Fire is nature’s way of redesigning. A way to rewrite the present landscape and while the process is painful, oftentimes, the landscape is rejuvenated. Coastal California is tricky though due to its chapparal ground cover along the mountainsides. You see, chapparal – a coastal low-lying shrub – is old growth and when it’s burnt, the soil loses its stability, causing horrific mudslides. Once the chapparal is gone, there’s nothing else to hold all that dirt together. There aren’t really trees or forests like in other parts of the country along these hills and mountainsides, rather the trees find refuge in the canyons, where they can be more protected, although, with the past few years in California, there seems to be no refuge from fires.
Like many of the local riding areas in Santa Barbara, Refugio burnt a few years ago in the Serpa Fire, engulfing the fire road and hillsides, charring it to the ground. As with most fires, mudslides followed, wiping out El Capitan Ranch in the process. Local efforts have brought the area back, making this epic dirt climb ridable again. Many people say it’s better than ever. Perhaps it was the rebirth of Santa Barbara’s trails and roads that prompted Stinner Frameworks to update their Refugio all road model. Or maybe that’s just a correlation I came up with, either way, a redesign, and improvement is always good when it comes to a bicycle frame, especially one that stays close to its roots, post-burn.
Aaron Stinner always used the Refugio climb as a litmus test for what a drop bar bike can handle. After a rain, the road can get really rough and rocky, so the bigger tire the better, which seems to be the trend these days with all-road bikes. Can we just call them road bikes yet? Yes? No? Ok. Anyway. The new Refugio model now boasts bigger tire clearance, flat mount disc calipers, and keeps its threaded BB. All good things in my opinion.
Check out more specs below and see more information on the Refugio at Stinner Frameworks.
-Maximum tire clearance of 700x50c or 27.5×2.3″
-Maximum chainring clearance for 42T (1x) or 50/34 (2x)
-Dropout spacing: 142x12mm TA Rear, 100x12mm TA Front
-Flat-mount front and rear disc brakes
-External shift and brake cable routing (standard)
-Max rotor sizes: 160mm front and rear (smaller custom frames may only accommodate 140mm)
-Seat tube diameter: 29.8mm (Steel), 31.8mm (Ti)
-Front Derailleur Clamp: 28.6mm (Steel), 31.8mm (Ti)
-Seat post diameter: 27.2mm
-English-threaded 68mm bottom bracket shell
-Carbon 1.5″ tapered fork, 350mm steerer
-Fork crown race diameter: 40mm
-44mm internal headtube diameter
-Headset: ZS44/28.6 Upper, EC44/40 Lower
This bike was built at Golden Saddle Cyclery, where they spec’d the parts for a customer who wanted a solid upgrade for his all road bike. If you holler at them, they can do the same for you, no matter your budget.
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