Category Archives: Melbourne
Since the first time riding in the ‘wood here in Australia, I’ve always wanted to shred some MTBs. Problem is, it’s usually a pain in the ass digging up a bike, or there’s just not enough time to spend fucking around on the tracks and trails.
This go ’round, I’ve been taking it easy, so when a Sunday afternoon opened up, we were able to find the time for plenty of fucking around. But what about a bike? Luckily for me, Andy set me up with Tim at My Mountain, a shop in Melbourne specializing in bicycles designed for dirt riding: i.e. a MTB shop.
So, I had a bike (which I’ll be doing a bit of a write-up on at a later date), I had a guide (or three) and plenty of time. Andy knew of some mates who loved to ride Smith’s Gully, a “local’s only” trail system. He wouldn’t tell me where it was, or let me use my Garmin, he just tossed me into his van and about 30 minutes later, I was in a parking lot putting on my kit and nursing a hangover from getting “trollied” the night before.
The four of us all gave each other’s bikes the once over (only to know what to look for in case one of us crashed into the bush) and took off for the trails. Now, let me apologize in advanced, these photos didn’t quite fit into the product reviews I’m in the process of writing, they’re merely left-overs that were too rad to just pitch. Especially this one of Barnie getting rad…
See a few more in the Gallery!
The owner of this Gangsta track has been hanging around Shifter Bikes since he was in his early teens. Now, years later and he’s got an itch to ride his bike out from the city on a big, weekend ride. Before he could do so, he needed Dan to add bottle braze ons to the frame.
Now, the technique Dan used didn’t involve a torch, but it did involve a drill and a device called a Nutsert. More on that later. For now, let’s check out this rad Gangsta Track!
I swear, when I’m in Melbourne, it’s like classic steel roadie overload. Normally, I’m content with my modern steel but after a day at Shifter Bikes, I’m ready to start piecing together an Italian race machine. Dan has so many amazing builds coming out of his shop at the moment, but my favorite is this Colnago Decor with Campagnolo Record. Why? See for yourself in the Gallery!
Photos by Andy White
Look, I don’t deal well with foul weather. Not anymore, anyway. The years of living in NYC have dwindled away as far as my body is concerned. Now, I’ve adapted to desert life in Texas. So when spring rains come, the trees are blooming and it’s grey outside, I succumb to all kinds of allergies and moody blues.
Maybe that’s why when Andy from FYXO mentioned doing 160k today in the rainy, muddy hills of Kinglake, I opted out for a shorter, more manageable ride. Or maybe, as destiny would have it, I’d be content with 100k. For whatever reason, my “man cold” was a perfect excuse to opt out of one of Fyxo’s fabled tough rides.
We began heading out to the familiar hillside, before approaching what I’m calling “cuntbuster”, or in the native tongue “Pine Ridge Road”. The first hundred meters or so was totally rideable, but we scaled 300 meters in elevation in just under 3k (1,200′ in 1.2 miles). Basically, we hiked up the 30+ degree, rutted, nasty “road”.
At the top, we quickly descended into a glorious stretch of gravel aptly named Watson’s Rd, got lost and then saw a very rare site…
From there, the ride became an animal rescue mission. Head over to FYXO for the full scoop on how we saved a rare Wedgetail Eagle and check out numbers and such on my Strava.
Ok, look. This bike might just well be one of my favorites I’ve seen in months. Why? Campag and Shimano, tapered head tube, general trickery and yes, a DIY paint splatter paint job with a matte clear coat. Blakey’s Kinesis commuter even has matching pedals and helmet (of which weren’t present). This bike rules, I’ve had splatter paint bikes before and there’s something that’s just so photogenic about them – and horribly difficult to correct white balance. Check out more of this rare bird in the Gallery!
I’ve been spending time with Lauren, walking around Melbourne these past two days and on our way to dinner last night, I saw these logos on an old storefront glass. They were hand-drawn on the backside as well. I’m guessing it was an old bike shop?
Until I start photographing bikes and shops, I’ll be uploading the non-cycling side of this trip to my Flickr, so follow along there!
Photo by Ari Hatzis
While I love good studio photography, personally, I think Fyxo‘s BT looks better being wheelied. But that’s just me. Literally. See more incredible photos at Ari Hatzis‘ portfolio site!
Andy White of Fyxomatosis knows how to throw a great party. Year after year, the Melburn Roobaix continues to grow both in numbers and in reach. People come from all over the world to take part in the two wheeled party. It’s not a race and it’s not exactly a ride, it’s just a good time!
See for yourself how stoked people are at the Melburn Roobaix portraits page!
One of the best FYXO jerseys is now available. Introducing the Carrefour.
“French for crossroads / intersection. This design is a collision between FYXO colours and the Mapei cubes synonymous with Paris-Roubaix thanks to their doping dominance in the 90s.
Melburn’s cobbled back alleys are thousands of miles from the stone farm roads of Northern France, but at speed and with the ringing of cowbells, the bumpy experience is the same.
If you are ever at the crossroads, always go North. Hell awaits you.”
Pick one up here!
“Local access only” is not to be confused with “locals only”. If there’s one thing to be said about Australians its that they love to show visitors how great their land is. Land is something that’s very ethereal these days. Tourism changes the way one interacts or engages with a place. For example, a surfer would have a very similar experience as a cyclist in Australia but a businessman or businesswoman might have a different perspective altogether.
As cyclists, we look for the most anti-social areas to socialize. No one wants to chat on a busy street. #NotBeachRd. We look at cities differently and while many people prefer the beaten path, some head out down roads with no KOM, no segments and no social scene. I’ve been very blessed to be given such a unique view of Victoria and over the years have met some great guides.
This roll of film was lost. Ok, not lost, just in the bottom of my film container in the fridge. It contains some moments from rides, a Black Breath show in Melbourne and some other randomness. Check out the narrated photos for the full story.
Tools of the trade: