Utah is a strange place, coming from someone that lives in Texas, but there are so many incredible places to shred there. During my recent trip to Moab, I opted for my Yashica T4 one afternoon, instead of my bulky 5Dmkiii. When I found out we were going to be riding singletrack all day on the RS-1 fork, I wanted to see how it felt without a backpack on, so I threw my point and shoot in a fanny pack and smashed onward.
We began in Grand Junction, ColoRADo and headed to Fruita for pizza at the Hot Tomato – from there, it was off to Utah and the SRAM Trail House.
Look, Moab is awesome. The trails are incredible and even super easy singletrack blew my mind. Oh and dinosaurs.
Tools of the trade:
There are bikes that epitomize performance and style, but few carry the brand clout of Moots. Sure, your dentist, or doctor might have one, but chances are, they didn’t spring for the Psychlo X RSL. This frame is arguably the best cross offering to come from the brand, with its 44mm head tube, PF30 BB, oversized tubing, shouldering-friendly – formed top tube and more than enough mud clearance at the stays. This ain’t your everyday Moots!
Ben’s a mechanic at Mellow Johnny’s, the local Moots dealer here in Austin. He picked up this frame for a song and built it up over a six month period of time, from used parts and new, with no immediate deadline in mind. A few weeks ago, it was ready to roll with a mix of Force / Red 22, ENVE and TRP Spyre mechanical disc brakes.
We rode out to one of our favorite “hot laps” singletrack spots in south Austin and shot photos of the bike sitting in a field of Blue Bonnets, the Texas state flower. With Nationals in Austin this year, Ben’s starting to train for cross the best way possible: shredding trails!
Baum are the king of the race car-inspired paint jobs and this Martini road is a perfect example, right down to the seat tube logo. Damn! See more of this insanely-dialed road bike at Baum’s Flickr or catch them at the UK Handmade Bicycle Show this weekend.
Have a set of Chris King ISO or ISO DH hubs that you want to run on your XX1 system? I know I do and up until today, there hasn’t been an option. This morning Chris King announced their new ISO XD hub for SRAM’s XX1. The best part is, there’s also a conversion kit available for existing ISO hubs…
Check out more at Chris King and see the press-release below!
Photos by Andy Waterman
Pinkbike has an exceptional story showcasing Lyle from Mission Workshop / Acre riding the English Lake District with photographer Andy Waterman. I’ve never had the chance to ride terrain like this and although it looks fun, there’s a price to pay for the beauty. Steep, slick, rocky climbs (hikes) and moody mother nature…
Head over to Pinkbike to check it out!
Photo by Margus Riga
New found confidence? Or just summoning the Necronomicog? Finally, some photos of me riding gear in a review!
I think this goes without saying, but I’d like to thank everyone involved with last weekend’s trip, including Margus and Adrian for shooting such rad photos of the riding. One of the reasons why we were there was to test out the new Guide Brakes from SRAM.
I’ll be pretty honest here, I have never really liked Avid brakes. My bikes all have Shimano systems on them, from SLX to XTR. In the past, I’ve said that I’d never ride anything else. Coming off a weekend like this, it’d be easy to say that SRAM put us in this rad location, threw new products at us and expected some positive feedback but that wasn’t the case at all. They really were interested in what we thought and were open to critique.
Unfortunately, the only feedback I had to offer up was: “I didn’t even have to think about the brakes”. Period. Riding new terrain, on a new bike, the last thing you want to do is worry about if your brakes are going to feel good and perform up to par. They felt so amazing, even compared to XTR.
We all know I’m not a king of technical garble, but I think it’s safe to say that these exceeded mine and everyone else’s expectations. I didn’t hear a single squeal from the rotor, or person the whole trip.
These new Guide Brakes from SRAM are like night and day compared to Avid…
Check out more below.
Everyone, in the history of friends who’ve been to Utah, particularly Moab, have said “broooo, you have to ride Porcupine” – which is followed by Enchilada – “ohhhh man, you gotta do Enchilada too!”
Let me just say that Utah is completely wild. It’s like a hipper Nevada. The word “Adventure” is literally everywhere you look – Adventure Raft Tours, Adventure Desert Guide, etc – I could have done a post on the vernacular of adventure x companies. Next time.
Back to Utah – I’ve been here once before.
Moab, however is a lot different than I expected. The trails are incredible and yes, Porcupine did indeed deliver. If you’ve ridden it, then you know. If you haven’t… broooo. The morning began with a quick cup of coffee and a breakfast burrito. Then came the sunblock lather, kit check and bag-stuffing. Snacks, water, tools, camera, check. In the interest of time, we shuttled to 7,000′ and ripped back to town.
Part of the SRAM Trail House media launch experience is getting to have some talented photographers shoot photos of you ripping down the mountains. To give you a point of reference: we stopped about every 10 minutes or so and went down the trail one by one. That results in a very long day – but for me, it just means I got to shoot my own photos in the downtime, some of which, I’m very stoked on.
Photographing MTB riding is pretty new for me, but I think this photoset captures what it’s like to ride in Moab, particularly Porcupine. At least in a pretty ok manner. What I’m saying is, I’m stoked on a lot of these, so don’t miss ‘em!
Unlike the first day of the SRAM Trail House media event, today I opted for a 35mm point and shoot in a hip bag, instead of my 5D in a hydration pack. That means, no photos just yet, but because I’m never without camera, I did get a few photos of food and landscapes – people like that right? No bike photos today!
We’re about to head out to hit Porcupine, a Moab favorite and I can’t wait. As always, more to come…
In 1989 Paul Turner and Steve Simon built the first RS-1 fork. Now, in 2014 RockShox resurrects the RS-1 name and a fresh design that’s clearly a nod to the Australian MTB market. Or something. More to come… You guys are smart, figure it out.
Over the past four years, SRAM MTB has invited a handful of media representatives out to Moab, Utah to unveil new products, talk tech and most importantly shred the abundance of trails just a few short miles from town. Getting an invite to an event like this is as exciting as it is unnerving. Dude, you have to like, ride new stuff with like 20 people. Most of which you just met that morning…
The trails in Moab are unlike anything I’ve ridden before. Some are infamously techy, then others envelop you in smooth, flowy 1-track ribbons. Today, we hit the HyMasa – Captain Ahab loop and I had an absolute blast. Once you get over the whole new bike / new trail / new terrain and just embrace your surroundings, the anxiety subsides and with each break you take, it’s easy to fall into the environment. Or, in my case you OTB, get up, laugh and everyone is stoked. Then you all get to hang out as the sun sets over the cliffs.
I’ve only been in Moab for 24 hours and I can see why it’s a favorite for many of my friends…
See more of the weird Utah vernacular and mind-blowing landscape in the Gallery!