We are constantly impressed by the growing efforts of bike brands, trail centres and even local cycling shops to encourage and promote women's cycling.
Everything from women's specific cycling apparel, to bike builds, coaching and even women's specific events are showcasing the talents, passion and more importantly, the community and spirit in women's mountain biking.
The women's MTB scene has been growing rapidly in the past 12 months alone, with trail blazing beauties shredding through the wild landscapes. Despite its growing popularity, us women are still considered to be a minority in the grand scheme of off-road cycling. For that reason, women's specific demo days, rides, and events are perfect for bringing everyone together to share experiences, and build lasting friendships.
Last weekend, local bike shop Alf Jones Cycles teamed up with the luxury bike brand, Juliana Bicycles to host and all mountain ride out along the natural trails of North Wales. Famed for its technical climbs, fast and loose descents, the area around Llangollen is riddled with exciting adrenaline fuelled trails.
Juliana Ride Out Wales
Early last Sunday morning, Alf Jones Cycles and Juliana set up camp in a sleepy field outside of town. With the demo fleet clean and ready, women were able to hire out a Juliana bike for the day of riding. And why wouldn't you? Unlike most brands, you can't just walk into any cycle shop to view a Juliana. These bikes are showcased on their online store, and sold through their UK distributor, Jungle Products.
Before long, women began turning up equipped with their kit and their enthusiasm for all things bikes, riding and fun. The weather created the perfect riding conditions, whilst it was warm there was enough cloud to provide sun coverage and it looked to remain dry - hurray!
With roughly 20 women - and a couple men - all kitted up, safety checked and briefed, it was time to head out.
The 27km course had a balanced mix of steep climbs, welcoming flats and very fast descents. The perfect combination of terrain to test your skill, and push the Juliana fleet to their potential. Andy Lund lead the group, ensuring no man or woman was left behind, and navigated the way through the natural mountain trails.
After everyone was sufficiently tired out by the long ride, it was time to head back to the site for some much needed lunch, cake and that important cuppa. Despite the long ride, spirits were high with the women enjoying some down time to reflect on the ride, and the Juliana bikes.
With energy levels topped up, it was time to get stuck into some skills coaching with renowned MTB coach Ally Campbell.
We all know that it's not always as easy as "riding a bike", and that sometimes a little guidance can go a long way. Everything from body position, weight placement, foot position can change your performance and comfort drastically. Ally spent time brushing up on the basics, running drills and helping the group out with any queries or concerns they had.
What better way to round off an MTB day than with some essential stretching and skills in yoga. Sam from Bodhi Movement, a local yoga studio based in Betws Y Coed, is passionate about working with cyclists and especially mountain bikers to help improve core strength and flexibility on the bike. Sam took the ladies through some exercises and positions which they can take away to practise at home to improve their shredding performance.
Having been lucky with the weather until that point, the ominous dark clouds began to rain down over the site. Check out the gallery below for more photos from the day.
Events like these are not only great for riding, but exploring new trails, demo'ing new bikes and meeting new people. It's essentially what mountain biking is all about, not to mention great food and awesome company.
With the industry heading in a more women's focused direction, we hope to see more events like these popping up on our calendars. Check out the gallery below for more photos from the day.