Experience Cycling takes on a whole new meaning.

Will Arnold on his Penny Farthing
Image by MS Society - SVIC via Flickr

The Cowichan Valley is a growing place, and as such a couple of new bike stores have recently opened up. Though I am sure they are nice places to get a bike, I won’t even give them a shot. Here is why…

My regular bike store is Experience Cycling. This post isn’t about their excellent repairs, and fast service. No. I’ve already gushed about that in a previous post.

Today, I want to share with you what they did that has blown my mind!

I have been a bit hard on my mountain bike lately, and wasn’t surprised when I heard the unfortunate grinding of my front brakes. Metal on metal. Crap.

Being a regular rider throughout the year, I can attest to the worst time for a break down is at the beginning of the nice weather.

Have you ever been to a gym in January? We all know that it is the wrong time of the year to go.

The same thing applies to bike shops in the late spring/early summer where I live. The mechanics and front end staff of most stores start to get a weird twitch in their eyes when you ask when your bike is going to be ready…You and 30 other people have asked the same question.

The problem for me is that I CAN’T go a week without riding. I literally go insane.

On Saturday morning, I do the faithful drive to Duncan to Experience Cycling and prepare myself to be parted from my steed for at least a week. It’s like a loved one going away on a trip… lol.

These are my expectations as I’m driving down island, knowing what the staff are going through with everyone deciding all at once to dust off their rusty bikes and bringing them in for a tune up. I am going to have to wait in line.

When I get to the store, Will(the owner), greets me at the door and has my bike up on Dale’s stand in a matter of minutes! My front brakes are almost done by the time I’ve had enough time to collect my thoughts! Incredible! I hadn’t planned on staying, so I left the bike there. Off I went with the rug-rats.

I picked up my bike a couple of days later after work. This is what it looked like…

When I dropped off the bike, it was filthy. I rarely bother cleaning it off because it gets muddy and dirty fairly quickly. Most of the time it looks like it’s been to a monster truck rally. haha.

If you blow up the pictures you can see that I essentially picked up a brand new bike! They detailed my bike so well, that it looks like the day I bought it. Everything was clean! Down to the cables, spokes, rear cogs, chainrings. Holy shit. Mind blown.

They’ve given me back my first ride on my new bike again.

When you run a business around exceeding expectations and building relationships like Experience Cycling has done, there is no need to check out competition. There isn’t any…

The only regret I have is that I didn’t take pictures of it just before dropping it off!