Mountain biking’s history is short. It began in the late 1970’s or early 1980’s. Many bike companies started by repurposing old road bikes for use on mountainous trails. Trek and GT Bicycles are two of the most recognizable mountain bike brands, setting the standard for mountain bikes in the future. Santa Cruz and Pivot are younger brands that have introduced technological innovations to help conquer the tough terrains.
There are many mountain bike brands
Mountain bikes are complex and require a lot of work. Because of the unpredictable terrain they are often used in, there are three types of mountain bikes.
Cross-country mountain bikes are designed for pedalling performance against steep hills. Trail bikes are a great all-rounder. They have more suspension and larger tires for better traction and stability. Enduro bikes are designed for downhill descents, and are often used in races.
Modern technology has enabled mountain bike manufacturers to develop an entirely new type of bike: the e-mtb. The electronic drive units are powered by rechargeable batteries and allow riders to adjust power to their wheels or change gears without having to take your hands off of the pedals.
Modern Mountain Bikes: Features
Mountain bikes are more versatile than road bikes. It can be hard to choose the most important features. Most mountain bike manufacturers focus on suspension, which is the part of a mountain bike that absorbs impacts and improves traction. There are three types of suspensions available: full, dual, or single-pivot.
Trek was born out of a father-son riding trip. Bevil Hogg and Dick Burke founded Trek after they bought mountain bikes from each other to use. They eventually started the company together, and in 1975 they established Trek. Their first venture was in Wisconsin where they made hand-crafted frames.
Vitus has roots going back to the 1930’s when Vitus was a French steel-tubing producer. In the 1970’s Vitus became an officially registered brand and began developing high-end race frames. Vitus was a pioneer in the development and manufacture of carbon fibre frames made of aluminium. These frames have been used by many of the best cyclists.
They are built to conquer any obstacle you may encounter on the trail. Mountain bikes like the ‘Dominer Downhill’ feature a light alloy frame that allows for agility and Maxxis tires that provide maximum grip on slippery slopes.
Skip Hess, the founder of Mongoose, was working in his Simi Valley garage in 1974 when he created the first U.S.-made cast magnesium alloy wheel. The brand’s first mountain bike, called the ‘ATB Pro, was launched in 1985. It then transitioned from racing BMX to mountain biking.
Pivot is one of the newest brands in cycling. However, they are not strangers to innovation. They were the first to introduce the DW-Link suspension to their bikes, which makes for a more comfortable ride. The brand was founded in 2007 by Chris Cocalis and has since established its identity as a leader in technical innovation and high-performance.
The Rocky Mountain Development Centre can be found at the foot Vancouver’s North Shore Mountains. It is home to some the most rugged and diverse terrain in the world. Since 1981, they have been building mountain bikes there and are at the forefront of Canadian mountain bike development and the rest of the world.
You can be sure that the bikes have been properly tested on the trails and in the backyard. With its adjustable geometry, 12-speed drivetrain, and hill-crushing gear range, the ‘Altitude carbon 70’ Rocky mountains mtb is the ideal companion for difficult ascents.
Safety tips for mountain biking
Always wear a helmet
Mountain biking safety is one thing that you must know. You need to use a helmet. Your helmet is the most important gear you have. Helmets are nearly 70% less likely to cause serious head injuries than a fall, crash, or misjudging the height of branches. Brain injuries can have devastating consequences that could lead to permanent brain damage. It is important to use a helmet when mountain biking and make sure you protect your head.
Keep your control
Mountain biking can be dangerous and could result in serious injuries. You should not ride further than your ability and keep control of the bike, no matter where you are riding or how familiar you are with the trail.
Not only is it important to be able to stop, but you also need to have the skills to identify and avoid potentially dangerous situations. It is also important to know where it’s safe to stop. Mountain biking is all about avoiding accidents with other riders.
Make sure you have the right riding gear
You should not only wear a helmet but also invest in safety gear and accessories. The focus should always be on safety and comfort when mountain biking gear is selected.
While mountain biking apparel is very similar to other disciplines, there are some differences. Mountain bikers usually wear two layers of shorts. The first layer is typically a pair of fitted, padded shorts (also known as chamois) with a looser-fitting pair on top of the cargo-like shorts. Because you spend more time in the saddle while mountain biking, the padding in shorts for mountain biking is usually less than in road riding shammys.
Other safety gear such as gloves and body armor, knee and elbow pads and body armour might be suitable depending on where and how you ride. This gear protects the most vulnerable areas of your body, and can make the difference between a bruise or a broken bone.
Basic accessories such as sunglasses to protect your eyes or a bell to notify others of your presence, are recommended. Earbuds might seem like a good addition to your gear bag. However, if you lose your hearing, your chances of being in an accident are increased.
Hitch Bike Racks
You can basically break down hitch racks into two styles.
- Hanging style hitch bike rack that hangs your bike from the top tube. These racks are available in two styles:
- Single-arm racks – These racks are equipped with one horizontal support post to hold the bikes.
- Twin Arm Racks – These racks support two bikes by having horizontal posts running parallel to each other.
- These racks are available in two styles, the Platform style which supports the bike with the wheels.
- Frame holding racks – These racks are made from a vertical post and arms that clamp onto the bike’s top tube.
- Two independent arms clamp onto the bike’s front wheels to secure it in a wheel holding rack
Each style has its advantages.
As bike frames evolve to incorporate new composite materials like carbon fiber, larger oval-shaped tubing and strange shapes for rear suspension, the Platform style hitch rack has become more popular.
The Wheel Mount Platform hitch racks will be the best choice for bikers who are serious about their bikes and for those who want to make loading up easy. The Wheel Mount racks have the following main advantages:
- This is the only way to go if you don’t want your carrier touching your carbon fiber bike frame.
- Easy Loading – The arms fold flat and are completely out of the way, allowing you to load your inside bike quickly.
- Folds down – These are the only bike carriers that allow you to open your Minivan’s rear hatch without having to unload the bikes. (Please note: This is not possible due to the infinite number of hitch/rack/bicycle combinations, but it is usually no problem).
Frame Mount Platform hitch racks can be used to transport a variety of bikes and are cost-effective.
- Universal Fit – These racks can hold all standard bicycles. However, those of you who are obsessed with Tandems, Recumbents or e-bikes may need something more tailored to your unique tastes.
- More compact – These racks can be folded up for storage during winter.
- These are less expensive than the wheel-mounted bike racks.
Why would anyone buy a hang-style hitch bike carrier? These are the main benefits:
- Size – Bike racks are smaller and can hold more bikes in a small space. You will have less rack hanging from the back of your car.
- Weight – Less material means less weight. If you are looking for something lightweight, check out the Yakima LiteRider and Thule Helium bike racks.
- Cost – A hanging rack is usually more expensive than a platform rack.
- Crossbar adapters may be required for bicycles with unusual frame shapes, ladies bikes, or small children bikes.
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