Carbon-Monkey is a dedicated MTB skills coaching, leadership and bikepacking organisation based in Snowdonia, North Wales. Surrounded by some of the best mountain biking on earth and headed up by a lifelong mountain bike addict, Tom Johnstone, we offer the highest quality skills coaching course, unique MTB leadership training and wilderness bikepacking expeditions.
Our mountain bike skills courses are designed to develop the riding skills and abilities of any rider, from beginners to seasoned pro's. We design our programmes from the fundamentals of mountain biking upwards and only used experienced coaches to deliver these courses.
Our bikepacking courses run all over the UK and we have a package for everyone. From our two day 'intro to bikepacking' courses to week long wilderness expeditions, there's an adventure to suit every rider waiting for you here.
We offer MTB leader training courses as well as a bespoke technical advice service to suit your leaders needs, location and client group. If you are an aspirant leader, centre manager or leader looking to progress and develop please contact us for more information on the services we can offer.
A lifetime of riding and a career of professional MTB guiding, coaching and leadership means you're in safe hands with us
There's nothing we love doing more than riding bikes and helping you to get more out of riding yours
From coaching theory and practice, to getting our hands dirty working as bike shop mechanics, all of our skills are ingrained from real life experience
Anyone with a keen eye will notice that for many years I’ve used rigid or hardtail bikes for all my expeditions, guiding and coaching despite the fact that most of my clients (on skills courses / day rides) and fellow guides are riding full suspension bikes. I’ve always ridden hardtails and love the raw power,[…]
Got a big European riding trip planned this summer? Planning a weekend away at one of the UK’s superb bike parks? Heading out into the wilderness for a big adventure? Now is the time to dial those skills to make sure you get the most from every hour of riding this summer. Sometimes the winter[…]
What’s better than riding your bike all day long? Riding your bike all day long, eating dinner round the camp fire, drinking a cold beer under the stars, dozing off to sleep in a warm sleeping bag and then getting up to ride your bike all day again, for a second day, that’s what… Love[…]
The highest point in England and Wales, our biggest mountain and a magnet for hill walkers, mountain bikers, climbers and tourists year round. Sometimes smothered in dense cloud, sometimes covered in a sheen of snow and ice, but sometimes bathed in glorious sunshine and exposing staggering views across the entire national park. Snowdon is a[…]
A couple of times a year I’m lucky enough to get down to Dartmoor to help run expeditions across the moors. In a good year at least one of those trips will involve some sunshine. This is my first trip of the year and it’s started well! En route down to Dartmoor I managed to[…]
I’m hooked on packrafts, I love mine and any excuse to go paddling, with or without my bike, I’m there – so when my wife showed interest in giving it a go I was eager to share the joys of packrafting. With the packraft kit packed (in a ridiculously small bag), we headed off to[…]
A true wilderness bikepacking trip in the UK can still see you far enough from roads that any failure on your bike could result in a very long push back to the nearest road. There are numerous ways you can protect yourself against this risk; – keep your routes within pushing distance of help –[…]
UK Bikepacking accomodation: Depending on where in the country you’re planning on heading off to on your bikepacking adventure, there will be various options for your overnight ‘accommodation’. We’ll start by looking at all the viable options and then narrow it down depending on where you’re going: B&B Bunkhouse Bothy Campsite Wild camp – tent[…]
UK bikepacking: So you’ve decided how much time you have, how far from home you can stray, how far you think you can ride in a day (start with 100-200% of your usual ‘Sunday morning’ ride distance assuming your adventure will be in similar terrain) and started looking into suitable areas for your bikepacking adventure.[…]
The best place to start is to narrow down your options a little, as the UK, and places that are within easy reach of the UK, offer most of the best MTB and bikepacking terrain in the world, so to start things off ask yourself a few questions: How many days do I have free?[…]
I often ride with, or meet up with riders, who are experienced and competent mountain bikers. Riders who are fit, technically capable, able to keep their bike rolling when break downs happen. Riders who have most of the skills they need to get out in big mountains on a real adventure, so what’s stopping them?[…]
After a night of relative comfort on a reclined leather chair in the main hall of Bergen airport I face the somewhat mammoth task of shifting my 23kg hold bag, 26kg bike box and 8kg flight bag, by bus, train, minibus and a fair bit of carrying, to my start point. The buses start early,[…]
Choosing what to pack, and what to leave at home on a trip like this is always hard. I have to pack personal kit for bikepacking in big mountains and real wilderness, sea kayak kit for a big solo trip and then personal and safety kit for supervising groups of Gold DofE sea kayakers for[…]