The Natural High team is chock-full of passionate bikers and our newest addition, Claire Glanville, is no exception. Born in Tavistock in the UK, Claire came to New Zealand in 2013 and has been living in Christchurch ever since. Here’s a rundown of her riding highlights.
Tell us about your riding experience.
I learned to ride a bike when I was four, and have been biking ever since. My first brand new bike at the age of eight was a metallic red Raleigh Peugeot road bike; it was very special to me as it was bought for me by my parents from money left in my granny’s will – it was my pride and joy! I currently enjoy both road and MTB riding, but do more MTB in New Zealand as there are so many single tracks and trails to ride. I currently ride a Giant Trance and a Claude Butler Milano road bike I brought with me from the UK.
What’s your favourite ride (either in New Zealand or overseas) and why?
I have enjoyed all the trails that I’ve ridden here in New Zealand as the scenery is so amazing. I think the Queen Charlotte will stand out as my favourite, as it was my first multi-day ride in New Zealand. It was a challenging ride for me, but the hard work was all forgotten by the memories of the initial boat trip to the start, the amazing views and awesome downhills. In the UK my favourite rides I completed were the Coast to Coast multi-day ride which takes you from Whitehaven on the west coast to Tynemouth on the east coast. My favourite local ride is the Devon Coast to Coast which took us from Ilfracombe on the north coast to Plymouth on the south coast. These UK rides both benefited from some amazing village country pubs on the way.
Best spot for after-biking drinks?
I really enjoy the New Zealand craft beers and ciders – therefore any pub that serves these is a good spot as far as I am concerned. I do really like Pomeroy’s here in Christchurch as they have such a great range of beers, and the Honest Lawyer in Nelson is great to frequent after completing the Dun Mountain Trail. My favourite local country pub back in the UK is The Castle Inn, Lydford – this is in the village that my granny and grandad lived in.
What do you like to do when you’re not riding?
I just love anything outdoors. I play competitive tennis for my local Kaiapoi team. I enjoy tramping, growing my own vegetables, outdoor swimming and going to the gym to keep fit for all my outdoor adventures. I also like to hang out with mates enjoying a coffee, BBQ or cold beer/cider.
What made you want to work for Natural High?
Since arriving in New Zealand I have been hoping to work for a biking company as I wanted to combine my passion of biking with my experience/skills I have from working in the leisure and tourism industry within the UK. I met Steve and the team whilst I was at my previous employer, as Natural High supplied bikes to our customers; when an opportunity came up to join Steve, Cecileah and the team I jumped at it!
Do you have any “must-do” rides or destinations?
I am trying to tick all the South Island New Zealand trails off the list. I really want to do the Old Ghost Road next, and then the St James Trail and a trip to Queenstown to do Around the Mountains is on the list too!
Anything else you’d like to share?
I am going to spend some of the off season back in the UK visiting family and friends; so I am looking forward to trying out some of the trails at my local Haldon Forest Bike Park in Exeter, Devon.
Claire is based in our Christchurch branch on Harewood Road (close to Christchurch International Airport). We’ve got a fully-equipped bike shop, shower facilities and luggage storage on site, as well as a huge selection of top-quality bike rentals and accessories. Pop in and check out our services if you’re in the area!
Have a great week,
Image: Claire on the Heaphy Track.