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Crust Bikes And Casa Verde, A Coastal Collaboration – Jarrod Bunk

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Crust Bikes And Casa Verde, A Coastal Collaboration – Jarrod Bunk

Crust Bikes And Casa Verde, A Coastal Collaboration
Photos and words by Jarrod Bunk

While wrapping up after Philly bike expo I casually said to Matt from Crust Bikes that I had hoped to make it out to Belmar to check it out, just like that there was an invite for a chill-out-grill-out and a Crust Bikes World HQ tour.  I left Philly and headed east to the coast. I’ve never been to Belmar, and my myopic view of Jersey was distilled through the lens of Newark, which is over industrialized and by comparison to Belmar, anything but beautiful.  Founded in 1889 Belmar, which translated from Italian means “beautiful sea” is a lush coastal community with close proximity to surf, shredding, and solace in the coastal hinterlands not far from where Crust is located.  So central is Crust/Belmar that in just a short drive you’re in NYC or Philly, should you need your fix of city life.

Inside / Out at Horse Cycles – Ian Matteson

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Inside / Out at Horse Cycles – Ian Matteson

Inside / Out at Horse Cycles

Photos by Ian Matteson, words by Kevin McClelland from ENVE

The Idea for this bike and trip transpired from a casual conversation at NAHBS in Hartford.  I approached Thomas from Horse Cycles at his stunning booth filled with some of my favorite bikes at the the show and we began talking about the yet to be released ENVE Gravel Fork and Gravel Bar. Thomas quickly started to show me photos of his freshly built cabin in Upstate New York surrounded by a beautiful landscape littered with some amazing gravel roads. That was the moment I knew I wanted to get out to New York for some riding with him and I knew I wanted it to be on a Horse Frame.

Paddles n’ Puppies: A Visit to Alpacka Raft HQ

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Paddles n’ Puppies: A Visit to Alpacka Raft HQ

Paddles n’ Puppies: A Visit to Alpacka Raft HQ
Words and photos by Spencer Harding

I’ve been fawning over Alpacka rafts for years but have yet to obtain one. I have used the shitty Klymit one, which resulted in my raft flipping while holding my camera at the end of a rapid. I learned the hard way that there is only one true name in the packrafting game: Alpacka Raft.

Last year my friend Molly (see our last trip for more cute photos of her and Sprocket) got a job working at Alpacka Raft HQ in Mancos, Colorado. Mancos is a quaint town nestled right between the full-on Rocky Mountains and the eastern edge of the Colorado Plateau. Ever since she got the job I had been waiting for an excuse to stop by and check out the factory. Turns out Mancos is not even close to being on the way from Salt Lake City to Denver (to meet up for this year’s DFL the Divide trip) but was well worth the detour.

Snowbirding in Tucson at Transit Cycles – Spencer Harding

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Snowbirding in Tucson at Transit Cycles – Spencer Harding

Snowbirding in Tucson at Tranist Cycles
Photos and words by Spencer Harding

This past March I wound up down in Tucson for some guiding work and planned some extra time to be there a little early to hangout with the nexus of bikey humans that seemed to congregating there. I happened to stop in at Transit Cycles for their monthly shop ride. The ride is co-hosted by Carl from Dragoon Brewing (find him for your first-beer-for-$1 token!) and the ride was a sporting 2 or so miles to the brewery along a bike path from the shop, my kinda ride really. It was an eclectic crowd with mainstays of the Tucson community, plenty of snowbirds from all over the country, and even a very pregnant pannier riding doggo.

Transit Cycles is nestled in the very southwest chic Mercado San Agustine on the west side of downtown Tucson. The shop is the culmination of the owner Duncan’s childhood dream to own a locally run bike shop. After bouncing around the west coast and finally ending up Tucson, Duncan opened Transit early in 2014. He was excited to offer the only place to buy cargo bikes in the city and a focus on adventure/touring bikes.

Today the shop is small but filled with many wonderful vignettes, from Mo’s personal artwork to a collection of more types of chain lube than I thought existed. The shop is currently just two employees, Duncan and Mo. A rarity in the cycling industry with a POC shop owner with a female head mechanic, a conscious decision to make space for gender as well as race. Outside of their monthly shop ride, Transit is a regular host to Swift Industries Stoked Spoke series, WTF rides, and intro bike-packing overnighters.

Next time you pass through Tucson, you know you want to escape winter everywhere else, make sure to swing by Transit Cycles and see what rad stuff is happening!

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Follow Transitcycles on Instagram and Revolta Art on Instagram

Sklar Bikes: He’s Got Curves – Morgan Taylor

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Sklar Bikes: He’s Got Curves – Morgan Taylor

Words and photos by Morgan Taylor.

Last year when we visited Scott at Porcelain Rocket, we were doing the usual: shooting the shit about the industry, and Instagram, and all of the opinionated yammering that goes along with that. The topic of Sklar’s top tubes came up. Yes, those top tubes that curve upward, reducing standover while making for an instantly recognizable silhouette. I was suspicious.

I Got Lost at Swift Industries – Morgan Taylor

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I Got Lost at Swift Industries – Morgan Taylor

Words and photos by Morgan Taylor.

Swift Industries has been making bicycle bags by hand in Seattle for eight years now. The first four of those years were spent in Martina and Jason’s basement, laying the foundation for a company that to this day produces each of its products in-house. When orders kept coming in, and they needed to hire help, Swift Industries moved to the space you see here, in Seattle’s Ballard neighborhood.

Repeating Patterns at Porcelain Rocket – Morgan Taylor

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Repeating Patterns at Porcelain Rocket – Morgan Taylor

Repeating Patterns at Porcelain Rocket
Words and photos by Morgan Taylor

Spending a few hours at Porcelain Rocket’s Canadian headquarters, I got a sense of just how much Scott Felter has invested in this business – and in the culture surrounding it. Scott began stitching bags for bikes while living in Banff, at the head of the Tour Divide Route. After a few years working out of a basement in Victoria, BC, he’s been in his current shop in Calgary for three years. On this particular day, Tim was working on a production run of frame bags for Rocky Mountain Bicycles, while Scott and I perused the layers of Porcelain Rocket’s history.