Chipps’ editorial sets out a bit about what the original crew were hoping to achieve with Singletrack World, and why they started it. Here’s an excerpt:
We wanted to use the particular strengths of the printed medium and the internet to make a hybrid of both. The web is great for short, punchy news, reviews and interaction, but no one likes to linger over a news website for long. Magazines are a perfect canvas for longer, more detailed stories and features. Print is also the only medium that can do justice to good photography. And you can take magazines on trains and planes. Or into the loo. Or read them slumped on your favourite sofa. And they never need to be plugged in and recharged.
And so here you have Singletrack, issue one. It’s quarterly, it’s written by some established names and it introduces some new ones too. What you’ll find inside are some great stories and photographs. Stories to sit down and read – not just skip or skim. We’ve put a lot into the magazine, both figuratively and physically, and we hope that you’ll like what you see and read. After all, it’s a while until the next one.
So, please sit back and enjoy this issue of the magazine. It may be the foolhardy dream of a bunch of writers and photographers who lamented the passing of too many good magazines… but, damn, it looks good for it, and we reckon it’ll read well too…
Chipps, Issue 1 of Singletrack World Magazine
It seems to me that the digital world has moved on in ways that Chipps perhaps couldn’t imagine back in 2001. We’ve moved with the times and technology and now offer digital magazine options so you can take the digital mag to the loo or on a plane via your phone. But much of what else he says has changed little. We still put a lot into the magazine, and it often feels like a foolhardy dream to keep it going. Many more magazines have fallen by the wayside and folded since Chipps wrote that editorial.
The gap between the functions of web and print may have narrowed, but the merits of a ‘Magazine’ rather than ‘Web Content’ still remain. A magazine brings you concentrated and curated stories, page after page of images and words chosen because we think you’ll like them. Importantly, we think you’ll like them whether you read them as soon as the magazine is published, or twenty or so years later. While the technology of the world and bikes may move on, some things are constant. Joy, adventure, sadness, laughter, hope, curiosity, friendship, blood, and sweat… mountain bikes bring all of this to our lives, and we aim to bring these to you in our magazines.
Take a trip back in time to Issue 1, and we hope you’ll stay with us for Issue 145 and beyond.
NOTE TO MEMBERS: The image quality is a bit ropey as the only source material we had was a low res PDF – back then we were still shooting on film and the idea of archiving hi-res digital magazine files for digital platforms was not even a thing. Our digital learning curve was steep, just like our head angles. The armchair feature remains one of the most popular articles we have published despite it being a whopping 10k words long with next to no images. More issues are available in this online format but it’s taking a long time to convert each article. All issues from issue 116 forwards have been mostly converted. – Mark