RIDE TOGETHER WITH MBUK & CALM
Innerleithan 10th & 11th September
The Importance of Riding Together
Riding on your own can be amazing, space to think, time to reflect or simply shredding the trails at your own pace. But riding with a group of mates is so good for the soul, be it just having a laugh or being there to off load the weeks dramas or simply just physically seeing and speaking with someone.
For many riders, a group to go out with is a luxury often overlooked. But what happens if you move to an new area, where do you start? Sometimes a riding group will naturally drift due to the time strains of life, or simply you really want to pick up a bike but it's not an interest anyone you know shares.
In Mountain biking we're way behind our road counterparts with clubs to join and club rides to meet people on. This is where #RideTogether comes from. Created with the concept to bring individuals together, provoke a space to share a passion of bikes, ride some incredible trails and possibly connect again to ride together in the future.
While this isnt limited to a male issue, the simple fact is the female side to our sport is forging ahead and leadign the way in creating group rides, forums and a community culture. This initial #RideTogether is just a starting point.
Ride Together see's Nukeproof partner with one of the UK's leading MTB Magazine; MBUK / Bike Radar as well as the charity CALM (Campaign against Living Miserably).
For 2022 its see's us visit Scotland, England and Wales for 3 amazing guided rides on some incredible trails. each ride will be small groups of similar level riders (Novice, Novice +, Intermediate and expert), with guiding and coaching from the UK's finest companies.
Forest of Dean
For Ride one, we visit the incredible Scottish Boarders town of Innerleithan for an "intermediate level" ride. Partnering with us is Tweed Valley Guides (part of Nukeproof dealer Tweed Valley Bikes). Lead guides Tommy and Fi are fully qualifed coaches as well as possesing amazing knowledge of some of the finest trails in the Tweed Valley.
The days are not just riding- on meeting in the back garden of Tweed Valley Bikes, we're greated with hot freshly baked scones and cakes and fresh coffees (thaks to the legend Val), plus the nessecery saftey briefing and introductions. Its also an amazing oportunity for some last second tweeks and set up.
Saturday was billed as an "introducton to natural trails" taking on the Innerleithan side of the valley. Prior to heading out the Enduro World Series, we were joined by U21 World Champion Elliott Heap and Nukeproof-Sram Factory Racing bossman Nigel Page. A gentle paced climb up the innerleithan side of the hill, with Fi taking a riding positon and technique clinic prior to dropping into the first of our four descents.
Most riders had shied away from Innerleithen, with its reputation for "Downhill Trails" only. But as a group everyone was coached down some hidden gems of some fine technical singletrack. With Photographer Connel on hand we even smashed out an impromptu photo session before heading back to base. The Valley's legendary chef Val, had layed on an incredible feast for all, providing some much needed nurishment as well as space and time to relax and chat bikes with the riders.
The Sunday was billed as an introduction to the Golfie, slightly longer techical descents, with a little more climbing. Again hot scones and Coffee welcomed our 10 guest riders. Both days featured Ride Together Co-Founder's, MBUK Tech Editor Rob Weaver and Nukeproof Global Marketing Manager Rob Sherratt to oversea the concept.
Again, a social climb up to the top of the golfie gace everyone chance to chat, get to know each other and have a good laugh. At the end of the 30-40 min climb, most barries were broken and it was just like riding with a big group of mates. Again at the top Fi and Tommy lead a skills sessions, prior to dropping into a few of the Golfies finest trails.
Some 2 hours of climbing and descending later the proverbial "tattie bag" was empty and we were all down to the skins. Luckily for us, Val was once again on hand to feed the troops. A huge thank you to everyone that came to these rides.
The take away from the days was to see riders swapping numbers to arrange future rides together with a Facebook Group avaliable for those wishing to connect and arrange ride outs. Our hope from the event is that we can start to build more groups/ clubs to form in local areas. If you have the ability to do so maybe you too could welcome and support riders to enjoy your local trails.