Apparently we didn’t scare Sean and Deanna off of mountain biking on the South Shore of Vancouver Island. They decided they’d come back for more dirt hijinx.
We covered a lot of the same terrain as last ride so they would have a chance to work on stuff they’d seen before and “figure out” typical tech moves that crop up repeatedly at Hartland.
Their Hecklers are a bit more XC oriented than our Nomads, but they are capable bikes and well suited to local riding conditions.
Their bikes have steeper head tube angles and lower front ends than ours which makes for easier climbing, but it also makes steep drops more challenging. Especially without height adjustable dropper seatposts.
It’s great to have a larger group out on a ride. You end up waiting around more, but that gives you time to chat and hang out with your friends.
Sharon’s enjoying the pay off from so much time spent learning her MTB skills as she isn’t at the back of the pack any more and she can offer up some tips to others.
Sean comes from a rugby and karate background. His style is to throw himself at the trail repeatedly and see who is tougher. This approach has been surprisingly effective, but has also resulted in some spectacular crashes. I gave him some body armour I wasn’t using for future rides as I suspect otherwise his MTB career could be really intense, but really short!
Deanna is a lot more cautious and she’s rebuilding her MTB skills at a measured pace. It’s going to take her longer to master the challenges of our local trails, but she’ll get there soon enough and won’t have to visit the hospital during the learning process!
We are continuing to get the riding position and the suspension setup tweaked optimally for their Hecklers. I’ve learned with my Nomad how important it is to continually adjust and evaluate your bike’s setup. Small changes can result in big improvements. Plus you get to understand your bike better.