The Legacy of Kilimanjaro.Correspondence Friends Curiosities Bicycles Heritage Art & Design Travel & Adventure Cycling Urban Cycling Stories
Mount Kilimanjaro is not the first place you would think of as an inspiration for bicycle design. However, for Simon Stanforth, it was and here at Brooks base camp, we needed oxygen when we heard about the story behind it. You see, Simon comes from good stock, his father is the former owner of Saracen Cycles and it was in 1985 ,when he heard of how cousins, Nick and Richard Crane climbed Africa’s highest mountain using bicycles.
Kilimanjaro by bicycle! Yes, all 19,341 feet of it.
It was the dawn of the fledgling mountain bike era, a time when these pioneering bicycles took cycle touring to a new level and with the case of the Kilimanjaro expedition, a new height. But, better still; they did the trip with trusty Brooks B67 saddles. Upon their return, they wrote a book about the trip called ‘Bicycles up Kilimanjaro’. They then spent many years presenting talks and lectures with Nick Crane going on to be the presenter of the famed BBC Coast and Map Man TV programs.[caption id="attachment_12811" align="aligncenter" width="640" caption="The Stanforth Kibo. A bicycle built to explore. "][/caption] Through the legacy of his father, Simon is a passionate collector of early mountain bikes. He has always held a desire to build his own bicycles, and with that we introduce you to the Stanforth Kibo. Hand built in the UK; its name is taken from the summit of the famous mountain, which sparked the passion all those years ago. Designed with simplicity, strength and durability in mind, the Kibo meets the needs for expedition touring, as well as for everyday urban cycling to get your morning paper. [caption id="attachment_12812" align="aligncenter" width="454" caption="The Kibo is UK built with Reynolds 631 lightweight tubing. "][/caption]
The frame is made of Reynolds 631 lightweight steel and the components have been carefully selected. All nicely topped off with a Brooks B17 saddle. Shimano Deore and Deore XT provide the transmission for the Kibo, giving the rider the tools to climb most rural and urban mountains.
Tradition and heritage are at the heart of the Stanforth Kibo. As well as being hand built in the UK, it was imperative that the frame and forks were lugged to give that classic retro look. Brazed on bosses for three bottle cages, a front low rider rack, a rear pannier rack as well as eyes for mudguard mounting give the bicycle and the rider the capacity to keep going.
Its not your normal everyday bicycle, but here at Brooks we kind of like that....
For more information, go to: www.stanforthbikes.co.uk
Original Kilimanjaro photography courtesy of Peter Inglis: www.peteringlisphotography.com