12 Years in the Game - Matt Cain

April 06, 2018


It was one of those sudden realisations that one comes to every now and then! That this is my 12th year in the guiding and biking holidays game. It doesn’t seem that long since I packed my trusty Marin hardtail into a bag and headed off to South America with all my worldly possessions in a rucksack. It’s been a wild ride and there’s no way that I could have predicted all the adventures that guiding has sent my way over the years.


Three years immersed in La Paz, Bolivia and Cusco, Peru was an incredibly rich and cultural experience. Guiding full time is hard work but the pure number of hours on your bike means that your fitness and familiarity with your bike are unprecedented. The fear is that doing what you love for a job can somehow dilute your passion, but I never found this was the case and inevitably days off were filled with more biking adventures and trail exploration.


Getting to ride in some of the worlds least developed and seldom visited true wilderness areas was a real privilege, and getting to share these experiences with guests from around the world is what makes this period a big highlight of my guiding career.


Back in my homeland of New Zealand with a Yorkshire lass in tow I got to spend a few years showing riders around some of the most beautiful riding terrain in the world. It is a long way to travel for a northern hemisphere riders but I promise you that the riding is easily worth the 24 hours of flying, especially if you have an local to show you around!


I’ve now been based in the UK for a bit over five years, exploring and leading tours all over the UK, from the rolling trails of the Chiltern Hills, the contrasting terrain of the White and Dark Peaks and the rugged alpine style trails of the Lake District. I’ve even opened a lot of British rider’s eyes to the hidden gem that is the moors of Northumberland! While it is easy to yearn for the sunshine of southern Europe or the long descents of the Andes, the quality and diversity of the riding in the UK is world-class. We should be proud of the trail network that this little island boasts!


Having recently completed an advanced guiding certification I’ve had been reflecting a little on the why I get so much out of guiding. It’s hard to quantify but there is nothing better than helping empower guests to have amazing wilderness biking experiences. Over the last ten years or so the level of professionalism amongst mountain bike guides has rocketed ahead, and I’m constantly inspired by my colleagues and their skills and expertise.
Luckily guiding isn’t necessarily a young man’s game so I get to look forward to many more shared adventures with the amazing people that make up our mountain biking community!

Size Guide

Women's Tops

UK USA World Bust Hip Length (front)
8 4 X-Small 87-90cm 96-99cm 53cm
10 6 Small 91-94cm 100-103cm 54.5cm
12 8 Medium 95-98cm 104-107cm 56cm
14 10 Large 99-102cm 108-111cm 57.5cm
16 12 X-Large 103-106cm 112-115cm 59cm
18 14 XX-Large 107-112cm 116-121cm 61.5cm
20 16 XXX-Large 113-119cm 122-128cm 65cm

Women's Shorts

UK USA Waist Hip Length (inside)
6 2 70-73cm 84-88cm 34cm
8 4 74-77cm 89-93cm 35cm
10 6 78-81cm 94-98cm 36cm
12 8 82-85cm 99-103cm 37cm
14 10 86-89cm 104-108cm 38cm
16 12 90-93cm 109-115cm 39cm
18 14 94-97cm 116-122cm 40cm
20 16 98-101cm 123-129cm 41cm

Men's Tops

Size Chest Length (front)
X-Small 87-91cm 55cm
Small 92-95cm 56.5cm
Medium 96-99cm 58cm
Large 100-109cm 59.5cm
X-Large 110-119cm 61cm
XX-Large 120-127cm 64.5cm
XXX-Large 128-135cm 66cm

Men's Shorts

Size Size  Waist Hip Length (outside)
28" X-Small 69-73cm 84-88cm 60.5cm
30" Small 74-78cm 89-93cm 61.5cm
32" Medium 79-83cm 94-98cm 63.5cm
34" Large 84-88cm 99-103cm 64.5cm
36" X-Large 89-93cm 104-108cm 65.5cm
38" XX-Large 94-98cm 109-113cm 66.5cm
40" XXX-Large 99-103cm 114-118cm 67.5cm