I may work for a bike shop, but an avid cyclist I am not..
I’m the kind of biker that needs to be dragged out on a ride, grumbling about somewhere I have to be, some imaginary appointment that I may miss if we are out for too long.
That all changed on Saturday after spending a few hours with a Ridgeback X2 e-bike, courtesy of Alec at the Ardrishaig bothy.
Instead of making excuses to avoid going out, I was coming up with reasons to take the bike out over the weekend. Nipping down the shop to get the morning rolls, going on a couple of rides with the kids, popping out to get another bottle of milk (wine).
The motor doesn't propel the bike, it "assists" with pedal rotation. It's a strange sensation, but quick to feel natural. On e-bikes, pedal assist usually comes in several levels of power. On the X2, it's Eco, Standard and High, depending on how much assist you want, and if you need to conserve battery on a longer ride. I did briefly try the lower modes for comparison, but happily fired it up to high for the rest of our outing, leaving the kids in the dust, complaining about having cold fingers or something.
On the flat, you could easily have it on eco or standard, but if you are like me (lazy) you’ll want the bike to be doing most of the work, most of the time.
In all seriousness, I was blown away by how much fun it was. I hate hills and the ebike makes them fun. You can do as much or as little work as you want. If you are looking for more of a workout, turn the assist down or, if you are insane, off.
I had it cranked up to the max and loved it.
I'm all for something that encourages us to get out on the bikes and the e-bike certainly does that. Fresh air, exercise, tired and quiet children. What's not to like.
The Ardrishaig Bothy is a brilliant resource for Mid Argyll, lending bikes to encourage cycling and getting outdoors. Give Alec a shout if you are local and you'd like to try a bike - https://www.facebook.com/ArdrishaigBothy
Give us a shout at the Glasgow shop if you are thinking of buying an e-bike, or indeed any bike - https://www.facebook.com/billy.bilslandcycles / https://www.billybilslandcycles.co.uk
Tip for Ridgeback - Needs a drinks holder.
Tip for Parents - Remember to take gloves for the kids.