Category Archives: portraits
The Vancouver Island Badass 200
Words and Photos by Eiry Bartlett
The plan: 6 women, 6 bikes, 2 days, fully self-supported bike-camping trip around southern Vancouver Island, covering 200km+ and completing the Rapha Women’s 100 in true Pacific Northwest style. Confirmations were sent, gear lists made, training rides were organized. Really, the most important thing was that our kits looked good together.
Well, apparently life can really get in the way of fun. My girls were picked off like ripe cherries on a summer day and by time the trip rolled around we were down to three, but we were three totally stoked, badass ladies ready for whatever was thrown our way. A smaller group meant a smaller vehicle and the addition of our dutiful camp commander – soon to be known as Captain Sparkles – who was willing to transport our food and gear to the campsite while we made our way across the wilds of the Cowichan Valley.
Weird weather happened, kooky locals, drivers – speeding like bats out of hell, and all the benefits you’d expect cycling a route that starts in a logging zone and ends in a gorgeous temperate rainforest.
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I’ve learned a lot in the past two years and so has Ben at Argonaut Cycles. He looks at his made in the USA, fully custom carbon road bikes as a project that’s ever-evolving. With each frame, he learns more not only about his customers, but his own process. My Argonaut was perfection in my eyes and while I loved it, some things about it made it less than ideal for my lifestyle and by that I mean, I travel. A lot. At the time, Ben didn’t offer a traditional seat post, only an ISP…
The summer of ’69 was a good one alright – right down to Eddy’s wrist brace. Although 1970 was pretty good too! I love the Tour.
Garrett Chow is an exceptional designer and I’m very fond of his work. In today’s industry, so many cycling-related projects rely on paint design, meaning it’s the ultimate crux in a project’s success.
It’s easy to draw some chevrons, or paint a logo a pantone and call it a day, but to really dive into data, something that’s typically not visually stimulating and pull a compelling paint job from a series of numbers and historical markers takes talent.
With the recent Mavic 125ans project bikes, I took a liking to Argonaut‘s design. There was information there and it required you to stop and really examine every aspect of the bike. There were a lot of immaculate paint jobs in the 125ans bikes, but this one was more than that…
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Man, I really want to see one of Field Cycles’ bikes in person and even take one on a quick spin one day, especially after seeing what just rolled out of their shop. The Sheffield Steel Peloton Road is a crit racer’s dream ride. Stiff where it matters and just flashy enough. Check out Field’s thoughts on this bike, along with some more photos below!
The NYC Women’s 100 Rapha Ride
Words and photos by Chris Lee
This past Sunday morning, women all over the world took part in Rapha’s Women’s 100 ride. Every year this globally-coordinated event challenges female athletes of all skill types to ride 100km together as a group.
At this point, my Geekhouse Mudville is about as worn out as I am. It’s traveled the world multiple times and each trip to Australia, the build is slightly different.
Looking back, had I known this bike had clearances for up to a 42c tire, I would have ditched the 33c world a long time ago. For big, big rides, those 40c Nanos are the way to go. Surly’s Knard 41c looks like a great option as well, but I’ve yet to try them.
Over the past few years, this bike has proven itself to me time and time again. While there are a few characteristics that make a cross bike less-than-ideal for big tough dirt rides, I’d say it’s an all around, solid tool for the job. Even doing ‘road rides’ on a 40c ain’t as bad as you’d think.
Looking forward, I’m not sure what kind of bike I’d like to use for ‘dirt riding’ and travel. A road geometry with a slighly-slacker head tube angle is best suited for descending steep, rutted and sketchy fire roads, but the clearances for a larger tire make any rocky surface just kinda disappear, even on singletrack.
I’d love to make a bike with a road BB drop, a slightly slacker heat tube and enough room for a 40c tire but for now, this bike is ripping! Out of all of my bikes, it’s seen the most action and it shows, especially after a long ride like the two day Bush Blast (day 1 and day 2).
After that ride, I have had these photos on my desktop and figured I’d share them.
I’ll admit, this bike should have been shot with a Kleen Kanteen, not a Purist, but Kyle doesn’t like rules, at all, so it’s fine.
This MB-1 came into Golden Saddle Cyclery around the time Kyle sold his Saluki, regrettably. We’ve all been there before, you’re in a bind and you’ve gotta part ways with one bike to make ends meet, but luckily for Kyle, he kept in alignment with Grant Petersen‘s ideologies.
Bridgestone’s MB-1 hit at a unique time in mountain biking. Dirt drops were in and rigid was the (only) way. For Kyle, this bike became his around-town singlespeed, opting for White Industries components and Nitto’s Bullmoose bars. Topped off with Rubena Cityhopper tires.
The 2014 All City Championship Weekend: Bandit Cross
Words and photos by Chris Lee
The third and last segment of the All City Championships got off to a wet start. With isolated thunderstorms all morning, racers began to trickle in to the start at One On One.
After a quick briefing of the rules and some last minute instructions, racers ran to their bikes for the le mans start and started knocking out checkpoints from their manifest.
In the end it was David Smith and Chelsea Strate that took the win for men’s and women’s category, respectively.
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Orange and red are two colors that often clash, but sometimes they work. Case in point, Patrick’s LOW track bike. If this one looks familiar, it’s because Kyle shot photos of it at the black top in LA a few months back.
To Patrick, this bike is the result of intense financial planning. It took him almost a year to save up for this bike, but the end result is one of his favorite moments of the day. As he describes, when he hops on the bike “it rides like a razor blade of butter.” Super stiff, but smooth…
Campagnolo Record drivetrain, H+Son rims, Thomson and Chris King. This bike is laced with top of the line, yet durable components and it adds a bit of subtlety to the flashy paint job. As I was photographing this bike, a pedestrian walked by and said “damnnnn that’s like a Testarossa!”
I love Andrew Low’s bikes, they’re a testament that made in the USA aluminum track bikes will always have a place in the world, whether the street or the track. Enjoy the ride, Patrick!