Since the first documentation of this project was posted on this site, I’ve been very interested in seeing the AWOL Transcontinental Edition touring bike hit local dealers. It is one of the most unique tourers I’ve ever ridden. My Product Review of the bike was thorough and Erik’s suped up Peacock Nuke edition swept everyone up in awe. Head over to Specialized for specs and contact your local shop for ordering.
Ever since Erik showed me the first sneak peek at his Specialized AWOL, I knew I’d have a blast photographing it one day. Little did I know, however, it’d be in San Francisco. By now, you’ve seen photos and video of this bike here on the site. How could you miss it? With the special Nickel PVD – Physical Vapor Desposition – coating, it pops!
Erik even referred to this bike as a “peacock” in the Transcontinental video. It’s almost so distracting that you fail to notice the Shimano Dura Ace Di2 Alfine 11 speed Gates carbon belt drive set up with hydraulic disc brakes. Or the wicked fat tire clearances.
Other nifty details are the Plug by Supernova, which charges electronic devices but one of my favorite frame details is the special bracket for mounting the rear Supernova light onto the non-drive rocker dropout. And of course, the Fällkniven F1 Swedish special forces-issued knife with its (purple) zip-tied sheath.
Trust me, during our ride in the Diablo Range, I was geeking out so hard on this bike.
Yeah, it’s pretty jamming and what better place to shoot it than Bernal Heights in SF, at sundown, as the sky itself put on a color-assault of its own. Countdown to full nuke… 3… 2… 1…
When Erik and I met at Eurobike last year, we talked about doing a ride to celebrate the Specialized AWOL release. Originally, we talked about Oregon, then LA, but after some research, we realized there were plenty of roads, tracks and trails literally in SF’s backyard.
With the help of Jared from Riv Bike, Erik began to think about a three day route from SF to the Diablo Range, Morgan Territory, Henry Coe and finally, into Morgan Hill where we’d share our story and watch the premier of the Transcontinental film. It seemed like an achievable goal. We’d pack for camping, which included cold nights and mornings and most importantly, we’d take our time.
Rather than actually planning our route, we decided to take trail maps and meander a bit off the beaten path. Digital maps don’t have all the trails marked and some of the current maps of the Diablo range revealed a path none of us had taken. We were set.
Unfortunately, as it tends to go, unexpected elements came into the equation and our plans changed. At first, I was pretty upset about it, seeing as how I was planning on pulling a few stories out of our ride, but after reviewing my photos, I decided it made for a good story…
Part of what the Specialized AWOL project represents is an escape, a desire to get out of your normal ride routine and try something new. Taking a chance if you will. While we didn’t complete our ride, we had fun and saw some incredible displays of color as Mother Nature impressed us all.
Seriously, the sunrise the second day rivals all in my past experiences…
Read on in the Gallery!
There’s more to come, including my review of the AWOL Transcontinental Limited Edition and a Beautiful Bicycle post on Erik’s own bike.
This morning, the AWOL team and myself left San Francisco for a three day ride through Henry W. Coe state park down to Morgan Hill. While we have a general idea of how we’ll get down there (i.e. excessive speculation), we’re leaving a lot of room for error. Because, let’s face it, no big ride can go down without something going wrong. At least that’s my track record as of late.
I’ll be riding one of the new hydraulic disc, belt drive AWOL Transcontinental limited edition bikes and shooting photos of the ride for a few features on PiNP.
Come Monday, we’ll be showing my photos from the ride at the premier of the Transcontinental AWOL video at Specialized HQ.
Well, the time’s here. It’s the fourth and final episode in the Specialized AWOL Transcontinental Race documentary. This has been one hell of a journey and I can’t wait to see what the AWOL team has planned next.
As always Ertzui delivered an exceptional web series. It’s so good that I just watched the whole thing over again. See parts one through three below!
Man, this has gotta be my favorite web series of the year. Is anyone else actually considering doing something like this? I miss the open road and these videos truly capture the physical and psychological challenges you encounter along the way.
Here’s the second, gut-wrenching episode of the AWOL project’s coverage from the Transcontinental Race, shot by Ertzui. Watch as the road takes all Erik and Recep have to offer. The Stelvio section looks horrific!
Specialized AWOL: Transcontinental Race Part 01
Here it is! The first part of the AWOL project and the infamously-epic Transcontinental Race!
“London to Istanbul within two weeks, overcoming more than 3100km, 30.000m of altitude gain and crossing 14 european borders. Unsupported, following a route of their choice, day and night, rain or shine, crossing the whole european continent: We went AWOL with Recep Yesil and Erik Nohlin on the mighty Transcontinental Race.
Filmed and directed by e r t z u i ° film
For behind the scenes, check Here
Bikes: Specialized AWOL Transcontinental