The latest issue of Australian Mountain Bike has hit the shelves of newsagents and select bike shops. Issue #186 is another Alpine Issue, actually the 7th one we have produced! What's that mean? For us at AMB it's a time to celebrate and highlight riding in high places, which is one of the best things to do in the summer months. 

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While we would usually have a story from somewhere overseas to tempt the travellers, this year we stayed local, and put together a road trip in the NSW Snowy Mountains. If you've got some holiday time to fill and want to spend a bunch of it on your mountain bike, then this is essential reading. 

We even have a competition so you can spend a weekend at Falls Creek Resort with 3 friends, staying at Diana Alpine Lodge and shuttling with Blue Dirt Mountain Biking! Get the details and enter right here.

Our crew travelled to Tumut, Cooma, Jindabyne, Lake Crackenback and Thredbo, meeting up with local riders at each destination to find out what the pick of the trails were, and also the best places to stay, get a meal or have a drink. This is a huge feature that is well worth checking out. The question is - where should our next road trip be?

Given that a lot of our alpine areas have epic gravity assisted riding, you would be forgiven for thinking that these places do not suit newer, or younger, riders. But that's not true at all. From Mt Buller to Thredbo, Falls Creek and all the way to the sub-alpine summit of Maydena Bike Park, there are green rated trails. Check out the feature that highlights some options.

One of those options that can suit those who want to cruise on their mountain bike, to those who want a good gravel cycling route, is the Falls Creek Huts and Aqueducts ride.

We had 20 bikes and products on test (ok, 21 if you count playing around in the new Isuzu D-MAX X-Terrain) and the bikes on test were a really fun bunch on the road trip.

Will Shaw tested the NS Bikes Define 130 1. This is a top-spec bike that isn't going crazy into the 5 figure mark. Ride Sports in Queensland sent this bike to Will to test, and in short - he was very impressed at how capable the 130mm trail bike was.

The NS Define 130 1 retails for $8799, but Ride Sports do have some incredible offers on their bikes at the moment. It's well worth checking out their website.

Tim Bardsley-Smith saddled up on the Cube Stereo Hybrid 140 HPC Race 625 - which is a mouthful. This is a 140mm travel, 29" wheeled eMTB that uses the Bosch Performance Line CX Gen4 motor, complete with the latest software for 85Nm of torque and extended boost.

With a SRAM Eagle 12-speed drivetrain and Shimano 4-piston brakes, the Cube has the gearing and the stoppers. The suspension spec from RockShox manages, but the value here is the carbon mainframe and a top of the range motor and 625Wh battery. Cube bikes are sold at 99 Bikes, and they're out of stock of this bike now, but have the 2021 model on the way with the tiniest of changes - and the same $6999 price, which is epic value for what's on offer. If it sounds good, don't miss Tim's thorough review in the new issue.

Earlier this year Specialized released the new Stumpjumper. They created a Stumpjumper EVO for the wild child in you, and a lighter, stiff, stronger Stumpjumper for the rest of us.

As a previous Stumpjumper owner, we asked Ryan Walsch to jump aboard a Stumpjumper Pro, and throw it around with reckless abandon. Which he did. This bike sells for $12000, and Specialized reckon it's the ultimate trail bike. Ryan is one of the handiest trail riders we know - so read his take in the issue.

We also tested a bunch of new products. From the Rhino Rack Pioneer Platform and bike holder, to the Thule GateMate Pro and Yakima OnRamp - all products to help you get your bike to and from the trails.

But wait, there's lots more! From flat pedal and clipless footwear, open faced and full-face helmets, new trail clothing, a 213mm dropper, waterless bike cleaner and lots more.

We've got fitness tips, nutrition tips, and secrets of speed from Jared Rando.

But perhaps best of all, we have a truly amazing subscription offer, with Merida Australia letting us give one lucky new or renewing subscriber a Merida eOne-Sixty 700 eMTB! This bike is a 2021 model with Shimano EP8, Fox and Marzocchi suspension, and a Shimano 12-speed drive train. Selling for $7999 this is one of the best prizes we've had for new and renewing subscribers for ages. You'd be mad to not subscribe, save some money, and enter the competition for a chance to win the Merida. Get all the details right here.

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