Pinkbike Poll: Who Introduced You to Mountain Biking?

Nov 12, 2014 at 10:29
by Mike Kazimer  

I've always liked hearing stories about how fellow riders were introduced to mountain biking, the tales that detail the beginnings of what often turns into a lifetime spent putting two wheels to dirt. It doesn't take much to get sucked into the mountain biking world, and sometimes those origin stories can be as simple as seeing a video or a still image and being inspired to grab a bike and give it a go.

Personally, I was lucky enough to get started fairly early, thanks to a middle school friend. His stories of racing through the East Coast woods, tales of battling it out with other riders through mud, roots, and rock gardens had me intrigued, and it wasn't long before I was fully hooked, an addiction that's persisted for nearly twenty years now. Of course, it's beneficial to have a mentor for those early days, someone that can help you sort out the little details that make life easier for newcomers to the sport, offering tips on technique, maintenance, or the importance of not wearing underwear under your chamois. Mentors can come in many forms, whether it's friends, relatives, or local clubs who help spread the mountain biking bug, and in a pinch even the internet and magazines can serve as electronic mentors for riders who live where the local riding scene is non-existent.

Share the Ride Vancouver 2013
Pinkbike's Share the Ride charity drive helps get bikes to kids who might not otherwise be able to afford one, spreading the joy of cycling to another generation. Photo: Margus Riga

The age that new riders are being introduced to the sport continues to drop, and with the advent of scoot bikes, it's not out of the ordinary to see a three-year-old pedaling around on a bike, no training wheels required. These kids are the future of the sport, and youngster's like Jackson Goldstone and Finn Finestone are prime examples of what happens when you grow up in mountain bike's Disneyland (Whistler) and have parents that recognize the benefits of cycling. The next generation of riders will soon be pushing the limits of what's possible on a mountain bike to previously unimaginable heights, hopefully inspiring another crop of young riders to get off the couch and into the woods on a bike.

There are two polls this week - who introduced you to mountain biking, and how old were you? Think back to those early days and answer away.


Who introduced you to mountain biking?


How old were you when you started mountain biking?

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196 Comments

  • + 210
 It was 1989 and I had $750. I was either going to buy two turn tables and a mixer and start DJing or, buy a mt bike. I bought a Trek 950.
I became a bike messenger in Salt Lake City within 4 months. 4 years later I went on to work at a bike shop and another 4 years later moved to San Jose CA to work for Rockshox.
It was the right choice.
  • + 28
 I want to work for Rockshox !!!
  • + 2
 Weren't they in mountain view or sunnyvale?
  • + 34
 I was 11 years old, my neighbour and now close friend owned like a 2006 giant faith and i though it was the sickest shit ever. I saved and saved and my parents paid half and I got my self a 2007 kona shred in that rust orange right out the shop and they told me if I wanted to keep with it I'd have to finance it. Thanks to pink bike I've dedicated the last few years to buying, selling, trading and working to get my full DH rig. Thanks to this I can now count endless days I would consider the best days of my life, up in whistler hitting the park with friends, trail building and pushing my personal comfort and limits to see myself progress to a level I never thought possible. 2 wheels can change a life, mine wouldn't be the same without em.
  • + 10
 I started xc when I was 6 - my dad got me into it and we'd do some pretty cool single track! We'd go out on a Saturday morning and come back to pancakes with Bacon and maple syrup (my mum is Canadian).

My dad then sadly stopped, and so did I, until I started downhill when I was about 13. (Ironically I was better when I was 6).

Now I'm a full on bike enthusiast, slightly obsessive, and am despiratelty trying to get my dad back into it. (Xc over downhill - I can't imagine he would excel at dh Wink thoug he does laugh at me when I go out all kitted up on a 200mm travel bike and do what he used to do in the 90s on a hardtail with 80mm of shitty suspension! Times have changed!)
  • + 9
 I dont know about all you fellas, but for me, DROP IN introduced me to the mountain biking that was in back then. I remember running back from school to catch it on tv channel 27, and id try to do their tricks on my bmx after lol..
Thank you Drop In. I f*cking miss your episodes and just miss being able to live the 'life on the road' for bikers through a show.. makes me wanna start up a road trip show (Y)
  • + 2
 @MickB We were all dreaming about being a part of mtb road trip show once in our lives... Big Grin

I got introduced to MTB in 99 when local riders decided to build track for at that time really popular dual slalom right next to my home. So when big boys finished riding we, kids, went to give it a try. That was the steepes track in national series and no match for 10 year olds on supermarket bikes but it got us hooked in and 15 years later it is on us to introduce new generation to this absolutely beautiful sport ( term lifestyle became a bit of cliche but in reality it is still the best description what all this means to us ). Damn I miss those times, being on bike right after school till the nightfall, now it is hard to get any riding at all due to jobs and all commitments...
  • - 18
flag CRAFTY-P (Nov 14, 2014 at 4:41) (Below Threshold)
 I bought the turntables; got paid to drink, got tonnes of poon, and got paid to play all my favourite beats without ever selling out and playing mainstream shit. Played 12 hours a week over 3 nights and made $750 a week cash tax free. Bought a sweet rig to shred hills on. Played more records, got more poon, and drank more, then bought a P-bike. Played more records, bought a car, got more poon, then bought a trail weapon.
The moral of the story is: buy the f*ckin' turnies cos unless you're Greg Minaar your bike is not going to get you more bikes, pussy, and drunk.
  • + 7
 @crafty-P, the irony is that in 97 I left Rockshox and started doing visuals. I've been VJing for 17 years and I make enough to support my cycling addiction.
I know that if I would have gone the DJ route back in the 90's I would have gotten heavily involved in drugs. Cycling has kept me in balance.
  • + 2
 Hey I worked at the manufacturing plant that made the Rockshox crowns around the same time (S&S). Used to ride the fireroads at Arastadero and drop off of Skyline Road into Portola Valley in the 80's. Can't remember anyone introducing me to it, must have been a primal urge.
  • + 2
 They were located in San Jose, CA.............right off 880. Back in 1996, I met the engineering manager at a SAE function and a college buddy was their test engineer. Ah, the good old days of blown Judy Cartridges. I remember when they went public. The employees were encouraged to purchase stock. Paul Turner and Steve Simons were the only ones that made money on the IPO.........the rest of the folks that bought stock got soaked.
  • + 2
 It was around 1986 or so. A Kona rep came up the mountain and asked if we wanted a few of the bikes they were going to start selling (a green explosif that I still have). I said I wanted one and the rest is history so to speak.
  • + 2
 i was 19 y. and was on a formal ball. there was a mtb there with a very nice dress. it was my boss back then [ i worked in a banc] who introduced me to that very nice looking bike. i fell in love. and a week later we married. i rided her so hard she didnt last longer then a month or 3. so we got divorced. but i found a new one and learned to ride. she will last longer maybe not forever,,, no really. i ride bikes since my 3. i had mtb when i was 12? but only when i was 20? i realised i could break and turn at the same time. and only a few years ago i met pinkbike.
  • + 2
 @ExiTeYeS you brought me mate Big Grin
  • + 2
 I got my dad into mtbiking, seriouly he has better bikes than mine now....
  • + 2
 @ MickB I meant to give you a green arrow but hit red by mistake. Can't seem to undo it. Great comment. Yes Drop in.
  • + 1
 no worries brother Wink
RideMoreBikes!
  • + 91
 Lifetime of depression boy here. I'm into a lot of things. Snowboarding, playing musical instruments, writing/composing music for short films, filmmaking, art, blah blah blah. I had a friend I met in highschool through another friend and we all became our "group"

He was fat and kind of the butt of every joke. He left after highschool to go become a car doctor (mechanic) at some technical school, and when he came home he was surprisingly badass with how well he could turn a wrench. The guy got a job at a car dealership and met another friend there who got him on a bike. He was riding a road bike to work and back every day, and I watched as this guys life turned around. He lost tons of weight, was confident, started letting go of his insecurities and finding his niches that made him happy. Getting him on a bike was the best thing ever. I still didn't care about bikes, I was just happy to see him becoming the best version of himself.

Fast forward like a year or two later, this mother f*cker somehow dragged me to crankworx with him and his biking friend. Crankworx 2012 I think. They help me put together a Transition Gran Mal to ride up there and this was my first real mountain biking experience. Like heroine. We watched the whip off. We watched joyride. I had my first exposure to the entire mountain biking community. They started pointing out the joyride legends, the big names. For the first time in my life I found a niche that I wanted to be a part of. My fat friend who was no longer fat was shredding trails, I was so freaking impressed. He was in way better shape then me, and this was the coolest stuff ever. His friend ended up becoming a good friend of mine too, and our old high school group soon fell apart and this group of friends came together. Both of them are quitting their dayjobs and throwing their savings into opening a mountain bike shop here in Woodinville, WA (Coastal Cycleworks, should be opening its doors in January!)

cont...
  • + 71
 ...cont


Fast forward again to after Crankworx. We didn't really ride together after that. I sold my Gran Mal to my friends and got rid of my gear. It was fun, but I figured it was just a flavor of the month thing. Next Crankworx rolls around and they somehow dragged me into it again. Swear I was hooked for good this time. Nope. After Crankworx I slipped back into my depression and distanced myself from all my friends. Went into the biggest dark point of my entire life, fell off the face of the planet forever. It wasn't until Spring, when they both reached out to me to get me on a bike again when I realized the exercise and adrenaline I get from biking is literally the antidote for my depression. I built up my very first real park bike (TR250) and made the most of this third season. I hit Stevens Bike Park at least 10 times and did the Crankworx trip again (I was the f*cker in the pigeon mask at Joyride). Finally tried riding alone, realized I progressed a buttload. Somehow I believed in myself enough to know I had what it took to really kill it on a mountain bike, and that being on a bike made me happy. Best season to date. This was this past summer.

Recently sold the TR250, looking to learn how to build my own bike this winter and working on a way to get on a road bike so I can be on a bike year round, commute to work on one, and also build something else to play in the woods after work. I left out a lot of shitty gritty details about some times when I was in a hole, but there's no doubt that mountain biking did what no doctor could. I've never been so content with life, everything around me is seemingly improving. My relationships with people are awesome, I don't randomly fall off the planet and not talk to my friends for 6 months, I was part of my former-fat-friends wedding a couple weeks ago. It's weird to credit so much of it to biking, but my god biking has absolutely brought me salvation of sorts.

cont...
  • + 60
 ...cont

Looking back, there's a few things that I wish were different for biking. Coming into it so late into the game is really weird (lots of you have been doing this since your tweenz), but it allows me to see things from a somewhat fresh-eyed perspective.

First thing's first - the barriers to entry to get into mountain biking, especially park riding, are WAY too expensive and confusing. People look at the price of bikes and will never ever consider it again. I consider myself lucky to have been dragged to Crankworx to rekindle the love of being on a bike, something I thought I had grown out of and happily learned that it's an excitement that never goes away no matter how old you are.

Second, the availability of bike parts in stores is awful. Your local bike shop might have lots of cool shit, but realistically if there's certain things you are after you can spend weeks hunting for a part. The market for mountain biking is very interesting, it has a very community-driven economy yet the card holders (big manufacturers) are really difficult with how they distribute their products. It's easy to walk into any bike shop and say hey give me any bike I wanna go mountain biking, but it's hard to have an exact bike or part in mind that you want and be able to get it anywhere, even online. Sometimes having to use bike shops as a middle man to get certain products is extremely time consuming and painful.

cont...
  • + 55
 ...cont

Third, the thing so much of us struggle with... places to ride. Duthie Hill is a local spot in my state (WA) that seems to have somehow done the trail-building thing right. They didn't go renegade, they worked with the city council, they got donors and even huge grants from the city to make something that was protected under law. No angry mom can walk in and sue Duthie, no fat angry old men can come in and tear down jumps and get rid of it. I understand city councils are god awful to deal with, but if you are struggling to keep your trails hidden from the public eye and trying to go full renegade with your spots, I urge you to look towards the story of Duthie and use it as leverage and an example of what a positive impact a piece of land sanctioned for mountain biking can do for communities. That spot absolutely thrives, it might not be as big as the bike parks I enjoy, but it's the spot we take people to try and get them into mountain biking.

cont...
  • + 63
 ...cont Lastly, in order for the sport to survive it has to grow. Like my friends did for me, we should try our hand in helping someone new get on a bike. Yes it takes patience and my friends had a lot of patience with me washing out on dusty berms or flying over my handlebars and busting myself on peak to creek, but they also saved my happiness. Reach out to the people around you. I see a lot of people who are so hellbent on their own progression that they often forget about the community this sport brings to us all. I love honing my skills in the park, getting sideways on huge tables, but in the end this still isn't about me. I want other people to be able to feel what I've felt. Everyone should have the chance to appreciate something as thrilling and exciting as mountain biking. A lot of people want to focus on how DH is dying rather then the few lucky ones like me who are still able to get into DH riding this late into it's existence, and using what worked with me on other people. Get friends or acquaintances on bikes, it literally might just open up a new world for them. I work a pretty lucrative manufacturing job building airplanes, but if I were to ever get laid off, for the first time in my life I'm not afraid. I know what I would do. I'd get a crappy part time job washing dishes in Whistler and I'd ride my bike more. And I'd be happy as a clam. Fuck yeah, biking. Cool novel bro. Sorry
  • + 51
 P.S. one other thing that kind of sucks about mountain biking if you've never heard of it before. Crankworx? Never heard of it before my friend. Downhill biking? You know it exists because every once and then you'll see a Redbull commercial where someones hucking a cliff. Other then that, the marketing for the sport currently sucks absolute balls. I also snowboard, and snowboarding has come a long ways in the last decade. Shaun White is a major tool but his brand and marketing with Burton has really brought snowboarding into just about every middle class home in my area. So many people snowboard, but nobody has ever even heard of a bike park. When Stevens Pass, which is jam packed in the winter time, opened their doors for a bike park a few years ago, nobody knew what to make of it. After it's third season there's still tons of people who haven't heard of it and don't know what it is.
  • - 37
flag parallaxid (Nov 13, 2014 at 22:11) (Below Threshold)
 tl;dr
  • + 13
 i know, i apologize Frown

tl;dr - bieks man
  • + 16
 I'm upping (?) propping (?) every page of your post. Love your passion anchoricex. Thanks!
  • + 48
 This man wins the award for longest pb comment! On the other hand it was a good read!
  • + 3
 It is funny how few people even realize downhill mountain biking exists. I snowboard as well at some of the same mountains that have bike parks in the summer and it's amazing how many of the winter crowd has no idea that the bike trails even exist. I can't count how many times I've been on the ski lift where some of the bike Park features are in view (jumps,drops,wall rides etc) and the skiers and snowboarders on the lift have no clue what the features are and that they are part of a bike Park.
  • - 4
flag HutchJR (Nov 14, 2014 at 0:02) (Below Threshold)
 Mad respect goes out to whoever read all of that^^
  • + 57
 I dunno, if you stuck a few photos between the lines, it would be front page article material... (imo)
  • + 3
 i read it haha but its long but oh boy it was a good read Smile
  • + 6
 nice story bro, really nice. I feel free when im riding my bike. Life cant fuck with me!
  • + 1
 Enjoyed that Smile Know how you feel bros !
  • + 3
 Even if the economies crashed and the world fell apart I know where I'd be and who I'd be with, still shredding with a smile on our faces and our tongues hanging out like dogs
  • + 7
 anchoricex, good for you but your PS...

I don't get this so very american obsession with the sport must grow and the sport must change so it can survive.
That's total BS! first off all why wouldn't it survive? Are you worried about the industry? There is also the possibility of small and healthy

And second what does someone who likes riding mountain bikes gain from growing and mountain biking getting more popular than it is? The only thing that would happen more people on trails and therefore more problems with with non-bikers which again would most likely result in mountain bikers getting banned from more trails that they are right now...

You are 3 seasons into the sport and therefore probably don't remember mountain biking in the 90s. Everything, especially in the US was hyped, there was MTB on mainstream TV, there where huge money loaded sponsors pumping money into the sports, there used to be athletes making hundreds of thousands of dollars a year but it was a bubble just like real-estate, and than some day as it always does it busted.
A lot of the small independent bike companies went into bankruptcy if they haven't already before because the could not afford to go the pace of the bigger once, pay athletes or compete in international racing any more because it all got simply to expensive.

Example: Back in these days there was Bontrager, there was Klein and Gary Fisher, legendary names. Everything that is left from these guys 20 years later is a name on plastic bottle cages for Trek...

What we should do is wish for is small and healthy... in the end we are mountain bikers and not stock brokers and we should care about riding and not growth rates...
  • - 2
 While I'm not old enough to even remember a good part of the 90s I do know for a fact that all Bontrager components are still going strong and Gary Fisher still works in designing every 29er in the Trek range. In case you are wondering why I'm sure, it's because I work in a Trek dealer bike shop.
  • + 5
 Lol you are cute... Do you have any idea what those brands and persons where or what the did for the sport before their companies got mashed into trek? Man... do your homework... especially if you sell Trek!
  • + 1
 @sino428 I've noticed the same thing at the 2 bike parks I've been to. People are at the resort and are just dumbfounded seeing mountain bikers.
  • + 2
 I certainly do know exactly what both of those amazing people did before 'getting mashed into Trek'. But I was getting at the fact that all those small independent bike companies are still there, maybe under a different name but the work that goes on in them is still very similar
  • + 2
 I lovdd it!!!! Congrats!!
  • + 38
 When I was in 5th grade, my dad insisted I get a Schwinn Woodlands mountain bike instead of a BMX bike. I resisted but eventually gave in. Little did he know he was creating a monster that's still going strong 20 years later. Just last summer he joined me and my brothers at Whistler; 60 years old and mountain biking for the first time. Cheers Dad!
  • + 23
 If only every mountain biking video was like this, did it for me.
  • + 6
 hey I'm kyle j
  • + 4
 same for me! My friend got me into riding everyday. That video got me into downhill. Still one of my all time favorites for a mountain bike vid.
  • + 2
 Everyone rode bikes as a kid, what got me into mountain biking was Drop In season 1. All I wanted to be was a ditbag riding a bus from spot to spot with my buds. That show opened my eyes to a whole new world.
  • + 20
 Poll is missing "myself" option.

Went riding at park, discovered MTB trails there, just started riding them, got addicted, rest is history.
  • + 4
 Exactly. Start with commuting, and after it was natural to switch my hiking activities to mtb.
  • + 2
 same with me. was bored at home, and went riding at the bike park not far from home, and here im a weekend warrior Big Grin
  • + 1
 But how did you know mtb exists? Where did you see one first? Someone had to show you one, if not, then on TV.
  • + 2
 i agree w jamminator, poll needs a "myself" option. i was a cat 2 roadie back in '86. sold some junk off to buy a hoo koo e koo, thought it would be an additional way to stay fit. sold the road bike a year later to buy an american M16.
  • + 1
 Started with skateboarding, but very soon found out that doing the same thing on a bike is much more fun. Faster, higher, more adrenalin, more freedom. 11 years later i still love riding my bike just as much as when I just discovered it. Only back then I had time to ride my bike literally every single day. Now I dont.
  • + 15
 I was a punk bmx kid who thought mountain biking was for p*****s. Took a trip to whistler with my parents and saw the bike park. Begged them to ride, and got one day in. Almost all skills that i had learned bmxing transferred over to dh mountain biking and i was able to rip a-line all day. Last time i touched a bmx bike was when i sold it to buy my by downhill bike Wink
  • + 3
 You're lucky that was your first experience. I first got suckered into a Cross Country bike from BMX. Thing was awkward to ride and fell apart almost instantly. I didn't touch a mountain bike for 10 years after that. Now mountain biking is all I can think about. Though I did just build up a BMX to ride pump tracks and do manuals getting around the neighborhood.
  • + 2
 Bmx can be fun to joke around on for sure. I feel ya man, i was sitting in class dreaming about all the lines i was gonna build this weekend
  • + 9
 I started mountain biking because I used to ride my bike to this strength camp at the highschool when I was a wee middle schooler because my parents signed me up for it. I didn't mind it but it wasnt what I would consider fun. One day I was late and didn't want to be embarrassed or yelled at by the coaches for it so I took off to the nearest local singletrack. I was completely unprepared and had no idea what I was doing and perhaps stupid but I dit it anyway. Eventually I started to ditch this camp to go ride as I figure it too was healthy. I found myself out there more and more and eventually went with a friend. Got a real MTB from the parentos (my first was 29er weird eh) and started going more and more to the neighborhood trails. Eventually I found highschool mountain biking which has led me to a job at the local sponsor shop, captaining the team and my life revolving around it including this website. I think I owe MTB everything and I will love it to life. Moral of the story, middle school makes you change and do weird things and strength camp is not my cup of tea.
  • + 7
 I only got into MTBing after a horrible motorcycle accident leaving me with 11 broken bones(5 in my back) collassed lung and a bunch more. Doc said I need a low impact sport for rehab. I was 24. I wish my pops got me into it when I was younger. I plan on changing the pattern with my 2 year old Daughter. She's already riding her strider off road!!! Cheers
  • + 6
 weird guy across the hall in the dorm sophomore year who always came back from rides all muddy and happy. talked me into taking my old schwinn varsity cruiser out on the local trails and had a blast, got a real mountain bike that week and never looked back!
  • + 10
 I invented mountain biking.
  • + 0
 Sorry but didn't you hear ? Canadia invented mountain biking !
  • + 6
 Raced motocross, saw people on mountain bikes at the races, thought it was cool. When I couldn't ride motocross as much as I wanted to I started to look into mountain biking, and my ex-pro cross country racer uncle thought that was awesome. I went out with him to Whistler after 2 years of riding dirtjumps and it turned out I wasn't exactly terrible at downhill. Even hit up most of the technical trails on a rental my first day riding. Soon as I got back to Ontario I found a DH bike for sale and haven't looked back since. Still provides the best times ever in my life
  • + 2
 I've got the same story as you man. Didn't start riding mtb's till I was 20, now I'm 22 and even if I had the money to race moto again I would probably stick to the cycle. Less money, less stress, less technical difficulties. I am grateful that I started cross training with XC for moto which ultimately opened my eyes to the hobby I'll take with me to the grave.
  • + 5
 1985. I was 15y.o. A classmate did his Oral on mtbiking and brought his bike in class, a Specialized Stumpjumper. It was love at 1st sight (w. the bike, not the classmate :-) ). Not so long after, I started hangin' with a couple new friends and one of 'em showed up at school w. his brand new and gorgeous 1986 pearl blue Nishiki Barbarian. Worked all fall and winter as a paperboy and shoveling the snow of neighbors to get myself a mtb. It happened in March 1986. I bought a brand new Norco Bigfoot from a local shop (Le Velomane) for $440.00. Boy, did I have fun on this bike. Never Quit since then. IMany bikes and 3 decades (almost) later, I can say, too, that I have introduced many people to mtbikng. A few years ago, my girlfriend and I met new people who then introduced us to their friends and with whom we're now all the best friends in the world and I introduced them all to mountain biking, as well as my girlfriend and every single one of them, men and women, are now as passionate, avid and committed riders as I am. Our summers, trips, vacations... are all planned around mountain biking. And since then, we all got kids who now pedal on two wheels and have been introduced, by us, to this wonderful sport. It is now a family affair. We're part of the same mtb club (Subway-Sigma -which may be, with close to 500 members the biggest mtb club in N.A. unless s/o tells me otherwise- a really great organization! ) And I am still riding w. one of my riding buddies from the 80's who also never quit mtbiking. Love these guys, love the sport. Wish illness or injuries never force me away from it.
  • + 4
 We where allways kids on bikes razing aboot building jumps with milk crates an exploring in the woods. BMX bikes at the time,then in the mid 80's Raleigh bombers where the new thing that the older kids had. Got my first cheap klunker an started exploring a bit further into the woods. After local moto enduros we would go out the day after an ride thier leftover trails cut in the forest. Then I left school an started work, having my own cash an buying magazines ment better bikes. Then through meeting another local I was introduced to Tom Sillis. He lived out in the woods an organised local rides an meets, he also had a shop in the next town over, Sugar City cycles. I spent hours in that shop just hanging out, drooling over the bikes that Tom was importing into the UK. This is where an when I was introduced to MTB proper Thank you Mr Tom Sillis
  • + 4
 As a wanker I can proudly say that I got myself into it, with tiny and unintentional help of my overprotective parents. I wanted a BMX so much but they said it's a stupid, useless kind of bike, just a fab. I said I want a road bike - no! Thank God, they thought it is too dangerous as it is too fast. So they bought me a shtty mountain bike with touring tyres. My dad was anti sport, he didn't get it why would someone do any sport instead of learning, sitting on a couch in front of TV or programming on Atari XL. The only thing mom accepted was hiking so I hiked a lot with my mom, uncles, aunts and cousins. Obe day I thought: hiking on those fireroads is damn boring, I can at least ride a bike on them. And so I secretly did. It wasn't until I was going nuts, studying to high school exam when I needed a quality time off so I was biking more often. My cousin was riding a lot so he kind of got me more into it but it wasn't until I saw NWD1 and I biked with two of my friends from studies when I got totaly into it
  • + 4
 all these life stories are awesome! i see so many that are nearly the same yet so many people on here continue to bash on different aspects of the sport. NEWS FLASH! XC, trail, DH, FR, CX, BMX, AM, enduro-we are all the same. now go ride.
  • + 4
 Father was National Champion for Trials Riding, was snooping around his office one day and stumbled upon some pictures of my dad absolutely killing it on his Trials Bike. I was 11 at the time, and my dad was not willing to spend the money on a Trials Bike bike for me on top of gas. That following summer I sprayed painted my first bike and made it look like a BMX bike and went on the local trails that don't allow biking on them. After a lot of convincing and some chores my dad bought me my first mountain bike a KHS Alite 2000, loved it. 6 years later and a couple races in my belt im happy to say that i still ride with my friends out on the West Coast but when ever i get the chance to go home and visit family ( i go to a boarding school) i get the opportunity to ride with the most rad, most encouraging trail buddy out there my dad, thanks dad for getting me into this sport and heres to another 6 years of shredding
  • + 4
 On the other end the start for my 11 year old son is now, at least it will be when I finally find a used MTB that's decent without spending too much money since he will grow out of the small-frame soon enough. Even though I am into XC and DH, and he is very covetous of my Stumpjumper, I still worry at the prospect of him getting hurt. He is a BMX kid and I have spent many hours watching races through my fingers. I wonder if he'll remember that it was me that got him started, years from now on a PB forum or with his buddies around a table of beers or playing video games or whatever, instead of giving the credit to his friend, or some smashing edit that he watched. Memory is a notoriously murky, and to look back in time and try to pin down who or what influenced your start in this joyful enterprise can be tricky. Sorry, guess I'm getting sentimental in my old age Smile
  • + 3
 Sadly the person who intro'd me to the wonderful world of mtbing is a poser @ss wannabe and quit after 2 months cuz he didnt get to pro level that quick lol bought a 3 grand bike n rode it 3 or 4 times within 2 months then finally sold it. All hyped up in the begining talking abt it all the time n how much he loves it n this is his new thing n then drops it like nothing n wants nothing to do w it now. How can someone do that?! Even tho hes a traitor I must thank him tho bc ive never had more fun in my life than while on my beloved mtb..thanks a lot you benedict arnold! Lol
  • + 3
 I was stationed in Seoul, South Korea, and lower enlisted weren't allowed to own vehicles due to parking restrictions on base. So I bought a Cannondale hardtail to get around. That first year was mostly urban riding and bmx tracks as opposed to actual trail riding. Once my time was up there I was stationed in San Diego where I bought a Trek and started with local trails and just branched out from there.
  • + 3
 My first off road biking was in 1978 when I was 3 and first got on a bike. By 5 it was a regular weekend thing. But I come from a very bike orientated family. My father (used to run the British forces expedition team) started when he was under 20, in around 1960, long before mountain biking was invented. They just called it touring and to get to youth hostals then (now many are bothies), you cycled off road in the mountains with fatter tyres on. By 20 he was riding in Zambia regularly when stationed over there with my mother. He still calls mountain bikes; numpty bikes and rides mostly road now, but he is 74 now.
  • + 3
 My first proper mountainbike my big brother got me as a present when I was about 13 (coming up to 30 now)
It was a GT Tequesta with the crazy black with white splatters paint job and the weird matching flat quill stem they came with.

Those were good days, wish my bro was still here to go on epic rides with.
Going back to the first place I ever rode XC at with him (Swinley forrest) by my self now just isn't the same but reminds me of a lot of awesome weekends.
  • + 3
 I started this summer at 27 years young! I was convinced I wanted to buy a new road bike since my Sport Chek bike was about 10 years old and no fun to ride anymore. There was this guy at work who was really into it and he made it sound like a lot of fun even though I didn't see the appeal of riding your bike over roots and rocks when you could just ride it on pavement. I always thought it sounded like a hassle. I asked a friend of mine to take me out just so I could see what the fuss was about. She did and one ride later and I got totally hooked. Turns out mountain biking is just about the best thing ever.
  • + 1
 Though I guess if you want to get technical I was 26 since my birthday falls at the end of August and I got on a bike in June...
  • + 3
 My dad bought me a BMX when I was 13, and to the despair of him I began to break my bones after that. After a few years I left the bike aside and started doing other adrenaline sports (climbing rock, ski mountaneering, whitewater kayaking and paragliding). I had forgotten the bike completely till six years ago one friend told me about those awesome new MTBs. I tried his ReignX and got hooked again, so I sold my paraglider (the truth is that I didn't like it very much) and got an AM bike and then another. Now I do skiing, kayaking and biking, and think I wont stop to do them.
  • + 3
 In grade 6 when I was living in Chilliwack I had the opportunity to go mountain biking at Vedder Mountain.
I did it all on a $100 hard-tail from Walmart while everyone was riding Kona Stinky's and the like. I crashed (hard) over 5 times but I never had so much fun on a bike before. After dropping MTB for a couple years while living on Van island I moved back to my hometown where I watched Seasons by The Collective. That movie was the best, and it totally got me hooked again. I later found some like-minded guys to try riding with. I then went and bought myself a Norco Shore to try and keep up. The rest is history.
  • + 2
 Seasons is awesome, I had alreasy been mountain biking for about a year but had never really seen downhill before I saw seasons. Since then I have definitely expanded my riding style so now I ride a little of everything. And I'm currently getting ready for my first downhill race next week. Smile
  • + 3
 45 years ago you rode a bike, to school, to the shop, to your friends.... the bike was a build up (unless you had a rich dad), steel frame, alloy rims with rim brakes, v basic 5sp dérailleur, no suspension... invest in 26" by 1-1/4 'knobbly' and you ride trail :-) You learnt about mechanics (things always broke), you learn about riding (you fall a lot).... and you get bitten by the bug, the rush when you stay on board, when you land that jump..... but it wasn't a true mountain bike. We called them tracker bikes.. We had a very basic form of cyclocross competition, but my time even preceded bmx. When it became financially possible i moved on to mx and enduro, my time on 'trackers' been well spent in the transition... Move on a few years, my winters now taken in the French Alps as an aspiring ski instructor, and what do i spy sitting in a ski shop window at the end of one season ? a Turner, alloy frame/wide rims, centre-pull brakes, bar-mounted changers... after much haggling with the owner (he had personally imported from the States) i was putting it in the back of my van to return to the UK (after having parted with most of my wages from that season) That was my first true mountain-bike.. from then till now i have lost count of the number of bikes i have owned, i have since the Turner always owned at least one mountain-bike, summers were spent in the Westcountry of the UK, great moorland riding, coastpaths and woodland, riding primarily to keep fit for the winters... I am now 56yrs, i live in a mountain ski area, i own a number of bikes, my passion for mtb hasn't faltered, in fact i enjoy the riding more than the skiing now... My reason for this preface of my life is to ask.. 'who introduced me to mtb?'
  • + 2
 Easter Sunday 2008. Watched Seasons and was like WTF? Went to a resort in Idaho (Tamerack) soon after and rented a V10. Fell in love!!! Grew up riding and racing moto my whole life so it makes sense. Bought a 2008 DEMO and put a 40 up front. and have been a season ticket holder ever since at Northstar. I have now come to a point where i have multible bikes in the $5k range and i own a $1500 suv! I'm now 51 yrs old. Whats wrong with me?
  • + 6
 I met this motivational speaker in a van down by the river....
  • + 3
 Before i was around my mom started riding on the shore. When i was 5(I think) she took me out on the trails in Nanaimo and a few years later, Cumberland. Pretty much escalated from there. She also taught me how to bunny hop.
  • + 2
 43 years ago my friends and brothers and myself wanting so bad a mx bike but no money that we started heading to the mountains around Mexico City pushing up our bmx steel bikes to hide at the top behind a huge rock and wait for the enduro motorbikes to go by and chase them and beat them on the downhill. So we really started mountainbiking doing DH. Its been the best experience talking sports in my life, have done it in different countrys as far as South Africa, Switzerland, Guatemala, Canada and USA. The dream is still Himalayas.
  • + 2
 I was 13 years old and had a friend that raced motocross. I went to one of his races and fell in love with dirt bikes. I begged and begged for one and like a lot of kids my parents wouldn't let me have one. I was so devastated until one day i was bored on youtube and saw a rebull rampage video. I watched it and i was hooked. I started on a trek 3700 and saved up for a santacruz 5010 alloy which is my current bike. I am 14 now and actually thank my parents for not letting me get a dirt bike because i now prefer mtn bikes so much more
  • + 2
 Trials pro Mike Bentham went to my school in Colwood, BC (just outside of Victoria). His mad skills on his mid 90s Kona Fire Mountain lit the fire in my soul. I'm from North Carolina originally, and live in Arkansas now, but my time in British Columbia made a huge impact on my life--and not only with mountain biking.
  • + 2
 Drop In should be on this list. I rode a little bit of BMX before Drop In but that was the show that got me on my first Mountain Bike (2003 Kona Scab). Drop In also got me into videography which led to my career in Television. Thanks Drop In!
  • + 2
 Pedal bikes with learning to walk, Moto started at about 4 years old, used to play on a bmx when Dad couldn't take me riding mx. After starting uni and moving away from my parents, couldn't mx anymore, luckily my flatmate introduced me into proper mountain biking here in Sheffield

Pictures:
tinyurl.com/k5o4grq
lead to
tinyurl.com/kubn89l
and
tinyurl.com/n7vcblh

Nothing changes...
  • + 2
 The year was 1993 and the Super V was the hottest thing around. Keven K of Omaha was saving for one. He showed me a picture of it and l thought was pretty neat but never gave it too much thought. It was a weird time back then. My family was in turmoil and i was in a deep state of depression and one day my exstep mother forced me to go bike riding with Keven but the thing was i didnt have a bike and was very out of shape. So, she said to use her ex husbands beach cruser, The Bun Runner. So here we were crusing the local trails, Keven with his Trek 990 and bullhorn bars and me with the 40 pound, single speed, coaster brake Bun Runner. At first it wasnt much fun...sucked really. But after awhile it became more fun despite my exstep mothers displeasure of the fact that mnt biking is rough on bikes like coaster brakes... I understand Repack fully...she thought l was just being destructive for the heck of it, but l wasnt. Long story short it was a friend who got me involved.
  • + 2
 I grew up on the back of my dad's road bike, when I got older and started riding, I would ride along with him, then one day we went and rode some trails, and that's what started it all. I can still remember that first time the training wheels came off too, popped a wheelie across part of the yard, I've been hooked ever since.
  • + 2
 Got a BMX when I was 9 back in 1986, the local council had built a BMX track in a nearby field, so it was just a thing everyone in our neighbourhood did. A few years later I got my first MTB, a Peugot Laser which eventually got stolen and replaced with a GT Timberline. Basically messing about on bikes was something that was always encouraged when I was a kid. Later in my teens skating and then climbing took over. Then I had a bad climbing accident and sort of gave up on outdoor sports. My younger brother had continued MTBing and BMX and had done some DH racing, he inspired me to get an XC bike about 10 years ago and I was instantly hooked. Not a very unique story, but messing about on bikes is what got me here, and that's still what I'm doing now. There's nothing quite as liberating as a push bike
  • + 2
 I've been a kayaker since I was about 10 years old, I got to the end of high school and started my a-levels because that's what everyone else did, and started looking at university courses, just like everyone else. But I always loved being in the outdoors, helping to get other people loving being outside too, by having fun. So I signed up for an outdoor education degree, and one of our first lectures was us riding the universities mountain bikes around the field they owned. I went home and had a look at mountain bikes online and spent my first chunk of student loan on the cheapest full suss I could find. I had no idea how it worked, how I should maintain it, but I took it out on our next lecture on a trail at Brechfa close to where we lived. It was only a green trail, but I loved every minute of it, flying down this trail as fast as I could. Obviously I crashed, got a massive graze on my arm, blood everywhere, massive smile on my face. I kept taking my bike to lectures and learning how to ride it properly. As part of the course there were students in higher years running expeditions, so I went on a couple of biking ones to places like the forest of dean and started loving the downhill bits of riding. I spent that summer riding my bike along the canal and bridleways by where I live, nothing too exciting, but I loved the freedom. I started upgrading bits of my bike when they wore out, the wheels were the first to go, I got excited and bought downhill wheels for a 120mm xc bike.
  • + 1
 In second year I convinced my housemate to buy a bike, he had a bigger budget than I did and got one up on me, or so I thought, he had a car so took us out riding to our local trail centre most weekends, we had a laugh, got covered in mud, and wore ourselves out. Another one of my housemates bought a bike, he was enthusiastic, but wasn't very good back then. We started hitting the trails as a group of three, and started doing harder trails (blue and red). We did a few more expeditions that year, and I broke my bike again, the rear mech came right off and I had to hire a bike for the rest of the expedidition. I got home and bought a whole new drivetrain and susspension.
I went to the south of france that summer to work as an outdoor instructor and took my bike with me, on my days off I'd ride it up the local hill and down the footpaths, and generally explore all of the footpaths I could find. It felt amazing.
In my third year of university I bought a car so I could take myself and my mates to the trails. I'd upgraded about everything on my bike at this point, It was running great apart from a little clunking sound, I had no idea what it was. I was going to the trails 3-4 times a week with my enthusiastic housemate, we pushed ourselves to ride faster and further every time. We had a tradition of stopping at macdonnalds on the way home, covered in mud we'd order about 6 meals between 2 of us and cover their white seats in mud and leave puddles on the floor wherever we went. It was out release from staying inside and writing essays, we loved it. The small clunk developed into a big clunk, and it turned out my frame was wearing out around the suspension pivots. I couldn't afford a new one so I fixed it with tin foil and washers and kept riding, it lasted until I had enough money for me to buy a new frame in the Christmas sales.
  • + 1
 I bought an ex demo nukeproof mega frame and me and my mate put all of my components onto it, I borrowed his forks because my old ones wouldn't fit and He'd ride on mine. He'd broken the rebound damping, but I didn't care, I had my bike and I loved it. We kept riding at every oportunity, every now and again we'd go to Afan and play in the skills park and I'd try and jump over the tabletops, all this time we were getting better and more confident. I finaly managed to buy my own forks and put them on my bike. I graduated this summer and went to the Aosta Valley in Italy to work as an outdoor instructor again, just down the road was pila. Every day off I had, I'd ride 45 mins down the valley, take the cable car up, ride lap after lap untill I couldn't ride anymore, ride the 11km trail back down to the bottom of the valley and then make my way back up to my centre. It was the best riding I have ever done, and I am definitely returning next season to keep on playing on my bike. hopefully I'll have a biking buddy with me next year. I wish there were mountains and trails where I live at home in the UK, but I still just ride along the canal and the bridleways, getting lost and muddy and having fun. Biking is now my main sport, and almost all of my money goes to keeping my bike running. Sorry for the essay, I haven't written one in a while.
  • + 2
 Nobody introduced me to riding off road, my younger brother and I just took our bikes to the woods and did it. I'd have been 10 or 11 so that makes it mid-late seventies. We used to call it "scrambling", which is a short course off road motorcycle sport here in the UK and was the closest analogy.
  • + 2
 Since that first ride with without training wheels I have been in love with bikes and riding. Rode BMX for years, didn't ride for a few years (the fast car years), then had to get back on 2 wheels and mountain biking was the natural progression as road didn't interest me much and I felt like I wanted something more than bmx. BMX skills definitely pay off when moving into mountain bikes though.
  • + 2
 I was in the 45-50 year old category. I met a man who took me mountain biking on our first date. I was shakey and went OTB and wound up with a bruise the size of my hand on my hip. I was determined to keep learning and a couple of years later I was riding at bikeparks on advanced dh trails but most importantly I ended up marrying that mountain biker Smile
  • + 1
 I was 3 years 4 years old and would ride well on the driveway with my dad holding the seat. Eventually he'd let go and I would continue riding fine until I looked behind me and saw him waving at me. At this point I would crash! I was never a training wheel kid, but this method definitely motivated me to learn! I still have the second bike my parents bought me, It's a little red Gary Fisher, although in my pre-teen years I pimped it out with a monkey seat and wide bars! My first bike ever though was a roadmaster, tiny little singlespeed, I would go everywhere on that thing, and have videos getting mad air of like 3 inches!
  • + 1
 I "thought" I was a biker... Specialized Rock Hopper... red rims... V brakes... you couldn't F*** with me son! Then I met some guys at work.. true mountain bikers. They quickly explained that I rode bike trails next to the pavement... and never an actual mountain bike trail. 1st ride I was blown away at what these guys could do on a bicycle. Being a super-competitive person...I was instantly hooked. Now, 6 bikes later, single speed, 29ers, full suspension, carbon everything... it's part of my life. There's so many new riders that I've brought to the sport. Helped them come up like others did with me. It's fun to enjoy your passion with other friends. I work in IT, and it's great to get outside... smiling like a little kid... working your a$$ off... and push yourself.

Thanks to sites like this for keeping us all stoked.

Favorite "light bulb" moment for me was 14 years ago..."Ohhhhh I said... There's a "mountain" in mountain biking.... got it!"
  • + 1
 since i could walk i was on 2 wheels, around 12 or 13 started to try bmx a bit, around 15 bought a jamis eurka, few years later i was racing downhill at platty, mt snow and killington. got out of riding around 2006 or 7. now got back into it last year and am hooked again.
  • + 1
 What got me into riding was watching Red Bull Gold Rush (not 100% sure if that's the name) at a friends house back in 2006. Watching Gee Atherton and all these other DH riders go flat out through a disused goldmine hitting jumps and stuff made me want to get out and ride. Immediately after we got on our cheap supermarket mtb's and started hopping off curbs and skidding around corners. Then I found out about Drop In TV through the same friend and got completely hooked on mtb. Same goes for bmx too, I watched BMX worlds at about the same time and thought that looked sweet. Fast forward 8 years and I'm still going at it. Though unfortunately my friend has put down the bike and picked up the bong instead.
  • + 1
 I was 8, my cousins had moved to Whistler and we went to visit them. My cousin started to mtb there and he introduced me to it. We went a couple times but when I came back home and grew a bit I thought it would be pretty fun to mountain bike so I worked hard to buy one and joined the local team.
  • + 1
 In '83 I bought a used Honda CR 125 at age 15. My dad didn't want to bring me to the MX tracks so I had to ride the doubletracks that were around our town. To avoid getting caught by the police I had to scout all the tracks before actually riding them. This I did on my bike : a 5speed touring bike with a flatbar and big tires. Already found out then that 29ers roll better....lol
First real MTB was in 1997, long time after the last MX bike had been sold.
  • + 2
 For me it was the high school league. thank you NICA so much for making a High school mountain biking league a reality. this introduction to MTB has changed my life and now is my life I can't thank you guys enough.
  • + 1
 Started in 1996 when I was told I looked funny as a grown man doing street BMX tricks on a 20 inch. Got a MTB and loved the fact that it was bigger,faster, and more durable. said FTW and been pedaling the big tired, geared bikes ever since.
  • + 1
 I got my first real mountain bike when I was 5. My parents took me to a park right across the street from the bike shop so I could ride it around. The first thing my mom did was go to the pharmacy to get a little first aid kit (mom always knows best), and sure enough when she got back I had already tried to negotiate a hairy rock section and crashed. I'm 29 now, and still have the scar on my elbow. My father thought she was nuts for buying that kit. He was wrong. What really got me into downhill though was when me and my friends rode our bikes to the citadel in Namur Belgium and saw these dudes flying thru the air on these insane looking bikes that looked like a motocross bike that someone forgot to put the engine in. One of the dudes said " hey, you want to try it?". Of course!! I was hooked.
  • + 2
 was on a no name, steal frame, orange, rigid ,18 speed mtn bike with motorcycle bars and phillwood hubs and AME grips. It was my road,mtn,bmx,party bike. oh how times have changed.
  • + 1
 I was working on a trail sustainability project at a local ski resort in the summer. At the time I thought mountain was all about spandex and flat trails. When I saw bikes with tripple clamp forks and rear shocks is when I got hooked. Ironicly, now I ride enduro too.
  • + 1
 My other halfs work colleague now friend introduced me to this nonsense.
At 40 and just north of 18 stone I was stuck in a rut (not to mention the arm chair Smile ) and needed something as gym work is bloody boring.
So after destroying a Halfords Special ; Apollo Guru anyone ?? I was hooked

The only issue is my now friend told me a load of lies

It'll be cheap he said

It doesnt hurt falling in the mud he said

So 3 broken ribs 1 cracked pelvis + nerve damage oh and the bank manager wanted a word too Smile .

In fairness he has probably extended my life another 5-10 years ; trouble is there the 1's at the end Wink
  • + 1
 Got myself into MTB. Grew up racing BMX but grew tired of racing every weekend. Ended up buying a used Cannondale in middle school , 26" up front and a 24" rear. Then saved up for a rock shox quadra. Now all the trails I used to ride are a sea of houses.
  • + 2
 no one person introduced me to mtb. I lived next to a mountain & used to ride my bike on the mountain. when mountain bikes became commomplace in UK in 1985 it kinda make sence to buy one
  • + 1
 Two people. My father bought me the first "mountain" bike, however it was a heavy steel bike and only things which were making it different from a road bike were smaller wheels, wider tires and a flat handlebar. I was riding with him a lot, but only dirt roads and easy XC trails because his own bike was no better and he was quite fat too so he wasn't capable of riding anything more technical.
Then about 10 years later my cousin bought a customised Kona Kikapu and let me ride it - so I can say that he introduced me to the "real" mountain biking. Later I bought the bike from him
  • + 1
 Started riding at the age of 28 to get fit for surfing. went to the fort william world cup in 2012 and loved it. then started to get more serious and booked to go to whistler in 2013 went back september this year and just booked for next year. started riding downhill in the whistler bike park aged 30 and now at the age of 32 riding and surfing have taken over my life
  • + 1
 I think I was 14. My aunt sold me her nishiki Manitoba. Rapid fire shifters 21 speeds, fully rigid, qr everything, all awesome. Fire roads called my name. It was 1999. I broke my back riding in 03 and didn't come back to it until 2008 when I got a iron horse yakuza aniki. I will never leave the sport again.
  • + 1
 best bud from childhood kept bugging me to ride. i was an over weight borderline alcoholic who went to work and partied after. i borrowed another buddies dad's specialized hard rock. within the first 2 miles, the front wheel worked its way loose and i went OTB....hard. My lungs burned, my legs were screaming, and he had to wait for me after every hill. but he was super positive and the downhill back to the car provided a feeling i will never forget. by the time we got back to the car i was hooked. 4 years and a couple grand later, we ride all the time, we build trails, and there is no more waiting around for each other. I've made other friends just from riding and my girlfriend and i ride every weekend. It truly was one of the best things that have ever happened to me.
  • + 1
 GT Bicycles - GT Himself Introduced me in 1983ish. I was 12yrs old and was racing BMX for GT Bicycles and saw the bike that was to be shown at Interbike. It was a Chrome GT Backwoods model. Fully Rigid. GT Tires, the whole works. I Had to have it. I got it and rode it until the cranks literally fell off. Haven't stopped since...
  • + 1
 Back when I was maybe 11 or 12ish? Couple of mates of mine used to go to the local dirt jumps. I always liked riding bikes, so got myself a pile of shit full suspension and went with them! Didn't learn to ride properly until I was about 17/18, but it's been a bit of an obsession ever since Smile
  • + 1
 1972... riding a 24" single speed Schwinn -- back when the real Schwinn not this crap wanna-be disposable Schwinns you see out there today. We lived out on Kwaj (Marshall Islands) where only a few random government vehicles were on the island... road that bike eeeeeevvvveeeerywhere. Went from Kwaj to North Dakoda ... same thing... everywhere with that same bike. Mountain bikes didn't really exist.... moved to NJ where I used my dad's 10 Speed road bike which was waaaaay too big for me but, I didn't care... I road that thing everywhere. I could ride a wheelie on that thing like nobody's bidnasss'. I had a short stint with motocross after that but got back into bicycles riding a beach cruiser (yep, again, road it everywhere). been through all the MTB fads and new products... SPD's when ya get stuck in them like an up side down turtle .. Cantilever brakes were at best, so so if you set them like I did... then Vbrakes!!! wow, they were soooo much better than Canti's... had all those bling bling brands like Kooka cranks, Ringle' back when they sold stems other things besides wheels.. been there, done that on pretty much every suspension fork out there.
  • + 2
 The movie rad got me hooked on biking but Drop In Season 1 and Tyler Klassen in North Shore Extreme is what made me pick up a mountain bike. My mom bought North Shore Extreme for me from a clearance bin in Block Buster lol
  • + 2
 Still remember setting up plywood jumps using blue recycle bins, jumping as far as we could go, using our helmets as distance markers lol
  • + 1
 Drop in. I remember waking up a half hour earlier then i had to when i was a kid just so i could watch that show. the first three seasons got me into mountain biking, although i didn't actually get a proper dh bike til many years later.
  • + 1
 when I was about 14 I had a bike stolen and at the time had never heard of djs or downhill bikes all I knew was u whent to walmart and got a new one. well I called the local youth shelter I was involved with at the time crying cause I didn't have a bike. two hours later I received a call back to come to the shelter cause they had something for me. when I got there all of the people that workd their chipped in and bought me a khs dj 50. I was jacked had never seen a bike like it bfore. needles to say im 21 now and ride downhill. thanks to a local youth shelter I found the true mountainbiking. I still talk and ride with the people who got me the bike
  • + 1
 None of them are what introduced me to riding so I didn't do the poll. But I got introduced into the sport by playing downhill domination on the ps2 and than went to watch one of the Nationals at Mt.Buller where I believe Sam Hill won by some crazy margin, after seeing that, I sold an old LJ Torana I was going to do up and bought a used Kona Stinky which serviced me for 3 years than I bought a proper downhill bike.
  • + 2
 1986. freshman year of college. team mate on rugby team who broke his leg and loaned me his "mountain bike". rode that thing through the woods and was hooked. still am! yup. l am old! haha
  • + 2
 I'm the same age, but I never feel old on a bike; at least on the downhill portion anyway Smile
  • + 1
 Pipin Osborne who was the manager of West Point Cycles in Vancouver sent me out on a Ritchey Everest demo bike in 1982. I ended up working at that shop later and bought a Stumpjumper Sport in 1983. That shop and The Deep Cove shop were two centres for off road riding then. Syncros, Rocky Mountain and Kona all came from the owners and employees of West Point bike shop. I was so lucky to work with and ride with this bunch of pioneers.
  • + 1
 I was 16 years old and start riding a xc hardtail for freeride and stuff. One year i realized that all i need for a good bike is cash and start working at Mcdonalds. Some years later i start work at local Bike shop and all my money goes for parts for my hardtail.. then full susp freeride bike.. Now i'm 26 years old and i'm a manager at the same bike shop. My ride is NS Soda with Marzocchi 66 and air Roco. Freeride is everything for me.. Smile
  • + 1
 Sorta offically it was my buddy Dave, thanks Dave. But when I really think about it it was a evolution. What I thought it was changed and what it is now, is more than biking. It's like finding a good trail. When you start you may not know it has begun but along the way you realize you are on to something amazing. From then on you spend the rest of your life think how stoked and thankful to have it apart of your life. No one gets through life, riding alone and thank God for that. Big thanks to all the Daves out there!
  • + 1
 Out drinkin' with friends. I overhear conversation between two of them. One of them started mountain biking the previous year and was planning to bring the other friend to try downhill the next day. Sounded like fun, so I joined them. Following week I bought some used up old downhill bike. Month later I bought a brand new 303rdh. That was 2011. Since then numerous biking trips and moved to BC. Been riding at Bromont, Mont Sainte-Anne, Highland, Killington, Whistler, Kicking Horse, Fernie and Sun Peaks. For next summer Coast Gravity Park and Silver Star, along with the yearly trip to Whistler. Also planning a trip to New Zealand in the near future.
  • + 1
 I was 11 and I went on a first Friday night session to do the road session (big mistake luckily didn't go down well) It turned out that the the was only doing mountain biking. So he told me to come every Saturday morning to do the MTB session. I did and rented a trek 4300 and did the local races on it and won them all Smile so a year later my dad got me a trek 4700 I got into some xc then later on got a superfly 9800. I loved my coach. He was like a dad. He was there every race and he was 63 years old and still did amazing training rides for me every Tuesday and Thursday. But sadly 18 months ago today he had a heart attack on one of our rides and passed. I still remember him every single race I do and i would have never known about mountain biking if he was never there. He has also trained over 6 national champions that still rude at that level today
  • + 1
 I can not imagine how my life would be if I did not move to this small town and make that certain friendship at thirteen years old that led to the past ten years of mountain biking. Truth is, it all started with my Dad and a friend who got me into racing motocross at age 7. Without that I may have never made a friendship with the guy who got me into mountain biking as he was into moto too, hence the reason we became friends. Many more rides and everything that comes along with it!
  • + 1
 First gave it thought after my boss at the summercamp I was working at told me about how awesome the Mammoth bike park was. A summer of oogling manufacturer webpages, pinkbike articles, and reading nearly every post on mtbr ever...I sold my cheap slightly-too-small "mountain" bike for a hundred bucks, and got my parents to cover the rest of the cost for silver/gray Cannondale F7 hardtail. I rode the shit outa that thing for a year and a half, slapped a 130mm rockshox tora and the gnarliest 2.1" tires I could find on it, went to mammoth, had a blast, met a kid with a 2007 prophet, sold my hardtail, bought the prophet, started racing XC in the So-Cal Highschool league (finishing 20/40 riders in my division two years in a row), worked in my LBS for 3 summers, and now here I am going to school up in BC with 2 bikes to my name, and hopefully a job with Giant come summer! Best damn sport ever!
  • + 1
 Nobody... I've ridden by myself for first 2 years at least.
I got my first fully ridged MTB in 2007 in age of 16. It was 2nd hand for about 30$ and ment to be commuter. And I thought myself: nobby tires and gears... damn! I need to ride this thing in woods...
  • + 1
 Got my first Mtb in '92 KHS Montana Comp, I remember, dx 7 spd rapidfire shifters and everything else LX. The cool kids had RMB Stratos with unpainted frames. Then Mag 21's came along! We had to ride for 10km's just to get to trails (no public transit) Never stopped riding, moved to Vancouver in the 90's and got schooled on the North Shore when I showed up with my Specialized Stumpjumper Hardtail with 26x1.95 tires and 50mm travel AMP forks. 20 years later, mountain biking got me into dirtbiking. Easy transition. I'm not jumpin' whoops or sayin' I'm the shiz, but being in shape from trail/xc riding makes dirtbiking easier. I still ride mtb 5 times as much as dirtbikes though, I can get to trails in 5 minutes instead of driving the dirtbike for 90 minutes to get to a trail head. Pedaling also allows me to drink as much beer as I want without gaining a pound, and eat what I like, all the while feeling great. Plus, if your pedal bike absolutely craps the bed, you can carry or wheel it out. A dirtbike? Don't think so.

That being said, strangely, the only other thing that keeps my head in the zone as much is riding the velodrome. Highly recommended.
Seriously, Mountainbiking keeps me somewhat adjusted; I never feel bad after a good rip on the bike.
  • + 1
 I was riding the end of my first road season and worrying how to take the new hobby through the winter. Decided to get a mountain bike for the snowy days but that winter was more fun than the summer on the saddle Big Grin I sold my road bikes.
  • + 1
 I was in my 20s, had gone through a divorce and gotten really fat. Saw some folks riding on a trail near my work one day, thought it looked fun, went to the bike shop and bought a Trek 4500. 4 years and -100 lbs later, it was the best sporadic decision I've ever made in my life.
  • + 1
 Got introduce by my Father. He start ride to get him fit for retirement plan. But I follow him around, race with him talk about mountain bike and where to ride next. He stop riding trail, but i still follow him around climbing road mounting every time I got back to his home.
  • + 1
 1988...MTB weren't available to me at the time. Used a cruiser with one of those motocross forks on it.... Yeah the one with the "gas tank"

this frame

encrypted-tbn3.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQ_iMLY14t8YSX6PV9SKp8R196TL3AdxdcR3Eisw_bKbUR-YQHX

with this fork

bmxmuseum.com/image/img_0443_copy3_lg.jpg

Then my "friend" got it stolen - dick head

then I got a Specialized Rockhopper

and about fifteen bikes later, I ride an Intense M9 and Tracer 275
still miss that old beater....
  • + 1
 For me it was a case of really wanting a mountain bike when I was younger but we were dirt poor so I never asked because I knew we couldn't afford it. I put all those thoughts aside for a really long time got heavily into photography and music, when eventually I got a steady enough job at 21 to afford my first proper mountain bike Marin Northside Trail which I rode religiously. A year or so later on managed to get myself Specialized Status. To be honest I would love to have a career of just being able to get up and ride my bike everyday, but it's weekend warrior for now.
  • + 1
 coming from an old school bmx background while living in olympia, wa around 2002, i just put 2 and 2 together. there were mountains close to town, and getting rad in the woods was just as fun and exhilarating flowing down a trail, as it was to hit up the local skate parks.
  • + 1
 was racing bmx expert class back in '95-96. was in LBS when i saw a schwinn s9-six full sus for the first time. i knew i was going to get into mtb at that moment, but i couldnt let my friends know i was interested cuz they would never stop making fun of me for it. (anything with wheels larger than 24" was gay in our bmx world) now both my brothers keep asking me about finding them a bike to try out. i know they will get hooked like i did.
  • + 1
 I think I was turning 5 or 6, and I went to Toys R Us to look for things I wanted for my birthday. Somehow ended up in the bike section, and saw a metallic blue "mountain" bike for $100-and WOW, MY NAME IS ON IT! I always got excited when I found out companies used my name, even if they weren't selling a product for me (like cigarettes). My parents went back later and bought the bike and surprised me with it at the end of the day on my birthday, hours after I had opened any other presents. I had training wheels for a week or two, and the next year I got a ramp and was jumping as fast and as far as I could down the street. I was so proud of that bike, nobody else had anything like it- who else had their name written right there in huge letters on the downtube? I rode that bike until it didn't fit, then got a larger but equally cheap black and yellow "mountain bike" that I rode until it was stolen. Replaced with a blue version of basically the same crappy sub-$100 bike, which I rode for about a year until I jumped off a 6 inch curb on the way to Checker's and folded the front wheel in half. Went that weekend to get a new bike and got an Ironhorse Maverick 4.5- my first real mountain bike, and the first bike I took on actual trails. Now 8 years and multiple bikes later I'm designing and manufacturing my own bikes for all disciplines of riding, and I wouldn't have it any other way.
  • + 1
 Started out taking the old 20 in on some local trails in a park a few blocks away from my house. Worked my ass of mowing lawns to buy my first "real" bike, an old rockhopper, and was instantly hooked!! Many bikes later I couldnt be happier.
Honestly all of the stories are super cool to read, and its really hard to think of myself being a part of any other sport/community. I've made some of my best friends though mt biking.

HANDS DOWN the best experience in life I've had so far was this past summer's whistler trip, got to shotgun redbulls with tippie on hecklers rock, ripping trails all day and enjoying it all with my favorite people.

BRAPPPPPPP!!!!
  • + 1
 Action now magazine in 1981 had an article about mountain bikes, and a Ritchey add on the last page..I thought wow an off road bike with gears how cool..I was using an old Schwinn cruiser to get around on and to get to school and work..after I saved up enough money I visited my local bike shop and bought an SR High Sierra for $400 dollars. The rest is history haven't been off a bike since..
  • + 1
 Got a trek 3700 for my 15th birthday and ripped up the neighborhood. didn't start really riding until 19 when I actually got my brother and one of my best buddies to go with me.
  • + 2
 Coming up om my 30th year! by chance while browsing for dirt bike rags, I came across a bicycle rag, been smitten ever since!
  • + 1
 It was just riding in the woods when I was a kid. Mountainbikes had not arrived in Sussex in 1979! Ten years later I had a proper mountainbike and it was a revelation!
  • + 1
 Family sport!! My dad was a motorcycle enduro recer, and when he stopped racing, he started on xc mtb. I grown up racing bmx race, but one day I met DH...
  • + 1
 Went on a trip to the Lake District with my Scout group and rode some hire bikes through driving rain and bogs, loved it ever since!
  • + 1
 1989 Just graduated high school and went to the local shop (Action Wheels) and bought a GT Karakoram. That was my first Mt.Bike and have been riding ever since !
  • + 1
 I started with a xc hardtail and a year later i bought a fullsuspension allmountain bike and i am super happy with my new hobby Smile
  • + 2
 Pro MX riders at Glen-Helen...Training tips! The rest is history, my focus went from moto to my own damn motor...
  • + 1
 I saw the teaser for ride the lightning and that changed everything for me. Bearclaw spinning that drop was mind-blowing. I switched from bmx and never looked back
  • + 3
 I invented mountain biking. I got everyone else into it
  • + 3
 Wade Simmons and Brett Tippie.
  • + 2
 Hey, well done to whoever started MTBing in their sixtys, now that's a retirement plan!!!!
  • + 1
 I introduced myself to biking when I discovered that I hate walking. Unfortunately I was 24 when that happened--about 22 years too late.
  • + 1
 i got myself into mountain biking..1984 and i saw some guy riding a norco sasquatch or something like that.. i knew i had to have one..
  • + 1
 BMX -> MOTO X -> sold up due to fatherhood -> silvia film on youtube -> DH MTB!!
  • + 1
 I was on budwieser jet ski tour 1990 and Victor Slasher Sheldon sold me his Nishiki alien Richard Cunningham
  • + 2
 Watched an episode of Drop In, never looked back
  • + 2
 Seasons last scene. Didn't know who are the riders back then.
  • + 1
 Wheels as a kid. Then i watched search for the holy trail, and I've been going to the hill ever since
  • + 1
 1988, Trek 850 started it all. Haven't looked back since. I love it more now than ever.
  • + 2
 My brother back in 1989 him on a Giant boulder me on a baccini 24
  • + 3
 your mom got me into it.
  • + 0
 she's a great kisser, really passionate. and she taught me how to tail whip!
  • + 2
 Wait.... You're not supposed to wear underwear under your chamois?
  • + 1
 It was 2013 when my mom signed me up for an endless biking course with my walmart bike
  • + 1
 Myself! Just was riding my bike in the park and than saw some little kikers, helmets and I ecame addictive of it)
  • + 1
 I'm going to assume I'm one of the few who was introduced to MTB riding by a girlfriend.
  • + 2
 lol xCri

Skateboard -> BMX -> MTB ... thats my story.
  • + 0
 MotoX -> MTB.
Nuff said.
  • + 1
 1st bike Giant Box Three! still have it in the garage!
  • + 1
 the guy who stole my bmx race bike
  • + 1
 Who introduced me to mountain biking?...No one, mountain biking found me.
  • + 1
 @fundamentaldirt introduced me to it, and I never looked back. Cheers bro!
  • + 1
 I discovered it myself, on the hills of my old house, never stopped...
  • + 1
 Cuz thats sport is so psych
  • + 1
 This is one of the best pictures I have seen in a while.
  • + 1
 Guess I better thank my sister later today.
  • + 1
 Magic of freeride video on YouTube
  • + 1
 where the trail ends was it for me
  • + 1
 Yup I honestly had no idea what true riding was until I watched that movie
  • + 1
 That is probably my favorite riding movie simply because it reminds me of why I started riding in the first place - the adventure of exploring some place new.
  • + 1
 I only started riding a year or two before it came out and now I'm riding when ever I'm not working or tuning my bike
  • + 1
 "Beast from the East" Damon Bradshaws brother Zach.
  • + 2
 MBUK 1991
  • + 1
 By watching videos I suppose, I don t regret it
  • + 1
 BMX from childhood which spawned into MTB as a teen
  • + 1
 38 years ago, not 43
  • + 1
 extreme tv
  • + 1
 Earthed 3, nuff said.
  • + 1
 who remembers pipeline
  • + 1
 Satan

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