New Zealand offers some fantastic backcountry mountain bike trails which can take you to remote and breathtaking parts of the country. This activity is increasing in popularity across the globe, with all kinds of tracks and trails being built each year.
Some of the key things to consider when taking your bike out is that unlike a walk or tramp, you can easily find yourself in the backcountry as you are using a machine to get you there. You also need to plan your trip and understand the inner workings of your bike, so if trouble appears, you can get yourself out of there in case there is no phone reception or help on hand.
Watch how to pack for an overnight bike ride:
There are over 76,000 people who mountain bike in the NZ backcountry each year.– There and Back, 2016
For the first time, the outdoor recreation sector has a comprehensive picture of what’s been going on in the New Zealand outdoors from an outdoor safety perspective, across 5 major outdoor recreation activities. This publication combines all injury, search and rescue and fatality data together to present a comprehensive ‘state of the nation’ style detailed breakdown.
84% of search and rescues for backcountry mountain bikers were alone or separated from a group.– There and Back, 2016
Explore the proportions of rescued Mountain Bikers below.
71% of backcountry mountain biking injuries are to the upper body.
– There and Back, 2016
Click to expand the items below and learn what you need to consider of the 5 Outdoor Safety Code Steps:
What would happen if something went wrong such as an injury or you got lost? It is vital to tell someone to raise the alarm if you have not returned. Make sure you tell them details such as:
There are good, better and best ways to leave your intentions with someone. Click the link below to find out how:
New Zealand’s changeable weather conditions frequently catch out the unprepared. Consider how it might affect your desired trip if weather were to change for example:
Learn how to be aware of the weather, how to read the weather in the link below
Is the trip achievable for you and the members of your group? Well there are plenty of tracks to choose from in New Zealand so researching before you go is a great way to identify the perfect trip. Involve everyone in planning process and get help from the following resources:
What should you take?
New Zealand weather is very changeable. Even if you set out in the sunshine and there is no rain in the forecast it's not uncommon to have an isolated shower. Make sure you take rain protection and extra layers you can put on if it gets cold. Having the right supplies means that you're more likely to remain warm, comfortable and safe for the duration of your ride.
Wear the right fabrics. Clothing only retains what heat your body produces. Certain fabrics wick moisture away from the body and retain warmth. Avoid cotton clothing – when cotton gets wet it ceases to insulate you. Wet and cold clothing significantly contributes to hypothermia.
There are a few other essentials you should have on you for day rides.
Or learn more about how to pack for your trip: