It's not too late to try new things
Yes, the nights may be drawing in and the weather turning disgustingly wet but that doesn’t mean your mountain biking season is over.
In fact, in the latter parts of 2016 we reckon there’s loads you can do to keep up your motivation and make the most of any riding you do.
Try night riding
We may not be enjoying the golden evenings of July and August any more but that’s no excuse to miss an after-work ride. Don’t think of night riding as a chore, it’s actually some of the most exhilarating mountain biking you can do.
Your local trail will look totally different in the dark and even the easiest obstacle will seem terrifying. It’s great for boosting your riding skills as well as you learn to let the bike move around under you without relying on your eyes.
Go on holiday
Escape the winter blues with a short break with your bike. You don’t have to spend a fortune to head out into the hills for a couple of days before it gets too cold. You could even camp if you’re feeling brave!
Those willing to splash out a bit more could look at European destinations that stay open all year round. A lot of pros spend their winters training in Portugal or southern Spain so you could spot a celeb while you’re there.
Winterise your bike
Riding in sloppy mud isn’t always as fun as dry summer singletrack, but there’s plenty you can do to make it easier. The first thing to fit would be some thick winter tyres.
After that look at mud guards to keep any spray out of your eyes and filling in any nooks and crannies with moto foam so you aren’t dragging round too much excess mud.
Do some trail building
Autumn and winter are the perfect time for building as the mud is at its most mouldable – why not make it a sociable event with a bunch of friends? It’s the perfect opportunity to improve poor drainage and repair the beatings the trails have had all summer.
Improve your mechanic skills
If you really do have to be stuck indoors on a winter’s night you could still do some maintenance on your bike.
There’s no bike that wouldn’t benefit from a bit of TLC and you could even improve your workshop skills while you’re at it. Plus having your bike dialled for your next ride will make it all the more enjoyable.
Ogle some hot bikes
It’s not too late to get your racing fix this year. Why not have a look at the fancy dress Fair City Enduro which prioritizes fun over competition, or there are the Forest of Dean Mini DH races which let you dip your toes into the world of downhill racing without the intimidating trails.
Bag a bargain
Loads of brands are offering end of season discounts on their 2015 models. Having a good search around the Internet can get you a great bike at a bargain price.
Introduce a friend
Everyone could benefit from a bit of mountain biking in his or her life and having a friend to ride with will surely increase your motivation to get out on the bike. Check out these novice rides for route recommendations.
Watch some mountain bike films
Mountain bike films are pushing the boundaries more than ever before. Get yourself some winter motivation with our picks here.
Put together a Christmas wish list
If you’re feeling the winter pinch then at least Santa’s elves may be able to make you up something nice. There’s nothing like a perfectly crafted Christmas list to keep you interested until December.