Muddymoles: Mountain biking (MTB) in the Surrey Hills and Mole ValleyMuddymoles: Mountain biking (MTB) in the Surrey Hills and Mole Valley

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3 things that really count when cycling

Posted by Matt, January 4, 2018 There are 7 comments so far

The Muddymoles at Holmbury Hill, December 2015
So having posted about what trends are looming in 2018, what do I think really matters?

Well, this is such a wide topic but I think I can boil it down to Community, Experience and Enjoyment. That does sound a bit poncy doesn’t it?

  1. Community. As I’ve mentioned before, somehow I’ve managed to fall out of the habit of riding with people, partly because my main source of miles has been commuting. Actually that’s not quite true, I’ve been commuting reasonably regularly with my brother in law on account of our wheels heading the same way at the same time, but my weekend riding has been limited. I’m not expecting an overnight change either but I do think that most physical activity is improved by having people to share in the social experience. It’s not just the riding though – the Moles have always been at their entertaining best when active online and I’m trying to lead the way here with lots of regular articles planned. I would also like to encourage anyone who wants to contribute to get involved… more makes more after all.
  2. Experience. We’ve done all sorts of bike related nonsense over the years and this year I hope will be no exception. I have quiet plans to re-visit Bedgebury when (if) it dries out as we haven’t been for years. Wales is a perennial favourite and I quite fancy either a bit of South Downs Way riding or perhaps some form of Surrey to Brighton ride? I’m also planning another day road riding round Boulogne (followed by that meal I missed last year), and have discovered that the Eurostar/TGV can get you a long way cheaply across the near continent. Might there be a chance here to try a short trip away? Any other suggestions folks?
  3. Enjoyment. Well, it’s always nice to buy a new bike and I have one lined up thanks to Cycle 2 Work. The question is, what to indulge in? That’s for another post really as here I’m thinking of enjoyment more broadly. Not just the bikes, but the riding. I’ve already said I’m aiming for social, but I’m also aiming for more riding that I enjoy. I’m not averse to a bit of ‘Wooo!’ but I also really like simply covering the miles. I think there’s a place for a bit of good ol’ fashioned XC riding without trying to Enduro things up too much, especially as the Surrey Hills is not the highest, steepest or rockiest place on the planet. No problem if people want to challenge themselves but I think heading out for cake is an end in itself!

So there you go. It doesn’t sound like much but when you add it all up, fun and good company always trumps bike spec. And I think that’s how it should be.

Matt

About the author

Matt is one of the founding Molefathers of the Muddymoles, and is the designer and main administrator of the website.

Having ridden a 2007 Orange Five for many years he's recently switched to a YT Industries Jeffsy, alongside a 2016 Marin Pine Mountain.

Lurking in the back of the stable, waiting for it's next chapter is a Kona Big Unit 29er hardtail, while an early On-One Inbred still whispers sweet things to him. You can even find him on road bikes - a Specialized Secteur and a Trek District 1 so far.

If you've ever wondered how we got into mountain biking and how the MuddyMoles started, well wonder no more.

There are 7 comments on ‘3 things that really count when cycling’

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  1. Steven Dunn says:

    Day out idea: Day trip to the IoW, there is something about riding on an island. Easier for you, Portsmouth to Ryde on the catamaran and you can mix off road riding with sight seeing and steam trains. My first IoW trip this year will be West Wight taking in the coastal path to the Needles (Alum Bay and Rocket Test site) then over Tennyson and along to the top to visit the IOW MTB center where new trails are being built (opens March 31st) – I recce’d this route in the autumn. For the road there is the very popular IoW randonee on May 6th, but I prefer to stay off road and avoid the crowds. 🙂

  2. Mat-S says:

    I’ve not been to the isle of Wight for ages! I think I’d be up for that. To be honest I’m just hoping to make it out on a few more moles rides this year…

    I think I’ve mentioned it before but a ferry across to Normandy can make for a nice weekend- we did it again this year with friends and I can heartily recommend it for food, cycling and scenery.

  3. Matt says:

    Nice to hear from you Mat, Normandy sounds interesting…

  4. Mat-S says:

    It’s been good fun both times we’ve been- ferry out overnight on the Thursday from Portsmouth, breakfast in Ouistreham and then spend all the time until the ferry back on Sunday lunchtime trundling round enjoying the countryside, beaches and cafes.

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