Recently, the Navajo Nation reinstated a 57-hour weekend lockdown due to the spikes in COVID in several communities. This put a hold on our first official Dzil Ta’ah Adventures youth bikepacking series outing in Nazlini, which was originally slated for September 26th. Once the lockdown is lifted, which we hope will be soon, we will proceed as planned with the Dine Composite participants. With the postponement of our first trip, we felt like this was an opportunity to leverage the extra time and continue to shape our mentorship program and build more of my team’s dexterity with an outing in John’s Canyon, Utah, at the southwestern base of Cedar Mesa.
March 14, 2020, seemed like a normal Saturday ride for our group of gravel enthusiasts (the “Dirty Bird Crew”). Our route guru Brian had put together another fantastic route, exploring dirt roads and trails a short drive from New York City. Every weekend, year-round, we are out exploring the (surprisingly!) high-quality dirt roads and trails in the greater NYC area. We’ve gone out in nearly every weather condition, from swimming holes in the summer, to snow rides in the winter, and even riding across frozen lakes with studded tires when it’s bitterly cold, but nothing had prepared us for the months ahead. Drinking post-rode beers there was some talk about Covid-19 and the possibility that we may be working from home for a few days. We said our goodbyes until next weekend, but little did we know this would be our last group ride for months.
The Great Basin region of the western US stretches from the Sierra Nevada mountains to the Wasatch range, and from the Columbia Plateau all the way down to the Mojave Desert. This expansive, high elevation desert has a nickname, the Sagebrush Sea, and I live right on the beach. I’m tucked away in a rural area at the northern end of the Eastern Sierra.
“Our friends, the SKID LIZARDS, are known for Slowing Down Fast and layin’ down some of the stylin’est skid-treats in the Tri-County region (we still haven’t figured out which 3 counties they’re talking about).
They take sharing the gospel of bike-camping every bit as seriously as they take spreading the stoke of the skid. And this new short-vid drop does just that! Volume up, please.
In collaboration with the SL crew, Swift Industries is stoked to launch the SWIFT CAMPOUT VIDEO CHALLENGE! That’s right, all you campers, it’s your time to shine! We wanna see your 2020 Campout experience, the good, the bad, the ugly, the hilarious.
Capture your Campout on vid — iPhone is cool, pro gear is cool too, it really doesn’t matter. We’re looking for creativity, entertainment, hilarity, and meditative scenic inspiration here. Surprise us! One talented winner will have their project shared on the Swift IG and YouTube channels, and will receive A GIANT PRIZE PACKAGE stacked with gear ‘n goodies from Topo Designs, Kitsbow, Bedrock Sandals, Dangle Supply, Camp And Go Slow, Sixmoon Designs, Fat Tire, MiiR, Black Coffee Roasting, and Hey Hi Hello Magazine!”
*** Edit and share footy to IGTV the week of Sep 28. Deadline Midnight Oct 4! ***
TO BE ENTERED INTO CONTEST:
-Must tag @swiftindustries @skidlizards #swiftcampout #swiftcampoutvidchallenge in post!
-Must be no longer than 5-mins in length!
-Must meet Oct 4 deadline!
-Bonus points for sharing to Stories, Reels, and main feed ;)
Our friends at Swift Industries are putting on a fall equinox campout this year in lieu of the normal summer solstice campout. This year, they’re offering dozens of overnighter routes, all over the globe and are like always, pairing this outing with lots of information and product. Due to the Covid19 pandemic, Swift Industries is encouraging everyone to take care when bicycle touring. Check out WTF BX for 8 guidelines to consider.
Head to Swift Industries to learn more!
This pandemic has us scouring social media for videos to share, in an attempt to transport us back to the time when group rides were the norm and our calendars were filled with fun rides. That’s what brought me to find this recap video from the 2019 Nutmeg Nor’Easter.
When it comes to ultralight bikepacking and cyclo-touring, redundancies in gear don’t cut it. Hydrolight’s new 2L reservoir is now available. It’s a clever solution for those looking for a substantial way to illuminate their campsite, without having to carry the extra weight of a lantern. Their innovative design allows you to plug in your favorite headlamp into their bladder to create campsite illumination, all for $35. Not bad if you ask me. Check out their video above, see more information at Hydrolight, and let us know what you think…
The first time I found myself in Puerto Rico was quite a few years back, it was on a sandy city street that ended at the beach in the Ocean Park neighborhood of San Juan. It was wintertime on the east coast where I flew in from, but I was now in a sunny island paradise.
The Kosciuszko Alpine Classic is just a name I came up with for a ride I did with my two good mates, Ben and James. We had organised a week off work in late October to go and spend some time in the Australian Alps. The route would see us riding primarily through the Kosciuszko National Park, taking in the wild brumby infested Long Plain, then going up and over the highest rideable trail in Australia, and also along some of the newest and flowiest single track built in the region. It was going to be classic!
It’s coming! June 22nd is rapidly approaching. Do you know where you’re going for the 2019 Swift Campout? Head to Swift Industries to see who is hosting a Summer Solstice Campout in your city. We’ll be in Bozeman with Alter Cycles and Sklar Bikes. We’ll be doing around 20 miles of dirt road climbing up to Mystic Lake to camp under the Big Sky!
Share your local ride details in the comments and check out some inspirational photos below!
Ladies and gents, boys and girls, all are welcome to the Swift Campout and guess what? It’s never too early to plan or sign up for this increasingly popular event. Simply go to the Swift Campout site to learn more! Remember, this is open to all and takes place Saturday, June 23rd. Check out our coverage of this great event on the Related sidebar.
Interested in riding from Portland to Salem during this year’s total solar eclipse? Well, now’s your chance to sign up!
Only thirteen more days until the Summer Solstice and the Swift Campout, an evening of bicycle camping under the stars with friends in your city. To find out more information, head to Swift Industries.
Watching this video reminds me of riding from Brooklyn to Philly a few times, a few years back. Northeast winters are so picturesque.
A couple weeks back I shared a set of rider portraits from a trip we took out of Vancouver and across Howe Sound to the Sunshine Coast. It was a simple winter overnighter, mostly on rural roads, with a great group of friends. Geoff and Pat, who are preparing to ride the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route this summer, keep track of their rides at Steel and Rubber with route data, travel stories, and great photos.
Check out a selection of Geoff’s photos below and head to Steel and Rubber for the gallery and story!
Photos and words by Morgan Taylor.
Here in Vancouver we’ve been experiencing one of the coldest winters in decades, with more days below freezing than I can ever remember. Over the past six weeks, since firing up #coffeeoutsideyvr, there’s been much talk of packing up and getting out for some overnights. And lately, with sunset already an hour later than it was at solstice, it was imminent that the talk become action.
Words and photos by Morgan Taylor.
They told us not to ride bikes in Yellowstone National Park. Why? Mostly the roads: little to no shoulder and overrun by tourists in RVs. That’s enough to spur some questions for a potential traveler, and with a quick bit of research, you’ll find the camping situation looks dire – especially from a cyclist’s perspective. Where can you even buy food that isn’t in an overpriced restaurant? And what’s there to see beyond geysers and animals, anyway? Maybe they were right.
Words and photos by Morgan Taylor.
Montana, oh Montana. In Montana we battled the desire for stillness with the impetus to keep moving. We sat and watched animals, we spent time in new places that excited us very much, we batted away mosquitoes and fled from them. We pedaled day by day, sometimes through remote terrain, not seeing anyone else for hours or possibly days at a time. We found our way.