Crossing the Bözingenberg in the early spring.
Crossing the Bözingenberg in the early spring.

Great! Someone Still Riding A Real Bike!

In the last couple of months, I have put 543 kilometers onto my Stooge MK5. For the last two years, I wasn’t able to mountain bike as much. Now that I have spent more time on trails again, something strange has been happening with regular frequency. Hikers comment about the fact that I’m riding with my muscle-power only. I have been mountain biking since the mid-eighties, and while I rarely had a negative encounter with a hiker, most of the time I met a hiker, we briefly exchanged a quick "hello" or "good day." That was usually it. Now, I’m regularly applauded for riding without the assistance of a motor. Yesterday, for instance, someone remarked: “Oh great, someone still riding a real bike!”

It left a grin on my face for the rest of an extremely tough climb. A real bike. So, in the eyes of that hiker, an eBike isn’t a real bike. It still has me thinking. Much may have to do with the fact that a human-powered mountain biker isn’t much faster than a hiker when a trail points upwards. An eBiker, by contrast, flies by with a greatly elevated speed. I don’t know what is going on here. I only observe that hikers have become much friendlier to a human-powered biker like myself ever since they have to share the trails with motorized bikes.

Offtrail.guru isn’t getting updated as frequently as I would like to, but sometimes there are other priorities in life. That’s just how it is. If I have more time to ride, shoot photos, and share them here, I’d like to bring a drone along on my cycling adventures again. I got my feet wet with one in 2017. In those five years, drones have become a whole lot better and a whole lot more reliable. But as long as I can’t dedicate any time to such a high-tech toy, I’ll keep following the drone market without actually pulling out my wallet to get one.

This article was updated on May 27, 2022

Patrick

Mountains are not stadiums where I satisfy my ambition to achieve, they are the cathedrals where I practice my religion; always on two wheels, no suspension and certainly no flipping motor.

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