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mountain bike magazine Issue 04 | July 2011 | Free Download www.freeridermag.in


L A I R O IT

ED

I’m happy to announce our first two supporters for Freerider mountain bike magazine. Two big bike companies in India which were showcased in our third issue, and we will have their support in the future too. I also welcome Kunal Udawat, our Public Relation associate in South India who is doing his best to push the DH and FR mountain biking scene in his region. It’s good to have him aboard. We are also excited about the Bangalore Biking Championships DH race and being their partner. We are looking forward to cover this event. I’m also fully prepared for the Freeride trip in India which I will be doing with mountain biking legends - Hans “No Way” Rey, Richie Schley and Joscha Forstreuter.

Editor-In-Chief

COVER - Rider: Simon Schwander |Photo: Mesum Verma| Location: Gurten/Bern, Switzerland EDITORIAL - Rider: Nilesh Dhumal |Photo: Srikanth.H.N | Location: Thurahalli/Bangalore, India

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CONTENTS EXCLUSIVE STORY Arabian Trails.........................3 TECH MANUAL Top MTB Tyres.........................16 HOT SHOTS Professional photos.........................20 TRICKNOLOGY Looking ahead & riding.........................23 WHATS UP Mud, Rocks, Woods & MTB.........................26 SHOW TIME

Photos from India,Nepal & Bhutan.........................32 Trail Gossip New Stuff.........................33 Sneek Peek About next issue.........................34

The Team:

Editor-in-chief: Mesum Verma mesum@freeridermag.in Deputy Editor: Vineet Sharma vineet@freeridermag.in PR Associate: Kunal Singh Udawat kunal@freeridermag.in Contributing Editors and Photographers Hans Rey Carmen Rey Dean `Blotto` Gray Srikanth.H.N Hyder Shaikh Prateek Singh Shivansh Raj Sharma Vaibhav Nijhowne Vinay Menon Doris

Freerider Mountain Bike Magazine #2434-A, Sector: 39-C Chandigarh. 160036 INDIA. ........................................................ This magazine is intended for free distribution and is only available through our web portal

www.freeridermag.in

........................................................ Feel free to write or contribute. E-mail us at: freeridermag@gmail.com

NOTE: We have done our best to make sure that all content in this issue of Freerider mountain bike magazine is accurate, but would emphasise that we at Freerider mountian bike magazine accept no responsibility for any errors in the magazine/content or any errors caused to your computer while reading our magazine.


Arabian Trails

Hans Rey and Dave Watson explore Jordan BY: HANS REY AND CARMEN REY | PHOTOS: DEAN ‘BLOTTO’ GRAY

When I received a phone call from the producer of the popular TV series, ‘Ride Guide’ asking me if I would like to go with them to Jordan in the Middle East, I was pretty excited. Jordan has been on my “Places to ride” list for a long time. Who wouldn’t want the chance to explore this ancient land as a biking destination? Most people have seen pictures of the sandstone city of Petra, I wanted to do more than see images, I wanted to be there and be in them. With that in mind, I hesitated for, oh, about a second, before I of course, said yes.

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My riding partner was legendary freerider and downhiller Dave Watson, best known for his infamous jump over the Tour de France in 2003, he has recently signed to ride for GT Bicycles . Freerider Mountain Bike Magazine | 4


Cory Horton was our cameraman and Dean ‘Blotto’ Gray, our photographer. Blotto is known for shooting the best snowboarders in the world including Shaun White, he is also an in-house photographer for Burton.We hadn’t worked together before, but as is the case with these trips, we got to know each other pretty quickly. We hit it off, working hard, but having plenty of laughs along the way and while having a pretty amazing trip.

Unlike my usual adventures, where I always plan from A-Z and have some sort of a mission in mind, this time we were in the hands of the Jordanian Tourism board. They had put together an interesting itinerary which once completed gave us a good insight into the Jordanian culture, history, food, people and landscape.

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Bicycles in general, are hardly used in Jordan; in fact, I didn’t see one single bike on the roads or trails the whole time we were there. Why? Beats me, I have no idea! Mountain bikers do not exist and bike shops are as rare as surf shops in Nepal. The good news was, we didn’t need a bike shop, as long as we had our own bikes.

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But that was precisely our problem, my bikes didn’t arrive, in the end, I had to wait for almost 3 days untilthey eventually turned up. Dave’s bike was lacking a front wheel and Blotto, our photographer’s bike was without pedals. We were in a bad and desperate situation. At one point I was actually considering flying to Italy to get my Euro bikes or alternatively looking for some bike shops in nearby Israel. But I did neither of these, as they say, “with every cloud comes a silver lining”, we made the most of our waiting time and became real tourists. Exploring, the markets and feasting on delicious local foods, especially the Hummus and Falafel washed down with sugar cane juice, yum. Along the way, we even managed to find one of those elusive bike shops where we could buy Blotto some pretty funky plastic pedals.


Once my bikes arrived and I had put them together, we were able to hit the road and head 30 miles north to the ancient Roman and biblical city of Jerash. For our Jordan adventure, Dave and I both brought our GT Carbon Force, 6 inch full suspension bikes, in addition I also brought my trials bike – just in case those cities of antiquity provided me with some tasty trials sections.

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Jerash, which originated way back in 1200BC was amazing, I had never even heard of this city before, they say it is second only to Pompei for it’s size and intact condition, although unlike Pompeii, Jerash was never wiped out by a volcano. The site is huge, and believe it or not, we were allowed to ride our bikes on the ancient Roman coble stone roads, off we went exploring under Hadrian’s Arch, the theatre, Hippodrome, Oval Plaza, Temples and Nymphaeum. The crazy thing is, this old city is built right next to, and integrated with the modern town; the contrast is stark.

Our next stop was the Dead Sea, 400 meter/ 1200ft. below sea level; the lowest point on earth on land. The air temperature was extremely hot,about 45C or 115F – we were grateful for the chance to float in the intensely salty water, which was refreshing, but it was also trippy. The salt content is so concentrated that it has 10 times more salt than regular ocean water, hence the fact that one cannot drown, no matter what you do, you still float on top. The high salt content also means that nothing lives in the Dead Sea, no fish, algae or even bacteria, it is an experience I recommend, minus the saltwater in your eyes, man that stings!

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The next day, 30 minutes south, we rode up the Rift Valley towards Wadi Mujib canyon, and the Mujib River Arnon, which flows directly into the Dead Sea. This is an oasis in the dry, hot desert. The riding wastaxing, the ground was soft, a lot like the dry hills in Utah, but we had a great view of the Dead Sea and after a bit of an uphill we were rewarded with a nice downhill. Once we arrived at the gorge, it was time to leave the bikes behind and proceed on foot. At a 328’, 100m high and 32’, 10m wide, the canyon was pretty spectacular; the 2 mile hike gave us the chance to cool down as we splashed our way through the water. Once we reached our halfway point, we came to a waterfall; our guide had a treat lined up for us. We got to rappel down the 150’ rock face to the bottom; that was a lot of fun, definitely not something I get to do everyday

Our next stop was a visit to The Zikra Initiative. This is a charity which is a Voluntourism program and was set up to allow people to experience a little and learn something from the everyday skills of the Bedouin people. In exchange for a little bike riding lesson, a mini trials show and letting the kids rip on my GT, we got to learn a thing or two from the locals, for example, how to make a banana leaf basket, how to make flatbread and even how to paint a henna tattoo.

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The evening was drawing in; it was time to head for our next destination, The Dana Biosphere Reserve, an area of 308 sq km of valleys and mountains. We cycled up the rocky trails to the once forgotten Dana Village area. Dana Village, which resembles ghost town in many ways, overlooks the scenic Wadi Dana and has witnessed human settlement since about 4000 BC. Evidence unveiled by archaeological exploration shows that Paleolithic, Egyptian, Nabataean and Roman civilizations were drawn to the area by the fertility of the soil, the water springs and the strategic location. For us, the main attraction was the14km downhill that awaited us after a welcome nights sleep in typical backpackers accommodation. The following morning we were able to explore the deserted paths, fruit orchards and trails in and around the village, we even had the benefit of a nice cool breeze, which was relief in the heat of another day in the desert.

Next we worked our way to one of the most incredible and famous sites in the world, the ancient and until 1812, forgotten city of Petra. Through a narrow gorge in the desert, an old trail leads to countless buildings and temples chiseled into the rock-face of the narrow sandstone canyons. Today the old Nabataean capital that was located on a popular caravan route, is a UNESCO World Heritage site and famous tourist destination, the Indiana Jones movie also brought this rose colored stone city whose name literally means “Rock” to the attention of a whole new audience. There are many stone building and trails that wind through a labyrinth of canyons and strange but beautiful rock formations. If only those walls could talk and tell us their stories from the past…. Freerider Mountain Bike Magazine | 11


I have visited some pretty amazing places in my life, but I have to say that Petra was a highlight. It is rightup there as one of the most spectacular sites I have ever seen and it fascinates me with all of it’s unanswered questions, I always like a good mystery.

Following in the footsteps of T.E Lawrence we headed to the desert known as Wadi Rum. Lawrence also known as Lawrence of Arabia thanks to the David Lean film, based his Arab revolt in the Wadi Rum some 60km east of Aqaba. It was time for us to spend the night in a Bedouin camp, but first, time for dinner, always a highlight in any day, We had a delicious meal made by the locals, its called ‘Zaarp’ and the meat is literally cooked underground. It was a feast. The night sky was full of another kind of beauty, I made my bed under the Arabian Milky Way. No light pollution, apart from a few candles, absolute darkness. The blanket of stars seemed descend all the way to the earth, giving the impression that I could reach out my hand and touch them.


The next day our mission was to explore the Wadi Rum for some trails we could use for biking , but it had a rather disappointing conclusion. As awesomely beautiful as the rock formations, mountains and rock bridges were, they offered little biking opportunities, especially since they were surrounded by soft sand and even the jeep friendly roads where not what we were looking for. I did find some spectacular and very exposed rock bridges. At first one particular rock bridge looked to be unride-able, but on closer inspection I found my line: I just couldn’t resist riding it, that was definitely a trials challenge and it got my heart rate pumping. The locals assured us that there were more ride-able trails, but time was running out and we had more exploring to do, the Red Sea and Jordan’s harbor town of Aqaba. Located only miles from the Israel, Egypt or Saudi Arabian boarder, Aqaba is Jordan’s only seaport. Once under Ottoman/Turkish rule but then liberated by Lawrence and Prince Faisal in 1917, it is now a thriving port and popular tourist destination for those that want to scuba dive and explore the Red Sea. For us, after several days in the extreme heat and dust, the 5 star hotels organized by the Jordanian Tourism board were a very welcome treat, such an oasis after the furnace of the desert. Not something I am used to on my trips, but hey, I could get used to it.

We finished our whirlwind tour in Amman, the capital of Jordan. There is potential for some great mountain biking, at this stage, though, it would be best for people who want to ride there to find a tour operator or guide that knows the trails and best riding spots. There are plenty of highlights and a beautiful culture to experience. Keep your eyes open for our TV production – its scheduled to air in over 60 countries. Ride on. - Hans Rey Freerider Mountain Bike Magazine |14


Tech Manual

Tyres MTB

TOP

BY KUNAL SINGH UDAWAT

MAXXIS

Highly rated in all reviews, the minions & high rollers are one of the most popular tyres for DH & Freeride. Most riders swear by them as these tyres provide high traction on all soils and are especially good over wet surfaces. Both score well on steep tracks as they provide solid cornering grip, stopping power and have tough sidewalls which prevents flats. The high rollers specially will let you corner at extreme angles, due to their hard gripping stiff side knobs. They come in a good range of sizes and weights for Downhill/Freeride.

MINION-Type: DH | Rating: 4.5

WET:

ROCKS:

ROOTS:

LOOSE MUD:

HIGH ROLLER-Type: DH | Rating: 3.5

WET:

ROCKS:

ROOTS:

LOOSE MUD:

CONTINENTAL Continental provides a range of tyres for multiple conditions and incorporates the black chilli compound which is based on nano technology. Continental’s mountain king series provides all round abilities on single tracks, or regular trails. It rolls fast with strong grip on steep trails and all mud/dry conditions. Though they are not as efficient in wet/moist conditions. For both wet/dry conditions, Continental’s equally famous Rubber Queen/Trail King offer superior grip. They travel fast over rocky terrains, rocks, bumps, roots and cornering abilities are also excellent again due to the sticky black chilli compound.

MOUNTAIN KING-Type: FR/XC | Rating: 4.0

WET:

ROCKS:

ROOTS:

LOOSE MUD:

RUBBER QUEEN, TRAIL KING-Type: DH/FR/AM | Rating: 4.5

WET:

ROCKS:

ROOTS:

LOOSE MUD:

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SCHWALBE

Schwalbe has a great range of tyres for all conditions. The popular Nobby Nics combine speed and grip to provide solid riding conditions on both dry and wet conditions. The wide tread in nobby nics helps get rid of mud very easily. For heavy duty conditions like snow, hard ice, wet rocks and slush the Dirty Dan series fits perfectly. These tyres are a boon especially during monsoons and winters in Himalayan trails. They grip very well in snow/hard ice with very less loss of traction. They also provide excellent grip on steep terrains and under heavy braking conditions.

KNOBBY NIC-Type: DH/FR/AM | Rating: 3.5 DIRTY DAN-Type: DH/FR | Rating: 4.5

WET:

ROCKS:

ROOTS:

LOOSE MUD:

WET:

ROCKS:

ROOTS:

LOOSE MUD:

DISSENT-Type: DH/FR | Rating: 4.0

WET:

ROCKS:

ROOTS:

LOOSE MUD:

TIMBERWOLF-Type: DH/FR | Rating: 4.0

WET:

ROCKS:

ROOTS:

LOOSE MUD:

WTB For dry conditions WTB has the popular Dissent series which comes in DH and race editions. They are excellent for dusty/dry conditions and very fast in trails. Not ideally suited to wet conditions as they pick up a lot of dirt due to the narrow tread pattern. For wet/moist conditions the Timberwolf series provides solid wet weather grip due to wide block patterned tread. The square knobs also provide excellent braking and cornering ability in steep trails.


KENDA

Available at: www.trackandtrail.in

Kenda’s Nevegal range are nice all round tyres for most conditions except wet. Provide good corner grip, slightly heavy but great for dry and loose conditions. They can wear out pretty fast when subjected to heavy downhill use. The heaviness factor also adds to a slow roll. However, they are easy to mount and good value for money. For a faster roll and better wet grip, the small block eight (SB8) series from Kenda is superior to Nevegal. However they are less resistant to punctures and not as great in mud and dry conditions as compared to the Nevegal series.

NEVEGAL-Type: DH/FR | Rating: 4.0

WET:

ROCKS:

ROOTS:

LOOSE MUD:

SMALL BLOCK 8-Type: FR/XC | Rating: 3.5

WET:

ROCKS:

ROOTS:

LOOSE MUD:

XR 4-Type: FR/XC | Rating: 4.0

WET:

ROCKS:

ROOTS:

LOOSE MUD:

XR 4-Type: XC | Rating: 3.5

WET:

ROCKS:

ROOTS:

LOOSE MUD:

BONTRAGER Bontrager’s XR4 provide excellent downhill grip in all mountain conditions. They have a good roll speed due to the closely held tread but they are not as effective in flat conditions. They are good on rocks, loose terrain and have strong sidewalls. Bontrager also has the XR2 series, which are good in most conditions however a more rounded profile means that they offer lesser grip compared to the XR4 on corners. They are great for dry conditions and provide good grip in dirt/roots.


IN

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Hot Shots Epic shots by professional photographers from around the world Photo: Mesum Verma | Rider: Simon Grimmer| Location: Shanghai, China

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Photo: Hyder Shaikh | Rider: Sami Makki | Location: Dighi Mountain/Pune, India

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ALWAYS

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and other safety gear when mountain biking, even if you're practicing on soft grass.


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k far o o l ers v i r d st ss if the e e l t s y a he f s ver track. Or ”, t i , e 1 tim Go ula he n o t m t o r n t ti o c o F ant a an d n e w i a r W e e u e u h Lik Yo r yo trail s th pens a n e a o , h t ti d e c ahea hing hap the Dire here wh are on a t t u some “Look in l end up nse, if yo end up g il l e sayin se you w egative s , you wil u n ree t a beca ot. In a id n e on . t a r a s o r t r e n to sie nce e tre a o h c e d t d n s o t i a an n i g g n in ing i d h d i s i r a r r c ree and

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ne ua not o s high n d u a s art i e c e t r b s s e i a t n n h s s mu Trail where o . This ca he top. T e zing i n r o o e , , t ead nd mem h jump n ideal lin ttom to a g nt in o ea a a k b t n r o i d l e o o n l l h fi ile ma imp mt . h ti o o r p w s f o t l g trai race rn ridin find the ot, is no a e a r ing o befo ver, to le ail. Then line or n g e st e tr d ar tyre or n a , How simple the faste line e front c in a e s ’ h m t t i fro ow ad of th strophi n ther n k e h y ead und ahe be cata ahead i it. W y. r l a ll il and t the gro at would 4 meters a initia r t a th na k s o k 3o a t o o , r l o e l a t r t s ju us t ty d try to o o n t y o r t n f o Whe rd, try n ly at the ou shoul y a n forw ly look o Instead, go. . t o direc descents u want t o steep rection y i the d

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The biggest advantage of looking ahead and riding is that you need not always brake, when you do not know what’s ahead. That translates to riding with a flow, saving energy and time, leading to faster riding as well. If you come across a situation where you cannot see so far ahead, try to retrieve the images of the line you had memorized. With that you can take a curve much faster, even when you cannot see what’s ahead. You should trust yourself to know where you would go in the corner and similarly you can concentrate on the next trail section as well.

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Whats up

We ended up with atleast 5 lines that all originate from the top of the hill and fork off at various points depending on which obstacles you wish to run! The ‘park’ took around 20 days to construct and has many interesting obstacles requiring varying levels of skill! Mind you this is not a hardcore pro level course, but has been designed keeping an amateur to mid level rider in mind.

TEXT BY VAIBHAV NIJHOWNE PHOTOGRAPHY BY VINEET SHARMA

MUD. ROCKS. WOODS and mountain bikes I was thrilled at the opportunity to build a mountain bike obstacle course along with trails at the Rural Tourism site of Malbar village in the Panchmahal district of Gujarat. I fixed up with Vineet Sharma and Baba Jan and the 3 of us eagerly arrived there with little else but our mountain bikes at the end of March this year. The village has a population of about 400 people spread out in about 40 odd homes and is surrounded on 3 sides by protected forests. Perfect!!! We were given a space of about an acre on an incline of this small hillock on which to build the obstacle course. After a day of walking the terrain and finding the various feasible lines that could be used to lay out sequential obstacles, we began the design, planning and construction.

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After the initial course was built, it took us a couple more days to test ride and fine tune the angles, shapes, take off and landing ramps. But that was the funnest part. Trying, making fools of ourselves falling infront of the villagers, and then getting down to fix the jumps! And once it was primed, it was pure bliss for any mountain biker. A table top that would make you fly without an effort. Berms that are in perfect sequence one after the other. Ladder bridges that are challenging yet fun. A skinny that is neither impossible, nor easy. And a teeter-totter that is not childs play! No need to go to a chiropractor – just take a run through Line 2A with the small jump, the drop and the rockgarden and the bones in your body will have been shook up proper! And when you want to catch some air, take Line 2B – hit the large table-top followed by the teeter-totter and the woops. And for the speed demons, there’s Line 3 which has 3 berms in very quick succession, a natural roots section immediately followed by a curved ladder bridge which is not straight forward to climb onto. And for the beginners, there is always Line 1 which has the Bamboo Bridge, a skinny, speed-up ramp and a step-up.

Apart from the obstacle course, there was no dirth of skill testing singletrack to ride in and around the village. There is a 4km loop of singletrack that takes you all around the village through the fields and houses and gives you a close glimpse of the real village life. And for the explorers, there are plenty of trails that lead out of the village through the forests to nearing villages and temples and the like. When the weather is right, a week in this place could be the perfect answer to any serious city dwelling mountain bikers woes. I plan to go back there as soon as the monsoons are over.

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NANJING DH RACE Mesum interviews the Race organizers @ Nanjing DH Race (China) Mesum: So can you give us an overview on who’s organizing these Downhill races and why are you organizing these races? Lansli: The race was organized by DeCharme Bike shop in Shanghai. The shop also organizes the DeCharme DH tournament in Jiangsu and Zhejiang provinces in eastern China. Each year contains five stops: Suzhou, Nanjing, Changshu, Wuxi and Hangzhou. This time the race in Nanjing was the second stop in 2011.

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Mesum: Why to pick Nanjing? Lansli: Well, it’s because there is a fantastic DH trail there. It may be the best one in China. You know most DH trails in China are 100% natural and not biking friendly. But the trail in Nanjing was built by local bikers in four years. Many challenging jumps and drops, technical corners are scattered along, almost every corner has a berm. It’s very exciting to ride this trail, with strong rhythm. Personally I like such trails. Mesum: More about the nanjing race; how many stars were coming and who all are the riders? Lansli: Nanjing race saw the best DH bikers in China mainland, such as Li Yu, Gong Yanquan, Li Ang from Beijing (All three won national DH champions), a French biker: Thomas Lecoq, sponsored by Specialized (he’s often winning DH in this area) and of course, me, Lansli (I was supposed to race because I am sponsored by Intense and Fox, but due to all the logistics involved in organizing, I decided not to race) as well as you: Mesum, you are sponsored by Santa Cruz! (Actually I am a dealer of Santa Cruz in Shanghai, perhaps when my contract with Intense ends this year, I may ride a Carbon V10 next year:) About Lansli, Mr. Dai Leming, started biking since his teenage, first road, and then jumped into the gravityside and never turned back. He opened his bike shop DeCharme in 2009, which turns out to be one of the coolest MTB oriented bike shops in Shanghai, China. As there’s no place in Shanghai for real mountain biking, his passion drove him to initiate a series of DH races within cities around, which evolved into the Decharme DH tournament, five stops a year. Now more and more bikers around China including expatriates participate in the amateur race series.

RACE RESULT

Group A – Full Suspension DH bikes - 200mm +

Group B, Full Suspension FR bikes – 160 to 180mm Group C, Full suspension or Hardtails - Below 160mm

1: Li Yu | 1:52:41 | Beijing/China

1: Zhao Liang | 2:03:00 | Hangzhou/China

1: Chang Bin | 2:42:03 | Suzhou/China

2: Thomas | 1:53:94 | France

2: Xu Jin | 2:03:56 | Nanjing/China

2: Sun Jian Xin | 2:45:37 | Hangzhou/China

3: Li Xian Yi | 1:55:37 | Beijing/China

3: Mesum | 2:11:84 | Switzerland

3: Wang Ze Zhong | 2:56:22 | Nanjing/China


In search for the holy trail My quest for the search of a trail began when I went to Uttarakhand after my exams ended and I took my bike with me. Staying at my cousin’s place in Dehradun I used to ride daily about 40-60kms just exploring the Siwalik Hills and the Malsi ranges. Trips to Mussoorie and Dhanaulti were normal. But, looking at those hills, I wondered there have to be several trails of which not many people know. Then one day, while riding solo, I stumbled upon this amazing DH trail about 5kms long and descending 1000feet. That day it was certain. These hills hid amongst them the treasure of amazing mtb trails but they need to be searched for. One day, me and my cousin headed to the trails for some photo shoots and in search of more trails, that day our car was not starting and so, Shivansh, towed me about 15kms uphill with his Honda Dio using a rope of 4 ton capacity. The maggi points on the way are the only source of food, water and beverages if you are not carrying any. The best part is when people see us bikers ride downhill or on the trails with our full face helmets they stare at us as if we are some aliens from outer space. The sport is so new to the country that many men call us insane seeing us ride on the hills, many look with awe and amazement and many even click pictures.

TEXT BY PRATEEK SINGH PHOTOGRAPHY BY SHIV RAJ SHARMA

After reaching the trail I discovered the last day, we began the photo shoot, and in around 3 hours we got some nice photos and we wrapped up and continued on our search. On the way there were several paths that seemed to be trails but they finished up in about a 100 meters or so only. We reached Mussoorie and hogged on momos and noodles in a nice Thai restaurant. Then a little up from Mussoorie, we were headed to Dhanaulti but we didn’t find any more trails that day unfortunately. We turned around and made our way back to Dehradun. Riding downhill even on an asphalt road can be exhilarating, but the oncoming traffic poses a major threat. Still riding down at about 40-50km/hr on an average, we made it home in about an hour. The next day we went to Dhanaulti and discovered the amazing Kedar Kanta trail. Unfortunately Shivansh was not carrying his pro camera equipment as we didn’t have to do photo shoots of any kind. So we clicked few photos of the trail. This one was amazing and about 10-12kms long. That day, I did a bit of trail shredding and came back home. Freerider Mountain Bike Magazine | 30


We found a nice trail just near Rajpur on the third day. I decided to take a drop and Shivansh decided to take photos. In first attempt I landed so badly on my front wheel that I was thrown over the handlebars and face planted into the dirt. I was lucky that I walked away from that without any fractures (Thanks to my helmet). After a 4 day rest we decided to go up to the trail I first discovered and explore it till where it ends. The trail was amazing, strewn with rocks and dirt, there were major switchbacks and the slope was quite that we needed to keep our fingers on the brakes at all times. We found out later, that the route was used only by the few villagers who reside at the bottom of the valley where the trail ends. I’m sure that there are many trails out there all over the Himalayas just waiting to be discovered by some mountain bikers whose hunger for trails is never ending like mine. So, just like we humans have an unending quest to find God, we, the bikers will always be in search of trails and technical terrain, no matter where on this Earth we may be.

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KINGDOM of STUNTS

TEXT BY VINAY MENON PHOTOGRAPHS BY KINGDOM OF STUNTS

It’s been a long time coming, India has been starving for an alternative sports extravaganza since the inception of this genre across the globe. May 2011, Pune City, Maharashtra, saw ‘Kingdom of Stunts’ a conglomeration of the best FMX and Mountain bikers from US, Canada and Australia all in one arena. Apart from the jaw dropping feats performed by the Riders, the spectators were entertained by some of the finest pyro techniques, fire performers and laser show. This Kingdom showcased the bike riders as warriors along with their fire breathing fearless damsels. Performing riders included X Games medalist Clinton Moore, whose one of the handful of FMX stars in the world who kills it with his body varials and super flips. Joining him in his gravity defying acrobatics were FMX underdogs from Chile and USA with their flip combos and mind numbing extensions. Along with the Motorbike maniacs, the ‘Kingdom of Stunts’ had the globetrotting mountain bikers from Canada with their massive step downs, flip whips and 360 combos. Speaking about the pedal pounding bros from Canada, the riders included the North Shore legend Dangerous Dan, street riding maestro Vass, the sender Mighty Mike and other big dawgs of the freeridemountain biking scene. Dangerous Dan on the microphone kept the ecstatic audience in check for their sanity, which they were losing every minute as the ‘KOS’ show was rolling. With ‘Mighty’ Mike throwing suicide no handers off the 20ft step down, moto whips and X-Up no footers on the Dirt Jumps and Frankie & Mr.Biggs showcasing their flip combos, 360 tail whips, bar spins& tuck no handers; the Freestyle Moto guys had to step up their game every run. The two nights gig at I.L.S Law College Ground, Pune left the spectators stunned and screaming for more! With an increasing population of our sub-continent looking out for sports other than cricket, we can surely see a surge in the number of alternative sports maniacs!


SHOW TIME

Ignatius Chen Chin Fa enjoying somewhere in Thurahalli/Bangalore, India. Photo taken by: Srikanth.H.N

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Trail Gossip

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Bangalore Biking Championship (BBCh)

Downhill Race 2011 First ever Downhill race in Bangalore organized by Bangalore Bikers Club and supported by Freerider Mountain Bike Magazine. This is going to be a big step taken by the Bangalore Biking Championships and we are super excited about this event. The official practice session starts on 16th July 2011 (Saturday) and the final qualifier run + race day on 17th July 2011 (Sunday). The race will be he held on a sweet downhill track which is less than a kilometer long, located in Thurhalli. To inspire and educate more people about DH riding, Mountain biking movie night will be held in June followed by a basic DH riding skill workshop which will include basics of cornering, braking, controlled skids, bunny hops and wheelies will be taught. So folks! Go and shred some gravity assisted trails in Bangalore.

More info@ www.bangalorebicyclechampionships.com

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