This paper discusses the motivation for mountain biking in Norway with the aim of contributing to the broader debate on the changing role of outdoor recreation in late modernity.
Mountain biking is practised in several ways, from the risky downhill type to simple tours of a forest on a bicycle with no need for special experience. To reflect this range of possibilities, we decided to study mountain bikers in two different situations; a competitive bike ride (Birkebeinerrittet in 2002) and a more tour-oriented bike-riding environment (Rallarvegen in 2002).
The goal was to study motivation for mountain biking in general, not the motivation for the specific type of ride that was being undertaken at the time when we administered our questionnaire. In our view, the two samples considered together throw a valuable light on the diversity that characterises the activity of mountain biking and its practitioners.
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