Pepper’s Tumbleweed Prospector Rohloff Peru Divide Touring Bike

Instagram. It opens the door to people’s lives. Their existence, their motivations, their day-to-day routines, and their ambitious undertakings. With some, this transparency and subsequent stoked, is not only exciting to follow along, but highly motivating. Pepper is one of those people on Instagram. The ones you see on their bike, in beautiful places every post, and sharing a positive mental attitude all while promoting cycling. I had never met Pepper before yesterday, yet I’m sure the feeling is mutual when we acknowledged seeing each other’s lives unfold online. One of the bigger undertakings of her cycling life was an ambitious bikepacking route with the Tumbleweed Bikes team. The end product of their trip is a beautiful film by Jay Ritchey, which premiered here in Los Angeles last night, coinciding with an opportunity for me to meet Pepper and document the very bike that she pedaled, pushed, and crashed on the Peru Divide.

We’ve looked at Dan’s Tumbleweed before on the site, and while the frame details are the same, the build differs, particularly with Pepper’s use of a basket for touring – not pictured here, a Fabio’s Chest by Swift Industries and Ultra Romance has replaced it – for that, head to her Instagram to check it out, and be sure to catch the film El Silencio: Cycling the Peruvian Andres if it comes to your city!


Follow Pepper on Instagram and Tumbleweed on Instagram.

  • Sascha

    I really do need to update my Surly Troll 😉

    • Chris Leydig

      I felt the same way since I got my troll right before the implosion of plus bikes. You can drink the Kool-Aid, but 26+ is a good touring option for chunk, and ofc you can go 27.5×2.5 or 29x42mm. I just really wish it had an oversized head tube…

      • Sascha

        I’m more over the reverse rear dropouts and the lack of tyre choice these days…I really don’t feel the need for 27.5 wheels but the market is dictating it to me…

        • Chris Leydig

          Word, not a whole lot of options for 26+, and not fond of the sliding dropouts either since it’s always maxed out…while I’m at it 142 rear hub spacing would be nice to avoid that chain rub running 3 inch rubber in the back. But until 26+ is dead I’ll keep this frame. Minions, Dirt Wizards and Rangers provide enough of a mix.

          • Sascha

            Yeah I’m currently using Surly 2.5″ ET’s which are good, I think some 2.8″ Rangers are for me next…

  • boomforeal

    what a lovely, practical bicycle

    except, i hate those pedals: love the concept, but the design decreases the distance between pedal and saddle by almost an inch when you’re clipped in, which is a bummer when you’re prone to patellar tendonitis

    • I always wondered about that.

      • colavitos_ghost

        FWIW, the A530s have not caused me any ergonomic issues whatsoever. I’ve probably logged ~8K touring miles on mine. My only complaint with them is that the platform has little-to-no grip, especially when wet. As an alternative, the MSW RP-210 is pretty slick! Replaceable traction pins, sealed bearings, a nicely-shaped but compact platform…

        It’s worth noting that, when touring, I tend to *mostly* ride clipped in and use the platform as an occasional “change of pace” so to speak. Being able to move my foot around a bit actually really alleviates some of the issues many long-distance cyclists typically encounter (notably: patella-area pain and foot/toe numbness). As always, tho, YMMV.

        • Bil Thorne

          You’re lucky you’re not as dumb as me. I can’t put my feet in the right spot on platforms and need clipless to tell me where to put them.

    • Zac

      Agreed. I used to have a pair of those, and my knees hated me for it.

    • GNARdina

      I was looking at getting platform attachments that would clip onto my M540’s. Just as an easy way to use street shoes on short rides. Any experience with those?

      • boomforeal

        i think it makes a lot of sense to put a platform on an existing clipless pedal

        i’d like a hybrid pedal for a bike that i’m both going to ride fast/long (in clips) and for shorter trips (in flats)

        i don’t mind giving up an inch of pedal reach on a shorter, easier ride when i’m not likely to be pushing things if it means i can still get full extension when clipped in and riding harder

        if someone ever comes up with a quick-release platform that makes it possible to quickly convert clipless pedals to flats for easy rides, they’ll have my money

        • GNARdina

          I like those and its drilled for road and mtb cleats. Most of what I could find were cheap, plastic, Chinese ones on amazon (forgive me John) or were only for road cleat patterns. These would be a better option for sure.

        • Tommy P

          Have you seen the MKS Rinko pedals that Compass sells?

          • boomforeal

            yup. they’re an elegant but expensive solution: you buy several $200 (CDN) pedals and can then interchange them easily

        • Röbby Sanfranciskö

          Check out the Problem Solvers Deckster. Benefit being you can buy them from your LBS, I’m looking at them on QBP right now. I have no personal experience with them though.

      • Brett

        The two sided Shimano XT trekking pedals are about as good as it gets if you ask me. Fly pedals seem to fly out at the wrong times, in my experience.

    • Dave Pelletier

      I have some and I’ve always set my seat height using the clip-in side figuring the platform side is for trips to the grocery store or the bar when I’m not concerned about perfect seat height.

  • this serviceable as fuck.

  • I really like this. If I could afford it, all three of my bikes would probably sport a Rohloff (in actuality I can’t even justify the cost of one, much less three) it’s a pretty incredible mix, when a bike practically screams fun! In one breath and practical! In the second, and be in harmony. This bike pulls it off. The only quibble I could ever have, is that I personally don’t care for the colour. But I had to reach for that. What a fantastic bike. And she looks like a very fun person. I think I’d love to have her company on a long ride.

  • dan scheie

    Pepper is a premium purveyor of stoke, glad to see her get recognized for the attention she brings to her local cycling community and her ability to prove that cycling isn’t just a boy’s club. Good on ya!

    • She is so rad. I’m hoping to do some Australia exploration later this year. Hopefully we can link up!

  • Chris Andrews

    Cool bike.

    I don’t get why rugged outdoor speakers are always Bluetooth linked (only) though – gimme a cheap SD-card playing device any day of the week, so I don’t have to drain 2 devices at once while i’m out in the middle of nowhere…

    • mattbwhite

      boombotix pros i am pretty sure have a mini sd slot

      • Fluent In Campagnolo

        Nope. They have 2gb of internal storage though

  • James Jay

    That is one rad bike! I started following her feed about a month ago, I gotta tell you that smile is infectious!

  • kermitonwheels

    It’s like a truck. In a good way!