Before you set out to traverse the trail this season it is a good idea to take a look at the old bicycle to make sure that it is actually ready to handle another season. If it has been awhile since you've purchased your bicycle you may want to consider getting a new one, especially if it has been over a decade since you purchased yours. Technology has improved quite a bit since then, and if you are an avid rider you ought to be taking advantage of those improvements. So do you know what to look for in a mountain bike if it is time to purchase a new one?
Since these are designed for off-road use from the start the frame of the bicycle is important in determining the terrain that it can handle. Most riders use cross-country bikes which our designed to handle fairly level terrain, while providing a comfortable ride.
If you are looking for a model that will perform better on rocky terrain you may want to look into one with a full suspension system, meaning that both the front and rear tires have suspension systems. Those with full suspension systems are heavier then those with partial system, but the payoff comes on rough terrain when you still have a comfortable ride.
Another option for the avid rider is a trail model. This kind always features a full suspension system for both sets of wheels. The heavier frame is sturdier and more durable then the frames on the average cross-country model that people ride.
If you are new to riding it is recommended that you invest in a trail model for your first purchase. For the professional cyclist all terrain models provide the highest amount of suspension possible. Some all-mountain models even feature 29-inch tires which allow riders to power over any obstacle, even though they are not recommended for shorter riders.
So now that you know what features you should be looking for, it is time to head to your local cycling shop to see if you can match the features you want with the price tag that you can afford. A local shop will often offer more variety in mountain bikes than a big box store, and though you may have to pay a bit more for the initial purchase, the ability to go to professionals who really know mountain biking if you should ever have a problem with the bike is a priceless asset to have access to.
Once you know what to look for, then it is simply a matter of picking out the one that meets your needs. The salesperson at the store will be glad to help you in this regard. They know everything that you need to get started in your particular interest in regards to riding.
When you find the one that has the feature list that you want along with a price that is in your budget then you can start making plans for how you are going to spend the next biking season. Here's hoping you find exactly what you need this year and happy trails to you.
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