Meaning of MOUNTAIN BIKE in English

noun (Lifestyle and Leisure) A bicycle with a sturdy lightweight frame, fat, deep-treaded tyres, and multiple gears, originally designed for riding on mountainous terrain. Etymology: Formed by compounding: a bike for mountain riding. History and Usage: Although originally designed for hill-riding, the mountain bike became the most fashionable and sought after style of bicycle for town and road cycling as well during the late eighties, rising to the height of a status symbol by 1990. The fashion began in the US and Canada in the early eighties and by 1987 had spread to the UK. At first, mountain bikes were custom-made in California rather than being mass-produced; the name began as a component of the brand names of these 'designer' bikes, such as the Ritchey Mountain Bike. The mountain bike has a distinctive appearance with its thick, heavily treaded tyres and straight handlebars, but the reason for its popularity is more likely to be its versatility and performance, achieved mainly through the wide choice of gears (more than twenty on some models). The sport of hill-riding on a mountain bike is known as mountain biking; someone who takes part in it is a mountain biker. Mountain bikes are also sometimes known as off-roaders or all-terrain bikes (ATBs). Mountain biking demands hill-walking stamina as well as track-riding skills. Initially, choose gentle routes among familiar terrain--or risk prolonged shoulder-carries! Country Living Nov. 1987, p. 164 80 per cent of all bikes sold in London are now mountain bikes. The Face Jan. 1989, p. 8 Cycling, like walking, is one of the best ways of seeing and enjoying the countryside, and mountain bikes have proved to be the latest and most popular method of 'green' transport: over 1 million of them were sold last year. National Trust Magazine Autumn 1990, p. 9

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