THE steepest of inclines. Slippery trails. Man pushing machine to the very edge of its capabilities.
When the 2015 Evocities MTB Series arrives in your city some of the best mountain bike riders in the world will be on hand to showcase their skills.
And the best need the best gear.
Elite-level mountain bikes have the basics in common with the ancient road bike collecting dust in your garage or your kids' BMX.
Handlebars? Check. A chain? Tick. Two wheels? What do you think.
But it's the additional features on the MTB machines which keep these men and women on the trail and out the trees.
Central West Off-Road Bicycle Club Vice-President Rodney Farrell outlined the key areas of difference for the uninitiated.
"The bikes are built to take the hits and big impacts," he explained.
"The big tires are designed for off-road use. The disc brakes provide enormous stopping power."
Among the major differences Mr Farrell highlighted the bigger, wider wheels with "big sized knobs" and the front and rear suspension systems as critical for traction and control.
VIDEO: Central West Off-Road Bicycle Club Vice-President Rodney Farrell: