2024 Single Speed Arizona: If You Find It, Look For It

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2024 Single Speed Arizona: If You Find It, Look For It

Single Speed Arizona (SSAZ) is an annual gathering that takes place every year during the first weekend of February. Part family reunion and part celebration of bikes running on one gear, it moves around to a different hosting location annually and takes advantage of southern Arizona’s favorable weather and exemplary singletrack riding. Josh Weinberg and Chris “Dirty” Reichel were in attendance at this year’s event, which saw a solid turnout of riders and volunteers descend on West Tuscon for a weekend of stout trail riding and (for some) even stouter partying…

First Ride Review: Introducing the Updated 2024 Pivot Switchblade

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First Ride Review: Introducing the Updated 2024 Pivot Switchblade

The Switchblade has been one of the best-selling bikes in Arizona-based Pivot Cycles‘ lineup since the first version dropped nearly eight years ago. Utilizing a DW-Link platform, it was one of the first full-suspension bikes to incorporate Super Boost rear spacing with either 27.5+ or 29″ wheels. Its last major overhaul was back in 2020 – which saw the bike grow bigger, longer, and lighter – and today Pivot introduces the next iteration of the Switchblade with geometry and kinematic advancements they claim “sets a new bar for how a 140-150 mm travel Trail/Enduro bike should ride.” This launch also celebrates the 35th anniversary of the first bike built by Pivot’s founder/CEO Chris Cocalis back in 1989: the Sun Eagle Talon.

Josh Weinberg, who lives just up the road from Pivot HQ in Phoenix, AZ, recently spent a couple of days getting to know the new Switchblade on some of his favorite trails and, below, shares a first look at the new model and some initial ride impressions…

Sueños de Colombia: Scarab Cycles Paramo Ultra Gravel Bike Review

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Sueños de Colombia: Scarab Cycles Paramo Ultra Gravel Bike Review

The Paramo Ultra from Colombian bicycle builders Scarab Cycles is arguably the brand’s most versatile offering. With clearance for thicc tires, sliding dropouts, and comfortable geometry, the Paramo Ultra is inspired by the unrelenting high-elevation Andean mountain terrain where Scarab is based to provide a capable ride experience in even the most demanding pursuits. And because every Scarab is built to order based on a rider’s size, discipline, and style, no two builds are ever the same.

Josh has ridden a Paramo Ultra for the past six months both in Colombia where it was made and on his local roads and trails around the Sonoran desert. Below, he shares his thoughts on the build as well on Scarab’s overall approach to fabricating custom bicycles in the mountains outside Medellín…

Like a Fine Wine: Wende Cragg’s Custom 1983 Breezer Series III

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Like a Fine Wine: Wende Cragg’s Custom 1983 Breezer Series III

Wende Cragg’s contributions to cycling and her documentation of the sport over the years are unquantifiable. And here at The Radavist, we’ve been fortunate to have her sharing snapshots of that history, from her moving piece about the origins of mountain biking, to her return to Crested Butte last year for the Pearl Pass Tour after a forty-two-year hiatus.

Wende is back today to share another special story we think you’ll thoroughly enjoy. This time, Wende pens an ode to her custom 1983 Breezer Series III built for her after multiple ill-fitting predecessors (including one of the ten original Breezer Series I). To top it off, she enlisted Joe Breeze to share a few insights about her one-of-a-kind bike and the general evolution of early Breezers. Let’s get right to it below!

Announcing Cycling the World Film Event hosted by Patagonia Palo Alto on January 24

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Announcing Cycling the World Film Event hosted by Patagonia Palo Alto on January 24

Cycling The World documents McKenzie Barney’s multiyear, mostly-solo attempt to see the world by bicycle over 18,000 miles, five continents, and 28 countries. Self-shot and edited, McKenzie is currently touring her documentary around the United States with The Radavist as her media partner. In 2023, the film toured around the country, hosted by universities, breweries, and bike shops such as Treehouse Cyclery and Cycleast.

Now, we’re excited to announce the latest Cycling The World film tour event for 2024: January 24 in Palo Alto, California hosted by Patagonia!

Josh’s Favorite Products of 2023

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Josh’s Favorite Products of 2023

It’s been a wild year around these parts. In addition to the organizational changes we experienced with this website, I feel fortunate to have met and collaborated with many amazing people in addition to traveling to some truly remarkable places. My list of favorite products ended up being rather eclectic, but I think it reflects the wide range of material we get to cover here. Of course, music was an integral backdrop to my work – on rides, traveling abroad, and with my family at home – so I have joined some of our other contributors in offering a selection of favorite tunes, alongside a handful of products, below.

Episode IV: A New Hope Tech 4 V4 Hydraulic Disc Brake Review

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Episode IV: A New Hope Tech 4 V4 Hydraulic Disc Brake Review

Earlier this year, UK-based Hope Technology released an updated version of their popular four-piston hydraulic brakes, the Tech 4 V4. The 2023 version is equipped with the same robust CNC-machined aluminum, easy adjustability, and stopping precision that contributed to the success of previous models. But where the Tech 4 V4 seeks to improve on the Tech 3 V4 generation is in its all-new lever design and revised caliper that promises increased power and improved ergonomics.

While it’s no secret we’re big fans of mechanical brakes here at The Radavist, we can also appreciate the confidence-inspiring feel of a solid four-piston hydraulic brake, particularly on full-suspension bikes. Josh Weinberg had years of experience using the preceding Tech 3 V4 on his 150 mm travel Oddity hardtail so, naturally, he wanted to see how the updated version performed over a long-term testing period aboard his Starling Murmur.

Continue reading for his breakdown of Hope’s latest flagship brakes…

Rolling Back the Years: The 2023 Annual Pearl Pass Tour

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Rolling Back the Years: The 2023 Annual Pearl Pass Tour

First held in 1976, the annual Pearl Pass Tour continues to take riders on one of the earliest organized mountain bike challenges: riding (and pushing) bikes to the top of Pearl Pass (12,705′) from Crested Butte, Colorado. Inspired to ride new terrain and get to know the burgeoning mountain biking community in Crested Butte, Wende Cragg and a band of Californians loaded up their klunkers and made the trip out to take part in several early editions of the now-iconic event.

Following a forty-two year hiatus, Wende Cragg returned to Crested Butte for this year’s ride. Read on for her tales from Pearl Pass, past and present…

Forty-Eight Hours in Berlin with Fern Fahrraeder/Allygn, Gramm Tourpacking, Drust/Akinn Cycles, Velociao Paint, and Velo Saloon

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Forty-Eight Hours in Berlin with Fern Fahrraeder/Allygn, Gramm Tourpacking, Drust/Akinn Cycles, Velociao Paint, and Velo Saloon

Germany is an epicenter of cycling innovation and production. Home to a lengthy list of big brands including Canyon, Diamant, Focus, Bosch, and so many more, the central European nation is also inhabited by an ever-growing community of smaller bicycle and gear fabricators, builders, and makers.

While we saw many examples of cycling-related German craftsmanship on display in our Bespoked coverage last month, those examples just scratched the surface. On his way to Dresden for the show, Josh stopped over in Berlin and spent his brief amount of free time learning about the city’s special place within the larger German—and global—cycling industry context.

Read on below for a primer on Fern Fahrraeder/Allygn, Gramm Tourpacking, Drust/Akinn Cycles, Velociao Paint, and Velo Saloon!

Modern Musettes: A Roundup of Handmade Sling Bags From Albion Cycling, Outer Shell, Swift Industries/Camp and Go Slow, Tangente Atelier, Team Dream, and Tunitas Creative

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Modern Musettes: A Roundup of Handmade Sling Bags From Albion Cycling, Outer Shell, Swift Industries/Camp and Go Slow, Tangente Atelier, Team Dream, and Tunitas Creative

I have a bit of a bag problem. I really like sling bags and use them all the time. They are lightweight and unobtrusive; perfect for carrying compact items and extra clothing. In recent years, cycling and adjacent bag makers have put their own spins on the classic sling “musette” bag design to enhance functionality with stabilizing straps, extra pockets, and more. Since they are usually relatively affordable I’ll pick them up when I’m traveling as functional souvenirs.

While not in any way a comprehensive list (that would be difficult as there are LOTS of options out there), this roundup features bags I’ve acquired in person from Albion Cycling, Outer Shell, Swift Industries/Camp and Go Slow, Tangente Atelier, Team Dream, and Tunitas Creative.

2023 Arna Westfjords Way Challenge Recap Video Series

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2023 Arna Westfjords Way Challenge Recap Video Series

You might recall Josh’s stunning reportage earlier this year from Iceland documenting the Arna Westfjords Way Challenge. It was a wild week of intense weather, inspiring accomplishments, epic landscapes, warm hot springs, and new friendships. To kick off registration for next year’s race event, the AWWC team have released a series of videos recapping the highs and lows from this summer and share all four episodes below. So sit back, get excited, and find out what it’s all about!

Unicorns are Real: The Story of an Elusive 1991 Yeti Tree Frog

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Unicorns are Real: The Story of an Elusive 1991 Yeti Tree Frog

There aren’t many modern bicycle brands that have a history quite as rich as Yeti, let alone a diehard cult following of collectors and fans for the early bikes. Coming into a steel F.R.O or Yeti Ultimate is usually enough to be considered a “Holy Grail” find for most. However, there is another bike in the early Yeti lineup that is so rare many will never see one in person and more modern followers of the brand may not know even exists. This is the story of an elusive Yeti Tree Frog…