If you are deciding which university to attend and love mountain biking, this post can help you figure out what to look for to combine the two in a great match.
Searching the right university for you should start by looking up their courses, and people who lead them. But you should also consider how you could continue and expand on your hobbies and passions outside academic life, as that makes the uni experience much better. If your hobby/passion is mountain biking, here are three criteria that you should consider for an MTB-friendly university:
1) Cycling Club
Look at the list of university’s societies and clubs. If there’s an active MTB club, it means that there’s already a group of like-minded people, and likely, an established network of trails nearby. These clubs are great to socialise, find out about local riding spots, and hitting them with new friends.
A) Outdoors: have a look at the map if there are there hills and forests near the campus. If so, you will be able to visit them for a quick afternoon spin instead of pedalling for hours before getting to any action. Are there mountains in reach? Of course, the answers should be yes!
B) campus: While it is important that the university has step-free access to be inclusive and welcoming, they should still have an option of a few stairs here and there, so you can have fun on your bike in between classes (or when the world is on the lockdown)!
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Late night urban rides around the summer solstice are so much fun!! Also, this is an inevitable outcome when you can't go to the mountains because of the #2020lockdown. #scotlandisnow @dundeeuni #dundee #longdays #mtbscotland #destress #advancedselfie #summertime #specializedbikes #bluehour #clear
Staying with the topic of campus, you might like the idea of commuting to the university on your bike. Are there places to park it?
Bike racks are clear, but if you have a fancy bike, you might not want to leave it just like this. It is nice to have some more secure alternatives, such as lockable bike sheds.
Another sign of a bike-friendly campus is that they have some essential tools for you to use.
It won’t replace a fully equipped workshop, but it is great to have the option to do most of the bike maintenance on campus. Mainly if you are coming from afar and you can’t afford to fill half of your luggage with spanners and a track pump.
Available vehicles to use:
If the university has a fleet of vans and minibuses for students to use, you can fill them with your pals (and your bikes!) and set off to experience trails that would otherwise be inaccessible.
Hope this helps with your decisions! Thanks for reading.