As we speak, mountain biking is changing. It’s not just the bikes either (so different today than even a decade ago), but also the sport as a whole. It’s no longer just a sport for a small gaggle of freaks that want to throw themselves down mountainsides. It’s going mainstream and it’s spreading as much appeal to adrenaline-hungry extremists as it is to outdoor enthusiasts and families looking for a dopamine hit, an intense dose of vitamin D, a release from daily life, and a chance to enjoy nature.
But there’s got to be a framework in place for the development to happen successfully. Many tourist hotspots have spotted the potential and are now investing heavily into family-friendly mtb offerings. More flow-trails are being built, creating the ultimate platform for an early, inexperienced introduction to mountain biking. But just because you’ve got little kids in tow, doesn’t mean you are restricted to regions with specific trails – in this issue there’s a bedtime story from staff editor Andy, who rode up a Bavarian mountain with his four-year-old daughter Maja for an unforgettable overnight adventure.
Change doesn’t happen without visionaries. And one such guy in the cycling industry is the Spaniard Cesar Rojo. Modern geometry owes a lot to this man, who teamed up with Mondraker to develop the concept of Forward Geometry. Not only does he run a successful design studio in Barcelona, he has also launched a bike brand called UNNO. He’s a man that’s fixated on pursuing perfection with the vision to adopt trends within design before they’re even a thing – but this comes at a significant cost. One of his creations is the UNNO Dash, a 29er trail bike that would be worthy of a place in an art gallery but we chose to lead it astray in Scotland. Find out in our test review if it rides anywhere near as well as it looks.
Our group test of suspension forks is testament to the continual development of cycling, and every year we’re struck dumb by the fact that certain brands still managed to raise the bar when it comes to front suspension. We’ve put the eight current most exciting forks on test and found out that although the bar is at its highest ever, there are some glaring differences in what’s on the market.
As ever, this issue is crammed with highly relevant and exciting reviews as well as exclusive views into the industry. Eight enduro bikes for under € 4,500 went under the microscope and we give the inside line on why perhaps your time spent scouring geometry tables for deep truths could be better spent doing something else.
Have fun reading this issue!