Mountain bikes are the ultimate adventure transport when it comes to off-road adventures on two wheels. Offering an unparalleled experience, the exhilaration of riding skillfully down a mountain trail on a mountain bike is unique and thrilling. The fresh mountain air, nature all around you while you’re moving along are all made possible with a sturdy mountain bike. It’s good for your mind, body, and soul, and we are all about this kind of cycling adventure at BikeExchange, where you’ll find everything from gravity-focused to lightweight cross-country mountain bikes.
Not for the faint-hearted, the great thing about mountain biking is there is something for everyone no matter where you are at in your journey in biking offroad. From flat trails to steeper trails, there’s plenty of scopes to get skilled up safely before venturing into the more thrilling terrain that mountain biking offers riders.
Cross country is considered the original form of mountain bike riding and is done on naturally occurring or purpose-built trails and is often less technical. The terrain can be almost anything, from hard-packed, muddy, rocky, and gravel.
Trail riding is simply “mountain biking” to many and will generally cover trails with greater technical difficulty than those designed for cross country and definitely involves elevation because a lot of great trails are often found in mountain areas.
Enduro riding is a unique form of mountain biking where downhill sections of a course are timed, but the uphill sections are not. Enduro bikes are designed to shine on descents, and this is where we enter more competitive mountain biking territory.
Gravity or downhill is for the adrenaline junkies. This type of mountain biking is all about flying down at speed and requires both skill and confidence. Riders will either get a lift up to a certain mountain point, or they’ll sometimes walk up with the bike and enjoy a rapid descent on their stead.
BikeExchange has a massive range of mountain bikes across all frames and for all terrains. Check out our range online now and find your perfect match.
How to choose the right mountain bike?
Choosing a mountain bike will come down to the type of terrain you want to ride, whether you're looking to compete, and your current ability. Suspension is a common theme on mountain bikes, with more suspension provided as the terrain becomes more difficult, but you also want to take wheel size into account.
First up, suspension commonly dictates the name of the mountain bike. Mountain bikes with no suspension are referred to as “rigid.” Mountain bikes with front suspension are called “hardtails” as the rear is rigid, and bikes with suspension at both the front and rear wheels are called either ‘full suspension’ or “dual suspension” bikes.
Rigid mountain bikes are a great option for riders looking to tackle easier and more accessible trails. While their lack of front or rear suspension limits the potential usage on more technical trails, rigid mountain bikes have the added benefit of being lighter in weight and lower maintenance. Plus, they’re also an easy entry-level choice.
As we’ve established, hardtail mountain bikes mean that the bike features a solid rear triangle and front suspension while the rear remains rigid. Hardtail mountain bikes are hugely popular due to their lightweight design, value for money, and how they require less maintenance than their full suspension counterparts.
Full-suspension mountain bikes, also known as dual-suspension or a “dually,” feature suspension both at the front and rear wheels of the bike. This added suspension provides an increase in control and comfort when tackling technical and rough terrain. The amount of suspension movement, known as “travel,” often dictates what riding style the bike is best suited to. They do require a little more maintenance, so consider this when you’re deciding which mountain bike is right for you.
Getting the right size bike is crucial. Being comfortable on the bike will provide a more enjoyable experience, and comfort equals speed. Conversely, an incorrectly sized bike will lead to discomfort and potential injury. Finding the right frame size is the first step. If your frame is too small or too big, it will be virtually impossible to make it fit you well no matter how much you tinker with seat post or pedal placements.
Then there are wheel sizes. There are three main types of mountain bike wheels that you will find on the majority of new mountain bikes. Wheels are referred to by numbers that indicate their size, and generally, the greater the number, the greater the size of the wheel, which offers more traction.
26-inch wheels are the original mountain bike wheel size still in circulation today thanks to being nimble and light.
27.5-inch wheels (sometimes referred to as “650B”), have become the new standard. These wheels offer slightly improved roll-over ability, traction, and more air volume than 26-inch wheels. They are also lighter, stronger, and typically more nimble than the 29-inch wheel size.
29-inch wheels are also called “29ers,” and thanks to their increased size, they provide more traction, greater roll-over ability on technical obstacles, and a smoother ride from increased air volume.
So now that you know what type of mountain bikes there are to choose from, paired with what type of wheel size will suit you, it’s time to find out what kind of price range you’re looking at to get the perfect bike for you.
The right mountain bike will also be partially dictated by your budget. Still, you’ll be relieved to know that because mountain biking is such a huge area, manufacturers produce a wide range of mountain bikes that cater to almost every budget, so there’s no doubt you’ll be able to find the right fit with BikeExchange. If you already know the exact make and model of mountain bike you’re looking for, even better—just type the details into the search bar and let our search engine quickly locate it for you.
What are the advantages of using a mountain bike?
The advantages of mountain bikes boil down to the type of cycling you like to do. If you find yourself more than often on a trail, then a mountain bike is the right choice offering specific features designed for outdoor, off-road, trail adventures.
Mountain biking offers a unique way to exercise and experience your natural environment in a way unlike any other activity. Suspension is crucial to the experience on off-road terrain, and if you’re considering tackling trails or mountainous terrain, then purchasing a mountain bike will be to your advantage.
Where can I buy a mountain bike near me?
You can buy mountain bikes here online at BikeExchange.
Mountain bikes are our biggest category on BikeExchange, and sellers are constantly listing premium and affordable mountain bicycles for sale, like our Cannondale mountain bikes so you have plenty of options.
We’re nuts about bikes if you haven’t picked up on it, so if you’re not sure a mountain bike is a good fit for you, check out what our electric bikes and road bikes have to offer. We also have a great selection of kid’s bikes and Trek bikes.