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  • Mountain Biking (13)

Fly Fishing Rod

by Fred
Categories: Mountain Biking
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Published on: March 30, 2011

In the sport of fly fishing, your rod is one of your most important pieces of equipment.  Fly rods come in various shapes and sizes, and which one you choose depends a lot on how you are going to be using the rod.

Fly fishing rods come rated in terms of the net weight they can handle (designated by nwt).  That means if you are fishing waters for fish up to 8 pounds, you should use an 8 nwt rod.  The higher the number, the bigger fish the rod will be able to handle.

Some rods are multi-rated (i.e. 8-10 nwt).  These rods are good because they can handle a variety of situations, but you will sacrifice flexibility in the performance of the rod.  A multi-rated rod is good for beginning fly fishermen because of it’s ability to adapt to various fishing scenarios.

Rods are made of three different materials:  fiberglass, graphite, and bamboo.  Fiberglass rods are the best choice for beginners.  They are durable and considerably less expensive than the alternatives.  Most fly fishing rods are made of fiberglass.

Graphite rods are a little more expensive, but they are lighter than fiberglass.  They are better at casting than other rods and can handle many types of fishing situations.  Graphite rods are strong so they’ll give you more fighting weight when trying to finish your catch.

Bamboo rods were the earliest rods used in the sport of fly fishing.  Today, bamboo rods are quite expensive, but they are amazing strong and durable.  These rods are suited for a slow, soft casting style associated with slow, leisurely fishing.  Bamboo rods are very graceful, but they can be difficult to handle in certain situations, so this is not a good choice for beginners.

The length of your rod makes a difference as well depending on what type of fishing location you are in.  Rods less than 8 feet long are good for tight, narrow places and areas with overhanging trees.  Eight to nine foot rods are ideal for trout and bass fishing in open areas where you can get casting distance.  Anything nine feet and over is for wide open waters and long distance casts.  You can also use a nine foot and above rod for fishing from a float tube.

Put some thought into your fly fishing rod.  While it’s not the only piece of gear that matters, it can be the one piece of gear that can help you bring in a monster fish or a baby fish.  Think about what you want to accomplish on your fishing expedition and choose a rod that you help you achieve your goal.

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Introduction To Mountain Biking

by Fred
Categories: Mountain Biking
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Published on: March 21, 2011

Mountain Biker with Blue Sky BehindMountain biking is a great way to explore the outdoors, stay in shape, or just have fun. Racing down the side of a mountain is a lot of fun indeed, although it can also be quite dangerous. Even though it’s dangerous, if you ride with caution, it can be enjoyed by the entire family.

Styles of mountain biking
Mountain biking can best be characterized into three different styles – downhill, free riding, and cross country. Even though the different styles are similar in some ways, they still require different skills. The style that you pick will determine the type of bike you get.

Locations for mountain biking
The sport can best be thought of as biking on an unpaved surface. Many areas throughout North America have specific locations designed for mountain biking. Before you decide to go down a trail, you should always check with your local park to get the routes, regulations, and any rules that they may have.

You can also find groups that have mountain bike rides and competitions. You can look on the internet or even in a local paper and see exactly what’s available in your area. You may be able to find groups for the more advanced riders as well as beginners.

Becoming a great biker
Endurance and stamina are a must for a great mountain biker. It will also take ambition and practice to succeed as well as conquer the course. Like all other sports, it takes time and practice. Those just beginning will have to get past the bumps and bruises from falling off the bike.

Selecting your mountain bike
The bike you select is more of a personal choice, and a big determining factor on the type of riding you will be doing. Bikes come in all styles, shapes, and prices, which will make selecting one for yourself very difficult indeed.

You should use the internet to help you shop for a bike, even do some price comparisons online as well before you make a purchase. Before you buy a bike, always ask to try it out first. A great mountain biker will become one with his or her own bike. When buying, make sure you check for comfort, how it fits, even how it is geared.

Staying safe when riding
Mountain bike riding on unpaved roads can be very dangerous, as mentioned earlier. Anytime you are riding, you should wear a helmet, along with knee and elbow pads. If you are following a group or riding in the woods you should strongly consider a pair of goggles as well. Safety should be your top priority and never taken lightly anytime you are mountain biking.

You Ought To Experience Mountain Biking In Australia

by Fred
Categories: Mountain Biking
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Published on: March 21, 2011

Mountain Biker JumpingAuthor:

LouisePounds

If you are a mountain biking fanatic, then Australia is the place to be. There are tons of lengthy nature trails that weave their way through various types of terrain, across multiple cities and national parks. Mountain biking in Australia is a great way to see the amazing landscape while getting a workout and experiencing a serious Australian adventure. Breathe in the fresh Aussie air and get up close and personal with nature while flying across the Australian bush.

In Victoria, Otway Ranges boasts some of the most picturesque mountain biking trails for the ultimate nature lover. On the trails you will pass by forests full of Eucalyptus trees as well as many other forms of native Australian wildlife. Although both mountain bikers and hikers can access the trail, it is most frequented by riders because it was specifically designed for mountain biking. The variety of trails in Otway Ranges offers options for beginners and advanced riders.

For novice riders, there are many simple trails that are not too difficult or advanced. In addition, you do not have to worry about accidentally ending up on an expert trail because each of the trails is marked with a difficulty rating. It is important that you stick to a trail that is within your mountain biking level, because taking a trail that is beyond your abilities can result in you, or others getting hurt.

The trails were designed by an actual professional trail builder, who put time into creating a fun and fast paced trail that expert mountain bikers would enjoy. Expert riders can feel the difference between riding on trails made for mountain bikers and riding on trails made for walkers. These trails were without a doubt made with the avid biker in mind!

There are many National Parks in Australia that are designed to protect the native flora and fauna, but allow some access for members of the public to visit and experience the beautiful nature. In parks like Kinglake National Park there are biking trails that riders can access, but keep in mind that these areas are protected and need to be taken care of. Pick up after yourself and do not be destructive when riding through this area.

Something you will learn as you become more experienced in mountain biking is that it is important to be respectful of your fellow trail users; especially walkers and hikers. Many trails are not meant for exclusive use by mountain bikers, and are often shared with walkers. The Great Dividing Trails in Australia are a great example of beautiful trails that are harmoniously shared between walkers and bikers.

If 250km of trails is not enough for you then you should try out the Bicentennial National trail which stretches out across more than 5,000km of land. Crossing the country on your mountain bike with the wind in your hair and adventure paved out in front of you will be an unforgettable experience. Since the trails are long, the terrain is diverse and will offer countless photo ops.

Mountain biking in Australia is the best way to experience the natural beauty of a spectacularly breathtaking country. Leave the traditional Australian tours to the tourists, and unleash the adventurer in you by seeing the sites via mountain bike! You will come away with more rugged and authentic photos, and interesting tales of your Australian adventure.

Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/sports-and-fitness-articles/you-ought-to-experience-mountain-biking-in-australia-4227196.html

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Get inside info on reasons why you should buy giant bikes now in our overview of all you need to know about how and where to get the best mountain bikes in Australia.

Mountain Bike Anatomy

by Fred
Categories: Mountain Biking
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Published on: March 21, 2011

Mountain BikerMountain Bike Anatomy A mountain bike is the one thing you need before you go mountain biking. A mountain bike contains many parts, which will be covered below:

1. Bottom bracket – This attaches the crankset to the body of a bike.

2. Brake cable – This is the cable that connects the brake lever to the brake mechanism.

3. Brake lever – The lever on the handlebar to activate the brakes. The left side is the front brake and the right side is the rear brake.

4. Chain – The circular set of links that transfer power from the chain ring to the cogs.

5. Chain ring – The toothed rings that attach to the crank to hold the chain.

6. Crank – The lever that extends from the bottom bracket to the pedal, transferring the power to the chain rings.

7. Derailleur – The mechanism for moving the chain from one cog to another.

8. Down tube – The section of frame that extends downward from the stem to the bottom bracket.

9. Front shock – The shock absorber on the front fork.

10. Handlebar – The horizontal bar attached to the stem with handgrips on the end.

11. Headset – The mechanism in front of the frame that connects the front fork to the stem and handlebars.

12. Hub – The center part of the wheel that the spokes are attached to.

13. Idler pulley – The bottom pulley of the rear derailleur that provides spring tension to keep the chain tight.

14. Nipple – A threaded receptacle that holds the end of the spoke to the rim.

15. Pedal – The platform to pedal on; attaches to the crank.

16. Rear shock – The shock absorber for the rear tire on dual suspension type bikes.

17. Rim - The metal ring that holds the spokes on the inside and the tire to the outside.

18. Saddle – The seat.

19. Seat post – Offers support for the seat.

20. Skewer - The metal rod that goes through the hub, attaching the wheel to the dropouts of the frame.

21. Spindle – The free rotating axle that the crank arms attach to; also a part of the bottom bracket.

22. Spokes – The thick wires that join the hub to the rim.

23. Stem – A piece that attaches the handlebar to the steering tube.

24. Wheel hub – The center of the wheel that the spokes are attached to.

Types Of Mountain Biking

by Fred
Categories: Mountain Biking
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Published on: March 21, 2011

As a sport or a hobby, mountain biking can be split into 9 different categories. These categories are very versed in what they offer. They are:

1. BMX
BMX is a style where the bikes offer 20 inch wheels. These bikes are commonly used at skate parks or with dirt jumps. Because of their smaller wheels and shorter wheel bases, BMX bikes are much easier to perform tricks and stunts with.

2. Cross country
This type of mountain biking involves riding your bike up and down hills. Although it’s the least extreme form of mountain biking, most cross country riders are very fit and go on long rides.

3. Cyclo cross
This is a cross between road and mountain biking. These riders have to go over obstacles, cross through rivers, and race on and off the course.

4. Dirt jumping
Dirt jumping involves jumping the bike over large man made dirt jumps then doing tricks while they are in the air. These jumps are normally close together so riders can go over six or more jumps in one run, gaining a flow to give them more speed for bigger jumps.

5. Downhill
Downhill mountain biking involves racing downhill as fast as possible. This type of riding is very intense and extreme, offering riders the chance for ultimate thrills and excitement.

6. Freeride
Free riding involves finding the perfect line down the mountain using all of the terrain to express yourself. These competitions are very popular, as riders can express themselves any way they see fit.

7. Single speed
No to be confused with fixed gears, this is a form of cross country biking that’s done using a bike with only one gear and fewer components. The idea with single speed is simplicity. The straight chain line will provide efficient pedaling, and the lack of components mean less mechanical problems and a lighter bike.

8. Street and urban
This type of riding involves riding in urban areas, ledges, and other types of man made obstacles. Riders of street and urban biking will do tricks as well, such as stalls and grinds.

9. Trails
Trials are considered an aspect of mountain biking, although the bikes used look nothing like mountain bikes. They use 20 or 26 inch wheels and sport small, low frames. Trail riders will hop and jump their bikes over obstacles, which requires an extreme amount of balance and concentration.

Spring Tune Up Tips

by Fred
Categories: Mountain Biking
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Published on: March 21, 2011

If you don’t ride in the winter, you’ve probably spent the winter months on the couch eating chips and watching television. Before you know it, spring will be here and a new season of mountain biking will begin. Even though your body may not be in shape, these tips will ensure that your bike is.

Before you take your bike out, check the wear and tear on your components and adjust them if its necessary. Start off with your chain. If you haven’t replaced it in a year or more, it’s time to do so. Over time, the individual parts in the chain will get worn out, increasing its effective length.

As this happens, the chain is no longer able to conform to the cog and the teeth of the chain ring, so it wears those teeth out to fit the profile of the chain. If you can replace the chain before it stretches too much you’ll save yourself from having to replace high priced cogs and chain rings.

Now, check the bearing surfaces. These include your bottom bracket, hubs, and the headset. Each of these should turn without a problem with no play in the system. Before checking the bottom bracket, make sure each cranking arm is snugged tight. Next, hold on to the crank arm (not the pedal) and wobble it back and forth. If you hear any clicking or if the crank arm binds, the bottom bracket needs to be adjusted.

Do the exact same thing with your hubs. Take the wheels off the bike, spin the hub axles, then feel for any free play or binding. If you feel play or binding, you need to make an adjustment. To check the headset, start off by putting the newly adjusted wheels back on the bike.

Now, grab the front brake and pull and push the handle bars back and forth. There shouldn’t be any play. If you lift the front end off the ground, the fork should turn very smoothly. If it feels rough, it needs to be either adjusted or replaced.

While your looking, check the condition of your cables and housing. The cables should be rust free and the housing shouldn’t be cracked or kinked. If you see any of this you should replace the offending device, as if you don’t your shifting and braking will be sluggish.

Last, you should inspect your brake pads. Most pads will have ridges or indicator marks that will let you know when they need to be replaced. Brake pads that are worn out will comprimise both safety and braking efficiency.

Once you’ve got the tune ups out of the way, it’s time to go for a ride. With your mountain bike running

Things To Take With You

by Fred
Categories: Mountain Biking
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Published on: March 21, 2011

Things To Take With You When you decide to go mountain biking on a long days ride, there are several things that you should take with you. Below, you’ll find the essentials that you should have with you.

1. Back pack – a camelback or mule is a good idea here.
2. Waterproof – the type that packs down very small is the best to have.
3. Water – you need at least 2 liters for a long ride.
4. Food – sandwiches and energy bars are the best to have with you to eat.
5. Pump – take a good one with you, as the small mini pumps are a waste of time and money.
6. Tire levers if you need them.
7. Two small inner tubes.
8. A piece of medium emery paper about 3 inches long and an inch wide.
9. A cut up tube of Crest for pinch punctures or to use as a tire boot.
10. A carpet needle.
11. A card of linen thread to repair torn tires.
12. A good chain splitter
13. At least two black pins. You should tape these to the inside lid of your puncture repair kit.
14. A set of allen wrenches. The penknife style is the best to get.
15. A small screwdriver.
16. A first aid kit that includes an elastic bandage.
17. A Spokey spoke key.
18. A felt tip pen that will show on inner tubes.
19. Some lunch and phone money.

If you take the above with you, you should have no problems with long mountain bike rides. Everything on the above list will serve a purpose, all you have to do is give them a chance. If you’ve ever been mountain biking and ran into problems in the past, you should know first hand just how important the proper supplies can actually be.

How To Lube Your Mountain Bike

by Fred
Categories: Mountain Biking
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Published on: March 21, 2011

Author: Mountain Bike Tips

A mountain bike is a lot of fun although it does require some maintenance. You should always lube your bike 15 hours or so before riding, as quick jobs right before you take off normally doesn’t get everything lubed. Some lube jobs will last for more rides, although if things get loud or shifting gets sticky, it’s time to lube.

Here is how to lube your bike:

1. The chain
Apply a generous amount of mountain bike lube to your chain as you move the pedals around backwards. It also helps to find a spot to steady your hand such as the frame while you move the pedals around and around. Make sure you watch out for the cranks and chain rings as they move around.

2. Front Deraileur
On the front defaileur, lube the pivots. Use a spot of lube everywhere you can see movement when you move the shift lever.

3. Rear deraileur
Just like the front deraileur, lube the pivots.

4. Pedals
There are some types of clipless pedals that will need to have the release mechanism lubed. You should only lube this mechanism if you have this type of pedal.

5. Everything into motion
Pedal around, shift your gears, and bounce your bike around. If you hear anything squeak, there’s a moving part there are it should be lubed immediately.

6. Wipe it all clean
Once you’ve lubed everything and wiped it all around, simply wipe it all back off. Use a rag to wipe away all the lube you used, including all the lube off the chain. Wiping it away will leave the lube in between the parts but clean it away from everywhere it isn’t needed. This will keep your bike from collecting dirt while you ride.

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How To Use A Chain Tool

by Fred
Categories: Mountain Biking
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Published on: March 21, 2011

Once your mountain bike chain becomes damaged, you should immediately replace it with a new one. It is possible however, to repair a broken chain using a chain tool. For this very reason, most mountain bikers travel with a chain tool.

Your chain has three basic components – the metal side plates, the rollers between the side plates, and the rivets, or pins which go through the rollers and help to hold the plates together. These pins allow the rollers to freely turn as the chain moves around the cogs.

If your chain happens to break, you’ll need to remove the broken link and replace it with a spare link. To do this, simply reattach the two ends of the broken chain and ride on a shorter chain until you can get it replaced.

To remove a broken link of chain, place it in the chain tool. Now, turn the tool counter clockwise until the rivet pin of the chain tool touches the chain rivet. Continue to turn the tool until the pin pushes out of the roller. Be very careful, as you want to stop turning when the pin is right at the edge of the roller, before it moves through the outer side plate.

Now, turn the tool in the other direction, and back it out of the roller. Set the tool to the side, then work the chain very gently from side to side and extract the inner side plates and roller.

Now is the time to re-route the chain through the bike. You may want to have a chain retaining tool or some to help you hold the chain in the right spot as you route and repair it.

Now that the broken link has been removed and you’ve re-routed the chain, you’re ready to insert a new link or simply connect the links that were beside the broken one. The process here is the same – align the two ends so that the link with the inner side plates will fit inside the link with the pin and outer side plates. Now, use the chain tool to push the pin inward until it’s positioned evenly between the side plates.

The easiest way to learn how to do this or feel comfortable doing it is to have someone show you, then actually practice with a chain and a chain tool. You’ll have no trouble at all making a temporary repair in a mountain bike chain once you’ve seen it done by a professional and practiced it yourself a few times.

Disc Brakes Or Rim Brakes

by Fred
Categories: Mountain Biking
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Published on: March 21, 2011

This can be a very important decision when you are buying a mountain bike. There are actually two answers to the question of disc brakes or rim brakes.

If you want better, more consistent brake performance in all conditions, disc brakes are what you should be choosing. On the other hand, if you want the lightest set up you can have and you are willing to accept small variances in brake performance, or you want the lowest price possible, rim brakes are what you should be choosing.

Over the years, mountain bikes have gone through many design changes. They started out with the original cantilever brakes, then went through the U Brake years, and are now with V Brakes. In most conditions, the V Brakes seem to work well.

In wet or muddy conditions, rim brakes will perform poorly. Over time, they can wear right through the side of your rim, causing the side of the rim to blow right off.

Disc brakes on the other hand have been around for a long time in cars but weren’t used on bikes much until the late 1990′s. There were some issues in the earlier models, although the cable actuated or hydraulic brakes of today seem to work quite well.

In terms of performance, disc brakes seem to work better than rim brakes, especially in wet or muddy areas. Disc brakes normally require less force to apply and aren’t effected by the rim or wheel condition.

Cost is an issue, as disk brake systems tend to be more expensive than rim brakes. Mechanical or cable actuated brakes are a closer match, although they will still cost more. Hydraulic brakes on the other hand cost a lot more.

When you make that final choice, weight out the above options then make your decision. Some riders prefer disc brakes, while others prefer rim brakes – making it a matter of opinion.

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