There are bike shops and there are bike show rooms, with the latter focusing on merchandising and the former on service. While there are permutations on the two, I really enjoy walking through the doors of a service shop. It’s something about the aromatic experience of chain lube and tires that makes me feel at ease, especially when it’s not my local shop. All it takes is a smiling face to make the environment welcoming. Luckily, at Black Mountain Cycles, that’s exactly what they’re selling: a welcoming and service-minded environment. In a place like Point Reyes, with a population of around 400, there are very few actual locals, so the owner of Black Mountain Cycles, Mike Varley prides himself in making everyone feel at home.
That’s not to say that Black Mountain isn’t a showroom in a sense. Mike’s vintage mountain bike collection is there, on display and it arguably takes up more space than the actual merchandising. Perhaps it’s because Mike prides himself in his life-long involvement in the cycling industry, as both a designer and a developer. He used to work for Haro and Masi before opening the shop in 2007. Since then, he’s been developing his own line of dirt-capable drop bar bikes.
We’ve seen one before on this site and every time I see one in person, I swoon.
Being located in Point Reyes, Black Mountain Cycles’ customers run the gamut and are including, but not limited to the speed-seeking roadies, or the dirt hungry mountain bikers, down to the all-nighter randonneuring crowd and even a bunch of rag tag cyclo-tourists like our group, who really needed new cycling caps and a cold beer.
I’m glad to finally be able to visit Black Mountain Cycles. The other times I was in town, it was either too late or too early for the shop to be open. So, if you find yourself in the Point Reyes area, please make some time to see Mike and the shop, he might even have his sweet Eddy Merckx in there for you to ogle. If you’re interested in a Black Mountain Cycles bike, holler and Mike and see the current availability at Black Mountain Cycles. Give them a follow on Instagram, too!
BLACK MOUNTAIN CYCLES
11101 Shoreline Hwy., #1438
Point Reyes Station, CA 94956