Category Archives: Recent Roll
Good Things Don’t Change at Mercian Cycles
Photos and words by Jim Holland
Sometimes good things don’t change, Mercian Cycles is one of those things.
The current workshop has sat in the same spot since 1965, watching as modern industrial buildings crop up around it and other older workshops disappear. Underneath the steeped, church like ceiling, little has changed and the intermittent clang of tubes and scraping of files ring out as they have done for the last 50 years whilst one by one, men make bicycles by hand.
Frames are still brazed free hand on an open hearth, as they have been since day one, amongst the very last practitioners of this method, Mercian believes it to be gentler on the tubes, which contributes to the longevity of the frame. Die hard Reynolds stalwarts, they don’t often stray from Birmingham steel and have a good stock of 531 for the true nostalgist.
One of just a handful of England’s traditional shop based builders that remain, the torches are still firing brightly and the benches are seldom dormant as the orders keep pouring in, one of them mine, I’m counting the days.
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Hawaii is a haven for cycling. From Mauna Kea on Hawaii to MTB trails on Kona, this archipelago has it all. One island you mustn’t overlook however is Kaua’i. I’ve already touched on a few points here on the Radavist. Including Kaua’i Cycle and a few random photos from a quick cross ride I did, so let me further expand on those.
Chris and Jonny from Kauai Cycle take to the woods when they can on their mountain bikes. In the drier months, hog trails open up to form a dense network of singletrack. Other service roads open up, as the plant life withers and thins out, but right now, in the middle of summer, everything is overgrown.
While visiting Lauren’s parents, I brought my cross bike and ventured into the woods with Chris and Jonny, not knowing what to expect. I was promised “Jurassic Park” landscapes, a swimming hole and lots of ripping down dirt, well, mud roads on the island. We did 45 miles and around 3,300′. More than enough to leave your legs and shred sled, sated.
If you ever find yourself heading out to this island, do not leave your bike at home!
Ride Along: Garrett Kautz from Strawfoot
Words and photos by John Watson
Strawfoot is one of those companies that has gained a lot of momentum over the past year in the cycling industry because of social media and word of mouth. While Strawfoot is a bag company, they’re most known for their socks. I was first introduced to Garrett from Brian Vernor last year, when I visited his small shop in Santa Cruz.
Over the past few months, Strawfoot has grown. They’ve moved to a bigger shop, are sponsoring a cross team and yes, he’s continued making socks, which sell out almost immediately…
Navigating the Lost in the French Maritime Alps – Ty Hathaway
Words by John Watson photos by Ty Hathaway
The French Maritime Alps are riddled with the remnants of man’s conflict of bygone eras. With the most recent being the Italian invasion of France in WWII. The Battle of France took Italian troops over these very mountains as they lay claim to Benito Mussolini’s demands for a ‘surplus population’. Or, in short, simply expanding the Italian empire.
As it goes with war, many souls are lost, leaving nothing but the roads, paths and man’s ruin…
Let me begin this post with the phrase: don’t blow up the spot, bro. Now, I know I’m posting photos of a few hidden gems, but you don’t have to name them… That said, we also were given “special permission” to access these spots from land owners, so, again #dontblowupthespot, bro. Also, also, remember one thing: this is Texas, people have a lot of guns and a particular connection to their private property. I’ve dealt with angry land owners before. Let me tell you, it ain’t worth it.
Now that that’s out of the way…
Central Texas can be quite unforgiving in the summer months and the only bastian for relaxation are limestone swimming holes, sink holes, aquifers, lakes and other vessels for holding water. The problem is: every frat boy bro and his messy friends camp out with coolers of beer and boom boxes, littering and ruining a lot of these swimming locales, leaving my friends and I seeking refuge in lesser-known locations.
Be it on a mountain bike, cross bike, or in this case, simply driving outside of the Austin area to swim has proven to be quite fruitful this summer in particular. We hike in and leave nothing but footprints and tire tracks.
Last sunday, we ruled summer as we partook in some classic Central Texas cliff jumps and lounging… enjoy the Gallery!
Tools of the trade:
Mamiya 7ii / 80mm
Kodak Portra 400
The last time I was in Los Angeles, I had one thing on my mind: doing some road riding in the Angeles National Forest. Usually, I’m in LA on my cross bike and we will spend our afternoons poaching trails, escaping to the dirt or bombing fire roads. All of which are wayyy more fun than a road ride, ATMO, anyway.
Still, there’s nothing like a somber ride up the 2 to Newcomb’s Ranch for a burger, a beer and some fries, only to rip back down to town, sated.
Unfortunately for the group that morning, Newcomb’s was closed and I think I was the only one who really ate anything at all that morning. Check out some selects from a Recent Roll. Man, that was a long time coming!
We totaled 80 miles and around 8,000′ and damn, Oinksters was good!
Tools of the trade:
Kodak Portra 400
Trackside ’85 at the Berlin Six Day Race – Staffan Jofjell
Words by Staffan Weigel, photos by Staffan Jofjell
Although it’s far from the spartan life of East Berlin, living in the west part of town is not always easy. The instability in world politics is constantly reminding the citizens of how vulnerable their city is. West Berliners stoically maintain a spirit of normality in their isolation. Their celebrations and manifestations of life before the wall serve as rituals that keep the absurdity of the surrounded city at bay…
The 2013 All City Championships in Polaroids
Words by John Watson and photos by Kyle Kelley
Parties. That’s what Minneapolis is all about come the summer months and I’m not talking about the “take over the bar with 20 of your friends and sing happy birthday” kind of celebration. What partying is, to me anyway, is grabbing a case of beer or a bottle, booking around town, hitting trails, sitting in a park and taking a dive in a body of water, nude, after the sun has gone down.
In the midwest, that’s the way of life come the Summer Solstice and in Minneapolis, the All City Championships mark the height of such activities…
Team Dream Extreme Volume 01: The Backboner
Photos and Words by Sean Talkington
Lyle from Acre recently moved to LA from SF and has been talking about “secret trails” near my home in Topanga for some time now. He kept saying that they were easily the best thing he had ridden in our area. I had skeptically tried to find the “secret trail-head” to the “secret trail” multiple times and always ended up lost. A few months ago I thought I had found said trail, so two buddies came with to rejoice in the new super secret discovery, only to end up trailblazing for 2 hours & schlepping bikes over loads of rock faces. I was bummed, my friends were bummed and I began to secretly hate these secret trails.
I’ve been a long fan of Cadence for some time now. Over the years, they’ve been huge supporters of PiNP and The Radavist, so when the new Flow kits dropped, I wanted to do something special to commemorate them. I knew from Cadence’s Instagram that they had just ridden from SF to LA and TCB Courier‘s John Daniel Reiss was trucking along taking photos, so I reached out to them to do a Reportage on the trip… Below you’ll see the ride unfold.