It’s National Parks Week (29 July – 4 August) and what better way to celebrate than with the first ever Cairngorms Bike Festival, which takes place at Glenmore Lodge, near Aviemore this weekend (Sunday 4 August). It promises to be a fun filled family day out whatever type of cycling you’re into.
The Cairngorms National Park – the UK’s largest – is one of the best and most stunning places in the country to enjoy cycling from high adrenalin mountain biking to something more leisurely between and around the Park’s communities. The festival is part of the Cairngorms National Park’s 10th anniversary celebrations and is also helping to mark Year of Natural Scotland.
Sunday’s event – which will be opened by local gold medal winning Paralympian Dave Smith MBE – will have mountain biking, trials bikes, road bikes and something for BMX fans and for those who prefer a more sedate cycle, why not try out an Electric Bike courtesy of the Cairngorms Electric Bike Project.
The Clan Stunt Display team – Scotland’s leading trials and dirt bike stunt display team – will be performing at the festival and a giant air bag will allow those who don’t have the same level of expertise as the Clan riders to have a go at performing big jumps and spins safe in the knowledge of having a soft landing! A round of the Scottish Trials Bike Championships will be taking place on the day as well as mountain bike races for various ages, a static road bike challenge along with various other cycling activities and attractions.
With the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games only a year away it’s an excellent time to celebrate the strength of biking in Scotland, both recreational and competitively, with Scottish Cycling hopeful for medal success at the Games.
The first ever Cairngorms Bike Festival is supported financially by the Cairngorms National Park Authority (CNPA), Sportscotland, Glenmore Lodge, the Cairngorms Business Partnership, Event Scotland and Celebrate Lottery Fund.
Duncan Bryden, Convener of the CNPA said: “Cycling in the National Park has continued to grow in popularity, both off and on road. It’s very important to the local economy. The Park has excellent shops selling, repairing and hiring bikes alongside must have accessories. There is employment for specialist cycle trail designers, builders and instructors and now we have the Electric Bike network operating in the Park. It’s only right that we celebrate our passion for cycling in some way and I think the Cairngorms Bike Festival is an excellent addition to the events calendar in the Park, helping to promote cycling for fun, health and sustainability.”
Al Gilmour, Head of Mountain Biking at Glenmore said: “Glenmore Lodge are proud and excited to host this event. We have been supporting mountain biking through skills courses and qualifications for over 10 years but this is a unique opportunity to impact a wide variety of bikers of all ages. We believe the Cairngorms National Park provides some of the best riding in the world and want to encourage more people to enjoy riding here whatever their level. We are pleased that the new trials facility and existing skills loop will be offered free of charge for anyone to use after the event, a fantastic legacy.”
Find out more about National Parks Week.