Category Archives: MTB
My 44 Bikes Marauder Hardtail is Steady Shreddin on Ibis 941 Wheels
My 44 Bikes Marauder Hardtail is Steady Shreddin on Ibis 941 Wheels

Since this bike first showed up at my door here in Los Angeles, I’ve really enjoyed riding it. While the kit that Kris from 44 Bikes delivered for the review interim was more than acceptable, it felt good putting both my old parts on it and new wheels, which made a world of difference. Wheels are like that though. You think everything is peachy-keen one day and the next you’re rolling on new wheels, having your mind blown. Call me naive but I didn’t think a wide rim like the Ibis 941 would make that big of a difference on a hardtail. Truthfully, it didn’t feel like it until I seat the WTB Trail Boss 2.4″ tire on the 41mm outer, 35mm inner width rims.

To say it was like a whole new bike might be over-doing it, or perhaps it captures my enthrallment or excitement. Either way, I do not want to take them, or these tires off my 44 Bikes Marauder anytime soon. (more…)

Nov 2, 2016 30 comments
Party Time on Mount Pinos in the Los Padres National Forest
Duck!

I reiterate this a lot, so apologies if I’m sounding like a broken record here but we’re lucky here in LA. There are a lot of mountains within a quick drive. To put it in perspective, most of the out-of-town riding is in the opposite direction of traffic. So, if you leave in the morning, you’re on a freeway, in a carpool lane, with no traffic. Then, upon returning home in the afternoon, it’s the same. This leaves a lot of options for riding mountain bikes in the National Forests surrounding our very own Angeles National Forest.

The most diverse, ATMO, being Los Padres and one area in particular that has quickly become one of my favorites is Mt. Piños. Named after, you guessed it, the many pine trees that cover its faces, this day-trip jaunt from LA delivers riding that is uncharacteristic of our local trails. Namely shade, and ground substrate. When you’re used to riding on sand, covering decomposed granite, the idea of riding on actual ground covering, even if it’s just pine needles, gets a lot of us stoked.

Sean from Team Dream has spoken highly of this trail over the years and to be honest, I don’t know what took me so long to follow his advice to come ride it. At any rate, I rallied some troops and we planned on visiting Mt. Piños on a Tuesday morning. (more…)

Oct 27, 2016 12 comments
Niner Launches the Alloy JET 27.5+ 29r
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Not everyone can drop upwards of $9,000 on a trail bike and not every rider wants rocks pinging off the tubes on a carbon fiber frame. Knowing this, Niner launched their popular JET RDO 27.5+ 29r frameset in an alloy version. Utilizing the same CVA suspension and engineering standards as the JET RDO, the new JET 9 is made for tackling your local trails, all at a pricepoint of $2,600.00 with SRAM NX-1. Check out more specs at Niner and see a few more product photos below. Keep an eye on Niner’s demo days via your local dealer to test one out. (more…)

Oct 19, 2016 2 comments
Inside / Out at Black Cat Bicycles
The shop.

Todd Ingermansen has been working in the cycling industry for a long time. Too long if you ask him. Since the age of 13 he’s had a presence in bike shops. What began as sweeping the shop floors eventually culminated into being a mechanic, riding bikes and living bikes. Yet, Todd wanted something more. Running parallel to his bike shop jobs was his art school education, where he realized his 2D and 3-dimension eye for details. In his early 20’s he chased his love of singlespeed MTB riding and racing to Oakland, California where cycling completely enveloped his life.

Back then, there weren’t any US manufacturers of singlespeed MTB frames. Or at least none that piqued Todd’s interest, so he began building his own. A few friends helped him out, some frames worked, some didn’t, yet every frame taught Todd something. Eventually he moved back down the California coast, to San Luis Obispo and began fillet brazing. He had built a dozen or so frames before landing a job with Rick Hunter of Hunter Cycles. Under Rick’s torch, Todd began to realize the importance of actually making a bicycle frame, something that stands true even today.

For the past 14 years, Todd’s been building a brand, and a modus operandi to how he believes bicycles should be made. Black Cat Bicycles are unique, arguably unlike anything else I’ve witnessed in my years of documenting framebuilders. Much like his mentor, Rick Hunter, Todd doesn’t just weld a mail order kit of parts together and paint it. He engineers his own dropouts, builds stems, machines metal into whatever he pleases, carves his own lugs and bends his tubing in very unique shapes. For instance, how do you make chainstays that are bent, yet have an ever-so-slight arc to them? (more…)

Oct 17, 2016 28 comments
Tumbleweed Bicycles Rigid Bikepacking Frameset Pre-Order
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Photos by James Newman

Tumbleweed Bicycles saw the opportunity to design a rigid mountain bike, suited for bikepacking and optimized for a Rohloff hub back in 2014. For the past two years, they’ve been developing the Prospector, a multi-purpose bike, designed to fit either 26″ or 27.5+ wheels, with a suspension-corrected fork or a Rock Shox Bluto and while the Prospector can take a front and rear derailleur, it’s design centers around the Rohloff platform. What makes the Prospector stand out from other offerings is the special 73mm version of Phil Wood’s eccentric bottom bracket. This, along with a boosted rear and proprietary yoke allow for a creak-free drivetrain that’s optimized for wider spacing.

The Prospector is available in two colors and four sizes for $1,300. Pre-ordering the frame is now possible at Tumbleweed Bicycles.

Oct 14, 2016 3 comments
Sunrise to Sunset at the 2016 Trans Cascadia – Dylan VanWeelden
Sunrise to Sunset at the 2016 Trans Cascadia - Dylan VanWeelden

Sunrise to Sunset at the 2016 Trans Cascadia
Photos and words by Dylan VanWeelden

The second Trans Cascadia race welcomed 100 primed racers to a blind format enduro race spanning 4 days in the rugged lands of cascadia. It kicked off with a meeting point in the Mackenzie River area where everyone was loaded onto buses with a bag, tent and bike in tow with no idea where they were going. The Trans Cascadia crew worked all season to open long time silent trails to keep even the locals on their toes. Each day hosted a full day of riding unknown trails while the night brought secluded parties only the racers will know.

If you’re looking for a wild experience next year, make sure to sign up when the 2017 registration opens because it tends to sell out in hours. Head to Trans Cascadia!

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Follow Trans Cascadia on Instagram and Dylan on Instagram.

Oct 14, 2016 6 comments