If you’ve been following me for a while, especially on Instagram, you may have seen that from Easter last year, we’ve been trying to help James cycle. He hasn’t ever been motivated by any form of transport beyond his feet. James has also struggled with scooting, only recently figuring that one out when we took him to an indoor scooter party.
However, Noah has always been quick to learn, and happy to ride, his balance bike, which of course was a hand me down from James. We’ve been reluctant to buy Noah a proper bike since James hasn’t got the hang of his yet, and it feels a bit discouraging to James to buy his little brother a bike when there’s his lying unloved and unused in the shed.
We’ve recently bought bikes for both kids from Black Mountain bikes, (affiliate link) and I wanted to share with you why I think they’re a really good choice. I researched this a lot before going for Black Mountain, with our situation in mind. I discovered quite early on in my internet searches that one of the main issues that may be putting James off is the weight of the bike, so most of my considerations were for lightweight kids bikes. Popping to the local bike shop didn’t feel like the best solution.
I’ll also say that at this point, I now have a reason to recommend them to you – that is I’ve become a member of their affiliate scheme. This means that if you click through to Black Mountain using a link from my site, you’ll pass on some money to me, but you pay the price you see. Read more about affiliate links on my site here.
Alternatives we considered
This is a charity local to us in Newcastle, who take donations of bikes and pass them on to people in Kenya or the Gambia, as well as selling them to people local to the North East. You can also wait for their special Recyke y-bike Kids Giveaway days, where you have to be at their Newcastle location at
We didn’t go for a bike from Recyke y’bike because the majority of the bikes from there are ex-mainstream bike retailer’s stock, and therefore fairly heavy.
The Bike Club
The Bike Club is a way to lease a bike, for around £5-£15 each, per month, and hand it back when your child grows out of it. You can then receive a bike of the next size up. The bikes are lightweight, high-quality brand Frog, and it does look like a great scheme.
We decided against it because it costs £20 to exchange a bike, £20 to start off, and £25 per month for two bikes which actually feels like a lot, especially when you don’t own a bike at the end of that
The only bike that’s lightweight for kids aged 4-6 in Halfords is the Wiggins Macon Kids bike. If you’ve got a pedalling 5-year-old it’s actually a pretty good choice, especially at the moment because it’s got 30% off in their kids’
Black Mountain bikes
So in the end we chose Black Mountain bikes because they are:
- 3 bikes in one! Each bike starts as a balance bike, then you can power up by adding pedals, and when your child grows, you can adjust the frame so that the bike grows too! Black Mountain say the PINTO replaces both a traditional 12in and a 14in bike, while the SKØG takes the place of 14in and 16in bikes.
- Really lightweight. The PINTO is less than 6kg, and the SKØG is slightly more at 6.1kg. The boys can lift these bikes themselves! How many times do you cycle to the park and then have to carry a steel framed bike back home again because they can’t face pedalling back again?
- Well designed. The handles are small, with brakes that can be managed easily by little hands. The bikes also have custom belt drives, which Black Mountain say are “600 per cent lighter than a traditional chain, low maintenance and oil-free.” Put aside the clever system for making the
frambigger and you still have an awesome bike.
Our Black Mountain bikes arrived on Friday and we assembled them very easily. More on that in a future post. Snow has stopped play this weekend but we will get riding as soon as the sheets of ice covering the pavements have melted!
(On another note, if someone could buy an empty shopping centre or warehouse and convert it to an indoor town which kids can ride their bikes around, that would be awesome, please and thank you).
For more information on the Black Mountain bikes we’ve chosen for our boys, please see blackmountain.bike