When exploring new areas you can always buy trail maps and ask questions at a local bike shop, but the best and most efficient way to check out a new trail network is with an experienced local guiding the way.
Two friends from afar who met through mountain biking decided to create an app to make arranging riding trips and finding ride buddies easier, so they’ve created MTBNB. The app hosts a global community of riders who are keen to host people in their local zones and interested in travelling to new areas.
MTBNB is very close to releasing their app, but they’re running a campaign on Indiegogo to fund future app and business development. The campaign could use a little support, and there’s still time to invest if you like this idea…
Using the app looks pretty simple. After setting up a user profile, you can search for riding buddies in whatever location you’d like to visit. Your search can then be refined by your riding discipline (XC, AM, EH, DH) and skill level (beginner, intermediate, advanced), ensuring you wind up with suitable ride partners. Your profile can also be linked to Instagram so you can show off photos of your local area and/or previous journeys.
Once you’ve found a ride buddy, MTBNB’s chat room allows you to sort out all the trip details. Beyond the membership fee, there is no cost to set up trips or fees paid to ride buddies/hosts. Members can send an unlimited number of messages and organize as many trips as they please. It’s up to you and your host to figure out how any trip expenses will be dealt with.
If you like MTBNB’s concept but you’d prefer not to host travellers in your home, that’s OK- riding buddies have the option to simply recommend bike-friendly accommodations in their area instead.
For travellers who have a few bucks to spend and wish to elevate their experience even further, MTBNB’s network includes professional guides and instructors eager to offer their services. If you are a guide or instructor, this app could prove to be a great tool to boost your business, as people from all over the world have another way to find you and sign up for rides, clinics, etc.
The first version of the app is to be released in July, and funding from the Indiegogo campaign will be used to add more features to the app and expand the business. To get notifications about the trial version’s development, sign up for MTBNB’s newsletter via their website.
There will be two ‘Meet the Founders’ rides this summer as well- If you’re near Annecy, France or Vancouver, Canada in August, you could have the chance to enjoy a guided ride with MTBNB’s creators Sebastien Payet (France) or Jonathan Lebon (Canada). Those interested should purchase the $11 USD ‘Ride with Cofounders’ perk on the Indiegogo page to obtain an invitation card. Exact dates are not yet specified.
For $45 USD Indiegogo supporters can purchase a MTBNB Buddy Kit, which includes a one-year membership plus a T-shirt, mudguard, stickers, newsletter subscription, and a handwritten thanks letter (how nice)! A one-year membership can be purchased without the swag for $20, and long sleeve MTBNB jerseys, T-shirts and mudguards are available separately as well.
Check out the Indiegogo Campaign page here, or go to MTBNB’s website for more info.