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Snow and Sunsets in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains: Things to be Thankful For

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Snow and Sunsets in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains: Things to be Thankful For

What a year it’s been. To be honest, as the editor/owner/curator of this website, I was very nervous about how we would survive the pandemic and subsequent lockdown. So much of my work that goes into this site is about traveling to other communities, documenting shops, group rides, races, and yeah, people’s bikes. All that was put on hold and we had to resort to more bike galleries and reviews than I’m used to.

My passion comes from the aforementioned activities and while I love bikes, I love what they create and enable even more. All year, I’ve been personally battling a pendulum of moods but one thing that has been the great equalizer is a jaunt into our mountains, the Sangre de Cristo Range, the southernmost tip of the Rocky Mountains. Living on the last stop on the Colorado Plateau has its perks I suppose and a simple hour or two-long pedal in the foothills often gives me perspective that is much-needed in this year of uncertainty. It’s something I have to remind myself daily. Yesterday was a perfect example.

Bailey’s Rocky Mountain Hammer Basket Bike

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Bailey’s Rocky Mountain Hammer Basket Bike

The almighty basket bike. It doesn’t need to be fancy. Doesn’t need flashy components. Just build it out for practical uses… like wallrides!

Earlier this year, Bailey got the idea to convert this older Rocky Mountain Hammer frame into a basket bike. His intent with the bike was to have a no-nonsense, do-it-all beater that he could lock up anywhere and not worry about it. Yet, because it’s Bailey, there was a twist to this bike’s use…

Kyle From Outer Shell’s 160mm Travel Falconer Hardtail MTB Ultra Light Loaded for the CDT

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Kyle From Outer Shell’s 160mm Travel Falconer Hardtail MTB Ultra Light Loaded for the CDT

Northern New Mexico’s section of the Continental Divide Trail is quite the experience and with its popularity, more and more cyclists are coming to New Mexico to ride 70 miles of singletrack over a 90-mile route. One of my friends, Kyle from Outer Shell, recently came through town with his Falconer hardtail to take on the CDT, so I shuttled him to Cumbres Pass and bid adieu. After his trip, I linked back up with him and shot his wild Falconer hardtail, “loaded” for his time on the trail…

John’s Retrofit Retrotec 27.5 Hardtail with Paragon Machine Works Rocker Dropouts

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John’s Retrofit Retrotec 27.5 Hardtail with Paragon Machine Works Rocker Dropouts

Steel is real. We all have personal paths when it comes to cycling and it’s serendipitous when our favorite bikes can adapt to align with these twists and turns within this cycling journey. My Retrotec has long been one of my favorite bikes. In the time I’ve owned it, I’ve swapped out the drivetrain, brakes, fork, wheel size, yet this latest permutation is easily the most drastic…

Condensare Pack List: Bailey’s Moné Hardtail 29er Loaded Up for Touring the Northern New Mexico CDT

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Condensare Pack List: Bailey’s Moné Hardtail 29er Loaded Up for Touring the Northern New Mexico CDT

Tomorrow, we’ll be sharing our Reportage from our tour of the CDT in Northern New Mexico but today I wanted to give Bailey a showcase on his Moné and how he packs for a three-day trip…

The poet Basil Bunting, while poring over an antiquated German-Italian dictionary, found the German verb dichten (to write poetry) translated as condensare (to condense/shorten). This became one of the guiding principles of Modernist poetry;  which would state; “Great literature is simply language charged with meaning to the utmost degree.” In my early 20s, I fancied myself a student of Modernist writing and, unsurprisingly, many of its ideologies found a place in my daily life. This concept in particular is one that has remained important to me and thus, my approach to touring/bike packing. If one can distill their gear down to items that have the utmost meaning or necessity, while doing away with any superfluities, the result is a light and nimble bike, allowing the rider maximum enjoyment of the terrain to be traversed without compromising their safety and comfort along the way.

The Radavist 2020 Calendar: October

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The Radavist 2020 Calendar: October

This is the tenth layout of the Radavist 2020 Calendar, entitled “Wall of Aspen” shot with a Canon 5D and a 70-200 f2.8 lens in the Santa Fe National Forest.

“Mountain bikers in their natural habitat, high in the Santa Fe National Forest, seeking out the changing leaves, golden trails, and damp dirt…”

For a high-res JPG, suitable for print and desktop wallpaper*, right-click and save link as – The Radavist 2020 – October. Please, this photo is for personal use only!
(*set background to white and center for optimal coverage)

The mobile background this month is another golden trail photo… Click here to download October’s Mobile Wallpaper.

Made in Santa Fe: Farewell Bags for Cycling and More – Eric’s Salsa Timberjack

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Made in Santa Fe: Farewell Bags for Cycling and More – Eric’s Salsa Timberjack

The Pandemic has left people with a lot of free time to pursue new hobbies. How many of your friends became sourdough bakers, xeriscapers, or home improvement gurus with all their newfound time at home? Eric Puckett is a long-time friend who always had sewing skills but once he was forced to work at home and couldn’t spend as much of his time outdoors, he began making bags for cycling, rock climbing, and more. Recently, he made this hobby into a side hustle called Farewell Bags. I caught up with Eric last week to shoot his new bags on his own Salsa Timberjack, so check out more below…

An Appreciation for Our (Cold Blooded) Trail Friends

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An Appreciation for Our (Cold Blooded) Trail Friends

Growing up, I had an obsession with all things cold-blooded. Perhaps it sprung from a childhood love for dinosaurs? Who knows. I had lots of reptile pets over the years, many of which are native species to the American West. Growing up on the East Coast, I couldn’t imagine what it would be like to see a Whiptail, Fence Lizard, Chuckwalla, Horned Lizard, or a Gila Monster in the wild. Our Eastern Blue Tailed Skinks, Broad Headed Skinks, and Anoles were the extend of our four-legged, local herpetofauna…

Santa Fe Rides: Take a Friend On Up to Deception Peak and Raven’s Ridge

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Santa Fe Rides: Take a Friend On Up to Deception Peak and Raven’s Ridge

Staying local during the pandemic has been a new thing for me. I’m usually on the road for most of the year, sleeping in our truck, documenting races, rides, people, shops, and communities. I can’t emphasize how strange it has been to just stay put. While it has been a bit of a change of pace, it’s really pushed me to take on as many of the local rides that I can and this week, I took on maybe one of the most infamous trails in our area; Deception Peak and Raven’s Ridge.

More than a Throwback: the Yeti ARC 29er Hardtail

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More than a Throwback: the Yeti ARC 29er Hardtail

We’re big into hardtails here at the Radavist. While my personal bikes are all steel, riding carbon bikes can be a real treat, especially when the company has put so much thought into the design.

Yeti has a long history of designing capable and attractive bikes. The original ARC was a collaboration with Easton and the intent was to make a truly lightweight machine in that era. The OG ARC’s aluminum frameset weighed a mere 3.2lbs, which was a groundbreaking accomplishment for 1991 and those bikes are still iconic, even today.

You could say Yeti had a lot riding on this new ARC design and there were a few decisions that set this new model on a different trajectory from its predecessor. After riding this bike for a month here in Santa Fe, I’ve finally wrapped my head around how to review it, pointing out its accomplishments and my own personal critiques of this entirely new model, so read on for more…

The Radavist 2020 Calendar: September

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The Radavist 2020 Calendar: September

This is the ninth layout of the Radavist 2020 Calendar, entitled “Autumnal Descent” shot with a Leica M10 and 50mm f1.4 Summilux lens in the Santa Fe National Forest.

“There’s no denying it. The days are getting shorter, the weather is changing. The Autumn equinox is right around the corner”

For a high-res JPG, suitable for print and desktop wallpaper*, right-click and save link as – The Radavist 2020 – September. Please, this photo is for personal use only!
(*set background to white and center for optimal coverage)

A Different Kind of Maker: Jacob from Bread Shop Santa Fe and his Surly Cross Check

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A Different Kind of Maker: Jacob from Bread Shop Santa Fe and his Surly Cross Check

We visit a lot of makers here at the Radavist. From frames to components to bags. 2020 has put a lot of that on momentary pause, yet I’ve enjoyed meeting cyclists serendipitously since moving to Santa Fe, many of which are small business owners. One of those is Jacob from Bread Shop. He and his wife Mayme, along with his brother Zac run a small bakery that’s big on taste. We’ve been buying loaves once a week from Bread Shop and this week I met up with Jacob to shoot his Surly Cross-Check.

Santa Fe After Work Ride: Tesuque Peak Loop – Alamos Vista Trail

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Santa Fe After Work Ride: Tesuque Peak Loop – Alamos Vista Trail

Living at 7,000′ has its ups and downs, particularly for someone still acclimating from life at sea level for the past 5 years. One of the positives though is easy access to alpine riding. Well, easy is subjective for sure but if you only have a few hours to kill and want a quick loop that’s equal parts hard as it is beautiful and most importantly, fun, then have I got one local Santa Fe ride for you…

Spaghetti Western: A XCR Tommasini X Fire Disc Road Build

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Spaghetti Western: A XCR Tommasini X Fire Disc Road Build

What do you call a stainless Italian disc road bike, built with Cinelli and Campagnolo, right here in Santa Fe? Spaghetti Western? Sure, why not?

Mellow Velo, purveyors of modern bikes, with a long history of building up classic Italian road racing machines, recently completed this build for a customer back on the East Coast. Adam, the owner of the bike, refinishes mouthpieces for saxophones, so as you can imagine, he has a particular penchant for procuring pristine pedal machines like this one. Luckily for him, David from Mellow Velo has a soft spot for modern Italian-made frames.