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7 Things Mountain Bikers Love to Hate

By Martin Atanasov

As much as we love riding in the mountains, some things simply get on our nerves. They make our blood boil – and not in a good way. Yes, though we are a cheerful bunch, MTB riders are just as prone to hating as any other person. But while we do tend to be irritated by some aspects of mountain biking, we can’t deny that we secretly enjoy hating them a little too much. It’s as if they make our ride a bit more fulfilling.

So, let’s talk about the 7 things mountain bikers love to hate.

That guy with the e-bike

You’ve spit out your lungs on that last climb, breathing heavily between sips of life-saving water with electrolytes. Your jersey is well marinated, your legs are burning, and your head is a bit dizzy. So, imagine seeing that guy with an e-bike behind you, just casually strolling by with a huge smile, barely sweating. They even have the audacity to greet you with a friendly wave.

At that moment, your blood starts boiling, and you get back on your bike, trying to take them over. Yeah, that’s not happening. But let’s be honest. There’s nothing wrong with riding an e-bike. If you are that jealous of how easy they have it, just buy an e-bike. But that’s not the point, now, is it?

It simply brings us joy to teasе these people. Throwing some salty jokes and making them feel inferior just because they love going down without having to sweat 3 litres of salty water first. What can I say? It simply makes our rides that much better, especially when you pass them during the downhill section.

MTB E-Bike
They even have the audacity to greet you with a friendly wave. © Profimedia

Those goddamn climbs

Come on! How many of these can be in one ride? Yes, whining about the climbs is a part of every ride. In the best-case scenario, you are doing it quietly under your breath while suffering. But if you have a friend with you, there is no better way to pass the time than swearing at the rocky climb that you chose to climb yourself. Still, there’s no reason why not to let your soul spill out all the hatred toward the mountain that has absolutely no fault for being there in the first place.

Of course, after the ride, you will enjoy the downhill. But on top of that, you will check your Strava after the ride to see if you managed to climb the segment faster and if you managed to put some more power into the climb. And at the end, you will jump around like a little child when you see it took you 10 seconds fewer to get there.

As much as we love hatin’ on climbs, they are our second favourite part of mountain biking, just after going down. So, let’s not pretend there are no bitter-sweet feelings when you hit that 20% gradient and manage to conquer it without stepping down. That doesn’t mean we will stop hating, though. What else are we going to talk about while climbing this goddamn hill?


Yeah, let’s pretend we don’t love every second of splashing around in the mud. Let’s hate the terrain, even though we love it to bits when we can go through a muddy puddle and spray ourselves from top to bottom with a healthy layer of earth. Toph from ATLA would have been proud of us.

Still, when it comes to hitting the shower or cleaning your bike, this mud does tend to make you lose your temper, especially if it’s the sticky kind. Moreover, it does make steering a bit harder but come on. Where is the fun in riding on solid ground all the time? Plus, consider the economic losses of mud-tyre manufacturers if we simply did the unthinkable – stop riding on muddy terrains. Of course, that’s not happening. After all, in most of Europe, mud is essentially what we have 8 months of the year, especially in the more mountainous regions.

Wearing a helmet on the climbs     

You will never hear us speaking against wearing a helmet while riding. That doesn’t mean we like it. Actually, scratch that. We love to hate it. It’s something like a symbiotic connection. It protects us, while at the same time, it gives us immense pleasure to complain about how uncomfortable it is to climb with helmets on. This goes double when talking about full-face protection.

Still, despite all the statistics some people will try to show, wearing a helmet while riding in the mountains is paramount to your safety. So, while it is uncomfortable and does occasionally collect insects during the climbs, falling down and hitting your head on a rock is definitely not outside the realm of possibilities. Thus, keep on hating while keeping on your helmet.

Made-up stories

Yes! I know you dropped that 50-metre drop without even breaking a sweat. For sure. And then you managed to beat Kilian Bron on Megavalanche. Sure, that’s not even mildly suspicious. But have you considered that what you can actually do is impressive enough? No, no, don’t stop living in your fairy-tale life. It is quite amusing, really. Of course, no one believes you but it gives us immense pleasure to comment on your absurd stories and claims.

And you know what the best part is? Even if you manage to do something special one day, no one will believe you. Still, for the time being, these fairy-tale stories give us some twisted joy that you actually believe we hate you because you are that good. We don’t. We actually love you. It’s the constant lying that gets on our nerves.

That friend who doesn’t know the time

Speaking of mates that make our blood boil, we can’t miss out on the one who takes Einstein’s theory on how time is relative way too seriously. Time may be relative but the clock, at least in the same time zone, is pretty much universal and when we agree on meeting at 10:00, that doesn’t mean that’s the time to wake up.

Still, hating on you will keep the conversation going for half an hour or so. And yeah, it’s frustrating but come on, we know you’ll be late, so now we mostly get there on time, just so we can tear you a new one during the otherwise tedious climb. So, don’t try to change. Hating you is way too much fun. If you start coming on time, whom are we going to tease – the influencer?

The influencers

Actually, there is nothing wrong with cycling influencers. They are pretty great and I love following their adventures, challenges, and absurd notions that someone cares if they can go on a 24-hour ride without a saddle. True, it does make for some entertaining content but come on. No one cares if you succeed or not.

Yes, being an influencer is quite OK as long as you keep it to yourself. I mean, get your shots and do your thing but don’t expect me to be part of your content. I’m not there to entertain your viewers and even if I were, I’d want a cut of the proceeds. Don’t ask me questions on camera, and don’t try to make fun of me in front of others. On the other hand, I definitely want to see myself riding on your channel. It’s a bit of a conflicting feeling. I truly hate your filming process but I love the end result and will continue to watch it.

So, keep on filming. Just don’t be intrusive, and don’t make my ride about your content. It is not. In return, I’ll keep on hating your process but keep sending you love on your channel.

What do you love to hate?

Surely, there are other things you love to hate. Those are some of the few universals that simply make every MTB rider’s blood boil. But let’s not stop hating together. What makes your forehead vein pop out?