Latest Singletrack mag has just been delivered.
Loving the new look and it smells great.
Well done team.the-muffin-manFull Member
Loving the new look and it smells great.
Aaaah – so scratch and sniff was the new super-duper feature then! 🙂
Most definitely. The aroma is very strong.
I wondered why the postman was sniffing my mail!onewheelgoodFull Member
Mine arrived just as I was reading the above. It’s been pissing down here and it only just made it! The mag seems to be unscathed, looks and smells great.thepuristFull Member
Was just going to post that mine arrived intact after the previous couple had envelope damage…StuEFree Member
I was hoping for a bit of a shake up of the format but unfortunately it’s the same old thing with a new look, feels like a bit of a missed opportunity and despite having not missed an issue since the first one I don’t have any regrets in cancelling my subscriptionoldfartFull Member
Sad to say I tend to agree with Stu , I too have been there since day one , have been considering cancelling for a while now , the new format hasn’t changed that thought if anything it’s made it stronger unfortunately 😟hardtailonlyFull Member
Quick flick, like the look, size, feel and smell.
No bike group test though? I know the aim of the mag isn’t to provide loads of bike/gear reviews … but I do really like a good group test.
I like the new format. I’ll keep supporting by buying the mag…
But it’s the forum I’m here for mostly.
I do agree it would be good to have a shake up of the mag articles. I don’t know what to suggest though but will have a think.
Would be better if there was less introspective waffly and/or virtue signalling stuff.
I tend to always enjoy interviews with interesting industry figures, especially if they are divisive and have a good story or something controversial to say (e.g. Chris porter, Rob Warner) but they are pretty rare.
I like stories about epic rides where stuff goes wrong. Proper type 2/3 fun stuff. Eg. mark’s ill conceived lake district 4 passes on the eeebs.
Edit:I also like a good group test
The content is still evolving – some things are planned nearly a year in advance, other things are more short term, so it’s not an instant flip from one thing to another (unlike the paper and printer). With bike tests, we were having trouble getting bikes reliably delivered that made sense as a group test. We don’t want to be scraping the barrel and giving you something like ‘3 bikes that begin with R’. Or worse – 2 bikes and some blank pages! Grinder was a previously popular feature, so for now we’ve brought that back as it lets us look at bikes (and other things) without them needing to be alike in some way.
For those that were hoping for something different – what else have you seen that you’re enjoying? Or have you enjoyed in the past? There are only so many way to say ‘the trail was rad’ or ‘I pedalled over the mountains and found myself’! If there’s a guitar mag, tractor weekly, or wood burner monthly that you think has some interesting formats, let us know.
Edit: more interviews are in the works!
Stories based on experiences?
Thinking here of the guardian’s experiences series which is normal people who have had a unique or special thing happen to them.
Very relatable ones that most people have had. Eg. on the type 2 fun theme: stuff like bonking, first trip in an ambulance, being dropped miles from home, rode into wrong valley; it was getting dark and no lights, I got lost and missed an impprtant thing. Maintenance disasters.
Could do a good series out of that I reckon with a new theme each month, then a few contributors’ stories.
we often get long threads on the forum about this kind of thing. I usually end up loling at them, because I can relate my own similar experience.convertFull Member
Mines not landed yet, but currently poorly (again) so looking forward to it.
My thoughts…..mixed views on the far away travel multi multi page epics. Used to like them, but not so much now. Couldn’t tell you why, maybe it’s a change in me and less desire to travel. Similarly less interested in the UK ride reports/guides. Probably because I live somewhere with so much awesomeness and as yet untapped opportunity I’m never going to venture further for (imo) less. But again, that’s probably me.
Thinking back to trip articles that I really enjoyed they are ones with a mission. I remember one early in ebikes where Chipps tried to see how much further you could take one on an all day (or was it an overnight) without ending up with a dead heavy lump. Then there was one where 3 £100 BSO were bought and ridden hard for a weekend trip to see if it was still fun. And a group of friends that had the most awesome weekend that left their offices at close if play on Friday and they had to be back for work on Monday; I think using trains. The lands they travelled through were great to see and read about but were a backdrop to the narrative. Or was the narrative a hook to keep you reading – who knows, but it worked.
Industry interviews are good.
I’d like a few more event reports – Strathpuffer style.
Oddly Id like some exercise advice – yoga for riders etc. I’m no longer a racing snake and I’ve come to realise that JRA is more fun if you are fitter….but I’m less and less good at making that happen.
Agree with convert about the mission idea (even thought it is a bit top gear).
The more 50/50 it is in the balance the better.
Also see the Geoguessr YouTube missions which are brilliantly entertaining
Best self rescue bodges and/or walks home (more points for being epicly far from home with very fundamentally broken bike)
Get lots of route guides that go around in circles. What about some nice linear rides (e.g. train assisted for return trip). The longer the bettertthewFull Member
Or have you enjoyed in the past?
I used to like the 1 page correspondence from the likes of Jason Miles and Mike Ferrentino. There were a few others over the years, but I don’t remember the names.
I don’t really care for the lengthy adventure articles, and in last issue there was nearly no other content. I read two pages, Chipps editorial and the contents page. Very disappointing, and the reason I stopped my print subscription.SpeshpaulFull Member
wood burner monthly!!!… there’s a mag?DickBartonFull Member
That is what gets used as the firefighter!
Not received mine yet. I agree with @tthew though, the long travel stories are OK occasionally or maybe one per issue, but they do seem to predominate over all other content. The quality of the writing is usually great though and I get how difficult it must be to find original and engaging content for every episode. I look forward to giving the new format a once over when the postie gets his finger out.mtbfixFull Member
I’ve had a flick through and liked the look of things. I like the long form articles in print. To my shame, I gave up on Amanda’s Spanish jaunt because I can’t stand reading proper stuff on a phone screen. My attention wanderers. So I hope to enjoy the various travel pieces this month.
As for virtue signalling? The alternative is just page upon page of white guys riding bikes. Other people doing things differently is not a bad thing.merckx12Full Member
Why no digital version out at the same time?bikesandbootsFull Member
Being a paper thing, how does STW know what content readers actually read and enjoy?
Personally when I flick through or even read most/all of it, the feeling I often get is that I’m not in the target audience for 75% of it. Perhaps I’ll like it in a decade and a bit when I’ll enter the quintessential STW age band.colournoiseFull Member
I think the revamped mag looks great.
(but then I might be slightly biased)
I think the cover photo is great – was pretty sure it was one of yours @colournoise
Also liked last month’s by Amanda I think – took me a while to figure out what was going onnickcFull Member
Mag arrived this morning. One of the best cover photos (of stiff competition recently) Should do that more often. Going to sit with a cuppa and have a read.mwleedsFull Member
Love the new look and this month’s content. I have been considering whether to cancel my subscription as I haven’t read the magazine cover to cover for quite a while. But this is a good one and so I am glad I didn’t!chrismacFull Member
Mines just arrived. Love the cover picture @stwhannah I’m interested in why it’s harder to get bikes to test. Many others seem to have access to bike pre launch let alone after. Is this the industry cutting back on who they will lend them too or other reasonsfathomerFull Member
Can’t comment on the new mag, mines still not arrived 😕
Mines just landed. As usual, I opened the packaging and inhaled deeply. Still smells as good as ever and looks great too. Loving the bolder, more adventurous layouts very much indeed!jim25Full Member
New mag looks good, but, really… You like the smell? It smells pretty rank! Why and how?
@chrismac deliveries have been becoming more and more unreliable for a while with things ordered slipping for weeks at a time. Fine if you don’t have a print deadline to meet, perhaps, or if you can take all the test bikes away somewhere for a week and do nothing but bike park laps on them in a condensed test period. The end of last year got especially bad (something another journo commented on to me just last week). Not sure exactly why, just is the way it has been recently.
Personally when I flick through or even read most/all of it, the feeling I often get is that I’m not in the target audience for 75% of it.
I’m the same (although probably in the stw age band). I enjoy some articles more than others, but your never going to please 100% of the people 100% of the time and is one reason I stopped my physical mag sub this time last year, and skip to the digital stuff I’m interested in now.
Bought the new look mag though and tbh I’ve enjoyed what I’ve read so far. Especially liked the style the small product reviews are in, less of the spec and details more on the actual what it’s like to own which is great.
I guess from about 1990 to 2010 I used to buy every mag every month on the shelves in WHSmith. But this was almost always for the reviews for new product development stories rather than “X went for a ride up a mountain” style stuff.
Now when a new product or dev in MTB comes out, my goto is the internet and YouTube. Mags used to be the front line of information, that’s the internet now so mags have to provide something the internet doesn’t for their value to be retained.
Imo the best article stw has ever done was the Jamie Tomkins interview a year or two ago. Informative, inspirational, and about real people. I handed re read an article multiple times for years, but that one.i must have gone through several times. It wasn’t just another, “we went for a ride and this is how it went” article.
I’ve no idea how stw can try to counter the downturn in print medium, I sell news papers and mags in my shop, and year on year it’s getting a smaller part of my business.
@stwhannah mags I like are positive news, byline times and art review. Positive news and byline times just seem to be slightly different to the other usual trope of information and put out articles that are relatable and upbeat. Art review is a bit more glossy and well presented (being an art mag).
When we bought our shop (8yrs ago) we sold round 3x more mags than now….which is a depressing thought. Our best selling category is kids mags, but I highly suspect that’s due to the plastic cr”p on the front. Best adult categories would be TV mags (elderly customers) and countryside, so farmers weekly/country man’s weekly and country life due to the rural demographic. I stopped getting the MTB mags in years ago because I only sold a couple copies a year (probably to myself).
Just had another rambling thought (sorry😂)
Having had a career in retail and before my shop specifically supermarket retail. Us retailers would generally make more money per meter of shelving, not selling mags at all and dedicating the space to an alternative product (almost cirtainly food to go in my case). The reason many shops like mine have mag shelving is not because they sell well with big margins, it’s because our contract with Smith news or Menzies for newspapers we have to sell magazines, the meterage of magazine shelving is pretty much dictated by the supplier.
But newspapers sales are also in decline…..
Subscription is cirtainly the way forward.
New mag looks good, but, really… You like the smell? It smells pretty rank! Why and how
I’m a graphic designer and love designing for print far more than for screen, which I just find quite sterile.
I love the smell of fresh print in the morning… 😉
I’m hoping the predicted death of the magazine will go the same way as the predicted death of hard copy books due to e-readers, audio books etc. Real books seem to be doing just fine despite all that e-competition. I know that it is harder for magazines and that they are in genuine decline, but surely there will be a backlash at some stage? Don’t some of the same things which keep books going apply to mags? The tactile and olfactory pleasure of perusing a physical object? Larger, better quality images than your phone? Taking in the whole spread of a couple of pages without scrolling, pop-ups, ads etc? I’m probably kidding myself and they’re doomed but it will be a sad day when you can no longer buy an actual paper magazine about your hobby/sport/pastime.tractionmanFull Member
“The tactile and olfactory pleasure of perusing a physical object?”
that’s why I still buy paper maps, spread em out on the kitchen table and get a real sense of the lie of the land… just cannot be done on a screen.sillyoldmanFull Member
Mine hasn’t arrived yet, but looking forward to seeing it.imrobertFull Member
Read it in an hour unfortunately,I found it very boring. I now understand I’m not the target audience anymore – ( I do buy bikes though ) but would it be so bad to have some humour and relatable fun mtb content. Navel gazing and whining isn’t for me. I am pleased I didn’t get too much of a prescribed hipster instruction manual this time though, last 2 editions I didn’t even bother after an initial squint. There’s entire articles that don’t discuss mtb once, just the past and taking over and lipstick – it’s just boring to me. I just don’t care about this group or that group or inclusion, I began reading singletrack a long time ago for escapism and to be entertained. I really like the layout and the smell is immense. The chipps article and the tech reviews were great additions though. I’ll try another one though through fomo, tis getting harder as I’m no longer wanted it seems 🤷🏻♂️roger_mellieFull Member
Has the magazine got smaller?
Paper smells of plasticine.
Happy that Through the Grinder is back.
The 2 international pieces I’ll save for later.
I don’t miss the cookery section.
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