Many Hands in the Mix: the 2020 Sierra Explorer by BTCHN Bikes

As with year’s past, we love featuring this Chico collaboration between Sierra Nevada, Paul Component, and a California-based frame builder. This year’s bike is stunning and with it comes a huge photo gallery documenting this beautiful build. Check the official press release below with all the juicy photos and read on to find out how you can win this bike!

The Sierra Explorer Bike is DONE, and YOU can win it!

When Sierra Nevada Brewery asked us to build them a bike to show off at the Sea Otter Classic this year, we had to think long and hard. We put a serious amount of time and consideration into making components that are functional, beautiful, durable, reliable, and practical, and we love flexing our engineering skills to make an idea scribbled on a napkin into a badass bicycle part with thousands of miles on it. Knowing that the folks right down the road from us at Sierra Nevada take the same pride in their work, and that quite a few of Paul’s ideas have been scribbled on napkins over a cold Pale Ale, we knew we’d have to come up with something really special to be worthy of this collaboration.

This year we had a very specific vision for a bikepacking rig. We imagined loading it up here in town with a sleeping bag and a bunch of food and water (and maybe a Pale Ale or two), heading out the door, and riding the network of gravel roads out of Chico and up the Butte County foothills into the Sierra Nevada Mountains, to one our favorite places to ride and camp, Butte Meadows. Having a clear vision of what we had in mind, and calling it the #SierraExplorerBike, we picked up the phone and called up some of our best buddies in the business to see if they wanted to help us turn this vision into a reality.

BTCHN’ Bikes was an obvious choice for the frame and fork. Tyler machines his own dropouts, bends and shapes his own tubes, and creates one-off masterpieces of functional, rideable artwork, right here in Chico. He hand-filed the headtube rings to emulate the scroll of the Sierra Nevada logo, and worked with Outershell Adventure on a custom strapless framebag that mounts to braze-ons inside the frame. He also called one of the most legendary bike painters of all time (Russ Pickett of Mountain Goat fame) out of retirement to lay down a dazzling metallic green fade, overlaid by a topographical map of the Butte Meadows area.

Outershell Adventure also made us a rack bag with a map window for the Pass & Stow front rack, which was painted to match the frame. Our friends at White Industries in Petaluma supplied cranks, bottom bracket, hubs, and headset. We machined our own brakes, levers, stem, Thumbie, and skewers, and had Ted polish them to a jewelry-store finish.

Velocity USA supplied the rims, and we installed Ultradynamico tubeless tires for the supplest of rides. Dannyboy Smith etched the Sierra Nevada logo into the leather of a Brooks Saddle. King Cage and Widefoot supplied stainless water bottle cages, and Jones Bicycles sent us a handlebar with enough hand positions for a long day of gravel riding on a loaded bike.

Now that this project is done and Sea Otter isn’t being held in person this year, what are we gonna do with this bike? Give it away for free! There will be a secret Text-To-Win Code circulating on displays at participating retailers, on Sierra Nevada’s Social Media, and at the Sea Otter Play Expo booth, so happy hunting!