btw this thread and the bby mtn thread…….i think we often forget why we're here or why we're on the mountain. too many judgments being passed around. here's an example of situations over the years that i have experienced and have thought about when i read this thread and the comments.
1) when i first started riding, i had no money and only one bike. my buddies and i rode almost everyday. after mustering up the nerves, we headed to the world famous shore as we wanted to see what it was all about. we went up to pangor on our xc hardtails. got a lot of weird looks and comments similar to op's friend. we made it down just fine. we had to walk some parts as it was definitely harder than we expected but we rode/walked it all the way back to the car. this was our first time and had never ridden anything like it. two weeks later we went back and did boogieman. walked more than half of it but was blown away that someone out there can ride that stuff.
regardless, it was our first time ever and we had a blast. more importantly we learned a lot. we learned that my friend didn't like it enough and therefore did not buy a bike that was more suitable for the shore. i learned that i loved it and that my next bike would be shore specific.
2) i am ubber clumsy and constantly get hurt. when i first started, i crashed a lot. i was constantly bruised and hurt.
on one crash i walked away seeing birds flying circles around me. my hip to knee was bruised badly, my shoulder ached and my elbow was bleeding and i somehow even managed to sprain my ankle. all this from one fall.
a week later i had the itch to go ride. time restraints only allowed for a rip at the shed. that's ok though cause i love the jumps there. i went, but because i was still sore and aching, i wore my body armor just to be safe. last thing i needed was another crash on a sore shoulder, elbow, and hip. i got a lot of weird looks and comments again. a couple of bikers even laughed and commented at how stupid i looked as i headed into the trail. oh well, all i know is i had a blast in there that day. i had so much fun i forgot how much pain i was in. the armor gave me that bit of confidence that took away the fear and that was all i needed to make a great ride.
so at the end of the day, i don't care what ppl think of me. they don't know my story or my situation.
i might not be able to afford a shore specific bike but riding a xc bike down the shore seems better to me than sitting at home wondering what the shore is about. or vise versa (bby mtn or the shed on a dh bike).
i might be wearing armor to be safe or to be protecting an injury. but wearing body armor at somewhere like the shed sure beats sitting at home thinking about biking.
so ya, how bout we all stop judging others here for their choices. you can laugh at me all you want, but if you had taken the time to talk to me you'd find out that we're very similar and love to ride every freaking chance we get.