Tag Archives: IMBA

Fond spring bike pic memories on #10 of 30 Day of Biking in April. In this photo, here is what the trail should look like here in the upper Midwest. In this pic we caught this biker dude enjoying some time testing his riding skills in Lebanon Hills Park in Eagan, MN.

Bike Pic April 10, what the landscape should look like this time of the year

Fond spring bike pic memories on #10 of 30 Day of Biking in April. In this photo, here is what the trail should look like here in the upper Midwest. We caught this biker dude enjoying some time testing his riding skills in Lebanon Hills Park, in Eagan, last year at this time.

View the new  National Bike Guide and all the fun rides coming up in 2018.

Thanks for viewing today’s ‘Bike Pic

Now rolling into our 11th year as a bike tourism media, our goal is to continue to encourage more people to bike and have fun. While highlighting all the unforgettable places for you to ride. As we continue to showcase more destinations you can have fun at we hope the photos we shoot are worth a grin. As you scroll through the information and stories we have posted, enjoy!

Do you have a fun bicycle related photo of yourself or someone you may know that we should post? If so, please send your picture(s) to: editor@HaveFunBiking.com. Include a brief caption (for each), of who is in the photo (if you know?) and where the picture was taken. Photo(s) should be a minimum of 1,000 pixels wide or larger, to be considered. If we do use your photo, you will receive photo credit and acknowledgment on Facebook and Instagram.

As we continues to encourage more people to bike, please view our Destination section at HaveFunBiking.com for your next bike adventure – Also, check out the latest  Bike Guide, mobile friendly as we enter into our 9th year of producing print and digital guides.

So bookmark HaveFunBiking.com and find your next adventure. Please share all our pic’s with your friends and don’t forget to smile. We may be around the next corner with a HFB camera ready to document your next move while you are riding and having fun. Capturing you in one of our next ‘Pic of the Day’ posts.

Have a great day and a memorable new year!

Giving back to your cycling community you can enjoy some great ways to stockpile some good karma and it’s fun!

Do your part giving back to the cycling community you enjoy

by John Brown, HaveFunBiking.com

Giving back to the trails, paths, roads and events you enjoy is a great way to stockpile some good karma and it’s fun! There are countless ways to give back to your cycling community. For example, you can volunteer to support rides, clean up a trail system, build a trail, support a high school cycling program, or help repair bikes for new riders. Read on for some more details.

Giving back to your cycling community by trail buildingGiving back imba

There are thousands of trails throughout the U.S. and they all need help to stay ride-able. Specifically, repairing places where rain water creates ruts and removes soil. As a result, water damages trails even if riders, hikers, and horses aren’t using them. As a result of this damage, user groups meet to do regular trail work to combat the deterioration of local trails and paths. IMBA (The International Mountain Biking Association) has training programs that teach groups how to keep trails in pristine shape. However, If you are looking for something more immediate, track down a local group, pick up a shovel or rake, and help with the next trail day.

If you are looking for a few other great ways of giving back, IMBA has a concise list.

Volunteer to support others

giving back events

There is always a need for volunteers at bicycle events. Because of that need, many events offer exceptional perks to anyone donating their time. Examples are; being able to earn free entrance into the Bike New York ride, getting preferential registration position to enter into Ironman races that quickly fill up and meeting professional cyclists at Gran Fondo events. Moreover, the largest perk in giving back is helping your fellow riders have a great time.

Volunteer to lead others

Join a local club and host a ride! Use your love of cycling to teach others a great new route, new trail, or where to stop for the world’s best doughnut. If you haven’t ever lead a group ride, learn the basics here.

Get kids into riding

There are amazing people out there who have dedicated limitless hours to getting new riders on bikes. Two groups that come to mind are Free Bikes 4 Kidz and Trips for Kids. Both have placed thousands of bicycles into the hands of underprivileged kids. Additionally, Trips for Kids also offers rides and training for young cyclists. Check out the overview of each below.

Free Bikes 4 Kidz is a non-profit organization geared toward helping all kids ride into a happier, healthier childhood by providing bikes to those most in need. The public donates gently used bikes and thousands of volunteers clean them, refurbish them, and then then give them away to kids in need. To date, over 32,000 bikes have been given away.

Trips for Kids Started out as a California dream with a handful of volunteers. Trips for Kids has grown into a national movement with over 75 independent chapters running the Trail Rides program.

Keep kids riding

The fastest growing sport in high school athletics is mountain biking. The organization spearheading this movement is The National Interscholastic Cycling Association (NICA for short). The NICA Volunteer Program is your opportunity to be a part of the high school cycling movement! NICA is always looking for enthusiastic and dedicated people to help with a variety of tasks necessary to promote its programs. Tasks can include calling or mailing campaigns, research, data upkeep, event preparation and execution, and much more. Some volunteer opportunities can even be completed from home.

Fond early summer memories riding the mountain bike trail. Here in today pic we caught this father/son duo enjoying some time together while testing their riding skills in Lebanon Hills Park

Bike Pic April 3, fond summer memories stirs plans for 2018 riding

Fond early summer memories riding the mountain bike trail. Here in today pic we caught this father/son duo enjoying some time together while testing their riding skills in Lebanon Hills Park in Eagan, MN.

View the new  National Bike Guide and all the fun rides coming up in 2018.

Thanks for viewing today’s ‘fond summer memories’ Pic of the Day

Now rolling into our 11th year as a bike tourism media, our goal is to continue to encourage more people to bike and have fun. While highlighting all the unforgettable places for you to ride. As we continue to showcase more destinations you can have fun at we hope the photos we shoot are worth a grin. As you scroll through the information and stories we have posted, enjoy!

Do you have a fun bicycle related photo of yourself or someone you may know that we should post? If so, please send your picture(s) to: editor@HaveFunBiking.com. Include a brief caption (for each), of who is in the photo (if you know?) and where the picture was taken. Photo(s) should be a minimum of 1,000 pixels wide or larger, to be considered. If we do use your photo, you will receive photo credit and acknowledgment on Facebook and Instagram.

As we continues to encourage more people to bike, please view our Destination section at HaveFunBiking.com for your next bike adventure – Also, check out the latest  Bike Guide, mobile friendly as we enter into our 9th year of producing print and digital guides.

So bookmark HaveFunBiking.com and find your next adventure. Please share all our pic’s with your friends and don’t forget to smile. We may be around the next corner with a HFB camera ready to document your next move while you are riding and having fun. Capturing you in one of our next ‘Pic of the Day’ posts.

Have a great day and a memorable new year!

Starting a new sport like Mountain Biking is a ton of fun. The experience of exploring local trails and challenging obstacles is exhilarating. Here are a few tips.

Get into Mountain Biking with these few tips!

John Brown, HaveFunBiking

Starting a new sport like Mountain Biking is a ton of fun. The experience of exploring local trails and challenging obstacles is exhilarating. Here are a few tips to get you riding faster and smoother.

Mountain Biking Tip 1 – Hips Don’t Lie

Want to make your bike turn? Simple, just turn the handlebars, right?!  Well….not exactly. Contrary to popular belief you don’t really steer with the handlebars when mountain biking as much as you think. Your bike turns when you shift your center of gravity (hips). If you want proof, try this basic test next time you’re on your bike. Ride along a piece of smooth flat ground and push gently on your right grip. Pushing on the right grip will turn the front wheel to the left, and theoretically, the bike will turn left. What will actually happen is that your bike will jerk to the right. How can this be? Well, when you push on the right grip, your center of gravity shifts to the right, and your bike follows. So next time you ride, try and keep your hips centered over the bike for stability, and when turning, shift them in the direction you want to go.

This rider has shifted his weight into the turn

This riders hips are pointed in the direction of the turn

Mountain Biking Tip 2 – Knees In

Mountain biking successfully is all about traction. As the trail changes material, density, and direction, you are in the constant pursuit of traction. Losing traction in a turn is dangerous but mostly avoidable. To maximize the traction you do have, First, turn your hips into the turn like stated above, then also lower your outside foot and turn both knees into the turn. By doing this, you are lowering your center of gravity (giving you more stability) and adding force to the area of your tire that is doing the gripping. Testing this one is easy and FUN! Pick a corner you can comfortably take with some speed ride through it with you feet level and hips on the pushed to the outside of the turn. Then take the same turn with your outside foot down, and hips and knees pointed to the inside of the turn (on your outside leg, the inner surface of your hip may rest on the top tube. That’s OK). you should feel the difference in traction immediately.

Mountain Biking Tip 3 – Be Shocking

MTB body shock

Most mountain bikes are equipped with suspension to absorb impact and maintain stability. That suspension can handle rocks, logs or bumps smaller than your fist. While suspension does a great job of taking the edge off, most trails consist of larger objects. Your legs and arms can be your suspension once things get rougher. Keep a good bend to your elbows and knees, get off your saddle, and be the shock. You will find that with some motion on your part, your bike can start handling objects taller than a water bottle with ease.

Go Straight Really Fast, and if Something Gets in Your Way……….Turn

Sounds simple, but it’s the truth. Speed naturally helps with stability. As wheels get up to speed, they naturally want to stay upright. You will also find that the faster you go the trail will feel smother. This is from the bikes tires skipping over the tops of objects, rather than dipping into every valley between them.  Once at speed, try to keep your bars facing the direction you want to go and your hips centered. If the front wheel is always facing the direction of movement, its’s easier to maintain speed and stability. Speed does have its consequences as well. Always ride within your abilities.

mountain biking at speed

With more speed, tires begin skipping over the high points of the trail

Ride Within Your Ability, but Experiment

When you go mountain biking with others, there can be pressure to ride everything others ride. If a trail is filled with obstacles above your skill level, walk it. You may also want to attempt the first part only. Once you master that first obstacle, try the second, and so on. Breaking challenging trail sections into smaller parts, mastering each separately, then trying to connect everything is a great way to build confidence and stay safe.

By using these tips you should feel comfortable in time, exploring all the trails you area has to offer. Remember to start small and progress as you feel comfortable and follow the rules of the trail. If you liked this information, check out our riding hacks for road bikes as well.

Mountain bike hacks: fat bike tips and tricks for winter fun!

by  John Brown. HaveFunBiking.com

For many of us, riding offroad through the winter is impossible without a fat bike. Our trails get covered with snow in December and don’t see the light of day again until April. While riding a fat bike is a great substitution for riding a mountain bike, it does behave differently than a standard mountain bike. Here are a few quick and easy hacks to riding fat bikes that will get you enjoying the snow in no time.

Why a fat bike

What makes a fat bike special is its ability to ride though deep snow with ease. The reason it is at home in snow is that these tires are between 4” to 5” wide. That width offers traction and flotation on the softest of terrains like snow and sandy ground cover.

Tire pressure

With wider tires comes a larger overall air volume, meaning that fat bikes have more space for air in their tires than a standard mountain bike. Due to that increased volume, fat bikes use a very different air pressure than your standard mountain bike tire. As an example, in very deep snow it’s not unheard of to run the tires as low as 8 psi. By contrast, a standard mountain bike tire at 8 psi would be completely un-rideable. Proper air pressure for a fat bike tire can be difficult to achieve if you don’t know what you are looking for. Basically, you want the tire to be able to deform easily over terrain, but not be so low that the tire “squirms” or collapses under hard turning efforts. I find it easy to get here by filling the tires until they are slightly less than firm, then lowering the air pressure incrementally over the first few minutes of a ride until the tires really perform well. You will know you let too much air out if the bike bobs up and down with each pedal stroke.

Turning

Due to the soft nature of snow, turning can be tricky. While turning on a normal mountain bike you move your body weight forward rely on the tires traction, then aggressively force the bike through the turn. Considering snow is soft and will not support that type of maneuver turning requires a slightly more finessed approach. First, leave your weight in a neutral position centered over the bicycle. Next, shift your weight toward the inside of the turn and begin turning the bars slightly toward the turn. The front wheel is more of a tiller than anything else.  Use it to direct the angle and direction of the bike, but resist the urge to load it up with weight. As the bike angles toward the turn, focus your weight on the rear wheel. If done properly, you will feel as if the bike is turning from the rear wheel rather than the front and your front tire won’t wash out.

fatbike

Weight back and rear wheel doing most the work.

Climbing with a fat tire bike

Climbing with limited traction can be difficult as well. Rather than putting your bike in its lowest gear and muscling up the hill you need to be wary of not letting the rear tire slip. If you drop the bike into its lowest gear, chances are the rear tire will have too much torque. Too much torque will cause your tire to rip through the snow and slip. The best thing to do is move your weight backward and pedal with as even a pressure and cadence as possible. Standing and pedaling, or jabbing on the pedals will most likely cause the rear wheel to break free.

Ice and studs on a fat tire bike

On snow covered trails that get ridden often it is possible for the trails to get packed in and begin to freeze solid. Once ice is on the trail it becomes very difficult to control the bike with standard rubber tires. For this reason, I recommend adding studs to your tires if your trail riding is susceptible to ice.

studded tire

MTB studded tire from Schwalbe (left) and stud detail of 45nrth tire (right)

Overall fun

The biggest tip I can give to fat biking is to keep it fun! Riding a fat bike is a totally different experience than riding a normal Mountain bike, and requires its own skills. Try not to get frustrated because it handles differently than your other off road bikes, just focus on building some new skills. Also, with riding in colder temperatures, enjoy the time you have. While a 4 hour mountain bike ride in the summer is great, you may not be able to stay warm that long through the winter. Beyond the different skills and time, enjoy the unique rewards only Fatbiking can give you.

Mountain biking fun with the leaves turning and in their peak in many areas of the upper Midwest.

Bike Pic Oct 17, mountain biking fun with the leaves turning

Mountain biking fun and challenges with the leaves turning and in their peak in several areas of the upper Midwest part of the U.S.

What better way to continue your fall fun and your #NextBikeAdventure. View all the fun ideas and bike destinations in the latest Minnesota Bike/Hike Guide. Then plan your next outing with family and friends in one of our HaveFunBiking Destinations.

Thanks for Viewing Our ‘Mountain Biking’ Pic of the Day  

We are now rolling into our 10th year as a bike tourism media. As we pedal forward our goal is to continue to encourage more people to bike and have fun while we highlight all the unforgettable places for you to ride. As we continue to showcase more places to have fun, we hope the photos we shoot are worth a grin. Enjoy the information and stories we have posted as you scroll through.

Do you have a fun bicycle related photo of yourself or someone you may know that we should post? If so, please send your picture(s) to: editor@HaveFunBiking.com. Include a brief caption (for each) of who is in the photo (if you know) and where the picture was taken. Photo(s) should be a minimum of 1,000 pixels wide or larger to be considered. If we use your photo, you will receive photo credit and acknowledgment on Facebook and Instagram.

As we continue to encourage more people to bike, please view our Destination section at HaveFunBiking.com for your #NextBikeAdventure – Also, check out the MN Bike Guide, now mobile friendly, as we enter into our 8th year of producing this hand information booklet full of maps.

Remember, bookmark HaveFunBiking.com on your cell phone and find your next adventure at your fingertips! Please share our pics with your friends and don’t forget to smile. We may be around the corner with one of our cameras ready to document your next cameo apperance while you are riding and having fun. You could be in one of our next Pic’s of the Day.

Have a great day!

For some of us, there is an undeniable call to immerse ourselves in fun moments, in outdoor activities like mountain biking,

Fun moments mountain biking and the gadgets to keep us connected

by John Brown, HaveFunBiking.com

For some of us, there is an undeniable call to immerse ourselves in fun moments in activities like mountain biking, that gets us out in mother nature’s natural settings. As we experience the thrill of off road trail riding we search out stunning vistas while enjoying the feeling of life around us, craving the type of solitude only found in wooded areas and rocky terrains. Now, as the explosion of mountain biking continues there is a wide array of new bicycles, gadgets, gear and trails that we want to share with you.

Fun moments for a mountain biker

When an outdoors person is introduced to life on two wheels, fun moments are had and a mountain biker is usually born. In fact, the mountain bike revolution began 35 years ago by road riders who loved to be in out in nature. That group of riders from the San Francisco Bay area quickly shared their passion which spread across the globe.

With Mountain Biking’s explosion, we have seen the development of, bicycles that offer better control, clothing that keeps us comfortable, helmets to protect us in our moment of need, countless gadgets to keep us informed,  and all types of trails.

Tuesday morning and this mountain biking chick finds a dry trail to enjoy. In Minnesota, check MORC trail conditions before heading out

The latest in mountain bikes for better control

As Mountain Biking developed as a sport, people developed different interests and capabilities which have developed into different types of bicycles. Most commonly, people begin on a cross country bike, which is usually a bike with a suspension fork and a rigid frame.

The Norco Challenger is a great example of this type of bike, with an aluminum frame, Shimano Disc brakes, RockShox Suspension fork and Highly versatile WTB tires. It’s ready to explore any trail a budding mountainbiker could imagine.

Mountain bike gear

Now that you have found yourself on the back of a two wheeled wonder machine, the real fun starts. I remember my first rides in jean shorts and a t shirt, just blasting through creekbeds and rocky trails at what felt like breakneck speeds. In retrospect, I realize that my relative speed was substantially lower than it felt, but fun was had. What wasn’t fun was how I felt on the bike. As an example, my propensity to rocket through creeks in jean shorts resulted in a lot of time pedaling in wet denim (uncomfortable and bordering on masochistic). In time, my clothing transferred into more traditional bike gear, and my body loved the change. I learned that something like the Endura Singletrack short and BaaBaa jersey made long miles more comfortable.

When comfort stops being the factor limiting your ride time, you start doing whatever is necessary to ride with greater efficiency. With that in mind, no accessory offers more efficiency than shoes and pedals. As an example, Lintiman Adjust Comp shoe offers a stiff sole to transfer more effort to the pedal, while reliving strain on your foot.

Couple those shoes with a pair of Egg beater 2 pedals and you can now drive force into the pedals throughout the entire pedal rotation (both pressing down and pulling up).

Mountain bike gadgets to help determine when to ride

I will admit, after a few fun moments and the mountain bike bug bites pretty hard. In fact, it can become difficult to find time in the day to fit everything you have to do with riding your bike. As a result, you can either slough off all responsibility and ride your bike (not too likely), or start riding at night! Ride at night you say…. yes! Night riding is one of the most fun parts of mountain biking. In fact, if you have traversed your local trails ad nausea during the daylight, they will look and feel completely different at night. Simply strap a light like the Nightrider Lumina Oled to your helmet and enjoy all the features night time trails have to offer.

https://www.niterider.com/product/lumina-oled-1100-boost/

Where to ride for fun moments

There are plenty of places to learn where to ride. For instance, if you live in the State of Minnesota, I would recommend paging through the Have Fun Biking Minnesota Guidebook . Regardless of how you find the trails, knowing where to go can be a concern. That’s why many riders are taking to using GPS cycling computers like the Wahoo Element.  With a GPS computer you can track where you are going as well as where you have gone.

If you are headed out of town, a great way to ride unknown trails is through organized rides. An annual pilgrimage to British Columbia for the BC bike race is the highlight of thousands of riders seasons. Additionally, you can ride at many of the same locations you ski at, as lift service for bicycles is a growing attraction to mountains around the world.

 

Beyond the great construction and performance, there are also conversational reasons to choose Headsweats for your next hat.

Headsweats is helping protect National Parks through custom caps

by John Brown, HaveFunBiking.com

While strolling the isles of Interbike, there were many brands offering headwear to keep you comfortable, but none as interesting as Headsweats. Beyond the great construction and performance, there are also conservational reasons to choose a brand like this.

Headsweats the product

What sets Headsweats apart from other caps is their primary material, Eventure fabric. Eventure can be manipulated to make a textile that can be warm in one configuration or cool in another. Additionally, they can have the material feel very soft on your skin or be incredibly durable. So thanks to that fabric, Headsweats can make all sorts of caps.

Headsweats’ offers a wide range of caps

The fit

Fit for their caps is easy. They have versions that tie, flex fit versions and Velcro style closures. Once on, you will notice the sweatband (included on all caps) is soft and comfortable against your skin. Once you start sweating, these caps show why they are so popular. Within the band there is a sweat absorption ring that pulls sweat away from your eyes, then allows that sweat to evaporate three-times faster than cotton.

A Headsweat cause

Headsweats started a National Parks program in order to give back to the national parks we all enjoy.  20% of the sale of every national park hat gets donated to the parks. This season they have Katmai, Golden Gate, Rockies, Yellowstone, Yosemite and Glacier national parks. Additionally,  at Interbike they were showing an International Mountain Bike Association cap and donated proceeds to IMBA.

Glacier, Golden Gate, and Grand Canyon Hats

Why should you buy one?

With about a million different styles, there is no situation Headsweats doesn’t have covered. On top of the expansive line, they also have all sorts of colors and patterns available to match your personal style. Even if none of their designs tickle your fancy, Headsweats can produce custom caps for you and your team.

If life were a mountain bike trail and a wheelie or Bunny Hop Monday helped smooth out your day-to-day ride or aided you to drop into your sweet spot.

Bike Pic Aug 28, Bunny Hop Monday into your sweet spot

If life were a mountain bike trail and a wheelie or Bunny Hop Monday helped smooth out your day-to-day ride or aided you to drop into your sweet spot. Why not review the following tips to make your week an adrenaline high?

Get into the zone and plan your next bike outing with family and friends at one of Minnesota’s HaveFunBiking Destinations. View all the fun ideas and bike destinations in the latest Minnesota Bike/Hike Guide.

Thanks for Viewing Our ‘Bunny Hop Monday’ Pic of the Day!  

We are now rolling into our 10th year as a bike tourism media. As we pedal forward our goal is to continue to encourage more people to bike and have fun while we highlight all the unforgettable places for you to ride. As we continue to showcase more places to have fun, we hope the photos we shoot are worth a grin. Enjoy the information and stories we have posted as you scroll through.

Do you have a fun bicycle related photo of yourself or someone you may know that we should post? If so, please send your picture(s) to: editor@HaveFunBiking.com. Include a brief caption (for each) of who is in the photo (if you know) and where the picture was taken. Photo(s) should be a minimum of 1,000 pixels wide or larger to be considered. If we use your photo, you will receive photo credit and acknowledgment on Facebook and Instagram.

As we continue to encourage more people to bike, please view our Destination section at HaveFunBiking.com for your #NextBikeAdventure – Also, check out the MN Bike Guide, now mobile friendly, as we enter into our 8th year of producing this hand information booklet full of maps.

Smooth Out Your Day-to-Day Ride with Bunny Hop Monday, and:

Remember, bookmark HaveFunBiking.com on your cell phone and find your next adventure at your fingertips! Please share our pics with your friends and don’t forget to smile. We may be around the corner with one of our cameras ready to document your next cameo apperance while you are riding and having fun. You could be in one of our next Pic’s of the Day.

Have a great day!

If life were a mountain bike trail and a wheelie or Bunny Hop Monday helped smooth out your day-to-day ride or aided you to drop into your sweet spot.

Bike Pic Aug 14, bunny hop Monday into your sweet spot

If life were a mountain bike trail and a wheelie or Bunny Hop Monday helped smooth out your day-to-day ride or aided you to drop into your sweet spot. Why not review the following tips to make your week an adrenaline high?

Get into the zone and plan your next bike outing with family and friends at one of Minnesota’s HaveFunBiking Destinations. View all the fun ideas and bike destinations in the latest Minnesota Bike/Hike Guide.

Thanks for Viewing Our ‘Bunny Hop Monday’ Pic of the Day!  

We are now rolling into our 10th year as a bike tourism media. As we pedal forward our goal is to continue to encourage more people to bike and have fun while we highlight all the unforgettable places for you to ride. As we continue to showcase more places to have fun, we hope the photos we shoot are worth a grin. Enjoy the information and stories we have posted as you scroll through.

Do you have a fun bicycle related photo of yourself or someone you may know that we should post? If so, please send your picture(s) to: editor@HaveFunBiking.com. Include a brief caption (for each) of who is in the photo (if you know) and where the picture was taken. Photo(s) should be a minimum of 1,000 pixels wide or larger to be considered. If we use your photo, you will receive photo credit and acknowledgment on Facebook and Instagram.

As we continue to encourage more people to bike, please view our Destination section at HaveFunBiking.com for your #NextBikeAdventure – Also, check out the MN Bike Guide, now mobile friendly, as we enter into our 8th year of producing this hand information booklet full of maps.

Smooth Out Your Day-to-Day Ride with Bunny Hop Monday, and:

Remember, bookmark HaveFunBiking.com on your cell phone and find your next adventure at your fingertips! Please share our pics with your friends and don’t forget to smile. We may be around the corner with one of our cameras ready to document your next cameo apperance while you are riding and having fun. You could be in one of our next Pic’s of the Day.

Have a great day!