Tag: Salsa Mukluk

Agua Caliente Fatbike Camp Day Deuce

In going through my pics I noticed something. I didn’t have too many pic of fatbikes being pedaled. No gnarly jumps, rad wheelies or sick skids. I wish I did, but I didn’t get anything like that. Instead what I found in my camera were people. People stoked to be out in the desert. Stoked to be pedalin’ fatbikes with like-minded folks I suppose. Heading to this ride I knew three people. That was it. But by the end of the weekend there were no strangers. This was one of the best trips I’d been on in a long time. Ok, maybe the only trip I’ve been on in a long time, but that’s besides the point. This was just what I needed, when I needed it.

Oh, and if’n for some reason you don’t know about Brendan and Mary of The Hub Cyclery in Idyllwild, well now you do. Do yourself a favor and go ride in their neck o’ the woods. You’ll be glad you did.

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FUMS Utah Road Trip

What a trip! Not sure how to put it in words so I’m gonna let the pictures do the talkin’. Ok, here’s a few.

Mom and Me

A few months ago Lee invited me to join his BikeMS team in Logan, Utah. He rode his BikeMS event on a fatbike last year and wanted to create a team of fatbikes to ride this year. I said yes right away, not really knowing what I was getting myself into. Team Beards and Gears ended up being 5 riders, 4 on fatbikes and all the fatbikes rode the Century. 100 miles on a fatbike!

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Logan, Utah is far from me so I knew I was in for a road trip. Serbrina couldn’t make the trip due to work, so my Mom, who has MS, asked if she could join me for the trip. I warned her that I would be camping and sleeping in the truck but she was game. I can’t remember the last time I’d camped with my mom. I’m sure it was sometime back when I was in high school, maybe even earlier. So I was both nervous and excited. I have to say it was a trip of a lifetime. Spending 5 straight days with my Mom was something special. It felt like a gift to be able to take HER on a trip this time around. A trip full of memories for sure.

Special thanks to Lee, Tiffany, Kaitlin and Mike for their hospitality. Hope to pedal with you all again. I’m riding for BikeMS again in October. If you like what I’m doin’ please support my ride with a donation. It means a ton!

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Cookin' Breakfast for Mom

Barn for Jason

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Mom and Me

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Bikes and Friends

A few weeks ago I got word that Ben was gonna be out in California for a few days for work. Work for Ben is demoing the current line of Salsa bikes. Not a bad gig right? He brought out three different rides for people to try out. Mostly for the mountain bike crowd. They had the Salsa Spearfish, Horsethief and the Carbon Beargrease! The lightest of fatbikes was gonna be here in So Cal! I’m in! Oh, and I get to hang out with Ben too. Bonus!

Salsa Van!

Ben and I met back in 2012 when we fatbiked the Northern Shore of Lake Superior in March. Yeah, March. Cold and, well, cold. Then we pedaled again together in 2013 touring part of the Stagecoach 400 route. He’s a super fun dude and I was lookin’ forward to just hangin’ out all day. It’s not often that he’s out here.

New Salsa Van!

I loaded up my Spearfish on the back of my moto. Yep, that’s what I said. On the back of my moto. It’s a crazy idea that I’ve been wanting to try out for some time. What a great idea right? Moto ride to a bike ride? Best of both worlds? Well, I’m not convinced personally. As you can imagine it really affects the handling of the bike. I’m sure some motos are better suited to this than others. Also, lighter bikes make for better handling on the moto. Hangin’ my fatbike off the back is really tough in my opinion.

BMW GS800 Adventure with Salsa Spearfish on the back.

It’s quite the head turner. I think I counted at least five people taking pictures on the way south and back north again. And those are just the ones I saw!

Carbon Beargrease

I rode the Carbon Beargrease for the first time. I thought for sure that I’d love it, but I have to say it didn’t do anything for me. Yeah, it was light. I guess it rolled fast, but I wasn’t that impressed. I suppose having a Mukluk Ti makes it tougher to impress me. Go figure.

Salsa Spearfish

The bikes I had the most fun on were the Spearfish and the Horsethief. I was surprised that I liked them as much as I did to be honest. Neither one is for the type of riding that I normally do. Maybe that’s the point though. Something different to liven things up? Something new? I rode a short loop that included a fun water crossing, a rocky climb and a technical (to me anyways) climb. Then all of that in reverse!

Salsa Spearfish

I’m not skilled or comfortable in singletrack and technical riding but I tried pushing myself a bit. I pointed the bikes both up and down the rockiest, steepiest and rutted out sections of the trails. Both bikes just rolled over everything with total ease and made me feel like I knew what I was doing. I even got a compliment from another mountain biker when I “cleaned” a section that made my clinch my cheeks! Maybe there’s something to this mountain biking stuff after all!

Horsethief

As I type this up I realize that I didn’t take any pics of Ben! Nothing of us sitting around and laughing. Eating salami. Talking about past trips or making plans for new ones. I guess that’s something that I need to work on for the blog side of things. Making sure I have what I want to tell a story. Too often though it’s best just to be in the moment and enjoy your time with your friends. That’s exactly what I did. Spend time with an old friend and make some new ones. I can’t really say I messed up if I look at it like that right? See you soon Ben!

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Huge Thanks!

In a couple days I will be leaving to Alaska for an amazing trip of biking, camping and friends. It seems like it’s taken forever for it to get here, but now it’s barrelin’ right at me! I wanted to take some time and say THANK YOU to everyone that helped make this happen. There is no way that I’d be going on this trip if it wasn’t for your support. Putting up with my annoying weekly emails and buggin’ you with daily facebook/twitter posts. I apologize for cloggin’ up your feeds with that stuff. I really didn’t like doing it, but I’m glad that it all paid. I couldn’t have done this alone, this was all #bikela. Even people that I’ve never met. I can’t thank everyone enough.

I want to give a special thanks to some people that really helped get the word out for me. Huge, huge thanks guys. Huge. Chris and the gang from Topanga Creek Bicycles. Kyle, Ty and Woody from Golden Saddle Cyclery, Matt and Muriel of Swrve, John of Prolly is Not Probably and Rob of Ocean Air Cycles. Huge thanks of course also to Salsa for putting this contest and trip on. If it weren’t for them, well, none of this would have ever happened.

Enjoy your week, I won’t be posting anything until I get back. I’ll have a ton of pics though so stay tuned!

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Angeles Front Country S24O

Saturday we set out on an S24O that was years in the making. Bruce and I had planned to try doing this 2009, right when the Station Fire claimed a huge section of the Angeles Nation Forest. Closing down huge portions of it for years. In fact, parts of the forest are still closed to the public for rehab. Rob set up this trip, so for the most part we were just following along. You wouldn’t know it from the pics, but there were 6 of us. However, there was only one Mukluk Ti so it was my main subject. Sorry, I hope you like looking at fatbikes. Click the pics to open the Lightbox.

This trip was my first solid ride on the Mukluk Ti. I was using some new bags and trying out a new tire. The bike handled everything I threw at it. I will say though that riding it loaded up the steep Cheney Trail Drive was harder than I expected. I was having a really tough time and had to stop more than I care to admit. I even laid down on the road at one point!

Once in the dirt the bike felt amazing. Rolling over everything. I could still feel the weight, but dirt is just so much more fun. Rob and I flew down the paved Mt. Wilson Road and the guys were surprised at how fast I could descend with the Mukluk Ti. A couple corners were a little sketchy since I was only running about 12psi. It’s kinda weird when the bike feels like it’s in a different spot than the contact patch of the tires. That made me check my speed a couple times. Back on dirt we rode the fireroad down into camp as the sun was setting and I didn’t have a proper light. The huge tires were very forgiving as I felt it rolling over obstacles that I couldn’t see. One log almost took me out, but we quickly made it to camp.

This trip took me to parts of the ANF that I’d never been to before. Places that I’d seen on the map, but didn’t realize how close they were. You really feel like you’re far away from home though. It’s a pretty magical place back there. One I’m looking forward to getting back to.

For the locals out there, we rode from Alhambra to Altadena. Then up Cheney Trail Drive and Mt. Lowe Fire Road all the way to Mt. Wilson Road. From there we descended to Red Box for water. Then took the Red Box-Rincon road to West Fork Campground. In the morning we continued on Red Box-Rincon road to Newcomb Pass. Then singletrack took us all the way down to Chantry Flats and the final annoying climb of the day. Pretty fun loop, although more challenging than I was expecting. It did give me plenty of practice though, and I’m stoked to say that I cleaned some of the tight switchbacks. I guess I’m getting a little bit better.

Enough of the chimpin’, get to the pics!

Bruce on his Salsa Fargo
We came from the notch way over there.

Tree blocking the trail.

If you like what you’re readin’ here, please consider donating to my MS ride. I’m riding for my mom, and for my friend Aaron. I’d appreciate any donations and please help me spread the word. Thanks!

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Idyllwild S24O

Sometimes you visit an area that you’ve been to before, but you see it a little differently. I’ve been to Idyllwild a few times. Mostly as a kid. Once, maybe twice by moto even. A month ago I came up here with some friends to ride part of the Stagecoach 400 route, and I’ve been thinkin’ ’bout it ever since.

I had a powerful hankerin’ to get back here as soon as possible and explore some more of the riding. I reached out to the man about town and we hatched a plan. Simple really. Carry what you can on your bike. Ride down to the valley, camp and ride back up the hill. K.I.S.S. Keep it simple stupid. That’s the essence of it. What was in the middle was being guided by a local, just following his wheels and learnin’. You might be challenged by the terrain, but one thing is clear, we will all make it. This was about the journey. The destination, well, we were already there.

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