Spencer and His Motobecane Fatbike on Strawberry Peak

Spencer Harding is true rad atavist. He’s always touring on his tallbike, or packrafting the LA river, and finding unique or interesting people to photograph. For the past few weeks, he’s been in Los Angeles, working on photo projects and riding extensively. For whatever reason, he and I yet to connect. It seems that while our paths were concurrent, they weren’t yet converging. Until last week when a text message ended with finite plans to ride.

Initially, we were going to ride Sunset Ridge, a ripping descent but I wanted to ride something a bit harder and more cross-country. Ty had already annihilated Chilao the day before, so we chose Strawberry Peak and its exposed singletrack.

Spencer's Motobecane Fatbike on Strawberry Peak

For whatever reason, I thought Spencer always had a Surly ICT. I’d seen his tires before with their plump 4″ width, but never actually realized it was a Motobecane. You know, the BikesDirect.com in house model that seems awfully similar to Surly, down to the dropouts. We were joking as I was shooting photos: “that’s the most stock, cheap bike to ever be featured on the Radavist!” My mind raced to think of another example, yet came back empty after running through the database. Yes, this is a damn stock bike, save for the bell and Brooks saddle, but as Spencer has proven time and time again, it’s not the bike that makes the ride. This one’s all about the abeausage…

Spencer on Strawberry

Enjoy these photos of some of Los Angeles’ most beautiful trails and give Spencer a follow on Instagram!

  • Love it! “as Spencer has proven time and time again, it’s not the bike that makes the ride” Beautiful Set!

  • meaty_urologist

    those tires are 4″….not 5″….

    • He had 5″ on it… my bad!

      • meaty_urologist

        i forgive you, john!

    • spencer harding

      4″ never looked so big

  • AaronBenjamin

    So much personality and a nice change from $12,000 bikes…

  • The bike, sure. But if things could tell stories, I bet there is a book and a half tied up in that cap.

  • Brian Richard Walbergh

    Photo #19 hot damn

  • Jonathan

    Best dude to ride bikes with.

  • We met up with Spencer to ride in Banff this past summer. No more than 10 minutes after we got rolling, Spencer looped out a wheelie on the only pavement crossing we’d see for a couple hours, resulting in a weird de-tensioning of his Brooks. Abeausage indeed. It took five of us about 20 minutes to figure it out. And you know what? Mechanicals aren’t lost time when you’re hanging with such good people. Hope to catch up soon, Spencer!

  • carl bradtmiller

    i find the ‘one less surly’ sticker particularly funny in this case – if not for surly and other innovators, what would the lecherous poachers at bikesdirect.com have to reverse engineer? they would have to come up with shit on their own and develop a market segment, just like surly did. im not saying surly invented the fat bike, but they brought it to the masses. support your local bike shop!

    • Brian Richard Walbergh

      I think the sticker is supposed to be exactly that…funny. If anything companies like bikesdirect should be good for the consumer. A stock Pugsley is a very nice bike, but it isn’t worth the $1,800 MSRP Surly has on it and everyone knows it. Maybe it was when it was novel, but not now. The “poachers” should force the innovators to do what they do best….innovate. The Wednesday is a nice step forward, for Surly, But it is likely a direct reaction to cheaper more trail oriented fat bikes becoming available in the last few years. It is all a cycle.

      • spencer harding

        Honestly Im looking into trading up to a wednesday. Seems like the world has settled on the 170mm rear end and that makes finding hubs for a possible 29+ wheelset easier. and surly also fixed the problem of getting the rear wheel out of the dropout which my bike has figured out due to me crashing it. I’ve owned surly bikes in the past and they are a fucking rad company. I’ve gotten funny looks for that sticker from people on the trail and I just laugh.

        • Brian Richard Walbergh

          The Wednesday is dope, I am also looking into one. Let them bring the funny looks, screw the haters, it is just a bike. Looks like you are having to much to to really care about them anyway.

        • rocketman

          Look again… most of the 2016 fat-bikes are running 190 rear hubs… bigger is always better in ‘murica!

    • hansgman

      holi crap.. I compared the geo and this BD lurch is like identical to my pugsley, other than the offset.

    • White Mike

      If you put a ONE LESS SURLY sticker on a Surly a virgin dove poots

  • hansgman

    Love how the brooks stamp is all faded out.. How does that occur? Is it from excessive wear? My brooks logo is still very well defined.

    • spencer harding

      must be that Im the 3rd owner, I dont take proper care of it, and after bike packing it a few thousand miles its getting tired.

  • Michael Casey

    When I grow up I want to be Spencer Harding

  • Scottathon

    Where to cop one of those in and out bottles? That shit is HYPE.

  • Ian Stone

    Thank god it’s not a Surly

    • colavitos_ghost

      How come? Because its production involved basically zero innovation or R&D? Because its purchase did zero to support anything resembling a local economy? Or is it simply because it was cheap? I mean, I understand people have budgets and real bikes built by real bike companies can cost a lot (nothing against Spencer and his bike), but I don’t get how this bike could ever, on any level, be considered superior to a Surly.

      If you’re being sarcastic, forgive me.

  • BoostahMante

    Dope photos!

  • kermitonwheels

    I really love your layered hills shots you’ve been doing more of recently. You’re really capturing the feeling of the light at those times. Very special.

  • Right on dude- share the motobacon love! I use mine as a daily commuter and ride the heck outta the thing.

  • FireUrEngine

    Love the photos!