Beautiful Bicycles

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Jeremiah’s Falconer Champion Tribute Bike

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Jeremiah’s Falconer Champion Tribute Bike

I went to grade school in Chico with Jeremiah and still have a very distinct memory of us running laps around the field at Citrus Elementary. He still has some cartoons I drew of a triangle guy riding a skateboard from back in those days. So it’s a real trip that after all these years, and what feel like many lifetimes to me, life has come full circle and I now find myself riding bikes and going to shows with him all the time in Chico. He almost always answers yes to the last minute “Swimming hole ride after work?” texts I send out, and as a long-time Chico rider, he knows all the cutty local trails.

The Cannondale Carbon Topstone has Evolved Past its Aluminum Sibling

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The Cannondale Carbon Topstone has Evolved Past its Aluminum Sibling

I absolutely loved the aluminum Cannondale Topstone for what it was: a nicely spec’d, well-riding, off-the-shelf all-road bike that has Cannondale’s DNA with build options ranging from $1,050 to $2,100. It was a great bike at a solid price that didn’t skimp on the build kit or frame design. So when Cannondale launched the Carbon Topstone, with new passive suspension design, I was interested in seeing how the bike would ride. To come out with such an evolved design from the original Topstone, it had to be worth it, right? Well… it’s complicated.

What Almost Was: the Mystic Alluvium 27.5+ Hardtail MTB

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What Almost Was: the Mystic Alluvium 27.5+ Hardtail MTB

Over the years, I’ve had the honor to throw my leg over many bikes, try them out, write a review, and then send them back. While the bikes return to their companies, the experience stays with me, and in the time I’ve been running this website, I’ve developed my own belief for what the perfect geometry for a hardtail mountain bike is. About a year ago, I began talking with Adam Sklar and Colin Frazer, who were about to launch a new production, US-made frame company called Mystic. We wanted to test the waters with a Radavist edition frame, dubbed the Alluvium. After chatting about numbers and branding, we felt like we were getting closer to releasing this frame. Then the reality of such an undertaking took hold and we killed the project.

Plenty of Space to Hang Towels on Ben’s Gilmour Tandem

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Plenty of Space to Hang Towels on Ben’s Gilmour Tandem

Ben has been regaling me with stories of putting this tandem together for quite some time, each time he was looking for one last little bit to make it all fit together.  Before we met up for coffee outside the other week, he pinged me to ask if he should bring the tandem to which I responded: “Of course, coffee and cool bikes, duh.”

This Cub House Built Crust Bikes Lightning Bolt Cruiser Shines!

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This Cub House Built Crust Bikes Lightning Bolt Cruiser Shines!

What do you get when Bené, aka Ultra Romance, aka Ronnie McFly, aka Glistening Gandolf coerces an XC/roadie racer boi into embracing the long and slow lifestyle? Well, you’re about to find out. While Benedict and Sean from Team Dream were working closely on those nifty merino wool bib shorts, Benedict convinced Sean with his silver tongue to build up a dream bike. A veritable ex-roadie 2.0 cruiser, complete with all the iconic componentry of MTB and randonneuring’s heyday, which pinch me if I’m wrong, is always the present time. What you see here is the result of much toodlin’ and many man hours spent scrounging for parts. All aboard a Crust Bikes Lightning Bolt.

Mark from Prova Cycles’ Ripido Prototype MTB, aka the ParTi Hardtail

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Mark from Prova Cycles’ Ripido Prototype MTB, aka the ParTi Hardtail

During the ENVE Open House framebuilder exhibit, one builder traveled further than the others: Mark from Prova Cycles in Melbourne, Australia. I’d never seen a Prova in person. Instead, I’ve had to check out his work via the lens of FYXO and the Prova Instagram. Mark learned at the Bicycle Academy in the UK and has been really putting in work on his brand. Let me tell you. It shows.

Trevor and His Cascadia Cycles Doug Fir Rigid MTB

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Trevor and His Cascadia Cycles Doug Fir Rigid MTB

Everything Trevor does seems to be dripping in story and lore as he comes from the homeland of mountain biking, Marin. He is the kind of person you just find stumbling out of the woods, shoeless, with the biggest grin on his face.  In fact, recently he finally gained the attention of the owner of Black Mountain Cycles, after years of visiting the shop, because Ted King ran into Trevor out on the trails and regaled the shop owner about his encounter with the barefoot forest nymph.

How to Burn Your Fingers: A Special Rossman for Paris-Brest-Paris

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How to Burn Your Fingers: A Special Rossman for Paris-Brest-Paris

Paris-Brest-Paris is a crucible, a pilgrimage, a quest. Paris-Brest-Paris is a cycling event. It runs 1200km (768 Miles) from Paris to Brest on the coast and back. Out and back. 6,000 people participate. They start in waves, pulsing towards the French Coast in a chrome-fendered murmuration of wool jerseys, Berthoud bags, and dyno lights. Racers have to finish their migration to the coast and back in 90 hours. 90 hours, on a bike – that’s little to very little sleep. That’s riding pretty much straight through.

Lael Wilcox’s 2019 Silk Road Mountain Race Specialized Fuse Bikepacking Setup

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Lael Wilcox’s 2019 Silk Road Mountain Race Specialized Fuse Bikepacking Setup

With the 2019 Silk Road Mountain Race beginning tomorrow, we thought we’d give a break-down for what Lael Wilcox will be carrying on her bike for the duration of the event. Lael is hoping to finish the 1700 kilometer course with 27,000m elevation in 7-9 days. In order to do that, she has her setup dialed. Check out the full list below for those curious as to what an ultra-endurance racer carries on their bike.

The Beautiful Bicycles of the ENVE Open House Part 02: Sklar, Falconer, Sarto, Sage, Argonaut, Moots, Retrotec, Legor, Bastion

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The Beautiful Bicycles of the ENVE Open House Part 02: Sklar, Falconer, Sarto, Sage, Argonaut, Moots, Retrotec, Legor, Bastion

ENVE has been supporting frame builders, both in the US and internationally for years now and has developed a symbiotic relationship with these artisans, who choose to put their forks, bars, and wheels on customer’s build kit lists. With this catalog of talent at their fingertips, they decided to have an Open House to celebrate not only their factory and offices in Ogden, Utah but the frame builders who choose ENVE to build out their complete bikes.

Continuing yesterday’s coverage are Beautiful Bicycles from Sklar, Falconer, Sarto, Sage, Argonaut, Moots, Retrotec, Legor, Bastion.

The Beautiful Bicycles of the ENVE Open House Part 01: Prova, Holland, Alchemy, Salt Air, Mosaic, Pursuit, English, Speedvagen, Bingham, Allied

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The Beautiful Bicycles of the ENVE Open House Part 01: Prova, Holland, Alchemy, Salt Air, Mosaic, Pursuit, English, Speedvagen, Bingham, Allied

ENVE has been supporting frame builders, both in the US and internationally for years now and has developed a symbiotic relationship with these artisans, who choose to put their forks, bars, and wheels on customer’s build kit lists. With this catalog of talent at their fingertips, they decided to have an Open House to celebrate not only their factory and offices in Ogden, Utah but the frame builders who choose ENVE to build out their complete bikes.

Over the next two mornings, we’ll look at a list of 20 frame builders’ bikes, in galleries filled with so many Beautiful Bicycles it’ll leave your mouth watering. Up first is Prova, Holland, Alchemy, Salt Air, Mosaic, Pursuit, English, Speedvagen, Bingham, and Allied.

Al Morris’ Occult of Cyclocamping Rivendell Sam Hillborne

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Al Morris’ Occult of Cyclocamping Rivendell Sam Hillborne

I’ve always jokingly called Rivendell Bicycles a Luddite cult of rim brakes lead by the charismatic Grant Peterson wielding his fistful of seatpost and wool undies. All kidding aside, I’d be honored to own a Rivendell, they are amazing and beautiful bikes made by great people, but as the first mechanic I worked under told me oh-so-many years ago, “Grant doesn’t sell his bikes to hipsters” as a response to my ogling of one of their bikes. So, I guess I’m outta luck. Anywho, when I pinged Al about his Sam Hillborne for some stories or insight into the build the first thing he said was, “The purple, white and black motif was inspired by the Heavens Gate cult of California when they left earth for the UFO behind the Hale-Bopp comet. That’s where the colorway came from.” Whelp there ya have it folks, a “bicycle cult” frame built around the color scheme of an actual cult, my low-hanging-fruit-esoteric-bike-nerd joke had come full circle.

John’s Falconer Chubby Road

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John’s Falconer Chubby Road

A few towns over from Downieville, California, where John works at Yuba Expeditions during the summer months, is Quincy, California where Cameron Falconer‘s workshop is. John and Cam knew each other back when they both lived in the Bay Area and since relocating to what is called the “Lost Sierra,” John really wanted a road bike that could handle the area’s veritable Sierra chunk.