back to news and reviews

Posted by

It’s a time of year for reflection. The mark on the calendar when we look back and acknowledge the deeds and achievements accomplished by the great and the good amongst whatever peer group we subscribe to. There was a time when I used to anticipate the arrival of news. News that ‘Bear Bones’ had received an award, a wink or a nod in recognition of services to bikepacking. Then, I stopped … you can only hold your breath for so many years before you turn blue and become dizzy.

At first, the lack of oxygen left me a little disheartened. I thought about the WRT and the money raised for good causes. The first bikepacking ITT to be held outside the US and the countless folk who’ve been gently pushed over the edge and down the slippery slope towards their personal, two wheeled tramp nirvana. However, once I got my breath back and the giddiness had passed, I quickly realised a number of things. Firstly, I’m not a dog and therefore, patting me on the head is unlikely to make me wag my tail, roll over or lick my balls. Secondly, I realised that in general, awards often seem to be given to the wrong people … or maybe the right people for the wrong reasons?

You see, bikepacking doesn’t need heroes and it doesn’t need infecting with the plague of celebrity. It doesn’t need those things because everyone out there, is already those things. The person looking out of their window on a sleety Wednesday evening in January, who then sets off alone to sleep in the woods – is a hero. There’ll be no magazine article, sponsorship or book deal off the back of their endeavours. The best they can hope for is some personal satisfaction and if they’re lucky, a reasonable nights kip. Maybe no one else will ever know what they did or where they went but that’s of no consequence because they’ll know … and that, is the purest motivation of all.

As 2017 draws to an end and we anticipate the arrival of another year, I’d like to congratulate everyone who’s spent the night shivering in a bivvy bag dreaming of a duvet. Everyone who’s used up their last ounce of energy to reach the pub before it stops serving, only to find it closed for refurbishment and everyone, who’s simply wondered what’s beyond the next hill and ridden to find out. You’ll never be a role model, sleeping in a ditch and cuddling a pork pie is not aspirational but please, keep doing what you do; sharing a mile of trail with you, a brew to greet the morning sun or even that odd cat-pissy smell that comes from your jersey after two days … those things are truly New Years Honours.


  1. Slightly pissed if that after at least in excess of 5 years of baking Bara Brith I didn’t get a mention!

    Services to cake!!!!!

    Bloody sham of a mockery of a sham!

  2. There was that one year when your Bara was more 'services to the building trade' than it was cake … but that aside, you're absolutely right and your contribution will be duly noted.

  3. derbyram59 says:

    'services to the building trade' :-))

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may also be interested in

Kill what you love.

Before we fall headlong down this particular rabbit hole, I just want to make it clear that I have no answers, I only have questions. However, they’re questions that I believe we should all ask of ourselves and if we’re honest and truthful, then perhaps the answers and solutions will readily present themselves. Once upon […]

Read Full Article

SOTO Wind Master stove.

Rightly or wrongly, I kind of assume that other people assume that I only ever use meths stoves. The real truth is, I’ll happily burn any kind of fuel in my continual quest for another brew. I feel there’s a time and a place for every type of stove and conditions combined with your own […]

Read Full Article

The Titan Ground Anchor.

To most upright members of society, a tent peg will receive less thought than what they’re having for their dinner. Conversely, to the ardent bikepacker, the seemingly humble tent peg is a source of untold fascination. Length, diameter, material and obviously weight all require careful scrutiny if the Holy Grail of tent pegs is ever […]

Read Full Article

Shopping Cart
There are no products in the cart!
Continue Shopping