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The story of how mountain biking started

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Joe Breeze built the first mountain bike. But it was another Californian, who would really run with the idea (Photo: The Smithsonian)
Joe Breeze built the first mountain bike. But it was another Californian, who would really run with the idea (Photo: The Smithsonian)

In little over 40 years, mountain biking has grown from fringe activity to a massive global outdoor movement.

Transcending geographies, continents, seasons and demographics, the mountain bike has become a method of healthy escape, essential exercise and mindful discovery. But where did it all start?

People have been riding road bicycles off-road, for many decades. Before roads were paved, that was a given. In South Africa, the rural transport network, before cars arrived, was often supplemented by bicycles.

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