Fort William DH World Cup 2022 - What were we up to?
After a hiatus of 2 years, we were all desperate to get back to this iconic location for such a special event.
After such a long time away from events and face-to-face contact with folks in general, this was a really special event for everyone. For us, we got to catch up with people we have been working closely with on many projects over the last two years virtually, which was pretty awesome, and got to chat with many of you who stopped to find out more about what we do, and what is going on in Scottish mountain biking now and what's on the horizon.
There were a number of people we spoke to who hadn't heard of DMBinS and it was a fantastic opportunity to explain the work that's going on and talk about the partners and supporters that help us work towards delivering the Vision and Mission of the Scottish Mountain Bike Strategy 2019 - 2025.
A lot of the questions and discussions we had over the weekend were around trails. Folk aware of the work that we do with trails associations and supporting the trail network were keen to find out specifics around how to set up associations, chatting over issues in their areas, and we had folks from Northern Ireland, Wales, and England stop by to get some advice and literature about how things are done in Scotland, to help them lobby for change in their areas.
We were also approached by folks who were at the initial stages of a facility project and were looking for advice and support. We were happy to chat over and direct folks to our specific resources on our new website.
We have proven expertise and the ability to deliver more trails – not just for the community but with the community. However, as our core funding is finite, we need the MTB community to support trails financially through the Scottish Trail Fund. It is the only way we will see us sustainably improve the Scottish trail network whilst maintaining our access rights as riders. Over the course of the weekend, we were able to promote The Scottish Trail fund, with many folks keen to support by donating to the fund.
Find out more about the Scottish Trail fund here and donate if you can.
Scottish MTB Health Fund
We as mountain bikers all know the benefits of being outside and riding our bikes, our Mountain Bike Trail Therapy programme was the topic of many a conversation over the weekend.
From those who were aware of the programme and wanted to find out what they could do to support it or help it roll out in their area, to people who were not aware, but when introduced, were super keen to find out more and support.
We were able to use this opportunity over the weekend to promote the Scottish MTB Health Fund too. Letting folks know the purpose of the fund and how they can get involved, either by signing up to Support Scottish Mountain Biking or by making a monthly donation to the Fund.
By donating you will not only help us run more MTB & Mental Health (Trail Therapy) Programmes, but get more women and girls riding, help us deliver urban MTB initiatives, support more MTB disability hubs and increase the diversity of riders on the trails.
Watch our trailer for 'Recovery' a powerful short film we made to tell one story of just how the Trail Therapy programme is making a difference.
Watch this space for details coming shortly on how you can see the whole film, while making a difference and supporting the Scottish MTB Health Fund!
We are really quite proud of our range of programmes that support more individuals to participate in this sport that we all love, mountain biking.
When we remember how awesome mountain biking is, and how it makes us feel, we don't want to deprive any individual access to this special pastime.
It's awesome for all-round physical fitness and amazing for mental well-being and the accessibility for folk of all ages and abilities from the super gnarly downhillers to the family riding forest trails to have a picnic in the woods, is truly phenomenal.
However, many communities are underrepresented in mountain biking and this is a real shame. A diverse community is a healthy, inspiring community, there are many amazing folk out there leading the way for others to be inspired by but more support is needed and we would like to help, not just with words on this page but with real, tangible action.
We have started but could do so much more – with your help.
A whole load of people were interested in where to ride and what to expect when they got there. Folks from all over Europe were present this weekend and it was pretty awesome to have such brilliant content to be able to share with them.
The Ride Guide section of our website holds an incredible amount of information across eight specific areas across Scotland. Dumfries and Galloway, Tweed Valley, Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park and Glasgow, Perthshire, Aberdeenshire, Cairngorms, Lochaber and the North Highlands.
We gave out quite a few of our handy Ride Guides, which we prepared in collaboration with Decathalon too. Aimed at those riders new to the sport, it's a pocket-sized plethora of information from what to buy to get you started to a guide to the Scottish Outdoor Access Code, to help navigate that 'right to roam' phrase.
Want to find out more about what we are up to and what's next for Scottish mountain biking, sign up to Support Scottish Mountain Biking and you will always be one step ahead of the pack!
THANK YOU TO EACH AND EVERY ONE OF YOU WHO CAME BY AND CHATTED AND WERE SUPPORTIVE OF WHAT WE AS A SMALL TEAM ARE TRYING TO ACHIEVE!