During the winter months here in the UK, as long as the autumn and spring months - it can get pretty dark, pretty early in the evening. This can mean that mountain biking is the reserve of either days off, or a weekend - there’s no way of just nipping out like you can do, during the summer months.
One way to keep out on the bike during the winter months, is to ride on an evening...in the dark. At Westbrook Cycles, we are mad keen mountain bikers - which means that we head out during the hours of darkness pretty regularly, we have gotten our heads together today and have listed some of the reasons why you should head out in the dark.
Darkness improves your riding
When riding in the dark, your vision is restricted by what your mountain bike light setup can illuminate. Typically, this light setup is immediately in front of you - which means that you can only see directly in front of your bike, obstacles can easily be hidden in the shadows - meaning you have to ride with a quicker reaction time, with faster reactions. All of these skills that you learn in the dark, make for massive gains when riding back in daylight.
Trails are unfamiliar
On short rides, you can easily and quickly get bored of your local trails. These trails can become predictable and too easy to ride. When you ride these same trails in the dark, they become almost brand new, and you need to learn to ride and read the trail in a lot of different ways vs the usual daylight riding.
The unknown of riding in the dark is incredibly exciting, as well as having to learn how to ride properly in the dark, it’s also exciting to ride - with limited viewing making for a faster feeling mountain bike journey.
Spring Fitness Boost
As spring comes around each year, and the mountain biking season begins in earnest again - you can enjoy being familiar with your bike, as well as being fitter than other riders who retired during the winter months.
If you prefer your trails and routes to be quieter - riding on a nighttime is the perfect way to enjoy all of the most popular trails and routes, when they are clear. There’s not only less mountain bikers out on the trails, but also less walkers, horses etc…
You can splash out!
Riding on a nightime is a completely new type of riding for most of us, and as such - new equipment needs to be purchased to properly enjoy the experience. As well as mountain bike lights, you will also need warmer clothing for winter riding.