Member Spotlight - Breathe Bikes

When you walk down Quilchena Avenue and come across a SUP {stand-up paddleboard}, you've actually arrived at Breathe Bikes. Travis Fehr's store is the go-to place for all things outdoor, and while bikes are certainly the main attraction, there is so much more to discover.


You can find Breathe Bikes on 1960 Quilchena Avenue in Merritt, give Travis a call at 250-936-9702, or connect with him via email, Facebook, or Instagram


Thanks for taking the time for the Member Spotlight, Travis! I know you're a busy guy these days with the start of biking season. Tell us a bit about yourself and your business.


My name is Travis Fehr, owner of Breathe Bikes. I serve the cycling and outdoor adventure public in Merritt, BC. From flat tire repairs, ski waxing, outdoor gear rentals, to suspension service and some of the best mountain bikes available, Breathe Bike is here to make your ride fun!

Cycling is my lifelong passion, beginning on a big and bouncy “moto-cross” bike that I pedaled around the city of Saskatoon, to the fast and fancy mountain bike I ride today, cycling still represents a unique blend of independence, self-reliance and fun that has been the longest passion of my life. I don’t just love riding them, I love fixing them, too! It is really a dream come true for me to be able to spending my “working” hours monkeying with bicycles!


Your passion for this is contagious! I bet your customers feel that as well. What do you think their biggest challenges is when it comes to biking, and how do you help them with that?


Cycling is something that nearly all of us can do and enjoy. Having said that, it takes a certain amount of self-discipline to actually get out there and do it on a regular basis. I see myself and this shop as a catalyst for making the challenge of getting active as easy and fun as possible.


How long have you been in business?


I opened Breathe Bikes on April 1, 2013. Originally located in the same location that James Oborne ran his bike shop, Back Alley Bikes, I have now moved to a larger and more visible location. While the new shop is an improvement in many ways, I will always fondly remember the good times and casual atmosphere of the time Breathe Bikes spent in the alley behind the Thrift Shop.


Yes, it was a unique atmosphere in your old shop, but your new location is great! Do you have any special certifications for the work you do?


I am certified by United Bicycle Institute in suspension service. 


That's especially important for mountain biking, right? Is your business family-run? Who's all pitching in?


My wife Lindsay Fehr has been instrumental in helping with the books, watching the shop when I’m out, and filling the roles of sounding board, wellness coach, and creative whisperer—it was her who came up the logo for our shop.


Sounds like you are a great team. And I love that she's also your wellness coach - that's something a lot of entrepreneurs are lacking, but it's so important! What do you love most about being a business owner?


Being my own boss is great. Not only because I get to make the rules, but because I love choosing the direction my business will take and working towards it.


That freedom is definitely worth a lot. But there always is a downside as well. What do you like least about being a business owner?


It can be very time consuming. I would like to see my business grow to the point where I can rely on others to help me with the business so that I can spend more time with family.


I hear you on this. And it brings me to my next question: what's the best business advice you've ever gotten?


Focus on the positive.


That is great advice, because it's something you can always do, right? So what do you love about the Nicola Valley, and how do you like to spend your time when you're not running Breathe Bikes?


I love the trails, lakes, weather, scenery, and the people’s laid back, friendly attitude in the Nicola Valley. When I'm not working, mountain biking is on the top of my list, plus of course road trips with Lindsay, paddle-board, snowshoe, ski, travel, read, play with my dogs and cat. 


That's a lot for a busy entrepreneur, I hope you get to enjoy all that often enough! What's your favourite social media platform to connect on with your customers? 


That would definitely be Facebook, whether it's via message or comments on my posts.


Other than connecting with your community, how do you give back to it?


I try to make that an ongoing, integral part of the business. Helping those in need is an opportunity that enriches my life and the community that I live in, so it’s an easy choice. 


You are definitely known for your support of the Merritt community, and it's very much appreciated! Last question: What’s something that people don’t know about you and might be surprised to find out? 


Before owning a bike shop, I was close to completing BCIT’s technical writing certification. Sometimes I still regret not finishing that when I read some of the less that ideally written service guides for new suspension designs.


Thanks for taking the time, Travis! It's great to have you as a member of the Merritt Small Business Centre!


Thank you for reading and for supporting local business. If you would like to stay up to date on collaborations and deals of the Merritt Small Business Centre and get notified when the next member spotlight is published, you can sign up below. If you're a business owner and would like to be part of building a thriving small business community in Merritt, the Nicola Valley, and Logan Lake, then come and join us on Facebook.

Write a comment

Comments: 2
  • #1

    Mischelle Pierce (Wednesday, 02 May 2018 00:34)

    Great interview Kerstin and Travis Great questions and equally interesting answers ! Travis you are such a welcome addition to our community and such a great promoter of our outdoors

  • #2

    Shirley Reynolds (Wednesday, 02 May 2018 12:29)

    -Wishing you continued success as your expertise and friendly service are needed and valued in this community. I’ll be bringing my bike in for it’s spring tune-up.