The first time I rode a mountain bike, I was commuting to work at "Drug Mart" on a borrowed Schwinn High Sierra, circa 1984.
The bike gave me the ability to ride through several fields with steepish hills that I'd never been able to ride before.
Almost 30 years later, I'm still hooked. Bikes are better though LOL!
I tried a good size jump and even though
I made it I was scared to death. Didn't try
The first time I rode a mountain bike, I was test riding it in the street after Dad put it together. It was like a BMX, but with bigger wheels, handlebar brakes, and gears that I didn't know how to use at 13yrs old.
Once comfortable on it, I went straight to the jump I used to take my BMX over - but decided against it as this bike was just a little too big for me. So I then went to a well-known gravelly section of The Bicentennial National Trail which was behind our house to do the only other thing I knew how to do well on a bicycle at that point in life: skids.
The tyres were worn out within a week.
The 1st time I rode a mountain bike I was pathetically out of shape. I was a pack a day smoker, and I was very happy to be able to ride up one big hill a year later. That was 1992. I didn't entirely get being healthy till 1995 or so. Good thing for my long term health that this stupid sport hooked me so bad.
1st real MTB trail I rode had so many roots all I could think was this sucks.
Yet I kept going back to what is now my favorite trail to ride.
It's such a fine line between idiocy and genius.
My first time was in 1998 or 1999, can't remember. Rode my brand new silver colored Diamondback HT 26er through a local park that had mostly level, short trails running along behind it. I was hooked. I was a BMX rider in my youth so I was already familiar with riding offroad.
Now, the first time I took that "mountain bike" to a mountain for climbing, I suffered badly. That was on a 3 mile climb with about 500' per mile of elevation gain. That was tough. I made it almost half way up after numerous stops, all the while huffing and puffing, seeing stars, dehydrated, and with cramping muscles before I threw in the towel and headed back down.
But I knew I was hooked. I wanted so badly to get to the top of the hill. It took a total of 3 attempts, but I finally made it. And before long, I was making to the top non-stop.
About one year later, I upgraded to a Spesh Rockhopper Pro. HUGE improvement! I was climbing faster than ever and the ride down was much more smooth. I had my first bad crash on that bike, too. Road rash from head to toe and a dislocated thumb.
Sorry for rambling...
Default reply: DJ, thanks for your reply!
My first MTB ride I puked my brains out after a steady climb.
My first mtn bike ride was as a lad, on a Schwinn Stingray, bendix hub coaster brake, running 32 18 or 32-19 on 20" wheels. We rode everything... horse trails, single track, made jumps out of gullys, raced each other before there was even BMX, and raced oval around islands at abandoned gas stations with polished concrete and used motor oil on the corner. What we couldn't pedal up, we walked up. We had stair cases of orchards with avocado groves/orchards growing on them. I remember Steve McQueen coming up on his Husqvarna to ride up there, while we were 10 to 13 year old kids on our bicycles. A Honda CT Trail 70 or a Yamaha Mini Enduro 60 were what the rich kids were riding back then. The really rich older kids were riding Bultaco Sherpa S 125's, a few with Yamaha's 125's or 250 with GYT kits on them for more HP.
It was all fun.
it was on a late eighties fully rigid univega alpina uno, complete with thumbshifters, a SIX speed transmission and aftermarket farmer john's tires that my friend slapped on it. the ride itself was a mixture of exhilaration and "HELL no, i'm not doing THAT!!!".
this was in san francisco's golden gate park, the first place a would take an absolute newbie mountain biking.
how things have changed in those twenty-plus years...
Over the handlebars three times in five minutes. That learned me.
plunging like stones from a slingshot on mars.
RandyBoy, your story sounds just like mine. Only I
had a Huffy Stingray because only the rich kids had
a Schwinn. Those were good times.
Originally Posted by John Kuhl
My first bike I built myself... a Schwinn Stingray frame, cranks, chain, and seat post that I bought from the owner for $10. Owner, was a girl, she got it back after a bike theft leaving it parked at the elementary school over a weekend locked up. I had to buy a fork, a neck, bars, grips and some wheels with my allowance... Around winter of 1968. We rode without gloves, helmets, patch kits or bike pumps. The one tool always in my pocket was an adjustable crescent wrench.
I rode on the local snowmobile trail in the summer, because my husband thought it would be fun. It seemed so rough and rocky, and I had to get off and push up some steep hills (that now seem like small inclines). I saw the Singletrack trail entrances and thought to myself "I'll never do that".
Never say never.
I think my first mtn bike ride consisted more of pushing the bike up the "steep hills" which now aren't so steep,and wearing the brakes out on the downhills on an old roadmaster.
I was a road cyclist. I had never ridden off road. until I accepted to go on a first date with a mountain biker. He lent me a hard tail and for our first date he and I explored his local trails. I was doing ok until I rode a "steep" section. My weight was not far enough back over the saddle and I flipped over the handlebars, landing hard on my hip. I covered up my embarassment by laughing, brushed myself off and got back on the bike. Plus I enjoyed this guy's company and I didn't want to be a baby.
We continued to ride, check out the rolling hills and gorgeous scenery, Later, when I got home I inspected my injured hip... I had a bruise the size of my hand. Over the next several days I watched that bruise change shapes and colours. and I vowed I would learn to ride
5 years later. I upgraded bikes and equipment, learned to ride more technical, learned to dh (got hooked joined the dark side), visited many beautiful and diverse trails, broken some bones, bruised and scrapped skin... and married the guy who introduced me to mountain biking
Eat your veggies
1988, had my first job out of college and saved up for a Diamond Back Ascent I bought from one of my customers(worked with bike shops in NJ). Rode the trails behind my apartment after work every day. Got into phenomenal shape. Then started riding cliff side technical trails in PA with friends. I always had great balance from my 15+ years of sailing and wind surfing so I kinda schooled my friends on those tech trails.
"Hey man can i try your new bike?"
3 hours later i was digging it.
First ride was a solo excursion to the mountain bike trails at a local state park ("Really? They have trails just for mountain bikes??)
I had no idea what the hell I was doing. I didn't even bring a helmet. Took me over an hour to ride a section that takes me 20 minutes to ride now. But I had a great time, and came back (with a helmet) the next weekend.
This sport has put me in the best shape of my life - not that I'm an Ironman, but waaay better than before.
...I had the saddle slammed to the top tube because I was in the 8th grade and my parents got me a 22" 1987 Diamondback Ascent EX. They didn't want me to outgrow it, and I actually never grew into it. I don't think I ever had more than 4 to 5 inches of seatpost exposed.
"Back off, man. I'm a scientist." - Dr. Peter Venkman
Riding in Helena? Everything you need to know, right here
Had a department store Murray in Fort Sill back in 94 or so. Won't count that as it just had a few rides mainly on paved frontage roads or park paths.
Forward to 1996 I found myself stationed in Bosnia and upon my return to Baumholder i visited the AAFES (PX) sports store and found a completely rigid Scott Racing Comp priced at 999 and they sold it to me for 620 to get rid of it because no one was interested in buying bikes that expensive.
1st memory is riding on the dirt and gravel paths of Smith Kasserne through the wildflowers. 2d memory is riding with the Frieson cycling club to St Wendel to watch Frishie and Pezzo mtb in the Grundig world Cup stop. Took a good spill in a creek bed that ride. But was hooked. 3d memory--installed a RS Quadra fork in the front and proceeded to break my arm pulling wheelies (or attempting to do so) in fron t of the Lagerhorf Inn right before my 2d deployment to Bosnia (yes I still went). 4th memory--First real endo barrelling down a trail in the Darmstadt forest. And a whole bunch of others with that bike in Baumholder/Vogelweh areas.
Upon my PCS orders to Fort Hood I sold it in the Smith Bararcks Thrift Shop for 200$ I think it was and bought a Trek 7000 in Killeen. A few more bikes have come and gone since....
....went off too fast on a roller, got airborne, grabbed the front brake in midair, front wheel touched down and felt like someone yanked the bike from under me, over the bars, landed square on my head, and cracked my helmet in two.
Went back next week after I could finally move my neck again. I rode slower.
I rode my mountain bike, a Gary Fischer Wahoo, on the roads and paved bike trails for about a year before I ventured onto trails. The trail was ten miles long and after about a mile, severely winded and suffering I started looking for the cutout to the "easy" trail.
Pure torture. I could not catch my breath. My legs burned on the few climbs I could make and hitting roots on the climbs and descents was gut-wrenching. To make matters worse I was occasionally passed by fit-looking riders on quiet bikes who appeared to effortlessly float over obstacles that stopped me dead in my tracks.
Clearly mountain-biking was impossible and I was scared off the trails for about six months. I picked up my mileage on the road substantially, made a leap-of-faith and bought a better bike (a 2010 Specialized FSR Expert), strapped on my helmet and finished the ten miles...not in world record time and not without some suffering but I finally got a taste of what mountain biking was all about.
Now, while I am no professional athlete, my bikes feel like extensions of my body and I came to the point where I could finish that ten-mile trail in a time that would have astonished me at the first attempt...if I want to. Sometimes I just stroll along on the bike effortlessly clearing things that hurt me the first time. Sometimes when I have a day off I take a nice, 27-mile ride on out local National Forest trail.
I have a full-suspension bike, a rigid geared bike, a rigid single speed, and I ride them all.
I was a runner for 30 years and just got sick of it. Residency training made it difficult to exercise and plodding down a deserted sidewalk at 6AM became a form of torture. My last running dog got too old to run with me and one day I just stopped in the middle of a run and gave it up. I took a bus home. Never ran again.
Now that I have the hang of mountain biking, I never dread riding like I did running, even at my peak more often than not it took a huge effort of will to go out on the road every day.
Last edited by Ailuropoda; 12-13-2012 at 07:50 PM.
I had a mountain bike in the early nineties, a Bridgestone MB4, but I rode it exclusively on paved and dirt roads. Their were no trails near me and you'll laugh but the concept of putting the bike in the trunk of the car and driving to a trail eluded me.
My story is so long I had to put together a website to tell it.