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Specialized Healthy Catch Ups back for Summer 16/17

Specialized Healthy Catch Ups at Rabbit Ridge

Specialized healthy catch ups is a program for 2016 that aims to promote healthy living for females. The program asks leading Specialized retailers around the world to organise social cycling experiences for women that are about friendship, fitness and fun. The initiative aims to inspire people to get out there, discover new experiences with friends –and have lots of fun along the way!

Healthy Catch Ups Rabbit Ridge Outside Sports NZ

Outside Sports hosted social ladies rides in January, February and March 2016 which turned out to be so popular we decided to make an annual event. The first ladies ride of this summer was to go ahead at Rabbit Ridge Bike Park on the last Sunday of November, within a couple of days from the event announcement the ride was fully booked.

Rabbit Ridge Bike Park is located next to Gibbston Valley Winery and features more than 40kms of trails suitable for all levels of riders. A perfect place for anyone getting into mountain biking that wants something a bit less intimidating than a lot of the riding in Queenstown.

Healthy Catch Ups Rabbit Ridge Outside Sports NZ

As the weekend approached the forecast wasn’t looking great and early Sunday morning the rain was pouring down. Between the clouds we saw that there had been a big snowfall on the surrounding mountains –

and it’s supposed to be the start of summer!?

We decided to go with the optimistic approach and head out to meet at Gibbston Valley Winery hoping that the sun would come out and the trails would be dry. On meeting at Gibbston valley Winery, Sean from Rabbit Ride had just got back from test riding the trails with a bike caked in mud.

It was not looking promising.......

We were expecting a small turnout due to poor conditions but nearly everyone that booked showed up excited to ride– great effort! The enthusiasm from the group seemed to pay off as the sun started to peek through the clouds and the rain stopped - a ride was definitely in order.

Healthy Catch Ups Rabbit Ridge Outside Sports NZ

The call was made that Rabbit Ridge was too slippery and the Queenstown trail across the road would be a good option. The group set off to ride the loop down by the river with the possibility of coming back to the Ridge if it dried out. The trail took the group on a loop down towards the river for a cruisy ride looking out over the Kawarau. As the group rode, the sun seemed to fight its way through the clouds making for a pretty nice day! The snow on the hills made for some great scenery and everyone seemed stoked to be out riding.

There was a mix of skill levels but everyone rode as a group and the more skilled riders gave riding tips and encouragement, making for a really great environment for all. Ronan the mechanic from Outside Sports rode along at the back to fix anything that went wrong and had with him the Specialized Levo pedal assisted mountain bike which several of the ladies had a turn on which made the ride a LOT easier.

Healthy Catch Ups Rabbit Ridge Outside Sports NZ

After the river loop we got a call from Sean who had been keeping an eye on the trail conditions at Rabbit Ridge and he had good news. The lower trails had soaked up all the water and it was looking good to ride!

As we had already done a decent amount of pedalling and food and wine was on the mind, we decided some shuttle runs would be more enjoyable then riding to the top of the park. With the Outside Sports truck and the Rabbit Ridge van, the riders were taken to the top of the park for a couple of descending trails to finish the ride.

Everyone arrived back at Gibbston Valley Winery where some complimentary bottles of wine and juice were waiting for the thirsty riders. After a post ride catch up over some food and drink, the riders left with new friends and have hopefully been inspired to get out there and do more healthy social catch ups.

Healthy Catch Ups Rabbit Ridge Outside Sports NZ

Thank you to Rabbit Ridge for free access to the trails, Gibbston Valley Winery for hosting us, and all the riders who came along with such great attitudes!

Keep an eye on the Healthy Catch Ups Facebook page for information on the next ride, and feel free to use the page to organise your own healthy catch up!

Thanks to:

Specialized Healthy Catch Ups programme

Rabbit Ridge Bike Park

Gibbston Valley Winery

Cookies Coaching

#WhereAdventuresBegin

Photo Credit: Meagan Lee Wilken

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