Riding Styles

There may be a need for another category of biking. I'm sure someone has coined a snazzy term for the riding I'm thinking about. But I know of nothing that describes riding a bike into the woods at a casual pace with no intention of technical riding or speed. It's a type of riding that could be done on just about any bike... but is done on trails. It's not mountain biking. Yes, I do it on my mountain bike. But I could do it on any of my worthy steeds.
I do it fairly often (and when I'm not doing it, I often dream of this type of riding). I pack a lunch or a book or a hammock or a thermos of coffee or all of the above. I casually ride through the woods looking at all the nature and creation around me. I stop along the way for lots of pictures and observation. Sometimes I sweat, but not always.
If I find a spot I like, I sit for a bit and snack. I might even fall asleep if the moment allows. It's quite serene.

But I don't know what to call this riding? I know what bike commuting is. I know what recreational roadies do. I can easily identify mountain biking. But what about this? What do you call this? Pondero does a similar thing he calls "micro-tours." I like that. But his micro-tours are usually on pavement. Is this an off-road micro-tour? That's a lot of hyphenation. Any suggestions?

Get out there.


  1. I leave the bike at home and call it hiking.

    So maybe you could call it bike hiking.

    1. That's exactly what it's like! For some reason, to say "mountain biking" to me would be the equivalent to sprinting through the woods on a "hike."

  2. I take a turn into the woods sometimes on my ride home from work. Never really thought about it, just as part of my commute.

  3. Since I have a lot of non-stripped paved roads, and gravel roads, my micro-tours generally happen there. If I had single track readily available, I'd do the same thing and call it a micro-tour. For me, its not the surface or terrain. It is (as you say) a riding style.

    Gary Buckham has an excellent series of YouTube videos called "Pugsley on Patrol" that sometime look like a micro-tour to me...


  4. Pleasure riding? I do this too, but it can also be done on a paved path or road.

  5. That's mountain biking.....Real mountain biking. Look at magazines from the early/mid 80's and you'll see more casual riding, smiles, and MTB's with racks full o' lunch. You shouldn't just give the term away to the wannabe racers and stunt men....Take it back! --------------------------- Mark D.

  6. *this* is exactly what i want to do on my new (to me) mountain bike. i don't want to do all the technical stuff - i'm chicken and i don't like falling. but i love being out in the woods and the feeling of riding on dirt and gravel. thank you!

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  8. Troll is looking awfully interesting there. Mine's taken a completely different look with the touring set-up.

    Hope your missus is enjoying the LHT. And don't steal it from her!