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A proud dad and something to think about

BigAlBigAl Posts: 3,122
edited October 2013 in MTB general
Went out with my two lads this afternoon. Nothing fancy, just a 10 mile loop on my local trails (Chilterns, Stokenchurch way)

They're 12 years old, just shy of 5 foot. To my shame they're still on 20" Hotrocks which are way too small for them*. No matter - they just rode. Uphill, downhill, whatever was in front of them. It wasn't technical but, hell, they picked up some speed on the downs! Lots of screeching etc and 'dad, I nearly lost it!

Neither of them asked for bigger wheels, more travel, discs, 1x11, or a dropper post!

They just rode what they have and loved it.

Isn't that the point?

* new bikes planned for Xmas

Posts

  • BigAl wrote:
    Went out with my two lads this afternoon. Nothing fancy, just a 10 mile loop on my local trails (Chilterns, Stokenchurch way)

    They're 12 years old, just shy of 5 foot. To my shame they're still on 20" Hotrocks which are way too small for them*. No matter - they just rode. Uphill, downhill, whatever was in front of them. It wasn't technical but, hell, they picked up some speed on the downs! Lots of screeching etc and 'dad, I nearly lost it!

    Neither of them asked for bigger wheels, more travel, discs, 1x11, or a dropper post!

    They just rode what they have and loved it.

    Isn't that the point?

    * new bikes planned for Xmas

    you make a extremely good point, I was having FUN on mountain bikes in the mid 90s, when they weighed as much as a gas stove, it seems the more advanced( the bikes get, the more miserable/serious the riders are


    I passed a couple of lads out yesterday, doing a bit of a drop through a stream and up again,'' HI'' I said ''nice day'' ''MMMMR'' they replied youd think they had just come from their mothers funeral by their general demeanor and countenance

    unlucky perhaps, but it does seem the more expensive the bike and particularly the ridding gear, the more standoffish and unpleasant they are
  • oxomanoxoman Posts: 8,218
    My 8yr old currently rides his Second hand giant mtx with 20" wheels and loves it his only moan is it hasn't got a bottle holder. I have currently got an old hotrock with 24" wheels and solid forks that I,m having powder coated then I will rebuild it like new. He will love it because he helped me do it.
    Too many bikes according to Mrs O.
  • veronese68veronese68 Posts: 22,798 Lives Here
    You' re not wrong. My 15 year old son's bike cost about £70 to put together, Frankenbike in my sig. I bought the frame off Ebay for £10 as there were no other bidders because it looked so rough, but it's a good frame. I bought used shifters, new old stock V brakes and levers and new cables. The forks had been on my old MTB so I donated them and some wheels. He loves it because he helped put it together and also because he knows how good it is although his mates all think it's a pile of junk. It's much better and lighter than most of their bikes, but because it's not new and shiny they can't see it.
    Took him to Swinley Forest a little while ago and he binned it into a tree. Fortunately he was ok, but he made a mess of the back wheel, now nearly straight. The forks could do with replacing as they are leaking oil from a top cap which is cracked, unfortunately I can't get a replacement. But he still loves it.
  • DCR00DCR00 Posts: 2,160
    slickmouse wrote:
    BigAl wrote:
    Went out with my two lads this afternoon. Nothing fancy, just a 10 mile loop on my local trails (Chilterns, Stokenchurch way)

    They're 12 years old, just shy of 5 foot. To my shame they're still on 20" Hotrocks which are way too small for them*. No matter - they just rode. Uphill, downhill, whatever was in front of them. It wasn't technical but, hell, they picked up some speed on the downs! Lots of screeching etc and 'dad, I nearly lost it!

    Neither of them asked for bigger wheels, more travel, discs, 1x11, or a dropper post!

    They just rode what they have and loved it.

    Isn't that the point?

    * new bikes planned for Xmas

    you make a extremely good point, I was having FUN on mountain bikes in the mid 90s, when they weighed as much as a gas stove, it seems the more advanced( the bikes get, the more miserable/serious the riders are


    I passed a couple of lads out yesterday, doing a bit of a drop through a stream and up again,'' HI'' I said ''nice day'' ''MMMMR'' they replied youd think they had just come from their mothers funeral by their general demeanor and countenance

    unlucky perhaps, but it does seem the more expensive the bike and particularly the ridding gear, the more standoffish and unpleasant they are

    they are probably in a bad mood as they have just realised that having carbon brake levers hasn't turned them into a biking god
  • My 6 year old daughter does most of the blue runs and some of the less technical reds at Swinley, and doesn't complain about the climbs. She gets upset if we spend too much time on the fire roads!!! I always smile when I see her skills by comparison to her friends. She is always keen to get out and try stuff even though her little full sus Muddy Fox is nearly twice as heavy as my Kona but she soldiers on and has a blast doing it.. Wish more people could take from this.
  • KajjalKajjal Posts: 3,404
    slickmouse wrote:
    BigAl wrote:
    Went out with my two lads this afternoon. Nothing fancy, just a 10 mile loop on my local trails (Chilterns, Stokenchurch way)

    They're 12 years old, just shy of 5 foot. To my shame they're still on 20" Hotrocks which are way too small for them*. No matter - they just rode. Uphill, downhill, whatever was in front of them. It wasn't technical but, hell, they picked up some speed on the downs! Lots of screeching etc and 'dad, I nearly lost it!

    Neither of them asked for bigger wheels, more travel, discs, 1x11, or a dropper post!

    They just rode what they have and loved it.

    Isn't that the point?

    * new bikes planned for Xmas

    you make a extremely good point, I was having FUN on mountain bikes in the mid 90s, when they weighed as much as a gas stove, it seems the more advanced( the bikes get, the more miserable/serious the riders are


    I passed a couple of lads out yesterday, doing a bit of a drop through a stream and up again,'' HI'' I said ''nice day'' ''MMMMR'' they replied youd think they had just come from their mothers funeral by their general demeanor and countenance

    unlucky perhaps, but it does seem the more expensive the bike and particularly the ridding gear, the more standoffish and unpleasant they are

    I to had the wrist damaging 1990's MTB with no front suspension and brakes that only really worked on the flat. Your right it seems the more expensive the gear the more miserable the rider. Also the more lycra you wear seems to make people miserable as well or maybe its just the physical and mental pain of riding to the limit ;)
  • Carl170Carl170 Posts: 99
    I was at Chopwell woods on Saturday and encountered 3 miserable ignorant sods with very expensive looking bikes. They were so serious discussing how technical it was (it isn't!) and how far it was uphill to ride back,. A bloke with his 3 kids came blasting down it - 2 girls and one boy, all under 10! They were all having a great time, as was the Dad whose main pleasure was just seeing his kids having a good time. The kids had no fear either and really bombed down!

    Slightly off topic - Someone has published an article on consumer choices and it appears that people are more miserable when they have MORE choice. This is due to thinking you have never made the right decision.

    I think you need to ride what you have - rather than being bitter about what you would really like!

    Regards

    Carl
  • ej2320ej2320 Posts: 1,543
    Carl170 wrote:
    Slightly off topic - Someone has published an article on consumer choices and it appears that people are more miserable when they have MORE choice. This is due to thinking you have never made the right decision.

    I think you need to ride what you have - rather than being bitter about what you would really like!

    Thats spot on
  • paulcpaulc Posts: 161
    My girl 11 never really wants to go out on her bike... But then again she has no choice, once out though she enjoys it... Can't work her out sometimes.

    My lad 9 is the total opposite always wanting to be out on his £70 mountain bike 3 years old now.. He broke it so many times I got bored of fixing it so taught him how to do it.

    Then last week he got a bmx with a gyro so he can do stunts for his birthday... Not being able to go skate park everyday he asked if I could make him a ramp... So I did in 5 minutes with two planks and plywood now he's the happiest kid ever.

    Small things really do make a difference.
  • UlyssesUlysses Posts: 104
    IMHO there is a bigger picture here which hopefully brings together this entire thread:

    Almost all the responses reference the fact that the bikes etc are not the determing factor.

    Of course kids love being out on their bike, but what makes it even more special is, as carl170 noticed, the kids were getting the opportunity to go out and have fun with their Dads.

    It's the "out having fun with Dad" factor that is the overiding influence on it all.

    I used to love any moment I could get with my own father when I was a kid because he was always working so much. History repeats itself with my kids and I.

    One of the reasons I love cycling so much, and why I think it's such a fantatsic hobby for any family to have, is because everything feels so much better both during and after! Kids seem to relish just being with Dad.

    Personally, it makes me stop thinking about anything else and be 100% focused on my kids and the moment. I find that increasingly difficult to do nowadays with the challenges that life loves to throw our way :)

    So, thanks BigAl for the post....it certainly got me thinking.

    After having just re-discovered cycling and having a daughter who is nearly two ... I'm already looking on fleabay for a kool little wooden balance bike for her. I cant wait to give her what I never properly had, quality time with Dad ... not much beats coming home from a shite day at work to "DA-DEEEEE" :D
  • J LJ L Posts: 425
    Great Thread this, 8)

    Hey BigAl, I used to live in Piddington just down the road, there are some really great rides around that whole area, on reflection I miss quite a lot in comparison with Devon. :cry:
    BigAl wrote:
    Went out with my two lads this afternoon. Nothing fancy, just a 10 mile loop on my local trails (Chilterns, Stokenchurch way)

    They're 12 years old, just shy of 5 foot. To my shame they're still on 20" Hotrocks which are way too small for them*. No matter - they just rode. Uphill, downhill, whatever was in front of them. It wasn't technical but, hell, they picked up some speed on the downs! Lots of screeching etc and 'dad, I nearly lost it!

    Neither of them asked for bigger wheels, more travel, discs, 1x11, or a dropper post!

    They just rode what they have and loved it.

    Isn't that the point?

    * new bikes planned for Xmas
    I'm not old I'm Retro
  • Ulysses wrote:
    After having just re-discovered cycling and having a daughter who is nearly two ... I'm already looking on fleabay for a kool little wooden balance bike for her. I cant wait to give her what I never properly had, quality time with Dad ... not much beats coming home from a shite day at work to "DA-DEEEEE" :D

    This ........ in spades :D My 2.5 yr old is getting her first bike for xmas - I desperately want her to have something light and racy but she wants pink and ribbons and baskets for her bunny (Not a real one) and that's more than ok. I am that guy that has paralysis by analysis - obsessively poring over components and weighing up the value of each part I add to my own bike and I'd like her to have the same quality but my epiphany is having the thought that she'll be on it for a relatively short time so it doesn't matter - getting her to love cycling is more important than wanting the best that's out there :wink:
  • BigAlBigAl Posts: 3,122
    J L wrote:
    Great Thread this, 8)

    Hey BigAl, I used to live in Piddington just down the road, there are some really great rides around that whole area, on reflection I miss quite a lot in comparison with Devon.

    Yeah plenty of good riding here - though it does tend to be in short sections which need joining up by road (or the Ridgeway)
    The Ridgeway is great with the kids though.

    We've been down in Devon (or Cornwall) every year for the last 5 and I reckon you're doing alright down there too!
  • Daz555Daz555 Posts: 4,040
    sjbrown wrote:
    This ........ in spades :D My 2.5 yr old is getting her first bike for xmas - I desperately want her to have something light and racy but she wants pink and ribbons and baskets for her bunny (Not a real one) and that's more than ok. I am that guy that has paralysis by analysis - obsessively poring over components and weighing up the value of each part I add to my own bike and I'd like her to have the same quality but my epiphany is having the thought that she'll be on it for a relatively short time so it doesn't matter - getting her to love cycling is more important than wanting the best that's out there :wink:
    2.5? A balance bike?

    If so I can recomend the Strider Bike:
    strider_ST3_pink.jpg
    You only need two tools: WD40 and Duck Tape.
    If it doesn't move and should, use the WD40.
    If it shouldn't move and does, use the tape.
  • J LJ L Posts: 425
    BigAl wrote:
    J L wrote:
    Great Thread this, 8)

    Hey BigAl, I used to live in Piddington just down the road, there are some really great rides around that whole area, on reflection I miss quite a lot in comparison with Devon.

    Yeah plenty of good riding here - though it does tend to be in short sections which need joining up by road (or the Ridgeway)
    The Ridgeway is great with the kids though.

    We've been down in Devon (or Cornwall) every year for the last 5 and I reckon you're doing alright down there too!

    That used to be part of the fun, 40 mile ride link up the trails with rural road sections and perhaps the odd pub (bull and butcher was one of my faves) one of my favourite downhills was a bridle path coming down from Parmoor into Skermitt through hatchet wood. happy memories of my teen's through to my early 30's.

    Another good one was from Ibstone opposite the Fox pub down a bridle path that eventually leads to the Turville road. sooo many good trails, need to go back for some fun..

    Yeah Devon has some good stuff but its in the national parks mainly so better for all day epics other than evening rides, there is much less local stuff like bridal paths and byways.
    I'm not old I'm Retro
  • UlyssesUlysses Posts: 104
    J L wrote:
    If your close to the A30 and close and dont mind a bit of a drive theres some good rides to be had in Cornwall, check out Poldice Valley and United Valley (the next one along), theres some fun to be had there!

    sjbrown wrote:
    This ........ in spades :D My 2.5 yr old is getting her first bike for xmas - I desperately want her to have something light and racy but she wants pink and ribbons and baskets for her bunny (Not a real one) and that's more than ok. I am that guy that has paralysis by analysis - obsessively poring over components and weighing up the value of each part I add to my own bike and I'd like her to have the same quality but my epiphany is having the thought that she'll be on it for a relatively short time so it doesn't matter - getting her to love cycling is more important than wanting the best that's out there :wink:

    Indeed the very same! Hours and hours of "researching", must be some kind of OCD thing, followed by finally taking the plunge and then being full of doubt if it was the right purchase until its dleivered lol!
  • Must be a guy thing :?

    Strider bike is being considered but her eyes keep being drawn to the ones ridden by the majority of little girls in the park with stabilisers - I know they are a bad way to start and we should harness her natural sense of balance but she wants one she can have a basket etc on. Unless anyone knows of a strider with fittings for a basket.
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