Wheelbase BIG Demo Weekend 16th-17th March 13 - Pedal Progression


22 March 2013

Wheelbase BIG Demo Weekend 16th-17th March 13

We’ve just got back from our second trip to the annual Wheelbase Big Demo Weekend in the Lakes, where we were guiding. At just a week earlier than last year we assumed the wintery weather of the past few weeks would give way to a beautiful spring weekend, and so I began dusting off the tent the week prior. We soon realised the freezing temperatures weren’t going anywhere and phone calls were made to secure ourselves somewhere to stay so we didn’t end up mummified in March!


After a long drive and an epic northern curry the night before, we turned up to Wheelbase on Saturday morning well rested and stoked to see what the trails were like a year on. Unfortunately, they were running a fair bit slower and Saturday nights 2 inches of snow made them comically slippery and even cancelled the first ride out. The rocks and corners (I know, corners in the Lake District, madness) made my route still a pleasure to blast around and only one ‘over the bars’ into a river couldn’t ruin the fun.

With groups being led and organised by the team from Cycle Active, the weekend ran smoothly and everyone got on with the tough job of comparing bikes from the biggest names in the business. Bikes from Yeti, Intense, Lapierre, Kona, Cube, Whyte, Trek and Cannondale were available for thrashing around loops of challenging terrain, only the Lake District can offer. Wheel sizes, tyres, suspension and weights were questioned and answers came in the form of aching legs, sweaty armpits, punctured tubes and gaping grins.

“Getting a bit sideways in the snow was fun but I’m glad we don’t have to put up with the following weeks of slush and frozen feet the snow brings! Back to sunny Bristol!”

Whilst looking after the Wheelbase clients, Pedal Progression managed to make the most of the free for all and swung legs over about 15 grands worth of metal and carbon, test riding new bikes from Kona, Intense, Trek and Cube. 650b was fast, 26” more fun, 29’ers ignored and the Trek wasn’t as good as my bike, so that was that! 😉

Matt kept banging on about how good the Intense Carbine he was riding was, claiming it was the best bike he’d ever ridden – some claim!

My highlight of the weekend was talking to a guy who had one lung, and persuading him to ride another intermediate loop instead of the beginner amble and spotting his smiling face at the bottom of the last rocky descent. Getting a bit sideways in the snow was fun but I’m glad we don’t have to put up with the following weeks of slush and frozen feet the snow brings!

The Wheelbase staff with their knowledge of local trails and bikes combined, were keen to get involved and help wherever possible. It was great to see so many faces we recognised from the year before, still shredding hard. Thanks for making our lives so easy and we look forward to seeing you again next year.

Thanks again to Wheelbase and Cycle Active. Make sure you stop in at the shop next time you’re up there, it is an Aladdin’s cave of expensive bikes and gear and will have you spending money quicker than you can say “where’s my credit card?”

Back to, ahem… sunny Bristol!








Written by: