It’s National Donut Day!
Once upon a time there was a very wise Ent living in the Angeles Forest that stumbled upon a gentle being who looked to be riding a road bike up to Josephine saddle and around the back side of Strawberry Peak, a route only walked or traversed via Boneshaker. This man was warned of the hazards that lie ahead and the inherent danger he was putting himself in by riding tires so skinny into these parts of the forest, but yet he pushed ahead. The Ent sent word via crow to the small village living at what we call Red Box today, these people were asked to send a smoke signal when the man arrived in the village, but the man never did.
This old folklore was the inspiration behind the first half of the Mudfoot Fundo One Hundo, a 100-mile route through the Angeles forest showcasing the drastic changes of climate and terrain of Southern California. The elevation gained is the equivalent of riding from sea level to the top of Mt. Whitey. Many started the ride, and some finished, but everyone had fun.
Tune in next week for the second installment of the Mudfoot Fundo One Hundo!
Oregon’s Big Country and the Steens Mountain
Photos and words by Gabe Tiller
Nick had never been to the Steens. It’s not his fault — they’re closer to Boise than anywhere that anyone’s actually heard of in Oregon. They’re technically just one weird mountain, not a range. Steens Mountain is one of the ten highest summits in Oregon but you can drive to the top. It stretches for 50 miles north to south, but the snow dusted eastern flank drops 5,000 dramatic feet to the contrasting Alvord desert lake bed, known for its hot springs and land yacht races…
The idea of a shuttle run is something very foreign to me. You gotta earn that descent! Still, a few friends here in Los Angeles have been trying to get me to wake up at 5am to hit the Mt Wilson shuttle with them and this morning, I finally gave in.
It might snow, there might be rain, the temperature is dropping tonight.
Still wanna ride? Of course. While the whole adoration of the inevitable clusterfuck or yard-shitting makes for interesting stories, sometimes just appreciating the spectacle that is mother nature’s mood swings merits documentation, regardless of how ethereal tales told on the internet tend to be.
Four hours. We had four hours to ride before the day’s responsibilities would set in for us. Kyle from Golden Saddle and Brian from Brian Vernor Making Blog (heh) wanted to ride Strawberry Peak in the Angeles National Forest. I’ve never been, but was promised picturesque San Gabriel shredding. While Strawberry Peak is strictly XC riding, there are plenty of places for unbalanced placement potentially resulting in catastrophe or consequence. I.e. exposure and lots of rocks.
The first ride on a custom bike is one of the best feelings in the world. At least to cyclists. Every pedal stroke, every turn, you form the beginnings of a new relationship with a machine that will hopefully one day take you to your dream landscape or roadscape.
For Sean from Team Dream Team, his Stinner hardtail has been in a shop since Sea Otter, getting everything dialed in for riding. When your dream bike is the poster child for a company like Mavic, sometimes it comes down to the wire and “the functioning build” is actually more of a “photoshoot-ready build.”
Anyway I’m in LA, stressed from being on the road, shooting photos and trying to maintain sanity but on Monday, I cracked. I needed to ride. I too have a new MTB and I wanted to shake it down some mountains and splash some sand across its powdercoat. Sean and I dipped out on responsibility, in a fuck-work kind of way and pedaled our way up to Brown, to hit one of my favorite descents in the area, El Prieto.
It happened to be at sunset and guess what? It’s LA, the weather was perfect. The dirt was dry, the poison oak was parched but on-trail adjustments were made resulting in a perfect shred sled sess…
For over 25 years Chico, California has been the home base for Paul Component Engineering. During the Speedvagen Fit Tour we swung by to check in on their operations and to get a sense of what the team, the city of Chico and Paul Price himself are all about…
“Climb” is a short video featuring a mostly gravel road on the col des Chevreres in the Vosges mountains, where le Tour came last year. It also happens to be the home of 2014 Tour 3rd place guy, Thibault Pinot…
The cycling industry is a competitive place. With mountain bikers clamoring over Enduro, the road and dirt industry has its sights on gravel grinder races. As the name implies, the Grinduro is a mix of the two. A mix, but a whole lot more…
Giro’s Grinduro is an entire weekend event that unfolds in the town of Quincy, California. A place that can get quite warm in the summer, so luckily, the event takes place in October. Participants will be able to camp at the fabled Quincy Campground, be fed by Chris King’s Gourmet Century, enjoy beer from Sierra Nevada brewery and enjoy music from live bands.
The format of the race includes timed climb segments, timed descent segments and a ripping 12-mile long singletrack ender. The intent is to chat leisurely in between segments, get to know your fellow racers, enjoy delicious food along the way and then give your all during the timed sections. Once you’re done, finish up the night at the campsites with a massive shindig.
The following Gallery was taken on the Giro Grinduro course, a 65 mile long mixed terrain route with approximately 9,000′ of elevation. These roads are some of the most beautiful in the area and as you will see, will not disappoint… Will you Grinduro?
Registration is open now, so head to the Grinduro site for more information.
Like many people, we decided to make a weekend of the Eroica California. Rather than fly or drive in for the ride itself. The city of Paso Robles hosted the event this year and since it’s smack dab in wine country, there were numerous places to eat good food and plenty cheap wine to go around. Luckily, my friends at Giro had rented a house, so a few of us camped out in the yard, atop a bluff overlooking town, rather than have to spring on a hotel.
The first day was spent mostly working on bikes. There was a lot of late-night tubular gluing, cable stretching, brake adjustment and minor part replacements. Things like that are always last-minute, right?
Saturday brought around the festival and the Concours. Tons of vintage bikes were on display for people to ogle, ask questions about, reminisce and take photos of. My only regret for the weekend was not shooting a few of these unique rides…
Yesterday was the event itself and since I had already ridden the course earlier in the year and was rather pleased with my photos, I decided to opt for my Fuji X100T, rather than the DSLR setup I’ve been lugging around on these rides as of late. We got a later start than anticipated, but had a decent sized group.
We rolled out of the gate at 8:30, almost two hours late and headed into the morning sun. It’d be a long day, filled with rest stops, wildlife, wine and plenty of climbing. We’d lose some of our group to wrong turns and our minds on the climbs. After 130 miles and around 10,000′ of elevation on 7 speed freewheels, we were all a little shelled…
Check out more in the Gallery and many thanks to Eroica California, Giro and all the volunteers for making the day so memorable!