Littlehouse Media

Bikes. Dirt. Downhill. Bike Night at The Fort William Mountain Festival 2016

The “Mountain Festival”, also known as the Fort William Mountain Festival, has over the years hosted some of the bike industry’s biggest names at their bike nights; and BOOM! … they have done it again in 2016. ‘ I Want To Ride My Bicycle’ on Saturday 20 February at the Nevis Centre, Fort William includes talks from Aneela ‘the bothy queen’ McKenna, Crawford Carrick Anderson, Chris Ball and Julia Hobson.

Keen to explore the idea that mountain biking is much more than racing World Cups or riding dirt jumps, with this year’s event organisers wanted to celebrate the great outdoors, highlight the wonderful environment in which we live and the fantastic opportunities for travel across the globe on your mountain bike.

Nikki Stafford from the Fort William Mountain Festival organising committee said:

“The brief for the 2016 bike night is much more about celebrating the lifestyle and the sheer pleasure of Mountain Biking. Living and working in the Outdoor Capital of the UK and a super keen mountain biker myself, I am very much looking forward to the bike night and hope to be inspired for my next adventure.”

Aneela “the bothy queen” McKenna will be host for the evening. Aneela is an avid mountain biker, partner of Go Where Scotland, and Juliana Brand Ambassador. Aneela is always keen for a new adventure and she makes things happen. Husband Andy McKenna from Go Where Scotland recently said “I was about to head to my bed the other night and next thing I knew we were heading up Minch Moor with our bivvy bags and a bottle of single malt for a night under the stars. How the hell did that happen?” Aneela knows how to have a good time and will extract the best from the speakers. We are sure that her long acquaintance with them all will unearth some great laugh

Crawford Carrick Anderson is no stranger to the Outdoor Capital of the UK. Crawford an ex British Team Skier has skied at Nevis Range. He helped in the early design off the world renowned mountain bike downhill course and then went on to compete as a downhill racer, making it into the World top 10 in the rankings. Crawford’s talents extend to the world of motor sport where he also successfully participated in motorbike Enduro and Trials , regularly taking part in the Scottish Six Days. These days Crawford is riding MTB Enduro and Cyclocross and spending time with his family, who are getting pretty quick as well. We look forward to hearing what keeps Crawford’s drive and enthusiasm going and what his goals are for the future.

For those who follow Chris Ball on Social Media they will already recognise him as a global adventurer. Chris is part of the team behind the Enduro World Series (EWS) and the man who started Dirt School. Chris has also worked for the UCI, was a downhill racer and is passionate about mountain biking. Chris loves getting out on his bike and having fun with friends. hH also enjoys a variety of other outdoor activities including climbing and skiing and, most recently, a bit of sailing.

Julia Hobson lives the dream. Julia is a mountain bike guide in Scotland and abroad. Like Aneela she is also a Julianna Brand Ambassador as well as being the queen of Instagram. She never sits still and has some amazing stories to share. As a racer Julia has competed some of the big races; she has cycled John o Groats to Lands End off road, and is a well ‘kent’ face in the Outdoor Capital and her friends cannot wait to hear about her most adventures.

The Thistly Cross After Party will be held in the Alexandra Hotel immediately after the conclusion of the Bike Night.

Saturday 20 February also sees the return of the very popular No Fuss Runduro Event which will see runners enjoy the mountain bike enduro format on the trails around Fort William and Glen Nevis.

Chris Ball recently issued a challenge to the other bike night speakers:

“We should all do this. I will speak first and give them all a chance to get their breath back! Could Crawford get the loan of a head torch just in case.”

To find out more about the Fort William Mountain Festival 2016 and to book tickets go to:

Facebook –

Twitter – / #FWMF2016

The Fort William Mountain Festival is presented by Jöttnar, technical clothing for mountaineering, winter climbing and all-mountain skiing –

The Fort William Mountain Festival wish to thank the following sponsors and supporters – Jöttnar, Three Wise Monkey’s Climbing, Rare Breed Productions, The Alexandra Hotel, Thistly Cross Cider, The Outdoor Capital of the UK, Ellis Brigham, Rio Tinto Alcan, Foundation Scotland, Corpach Boat Building Co. Ltd, The Nevis Landscape Partnership, The Heritage Lottery Fund, Hotscot, Cotswold Outdoor, Nevis Range Mountain Resort, John Muir Trust, Printsmith, Lamont Design, Allround Signs, Abacus Mountain Guides, The Granite House, No Fuss Events, Bill Scott Architects.

Notes to Editors:


Useful Websites

Lochaber Chamber of Commerce –

Outdoor Capital of the UK-


The Nevis Landscape Partnership. Ben Nevis and Glen Nevis represent one of Scotland’s most treasured landscapes, yet one that is seriously under-resourced. The Nevis Landscape Partnership, constituting a wide range of stakeholders and communities, is cohered around a shared vision: to protect this unique place for the future; to manage it collectively; to view it holistically; and to give voice to its diversity and many communities –


Jöttnar – The Fort William Mountain Festival is presented by Jöttnar, technical clothing for mountaineering, winter climbing and all-mountain skiing. “We were in the Norwegian mountains during a fierce Arctic winter when inspiration took hold: the development of a technical outdoor clothing range that would protect against the raging brutality around us, but also capture the purity and elegance of the Scandinavian landscape.


“As mountaineers, as well as former Royal Marines, we knew the importance of creating our products with the most savage conditions in mind. Our clothing has since withstood the demands of the most exacting users in the most ferocious conditions.”


3 Wise Monkey’s Climbing Three Wise Monkeys Climbing are creating a brand new indoor climbing centre in Fort William.


Once completed, the renovated church will host a bouldering wall and roped climbing wall. To complement the climbing experience they will also have a Café, Yoga Classes, Climbing Shop, Sports Massage and much more.


The Outdoor Capital of the UK Formed in 2003, The Outdoor Capital of the UK is a community-focused not for profit membership company with a volunteer board of directors and a salaried staff of three. Through a range of collaborative marketing intiatives and activities the organisation promotes Fort William and Lochaber as the best place in the UK for everyone to experience the outdoors; with a view to developing local jobs and wealth and encouraging sustainable economic growth.


The organisation currently has over 110 member businesses which range from accommodation, food and drink and activity providers to non-tourism focused businesses which support the aims of the Outdoor Capital and acknowledge that tourism is crucial to the local economy. Many of these businesses are SMEs and by pulling resources and working as a team the Outdoor Capital achieves the positive results that individually the members couldn’t otherwise reach.


Visitors interested in the outdoors are increasingly important to economy and community of Lochaber. There are over 65 different activities to choose from in an amazing landscape that encompasses the small isles to Ben Nevis with white water rivers, sea, lochs, beaches, forest, glens, cliffs and mountains in between.


The Highland Mountain Culture Association Limited, is a not for profit organisation, whose aim is to promote the understanding and appreciation of the world’s mountain places and people, by creating opportunities for people of all ages to share their mountain experiences, ideas and visions. To showcase these ideals, it stages annually a programme of events within the Lochaber area, called The Fort William Mountain Festival.



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