The WTF Bikexplorers have expanded their mission for the forthcoming 2020 calendar year. Within the list of new programs are a new Gravel Team and a fresh podcast, dubbed Within & Without. Check out the details below.
Photo by Brian Vernor
Caché, one of the Golden Saddle Cyclery homies, is a Guatemala native, who grew up in Los Angeles. In this Bike Mag online article, he goes over his past, present, and future of riding and painting. I highly recommend this piece as it points to the importance of accessibility of bikes for inner-city kids! As to why he paints chickens…
“I’d read a book by Carlos Castaneda called ‘The Teachings of Don Juan,’ and he talks about ‘energy vampires’ that feed off our human energy and awareness, saying we’re like chickens being reared for the consumption of others,” Caché explains. “When I first decided to paint the chickens, it was more of an observation of the human condition. We are in our own coops, controlled by worry and fear.”
Check out this article at Bike Mag!
Yesterday I had the pleasure of accepting an invitation put out by the Mojave Desert Land Trust to partake in a 45-minute long flight from Palm Springs, across the Sand to Snow National Monument, across the Morongo Canyon Preserve, through Joshua Tree National Park, and back across the Little San Bernardino Mountains into Palm Springs on a Ecoflight single-engine Cessna 210…
Got an adventure up your sleeve? Or a creative way to do projects? Or perhaps you just really love Kona. If you’ve ever wanted to be a Kona Ambassador, now is your chance. The brand has just posted their call for entries to be a 2020 Kona ambassador. Head to the Kona Blog to see how you can enter…
I can’t come close to Sean’s words here, so apologies for the copy + paste. He’s running a silent auction on his 2019 NAHBS bike to raise money for his friend Phoenix:
“Heart-to-heart coming at ya. I have a friend who needs some help. His name is Phoenix. He is seven years old. He has cancer. And though I will continue to do what I can to help Phoenix, his Mom, Dad and three siblings; it will never feel like enough. Ever. So I will start this late Tuesday evening by offering my personal Mtn Cruiser, number 1/10, to anyone willing to do the right thing. One of you can take this machine home, built originally for the North American Hand-built Bicycle Show. Because I would rather have Phoenix than a million bicycles. And I am otherwise unable to help him financially. I will post images of this bike through next week, with info on its build and geometry. With a story on the why and how and what’s. And if you want to help an amazing seven year old with the fight of his life, and take this one-of-a-kind bicycle home as a bonus, please, message me with questions and/or your bid – as I’m selling the OG Mtn Coaster ‘Silent Auction’ style. Highest bidder gets the bike, some good karma and a big thank you from me. Every penny you bid goes to Phoenix. We all do hard things, and endure hardship. But at seven? This is so heavy. And feels so unfair. If you feel the urge to help otherwise, please click the go fund me link in our profile. Thank you for reading. Stay human.”
“I’m accepting silent auctions style bids. Send your bid to me via email OR DM here on IG (I DO NOT check Facebook!). Every dollar goes straight to Pheonix’s Cancer Fund (see my previous post on 9/25)- If you win, you will simply send funds direct to his Go Fund Me page (link in bio). I will cover shipping costs and the bike will be sent directly to you, the winning bidder.”
QBP is back at it with another year of their Bike Mechanic Scholarships:
“The QBP Bike Mechanic Scholarship is dedicated to increasing gender diversity within the bike industry. Funded by QBP and brand partners, scholarship recipients attend the United Bicycle Institute’s 2-week Professional Repair and Shop Operation class in Oregon or Barnett Bicycle Institute’s Professional Bicycle Service Course in Colorado.
Equipped with the expertise and connections gained from this class, scholarship recipients can affect even greater change in their communities, making bikekind a more inclusive place for us all. Through hands-on learning, component-by-component study, and formal lecture, scholarship recipients come away with the skills to advance their careers in the bike industry, gain advanced mechanical knowledge, and deepen their bike industry network.
Thanks to the success of past years and the generous support of our sponsors, this year we’re excited to send 32 bike mechanics on this adventure.”
See more and apply today at QBP!
It’s that time of year again! We’re in Quincy once again for Grinduro as autumn settles over the Lost Sierra. While the forecast doesn’t look so great for tomorrow, with rain and cold temperatures, today has been bright and sunny.
Stay tuned for our coverage, which will include Team Brooks’ effort at the event.
Our goal with the webshop is to always have staple products in stock and everyone loves the Olive Drab bottles, so when they sold out last month, we got a lot of requests for a restock alert. Well, here ya go. They’re back in stock.
It feels like just a few months ago I was sitting at my keyboard, on the fence about opening up to a very vulnerable subject and sharing the hardest struggle of my adult life. Yet, here we are, two full years later and I’ve got updates to what was and still is the most difficult thing I’ve ever done.
As cyclists, we’re used to overcoming struggles. Be it training for a race, making it up a steep climb, or clearing a rock garden, and to be honest, I don’t know if I would have been able to quit drinking if it weren’t for cycling. Yet, the very thing that taught me perseverance is also heavily laden with alcohol. It’s a double-edged sword, but one I’m fairly comfortable opening up to you about.
The following trip report is also available on Amazon Kindle, for ease of bookmarking…
Day 1: Wienerwald or bust!
JEN: Good decisions can be made on a whim. That’s how I found myself on this spontaneous bike trip in Europe. It all started in Vienna, Austria. My friend Bun Daniel, also from Los Angeles, was there, visiting and working with BBUC (short for Brilli Brilliant Unicorn Club), and had offered for me to stay with him. I had plans to go to Spain 3 weeks later but the space in between was yet to be determined. That space in-between turned out to be a great adventure. My bike partner in crime and fellow California Girl, Erin Lamb, flew out from Santa Barbara to meet me. We had one mission – to satisfy our appetites for some asphalt spaghetti draped on the Alps.
Head to Bike Mag to read the full piece, Burned Lines, to gain a better insight into how these communities are bouncing back after a summer of blazes.
In news that no one has to be surprised at, Vice takes a look at the top 10 most dangerous cities for cycling in an interesting, yet terrifying article. As someone who calls Los Angeles home, I must say I’m not surprised, but like the article notes, cycling is the answer to helping save the environment we’re all aware of, yet we’ve got a long way to go to make streets safer…
“In 2019, more and more cities across America are encouraging their residents to commute by bicycle. Cycling, of course, is good for the environment in terms of reducing pollution from car-dominant streets, and it’s a healthier way to travel.
But cities gaining new cyclists are quickly, tragically finding that they do not have the proper infrastructure to keep them safe. Cyclist fatalities have gone up 25 percent across the U.S. since 2010, and up 10 percent in 2018 itself, while all other traffic fatalities have decreased.”
Read on at Vice.
With cooler temps approaching, I really wanted to circle back around to our late spring trip to Sedona. Colin and I bugged out for a bit, camping just outside of town, riding bikes, 4-wheeling, and enjoying the local cuisine. While this isn’t necessarily a “Guide to Sedona” nor will it dive into history, both colonial and indigenous, it is meant to spark a desire to ride in this veritable mountain bike theme park.
What better way to spend the long weekend than reviewing bikes. Next week, we’ll be dropping a handful of drop-bar reviews, starting with the Speedvagen OG Disc. After that, the Salsa Warroad and Cannondale Topstone. Which of the latter two would you like to see first?
The thing about Instagram is while sometimes you end up with these great one-off shots, that have very little story behind them, they end up living on this low-res platform which most people interact with solely on a cell phone screen. Last Saturday, Kyle, Caché, and I headed down to the LA River to take a photo Caché had previously shot with his cell phone. I wanted to get a nice, high res, professional photo because Caché’s eye for urban lines have resulted in many awe-inspiring takes on what it means to ride a MTB within the Los Angeles city limits. The resulting photos made quite the splash on our Instagram but I wanted to share them here as well.
For Caché, he looks at the MTB as a tool for exploration within and on the outskirts of this sprawling mega-metropolis. In the newest print-edition of Bike Mag, Caché gets a full spread of his riding and art as a mural painter with graffiti roots in LA’s scene.
Give him a follow on Instagram and check out some more randoms from our morning in the LA River drainage network. The last shot is my favorite. Which is yours?
After watching today’s Leave it on the Road post, it reminded me of a piece I read last year, on Science Daily. Coincidentally, I just posted something similar on my personal Instagram account that really resonated with my followers.
If I don’t do something physical, something that causes my heart to race, my legs to ache, then it’s so easy to slump into depressive thoughts. I wonder what the world would be like if more people exercised daily and spent time in the outdoors. It’s the great equalizer…
Telling people to “get outside” is one thing, but emphasizing the importance of exercising and experiencing connectivity to the natural world is one of my main goals with the Radavist. Sure, we post a lot of gear and bike galleries, but the overarching modus operandi revolves around using that gear to further enjoy yourself while recreating in areas that allow for introspective growth.
This past July I was lucky to attend a downhill day with the rad humans who put on the Midwest Dirt Legion. I had heard tales of their group from my partner and friends, so I was very stoked to finally meet them and see what they were up to. Time after time I hear from non cis male people that they feel there is a lack of places they feel comfortable riding and learning in the mountain bike world, which makes the work that Steph and Ash are doing that much more important. I caught up with them for a spin around the local bandit jumps and got a testimonial from their biggest fan, Chelli. If you are looking for amazing people to ride with in the midwest, check out the Midwest Dirt Legion! -Spencer
Midwest Dirt Legion is here to build a better mountain bike community for marginalized genders. Based in Minneapolis, the group was founded in February 2018 by Steph Aich (she/her) and Ash Murray (they/them) . Our focus is on bringing passionate people and organizations in the Twin Cities together to increase ridership for transgender, gender non-binary, and cis women riders.