Try mountain biking in Oman

T-Mag Wednesday 22/March/2017 20:10 PM
By: Times News Service
Try mountain biking in Oman

To explore the beauty of Oman, while getting a serious rush, explore the terrain not by car, not on foot, but on mountain bike. Crossing obstacles, jumping over rocks, and riding straight down mountainous roads. If you’re anything like us, it will be one of the most exciting weekend adventures you’ve ever had.

Mountain biking is an adrenaline-filled off-road activity that involves riding bicycles on rugged surfaces, using bikes specifically designed for these sort of adventures. Mountain bicycles have a ton of similarities with ordinary bikes with the exception of having features that boost up performance and durability in the wild and off the road, such as heavy-duty tyres.

Rewinding to the 1800s, the very first examples of mountain bikes were the ones used by Buffalo Soldiers during their journey from Montana to Yellowstone in the United States in 1869. A few years later, in 1891 the Swiss military established their own biking routine, and by the 1900s, it was an established part of most military training regimes. By the 1940s, it was also being adopted by non-military folks, who fancied a little adventure on two wheels.

There is no better place for this bold sport than Oman, with its hilly roads, steep mountains, rugged wadis, and lush farms, all of which offer challenging terrain for the serious bikers. There are some basic, fundamental skills aspiring mountain bikers should be aware of. At the outset, handling brakes and understanding balance is of great importance on uneven terrains. Just as important is knowing when to pedal and when to stop, for example, when climbing hills you should pedal harder and add more pressure by changing gears, while going down hill, it is a good idea to “downshift” your bike and use your brakes in the correct way to avoid skid-outs. It is also important to relax and enjoy the experience, as this will help you to stay loose on the bicycle, and avoid clenching your grip or locking your elbows. The most important thing in mountain biking is to keep your eyes scanning your path for rocks, roots, tree branches, or ditches that you may need to navigate through, over, or around.

This recreational activity demands some endurance, core strength, balance, bike handling skills, and self-reliance, but with Oman’s unique geology, every excursion is bound to offer a great ride. If you are just getting into the sport, or are new to the sport here in Oman, there are biking companies that offer not only tours and packages to almost anywhere in the Sultanate, but also have their own fleet of bikes, in case you don’t have your own already. Bike and Hike Oman, established in 2012 in Wilayat Al Hamra, offers opportunities for biking aficionados to explore the country on cultural tours, mountain and canyon visits, water trailing, and longer trips to places like Jebel Misht, all on two-wheels, of course. [email protected]

Book a Bike Tour
Hike and Bike Oman
+968 9516 5038

Popular Tours (many others available, see Hike and Bike website for details)

Freefall Downhill Cycling Tour:
The ride starts at the top of a paved mountain road, where you can take in views 2000m to both sides of the hill overlooking Bilad Sayt and Hut. Descend the steep road, making stops to cooling down at small villages along the way. This 28km ride is appropriate for intermediate riders with good break control.
Prices per guest: OMR38 (group of 3-10 people), OMR 48 private tour (2 people), OMR 80 private tour (1 person, alone), additional discounts available for groups.

Heritage Hike and Small Downhill Cycling Adventure Tour:
This tour begins with the heritage hiking tour through Al Hamra, followed by a 4km downhill cycling adventure into the valley below the village. This tour is great for beginners, as it is appropriate for anyone who knows how to ride a bike. A high fitness level is not required.
Prices per guest: OMR 46 (group of 3-10 people), OMR 56 private tour (2 people),
OMR 87 private (1 person, alone), additional discounts available for groups.