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  • How fit do I have to be?
    The good news is that there aren't too many hills to tackle on mainland Orkney, just undulating quiet roads and tracks. Hoy is by far the hilliest island to explore, with some steeper climbs (but the views are well worth it!). What we can't always plan for though is the weather, and the Orcadian breeze can sometimes be a challenge! So to ensure you enjoy your day out with us we recommend that you have a base level of aerobic fitness, i.e. undertake some form of aerobic fitness activity such as an exercise class, brisk walking, cycling, jogging etc. at least a couple of times a week.
  • I haven't ridden a mountain bike before. Can I book a guided day?
    If you have NEVER ridden a bike before then a guided day out is definitely not recommended. However, if you are used to riding a road bike then you should be absolutely fine. Road bikes are built to be lightweight and aerodynamic. They feature a more aggressive riding position and are the fastest bike on the road. Mountain bikes are built for stability and utility. They feature knobbier tyres and ride smoothly over any surface, which is why we use them for our guided days out.
  • What is the group size and who comes on the guided days out?
    We focus on smaller groups, with a maximum group size of 6, plus the Ride Orkney guide. We have a mix of riders, ages, fitness levels and abilities, but we will always try to match you with a group of equal ability/fitness.
  • I'm not sure I'd be comfortable riding with other people I don't know. Do you offer one-to-one (1-1) guiding?
    We absolutely realise that riding in a group can be daunting, so we cater for riders who just want to ride with the guide and no-one else. And we don't charge any more for this! Just let us know that you want a 1-1 guided day out and we will hopefully be able to accommodate.
  • What happens if the weather is awful?
    The weather on Orkney can sometimes be a challenge and we can't always guarantee blue skies, light winds and sunshine! The health and safety of our riders is our number one priority though, so our guides will look at the weather forecast 48-hours before and make a decision on whether the weather is suitable. In the event that the weather is not suitable you will be offered an alternate day or a full refund. If we do venture out, please remember that we very occasionally get four seasons in one day on Orkney, so please come prepared with waterproofs, gloves, hat, an extra layer .... and sunscreen and sunglasses!
  • Do the ferries always run?
    The good news is that our inter-island ferry service is excellent! It's very rare for an inter-island ferry to cancel due to a technical fault, however, a ferry can get cancelled if the weather forecast is particularly bad. Usually, we will receive prior warning of any cancellations so we should be able to advise you at least 24-hours before your day out with us. In the event that the inter-island ferry is cancelled we will offer you an alternate day out or a full refund.
  • What clothing and kit do I need to bring?
    We recommend bringing the following kit: Suitable footwear (trainers/approach shoes) Padded shorts or normal shorts - Ride Orkney have a number of bike seat gel pads if you need to borrow one Cycling trousers – non-restrictive Waterproof jacket Waterproof trousers Warm base layer (top) Spare clothing (suggest a fleece top or similar) Cycling gloves or thin gloves Helmet, if you want to bring your own. Ride Orkney do provide helmets (included in cost) Rucksack - Ride Orkney have spares if you need one. Water (to drink) Food (for energy!)
  • Can I bring my own bike?
    Although you can bring your own bike, Ride Orkney reserves the right to refuse the use of the bike if we deem that the bike is either unsuitable for the planned day, or it is not in a suitable condition (e.g. tyres/brake pads worn, mechanical issues etc). In the event that your bike cannot be used we will offer you the use of one of our own bikes if we have one available. If a bike is not available and we need to cancel your place, a 25% refund will be offered.
  • Do you have electric bikes to use?
    Unfortunately we do not have electric bikes.
  • What happens if I have a puncture or mechanical on the day?
    The good news is that our guides are trained as part of their Mountain Bike Leader qualification to make basic repairs if the need arises. Our guides carry spare inner tubes, pumps, chain links etc, so in the unlikely event that you have a flat, our guide will fix it for you while you relax and enjoy the scenery!
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