Found in the Mountains Good Friday Ride!

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Found in the Mountains Good Friday Ride!

Morgan and Stephanie are hosting an adventure pace, mixed-surface ride in Vancouver after their usual coffee outside on Friday:

“We’re crafting up a route that will keep us out of traffic and exploring off-the-beaten-path dirt and neighbourhood connectors around North Vancouver. This will be an absolutely no-drop, adventure pace ride. Expect about 50 km of mixed-surface riding with options to bail out along the way if you want a shorter ride or need to get somewhere earlier in the day.”

Get the details at Found in the Mountains.

Showing Found in the Mountains LA

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Showing Found in the Mountains LA

Morgan and Stephanie from Found in the Mountains are here in Los Angeles and over the next few weeks, we’ll be showing them around to the local rides and maybe we’ll even do another group ride or two. While our touring couple has seen much of the West Coast so far, I don’t think they were prepared for the coastal desert that is Los Angeles, in the middle of the summer.

We’ll be riding early in the mountains to keep cool and laying low during the heat of the day. Expect lots of coverage from their trip to hit the site next week!

We Met Found in the Mountains for Margaritas and Fish Tacos

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We Met Found in the Mountains for Margaritas and Fish Tacos

With group rides in Los Angeles, ya never know what you’re going to get. As I was packing the night before for this ride, my girlfriend asked me how many people I thought would show up. My response: either 20 or 4. In my experience, the latter is easier to manage, especially when rides like this include around 30 miles of inner-city road riding, yet I have wrangled enough cats to know how to deal with larger groups as well.

While half of this ride is indeed on sealed roads, the 30 that is on dirt is some of the finest Los Angeles has to offer. Dirt Mulholland takes you in the Santa Monica Mountains and intersects miles upon miles of singletrack and fire roads. You could literally spend days riding in the mountains, provided you’ve got access to water.

Four people showed up in the morning. Four new faces, two of which were tourists, who happened to find themselves in LA this weekend. We met up for coffee and left 15 minutes behind schedule to allow any Saturday morning stragglers to roll up. Confident with our group’s size, we headed out through Hollywood and up Nichols Canyon Road, a climb that is often hectic during the week, yet at 7:30am on a Saturday was quite peaceful. With our heads down and in a paceline, we snaked our way to the dirt and that’s where the fun began.

After casually spinning through the mountains, we dropped down to the Pacific Coast Highway via Topanga Canyon HWY 27 and met up with Found in the Mountains at the Reel Inn for fish tacos, margaritas, and stories.

The ride home is always interesting. If you’re visiting LA as a cyclist, it’s a great way to see the places you’ll probably never want to visit again. This includes: Beverly Hills, Melrose, Rodeo Drive and most of Hollywood. As we zig-zagged our way back to the east side, I found it funny how our caravan of cyclists were keeping pace with luxury cars, busses, motorcycles and other vehicles, once again proving that the bicycle is always the best form of transportation in a city.

Transportation and a vehicle for socializing along 60 miles of fun on a Saturday morning.

Found in the Mountains Los Angeles Group Ride

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Found in the Mountains Los Angeles Group Ride

Our friends at @FoundintheMountains have made it down the California coast and will be arriving in the Los Angeles area on Saturday. We’d like to welcome them to LA in style, so we’re throwing a group ride. Expect a 60 mile day total, with around 4,500′ of climbing. Half of the day will be on dirt, the other half through Saturday morning traffic, so keep your whits sharp!

The plan is to meet at Intelligentsia on Sunset Avenue in Silver Lake at 6:30am for a 7am roll-out. BE ON TIME. We will be leaving right at 7am. No excuses!

You should bring plenty of food, sunblock, tools, tubes and pack your big bottles. It’s going to be a hot day, with the highs in the 90’s. There is a water stop at mile 18. After cruising on some of LA’s finest inner-city dirt, we’ll drop down Topanga Canyon and meet our friends at 11am at the Reel Inn on the PCH, eat tacos, drink a margarita or two and then ride back to the east side via Santa Monica Blvd. This is a no-drop ride. There is a lot of climbing, so be prepared.

Ride your cross or road bike! If you’d like to load this route in your GPS, here’s my Strava file and if you’ve never ridden Dirt Mulholland, check out some photos from our Getting Dirty post!

We Will From Now On Be Found in the Mountains – Morgan Taylor

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We Will From Now On Be Found in the Mountains – Morgan Taylor

Words and photos by Morgan Taylor.

Bikes instead of flights. That was the idea. Stephanie and I have been scheming on this plan for quite a while – about nine months to be exact. You see, we got married back in October, and wanted to go on an extended trip to celebrate. Over the winter we threw ideas around about what kinds of bikes we could ride on our honeymoon trip, and then keep running as fun all-rounders when we were back home.

We landed on the Soma Wolverine, a bike that in its few short years has developed a bit of a cult following. What surprised me, however, is that not many people had built these bikes with 27.5 wheels. There were so few people out there doing it that I wondered whether it would work out. I calculated wheel diameters, I stuffed various wheels into Wolverine frames on trips to the city, and I eventually decided that 27.5 with a larger volume tire was our ticket. More on the bikes in a later piece, though.

As the months moved along, a plan came together to ride straight from home in southeast BC, over the two mountain chains to the Rockies, and loosely follow the Continental Divide with national parks in our sights. Glacier, Yellowstone, and Grand Teton were within striking distance. At some point we’d head west, likely to northern California to see Yosemite and the Sierras on the way to Los Angeles. None of this was set in stone, though; we simply wanted to follow our noses and local recommendations on a mixed surface adventure through the western US.

Weekend Wanderlust with Found in the Mountains

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Weekend Wanderlust with Found in the Mountains

Photos by Morgan Taylor

If you have been following Morgan on Instagram, then you’ve seen a few recent posts, documenting the first days of their massive tour. He and his wife Stephanie are riding from British Columbia to California (eventually) and documenting it both here at the Radavist and on the @FoundInTheMountains Instagram. What I like the most about this documentation is the daily updates on each photo, so follow along, wherever you might be!

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Riding Fixed, Up Mountains, With Pros: Ep. 14 – Oatman w/ Leo Rodgers

Our friend Leo Rodgers takes off to Oatman, Arizona for the latest “Riding Fixed, Up Mountains, With Pros” video from State Bicycle Co

“Hailing from Florida, by way of Southern California, Leo Rodgers has always craved speed and adventure. In 2007, Leo was involved in a motorcycle accident that significantly changed his life. Leo has since turned this unfortunate event into an opportunity to inspire others. Since then, Leo has traveled around the world, competing as a Paralympic medalist, participating in the most grueling gravel events, and of course, street cycling (O.G. Alleycats). Leo’s mission is to use cycling to inspire and motivate others to take action. He continues to spread his message through the Leo Rodgers Foundation.

In this episode, we take Leo to visit Oatman, AZ, a town on the historic Route 66, where the weather is hot, the roads are windy, and the donkeys are the citizens. Buckle-up buckaroos, you’re in for a Wild West Adventure!”

Moksha Patam: Snakes and Ladders – Flashpacking Through the Tasmanian Mountains

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Moksha Patam: Snakes and Ladders – Flashpacking Through the Tasmanian Mountains

Moksha Patam is a game based on traditional Hindu philosophy. It was designed to teach players the Hindu concepts of Karma and Kama: virtue and desire. The virtues of generosity, faith, and humility are the ladders that carry you up the board, upwards towards enlightenment and to the end of the game. But if you follow the path of vices—lust, anger, murder, and theft—the snakes will pull you back to the beginning of the game. Up and down. Enlightenment and rebirth. Making it to your destination or being pulled back to the start.

Curtis Inglis’ Titanium Retrotec with ENVE Foundation AG25 Gravel Wheels

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Curtis Inglis’ Titanium Retrotec with ENVE Foundation AG25 Gravel Wheels

I don’t know about you all but personally, I miss seeing off-the-wall crazy custom bikes at the various tradeshows. With the pandemic canceling the 2020 and most likely 2021 dates for various open houses and NAHBS, I’ve just accepted the fact that those balleur bicycle gallery shoots will have to wait. That said, when projects like this fall into my lap, I’m more than excited to take some extra time documenting them.

ENVE launched their Foundation Gravel wheels last week and in a perfect world, a press-camp was supposed to happen in Arizona to test out those wheels. ENVE planned on pinging various builders to fabricate the chassis for their full gravel lineup. One of those builders was Retrotec and Curtis went overboard for the event, building a handful of titanium frames alongside Oscar Camarena of Simple Bike Company. When the press camp wasn’t happening, Curtis decided he’d send this bike out for me to document. He needed photos for his website and I won’t say no to content like this…

In the Shadow of the Fann Mountains

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In the Shadow of the Fann Mountains

(Note: This story took place before the pandemic)

Following our ride along the Tajik/Afghan border, Chrissa and I paused for a few days in Tajikistan’s capital city of Dushanbe to soak up the local culture and stock up at the grand bazaar. Even in the biggest city in the country, the outgoing personality of the Tajik people comes through. Where in a typical city of this size the locals would mostly keep to themselves, here it was very common for people to stop and chat with us on the street, asking what brought us to their country and giving us tips about places to visit in the city.

Snow and Sunsets in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains: Things to be Thankful For

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Snow and Sunsets in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains: Things to be Thankful For

What a year it’s been. To be honest, as the editor/owner/curator of this website, I was very nervous about how we would survive the pandemic and subsequent lockdown. So much of my work that goes into this site is about traveling to other communities, documenting shops, group rides, races, and yeah, people’s bikes. All that was put on hold and we had to resort to more bike galleries and reviews than I’m used to.

My passion comes from the aforementioned activities and while I love bikes, I love what they create and enable even more. All year, I’ve been personally battling a pendulum of moods but one thing that has been the great equalizer is a jaunt into our mountains, the Sangre de Cristo Range, the southernmost tip of the Rocky Mountains. Living on the last stop on the Colorado Plateau has its perks I suppose and a simple hour or two-long pedal in the foothills often gives me perspective that is much-needed in this year of uncertainty. It’s something I have to remind myself daily. Yesterday was a perfect example.

A Reason to Ride: A Big Ride for a Big Cause in the Santa Monica Mountains

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A Reason to Ride: A Big Ride for a Big Cause in the Santa Monica Mountains

Should we join the crazy Everest fad? Zwift for 48 hours straight? What if we ride the entire Santa Monica Mountain Range? The route had to be gnarly enough to catch people’s attention, and then we could steer the gaze to the reason for the ride. To raise funds and awareness for grassroots organizations that fight racial injustices as a part of the Big Rides for a Big Cause platform.

The Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship Announces Mountains to Meadows and Gravelation in Quincy!

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The Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship Announces Mountains to Meadows and Gravelation in Quincy!

The Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship knows how to throw races. There’s a reason we cover each and every one, year after year! The proof is in the puddin’. Every year, 1000+ racers show up for Lost & Found, even more for the Downieville Classic and with Grinduro leaving Quincy, the SBTS decided to up the ante and continue throwing a weekend event of racing and partying, dubbed Mountains to Meadows. The location is too good to not pick up where Grinduro left off. Mark your calendars for September 24-27, 2020 and read on below.

The Sierra Buttes Lost & Found 2019: Straight From the Mid-Pack

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The Sierra Buttes Lost & Found 2019: Straight From the Mid-Pack

Introduction: We pinged Erin Lamb to write about her experience at this year’s Lost & Found with John’s experience told through the gallery captions. We’re trying new models for event Reportage, so please let us know what you think in the comments! Enjoy!

I lost my wallet a couple of weeks ago, and I’m not searching to find Jesus. I’m pretty sure the wallet fell out of my purse in a parking lot when I pulled some shit out to throw into the back seat. And, the Jesus thing, just not interested. If you’re looking for a feel-good story about stumbling upon the light, then maybe this isn’t for you. This is more of a coming-of-age gravel riding tale dispatched straight from a middle of the pack 65-miler on the Sierra Buttes’ Lost & Found.

Into the Inyo Mountains: Disconnecting in Cerro Gordo

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Into the Inyo Mountains: Disconnecting in Cerro Gordo

Owens Valley, the Mojave, and Death Valley have been the backdrop for many stories here on the Radavist, but there is one region in particular that has interested me in regards to both the terrain and the history. The Inyo Mountains are ripe for adventure-seekers looking to get off the beaten path of Death Valley National Park or the Eastern Sierra. It can be a very isolating place: the roads are rough, rugged, with little to no cell reception or provisions. If you can, however, access this zone safely, you will be rewarded with unsurpassed views of the Eastern Sierra as the backdrop and colorful geological features abound.

I spend my free time exploring this region for routes that are suitable for travel by bicycle and to be honest, very few have proven to be fruitful in such endeavors. The area is plagued by roads so steep that even an equipped 4×4 can overheat, or miles upon miles of rock gardens, and sand traps. Not to mention the complete absence of water. To ride in this zone, you have to be prepared, both mentally and physically. It’s a region that challenged the native tribes as well as the prospectors who were driven by the desire to strike it rich. There’s a bigger tale here before we dive into our story, that needs to be told. One that hits close to home for us at the Radavist.