Minimalist Mountain Biking

What is really at the heart of mountain biking? Well, I can only speak for myself but one word beats with the pulse of biking and that’s adventure.

Excitement, adventure, invigorating, and fun. These are all words that can describe biking, there are many more but one people don’t usually link with the rest is … simple.

[rant]

Personally I adhere to the K.I.S.S (Keep It Simple Stupid) philosophy and to me mountain biking should be no different.

Yes you can have lots of fun strapping on a bunch of gear and armor and pedals and fenders and suits etc… but is that really the soul of biking, gear? The idea is to get out there, be out there, and love out there. To me there is nothing better than finding a great deal on a good bike that will be tough enough to prevent injury, throw on a water bottle and helmet and ride. I am not a professional, I do not intend on becoming one so why would I need the same gear they need? Yes for the most part more expensive bikes will be built better, feel better, ride better and a whole slew of other sales terms but what are you doing with that bike? Your taking it into a forest, mountain, desert whatever and riding, trashing, falling and living with it. I don’t see how hundreds and thousands of dollars worth of gear can attribute to the adventure lifestyle of mountain biking. Now don’t get me wrong, I love going to the shop and checking out all the new fancy stuff. Playing with it and trying it on or testing it on my bike. Yet as enjoyable as that can be I always have a pang in my heart that says “Why are you here in the shop rather than out on the trails”. I didn’t have that gear to begin with, it sure looks great and feels great and sounds great but do I really need it? Can I live without it? The answer is in your heart. Do you want to spend your time buying accessories, or on the trails?

Whoever try’s to put another down because they have a cheaper or older or whatever bike needs to get off the trails and stay off, because that is not what it’s about. All that matters is being out there and having a great time. I have found that the majority of those that try to put others down because of their gear are just trying to justify what they have. It’s a deep rooted psychological issue that usually appears in many aspects of that persons life. It’s quite sad to see especially as common as it is in todays short attention span instantaneous result society. I bike to get away from all that, the hustle and bustle of work and city and to live freely out on the trails where man and earth meet (sometimes forcefully).

I say chuck out all that crap you don’t need to ride safely, and if your getting started or back into riding go light, get an inexpensive bike and ride it until it breaks. Sure more costly ones may be space age light and so forth but why not learn and grow stronger on what you have. You don’t gain strength (body or mind) by making things easier after all.

For any that think this is a rant due to my own lack of a nice expensive bike you are sorely mistaken. There are benefits to having modern technology in a bike however to each his own.

[/rant]


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