What is Outerbike?
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What is Outerbike?

Outerbike is about making friends in the bike world. It is a chance to meet other cyclists and industry people – and to find the perfect bike for you. If you love to ride, this event is about you.

Husband and wife team, Ashley and Mark of Western Spirit, created Outerbike. Photo: Whit Richardson

Created to unite bike enthusiasts with an industry insider experience, Ashley Korenblatt of Western Spirit, is the brains and the passion behind Outerbike; a consumer access demo days that originated in Moab and, for the fist time this year, will be in Whistler as well. It is a four day event that offers the general public access to bike and gear manufacturers, allowing them to check out the latest innovations and, more importantly, to try out new bikes. The event also includes lift or shuttle access riding, guided rides, meals, parties, and beer!

I thought it would be a good idea to invite the customers to come ride the bikes! At Western Spirit we meet lots of cyclists who are passionate about riding, but are not part of the industry.

It is as much about test riding the bikes as it is about being immersed in the bikes industry…

we thought it would be great to invite them to the party — give them a chance to meet people in the industry, bike designers, marketing people, etcetera — and most importantly to ride the bikes.

Bikes aplenty at Outerbike. Photo by Whit Richardson.

Bikes, bikes, bikes. Photo: Whit Richardson

Ashley goes out to explain that her main goal was “to spread the love.” Observing the bike industry as “cliquey and exclusive,” she wanted to create a haven where enthusiasts, even those who may only get out for a pedal once a year, would be welcomed and included. “We want even casual cyclists to feel like they are part of the biking community.”

The last five years of organizing Outerbike in Moab have been hard work, lacking in sleep, and a year-round commitment, but it is all worthwhile for Ashley when she recalls “literally hundreds of riders have come to me, given me a big hug and said ‘Outerbike was the best weekend ever!’”

Bike testing in Moab is a little different than the lift access and alpine cross-country that Whistler has to offer. Photo credit: Mike Schirf

Bike testing in Moab is a little different than the lift access and alpine cross-country that Whistler has to offer. Photo: Mike Schirf

We know there are more people out there that want to test the bikes, so we are excited to bring the program to Whistler.

This year Outerbike is expanding to Whistler. This all-inclusive style event will be north of the border from June 4-7. The move was in part a decision based around demand and a want to preserve the existing culture of the Outerbike Experience. “To maintain the quality of the experience we are capping the event in Moab, but we know there are more people out there that want to test the bikes, so we are excited to bring the program to Whistler.”

While the event in Whistler will be run by Grant Lamont, both Ashley and her husband, Mark, along with several of their Western Spirit guides will be in attendance, “specifically to help with registration and make sure everybody gets to ride whatever bikes pique their fancy.”

As an accessible industry event, Ashley looks to the communities that host them, Moab and, now, Whistler, to be involved. “When we bring people to a community we are counting on the residents to welcome them, from the lodging folks to the restaurant people to the liftees.” She goes on to explain, “we see Outerbike as an opportunity for Whistler to welcome a broader mix of cyclists.” And what can the attendees expect? “Outerbike is about making friends in the bike world. It is a chance to meet other cyclists and industry people—and to find the perfect bike for you. If you love to ride, this event is about you.”

Enjoying the community feel of Outerbike. Photo: Whit Richardson.

Enjoying the community feel of Outerbike. Photo: Whit Richardson.

In contrast and complement to the event in Moab, Whistler has a few unique offerings; lift service riding and Alpine cross country trails, which differ from the desert riding in Moab. Ashley’s own first experience in Whistler left her “grinning from ear to ear.” As a new mom she only expected to get a run or two in before letting Mark ride, “but,” she says, “when I finished my first run all I could say was ‘we’re getting a babysitter!’”

From one mountain biking mecca to another, the crew at Western Spirit, and the organizers here in Canada are very excited to offer Outerbike to Whistler.

This blog originally appeared on PinkBike, written by the Outerbike crew: http://www.pinkbike.com/news/outerbike-a-brief-history-2015.html

Gibbons is the official hospitality partner of Outerbike – the more the merrier, so if you want to party with the riders check out our line up of events below.

Outerbike events poster.

Gibbons Whistler

Gibbons has been celebrating with people since 1979. We operate venues, run festivals, brew beer, talk travel and throw parties.