Mountain bikers come in all shapes and sizes, with varying reasons for getting in the saddle. We specifically made our trails at Bike Glendhu to be welcoming for all levels of mountain bikers, from the beginners to the die-hards, and we love seeing the diversity on the trail. If you’re new to the park and keen to come for a ride, here are the types of bikers you’re likely to come across.
The Family Unit
Hats off to the mums and dads who make mountain biking with kids a priority family activity. We know it’s not for the faint of heart. The Family Units spend most of their day at Bike Glendhu managing meltdowns and feeding snacks into the mouths of their eternally hungry spawn. They can often be found loading up for a van shuttle or taking turns towing a child uphill with a tow rope and e-bike.
The parents are always equipped with a 10–20L backpack containing everything one might need to placate a fussy child in case things go sour, of which there’s always a relatively strong chance (we fact-checked). On a good day, they’ll get in some good ol’ fashioned family trail time before abandoning ship and heading to the café where they submit to the never-ending requests for ice creams and treat themselves to a beer or two (Lord knows they deserve it).
If you’re not sure what a cross country rider is, just show up 15 minutes before Bike Glendhu’s gates open, and you’ll surely see this ambitious bunch. These riders would prefer to be on the trail at 6am, but since we don’t open that early, they’ll settle for the 7am pre-ride commute to the park before the gates officially open.
While not true for all cross-country riders, this bunch is commonly found in SPD shoes and head-to-toe lycra to maximize efficiency and decrease drag. You can find this group lapping Rocky Borrow Show or riding straight to Falcon’s Nest to get their climbing in. For these riders, every day is race day. They’ll skip the post-ride beer with their mates and instead hop back on the bike and pedal home, where they fuel up with a protein shake and a modest few hours on the wind trainer.
The Strava Addicts
If it’s not recorded on Strava, did it really happen? If you’re a rider that falls into this category, the answer is a hard no. A ride without kudos isn’t a ride at all. The Strava Addicts live for the thrill of getting a new KoM, and they will definitely mow down your firstborn child to do it.
You can find them on any trail at Bike Glendhu, obsessing over a segment and just doing one more lap to try and knock off a few seconds. If they get ousted by another rider, they’ll pretend not to care, but you can guarantee they will stew about it obsessively until they can get back out to reclaim their position in the ranks.
The Downhill Purists
Despite common misconceptions, you can actually find a few Downhill Purists at Bike Glendhu, and no, they didn’t accidentally find themselves in the wrong place. The Downhill Purists can be seen with a full-face helmet, heaps of body protection, and a bike no one would dream of pedalling uphill. Because of this, you can find them doing laps with the van shuttle or booking out the Can-Am for a 2- or 3-hour session. They’re there for the downhill only and will simply not entertain the mere thought of a hill climb.
Ahh, e-bikers. Dare we say it; a group that everybody seems to have strong opinions about. These mountain bikers can be found flying through the climbs and making quick work of as many laps as they want, no matter the cost. Trail etiquette? No need for that when you’re powered by electric, baby! The motor power buzz often goes straight to the head for some of these riders.
Ok, who are we kidding? We love e-bikes here at Bike Glendhu. Sure, not all of them tend to yell “on your right!” as they whiz past, but we could say the same for non e-bikers too (and you should really yell “on your right” as you whiz past). While some might turn up their noses at e-bikes, the haters probably just have a hurt ego from being overtaken on the climb.
Look, we love introducing Newbies to mountain biking at Bike Glendhu. They tend to show up with nothing but optimism, a can-do attitude and a pair of running shorts that will leave them chaffing so bad, that they won’t be able to have a hot shower for weeks.
For the most part, these riders are just happy to be along for the ride, tootling along and taking in the views. Most of the newbies can be found on our beginner-friendly trails like Kākāriki and Matt & Gary, but some Newbies ignore natural selection and head straight to Hare Time, which is definitely not for the faint-hearted or limitedly skilled.
The Newbies are there to dip their toes, but mostly just to check out the views and enjoy the post-ride brews, and we can’t blame them. Everyone has to start somewhere, and as long as you’re giving it a go, we’re stoked for you.
No matter what category you fall into, we’re glad you’re along for the ride. If you haven’t already, buy your Early Bird Season Pass now before the sale ends. Adult passes start from just $349.