Category Archives: touring bike
Tom’s Hunter Cycles 27.5+ Hardtail Loaded Up for the Baja Divide
Tom's Hunter Cycles 27.5+ Hardtail Loaded Up for the Baja Divide

For the past few months, all I’ve been reading and hearing about is the Baja Divide. Lael and Nicholas created a route last year that would take riders on a 1,700 mile journey from the US-Mexico border down the length of the Baja Penninsula, almost entirely on dirt. Well, dirt and sand. They are two completely different riding substrates. The grand depart took place last week and over 100 cyclists embarked on the journey, two of which being Tom and Sarah Swallow.

In order to prep for their 45-day ride – they’re going out and back on the route – Tom and Sarah rode for two weeks along the Baja Divide route in December. Afterward, they both described their ride as “the hardest thing we’ve ever done.” But at least they now know exactly what they needed in terms of gear. For instance, they left their filter at home, because there is no fresh water on the route, only bottled and filtered water. They’re also confident in their setups, which are very similar, save for Tom is riding a Hunter Cycles 27.5+ hardtail and Sarah is on a carbon S-Works hardtail.

Tom’s bike just looked so damn good all loaded up with Revelate bags the day before they left, so I had to shoot some photos of it. Not only to give Rick props for building such amazing frames, but I rarely get the chance to shoot loaded down hardtails. All of Tom’s little hacks – like those killer King Cage USBs – to make this a proper tourer simply add to the bike’s character.

I want to wish everyone who’s out on the Divide’s course good luck. You can follow Tom and Sarah’s trip on their Instagram.

Jan 5, 2017 33 comments
Benedict’s Silver and Gold Crust Bikes Romanceur Touring Bike
Benedict's Crust Bikes Romanceur Touring Bike

“The ROMANCEÜR is a swashbuckling tender heart of a fantasy warrior, who not only seduces its rider, but acts as a psychedelic aphrodisiac on the psyche. Together you become thee Romanceür, a sacred, lustful partnership rendering all riding surfaces swooned out and speechless, pining for an intimate evening including a tray of rosé Jell-O shots.” – Ultra Romance from his Crust Bikes Diary

Recently, Los Angeles was invaded by some of cycling’s biggest celebrities and no, not Wiggo, Sagan, Vos, or Bryceland. The cyclists that found themselves hanging out at Golden Saddle Cyclery are from a different walk, er, roll of life all-together. These nomadic raconteurs favor dirt to pavement and fully-loaded bikes to ultralight carbon. Not to mention, they’re always on the hunt for the latest cycling expedition, which brings me to Los Angeles… (more…)

Jan 3, 2017 61 comments
APB: My Geekhouse Touring Bike
StolenBike

If you live in Los Angeles, please keep a look out for my Geekhouse touring bike. It was stolen this morning between the hours of 5 – 6:30am from my house. It doesn’t have fenders now and has a basket bag, but is very distinguishable. If you see it, throw a u-lock on it or call Golden Saddle Cyclery (323-661-1174). Leave a comment if you have any questions.

Nov 13, 2016 46 comments
Cari’s Elephant National Forest Explorer Touring Bike
Cari's Elephant National Forest Explorer Touring Bike

No bicycle is ever a completed work. At least in my opinion anyway, but sometimes a bike is at a place where you step back, look at it and smile. The other day I caught Cari doing just that. Smiling as she looked at her bike. She then said she’d like to photograph it in the forest. We were in Santa Cruz at the time and had just finished up a killer loop through the redwoods and down to the coast.

Let’s back track a bit. Around NAHBS last year, she mentioned that she’d like an upgrade from her current bike, an old Nishiki road bike that was a couple sizes too big for her. We looked at the market’s offerings and discussed what ideally she’d like in a bicycle.

Once she had a budget, it was easier to nail down exactly what her options were. I knew NAHBS was coming up, so I emailed a few builders, including Elephant to see if there would be any deals rolling around. Throughout this whole process, I couldn’t stop thinking about how the National Forest Explorer was a perfect “all-rounder” bike when I reviewed it. You could tour on it, ride trails and use it as a grocery getter. Since we have endless dirt, right from our front door, the idea of having a nice, plump tire for Cari was a plus. Anyway, John at Elephant told me he’d have a size small, complete, at NAHBS for sale after a customer backed out at the last minute.

NAHBS came and went, we picked up the bike and began riding all over Los Angeles. Fast forward a few months, a few part swaps and here it is. (more…)

Nov 10, 2016 55 comments
I Got the Blues: a Bombus Bikes Blue Steel Tourer – Kyle Kelley
I Got the Blues: a Bombus Bikes Blue Steel Tourer - Kyle Kelley

I Got the Blues: a Bombus Bikes Blue Steel Tourer
Photos by Kyle Kelley words by John Watson

A simple search online for Bombus Bikes won’t turn up a whole lot of information. A video here, a random photo there, and a Yelp page with not a lot of information. Yet if you talk to people of Seattle, they know good and well about this small time framebuilding shop. Well, some of they do anyway. Throughout the year, we get lots of touring bikes coming through Los Angeles, specifically through the doors at GSC. Sometimes I’m around the document them and sometimes I’m not, leaving it up to Kyle to do so. (more…)

Nov 3, 2016 61 comments
Ride Klamath

Path Less Pedaled looks at one of my favorite regions in the State of Jefferson.

Oct 10, 2016 5 comments
The Radavist 2016 Calendar: September
RAD_Sept2016-1000

This is the seventh layout of the Radavist 2016 Calendar, entitled “Surprise Sunset” Shot with a Canon 70d with a 18-135mm lens in Gray Creek, British Columbia

On the second day of their tour, Found in the Mountains tackled a whopping 40 miles and 6,500′ climbing, on their fully-loaded Soma Wolverines. As they climbed out of a valley to the Gray Creek summit, they were greeted with a full nuker. Gray Creek is coincidentally the highest dirt pass in Canada!

NEW: There’s also a mobile image uploaded for anyone wanting a mobile phone background each month. September’s image is from Los Angeles, featuring a tall dead tree and dust. Click here to download September’s Mobile Wallpaper.

For a high-res JPG, suitable for print and desktop wallpaper*, right click and save link as – The Radavist 2016 Calendar – September. Please, this photo is for personal use only!
(*set background to white and center for optimal coverage)

Sep 1, 2016 4 comments