Mountain biking is a diverse activity and whether you are leisurely rolling along smooth gravel trails or careening down steep goat paths, it is an exciting and fulfilling way to experience the outdoors.

Check out some photos and stories from a sampling of our trips here.

Explorers Club Biking Chair

The Explorers Club is currently looking for a motivated and experienced member to fill the position of Biking Chair. If this is something you think you might be interested in, please contact us!

Biking Destinations

Depending on your level of fitness and what your mountain biking goals are, you will choose a different destination. There are many local county and city parks (the most local of which are Schenley Park and Frick Park) in the area that one can bike in. I have found blazing along the gnarly and hilly trails of Frick Park to be a thrilling ride even after many visits and Schenley Park is good for the occasional leisurely jaunt, but for longer and more explorative rides, it is necessary to drive out of Pittsburgh for at least 30 minutes or so. There are a few nice county parks and many state and national parks and forests referenced on the hiking page that offer biking trails.

Biking Gear

The Explorers Club owns and maintains five mountain bikes, including two complete with panniers and racks. This is a great opportunity for those who are interested in biking but either don't have a bike or have a bike unfit for off-road use. It is important to only ride a well maintained bike, designed for off-road use, in order to avoid potentially severe bodily injury. Similarly, an undamaged helmet is essential, so the Explorers Club has three differently sized biking helmets.

Bikes available for checkout are:

  • 2014 Specialized Crave 29 - Size S (Red)
  • 2014 Specialized Crave 29 - Size M (Black)
  • 2016 Cannondale Trail 3 (27.5) - Size L (Red)
  • Novara (26" wheels) with optional rack + panniers (Green)

The Club also owns SPD pedals for more intermediate and advanced riders, a hydration pack, gloves, multi-tool, spare tubes, and floor pump. All of this gear is located in the storeroom and, as per Explorers Club policy, must be checked out and returned by an Explorers Club officer.

Note: If you are wearing one of the Explorers Club biking helmets and it withstands a heavy impact, such as you falling on your head while on a trail, you must inform an officer of this upon its return. A helmet's effectiveness in protecting the wearer is significantly decreased after such an impact and the Explorers Club will purchase a new helmet.

Bike Checkout

As mentioned in the above section, the Explorers Club owns and maintains a mountain bike. In addition to the general gear checkout rules, there are two stipulations with bike checkout.

  1. You must email the biking chair (and cc the biking list) before checking out the bike. Please give advance warning of your plan to checkout the bike; 24 hour notice is ideal.

  2. The bike cannot be checked out for more than two days without permission from the biking chair.

Shops & Resources

Pittsburgh Pro Bicycles - Bike shop on Forbes Ave., right in Squirrel Hill
Dirty Harry's - Bike shop in Verona, PA
MTBR - Excellent mountain biking resource with reviews of products, shops, trails, classifieds, etc.