Tuesday, January 31, 2012

weekend= relaxing...?

For once that equation actually played out. I had a great weekend. It started Wednesday at 330pm, promptly I signed out of my computer, grabbed my stuff and high tailed it out of there before anyone could say anything to me or ask me to do anything else. I had to pick up Kelly's brother's friend and Jerry and head to St. Cloud where we would be meeting up with Tommy and Kelly. Thankfully we didn't hit much for traffic on the way up there.
We met them at Revolution Cycling and Ski, where I had made arrangements to leave my car for the weekend. A quick stop in to say hi to Harry and Brian and then tossed the bags in Kelly's car, got Jerry in the back seat and hit the road!
An hour and half later we stopped at Zorba's Pizza in Crosslake, grabbed a couple pies and headed to the cabin. Right away I could feel the tension melt away. Something about the cold fresh air and silence that will do that for you! Back to simple living. There is no running water up there in the winter. You have to use the out house or a tree for a bath room but luckily there is heat.
The next couple days was spent just chilling, ice fishing, walking around the lake with Jerry and watching movies at night. We watched Moneyball and Lincoln Lawyer. Both of which were really good. I was a little skeptical of both but was pleasantly surprised.
We headed back home on Saturday. Again stopping at Rev to pick up my car. I was hoping to get a chance to talk to Ben and wish him luck on the Arrow Head 135 but he wasn't working so I chatted with Brian, Mike and their buddy Matt. Mike is an endurance mtb racer as well. Last year he placed 6th at the US National 24 hour race, which is incredible if you ask me, and this year he is planning on competing in the World Championship 24 hour race that will be head in Vancouver BC, Canada. I wish him luck on that and it was good to talk to those guys again.
To fill you in on Ben he finish the race again this year, which is a huge feet in its self and also finished 5th again! So congratulation to Ben on his great finish!
As soon as I got home reality came crashing back to earth. The reality that we have had an offer on a house in Cottage Grove excepted and our inspection is on Wednesday at noon and if all goes well we will be closing on February 29th! I know it's exciting but also stressful as well as the reality that the wedding is fast approaching. I slept great at the cabin but the last few nights have been tossing and turning and restless night's sleep! I am ready to get this next few months behind me, while I am looking forward to all of it the stress and anxiety are not cool! haha

Hope you all had a great weekend!

Keep it real!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Classic Photo!

I love looking at Hansi's photos. He not only does a lot for the MTB scene around MN he gives us some sick pictures to boot!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Rocky Mountain Slayer

I know that I have raved about other bikes but the deeper I delve into the bike search and the search for that proverbial do it all bike I keep going back and forth with a few different bikes but this one is definitely at the top of the list, if not the front runner all together. It is not hard to see why as it has just about everything from my wish list , maybe everything!

The bike I'm referring to is the monster from the Canadian manufacture that 10 years ago decided when everyone went towards the light weight XC game they stuck to their guns and went back country burly! They listened to the market and built bikes they wanted to ride and put out the first "all mountain bike" before anyone knew what an all mountain bike was.

This bike was born and raised on the shore and built to last.

This is an all new and completely redesigned model over the 2010 and earlier models. They have lighten the over all weight, steepened the seat tube angle and slackened the head tube angle. So what, what does that mean? Well look at this monster! And the name? The name says it all, IMO! Who doesn't want a bike named Slayer! It just screems bad ass ripper that doesn't take shit from anyone or any trail! Just like the heavy metal bad from the '80!

Ok for real, what does this mean? Well let me have Rocky Mountain tell you what it means.
First they have completely redesigned this bike and we will have the head designer go through that with you.
Ok now that you have seen the design changes and what they are suppose to do, lets check out just how bad ass this bike looks in action. I know, I know a pro can make any bike look bad ass but this bike looks really bad ass!

http://vimeo.com/14424781 (sorry not able to imbed this)
Now that you have seen it in action, why does this bike handle the way it does?
It has to do primarily with the geometry of the bike. I'll let Rocky Mountain explain this a bit.

Super sick isn't it. It looks like they really have there ducks in a row. Sitting on the front of your seat has never been comfortable and neither is that feeling like you are going to slide of the back of your seat. So when that bad boy is in it's sag, it puts the seat exactly where you needed it to be! The other great thing they have done is slacken the head tube angle, which makes the bike descend like it is on rails.
As two of the greats have said, Mark Weir and Ross Schnell, a 66 degree head tube angle is the ideal head tube angle for a trail bike.

We know this bike hauls ass down hill but why? Well besides the spot on geometry, it is the bottomless feel of the rear suspension. Why does it feel this way? Let's find out why...

I know that this looks a lot like Specialized's FSR and Norco's new ART rear suspension design and to be honest, it is similar but not the same. It is a 4 bar rear suspension and the major difference is the location of the rear pivot. By putting it above the rear axle it limits the chain growth and improves the pedaling efficiency with out having to use a shock platform like you see with many of Specialized's bikes with their brain shock technology.

Rocky is touting the proximity to the chain as one of the big advantages of this configuration.  In their own words "The lower linkage member is almost parallel to the Average Chain Torque Line (ACTL), at all points of travel. Keeping the lower link parallel to the ACTL allows the instantaneous center of rotation (ICR) to follow very closely to the ACTL, thus practically eliminating pedal induced suspension bob."
The last thing I have for you is Andreas Hestler going through the Slayer


Head Length
Head Angle66.5°66.5°66.5°66.5°66.5°
Seat Angle75°75°75°75°75°
Seat Tube length381419457482520
Horiz. Toptube Length546565575595620
Headtube Length115115125145155
Chainstay Length428428428428428
BB Drop-16-16-16-16-16
Standover Height752775761777792

Ok so we have all the facts, what else makes this bike shine or stand out to me? It has 160mm of front travel and 165mm or rear travel. It sports a tapered head tube; an over sized front triangle and a 20mm front axle. All of this equals a super stiff front end, which will feel extremely stable when pointed down hill. The rear end sports a 142x12 rear axle and a 16.85 inch long chain stay which equals an extra stiff and stable rear end that is still flickable and nimble.

With an over all wheel base of about 45 inches this will make the bike have an over all stable feel, combine that with stiffness of the front and rear end, this bike will feel like it is on rails!

This bike has received great reviews from all the magazines, check out what BIKE has to say here. This is what the Pinkbike brethren had to say HERE actually it's mostly pictures and comments. As well as a tid-bit from off-roaders (dot) net and last but not least here is what the boys from the shore have to say about it, and who would know better? HERE

I haven't had the opportunity to ride this bike myself, yet but I will. Unfortunately there are not any dealers here in the metro but there is one in the state and that is in Crosby, Cycle Path and Paddle.

I have contacted them and they are going to be stocking at least one Slayer this summer and are also trying to organize a Rocky Mountain Demo, unfortunately that demo looks like it will be during the Cuyuna Mountain Bike Festival which will be held on June 9th and 10th and I will be in Whistler. So I guess that isn't really a bad thing but I would have really like to have been able to demo the bike and actually ride it. Nothing tells you how a bike rides the really getting out at riding it and riding her hard and putting her to bed wet. Unfortunately most bike shops don't really want you to do that, as they do need to sell that bike still. So hopefully I will be able to take a Slayer for a test ride in Whistler and also give it a second go in Crosby. I will do a test ride write up after that! 

If this doesn't spark your interest in the Rocky Mountain Slayer, you might want to check your pulse or maybe you need to come out of the closet because you must be a closet roadie! 

Keep it real!  

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Should mtb in MN cost the riders?

Is cycling/mtb a right or a privilege and should we, as riders, have to pay for this privilege?
What do I think? Well I would love to tell you it is your right to ride a mountain bike and do it where ever you please but we do not have things like freedom to roam acts as they do in countries like Scotland and others. So it is a privilege. Is the act of riding a bike in general a right or a privilege? Well I would say that it is your right if you are using it as transportation, especially if you pay taxes. You paid for those public streets that you use and share with vehicles and other pedestrians and you are using it as a mode of safe, cheep and environmentally safe transportation.  If you are using it strictly for recreation, then I would have to lean towards the privilege side again. Nothing you choose to do for your own enjoyment is your right. You have the right to have enjoyment and pleasure in your life but you don’t have a right to anything that leads to that unless it is inside your own home or on your property. If it is outside of that area it is on public land or someone else’s land, at that point unless it is a necessity of life, I know for some of you like me believe MTB is a necessity but it’s not, it is not a right, it is a privilege bestowed upon you by the land owner or manager and we need to respect that but should we have to pay for that? Do we already pay for it in some form or fashion?
Yes, we, as the mountain biking community, do, at least hear in MN, especially the Metro area. We have organizations such as MORC and MOCA that are non-profit groups that do the majority of the maintenance and that work is all done by volunteers from the MTB community. I feel we are already paying for this privilege in our blood, sweat and tears but not all of us are doing this. Should those that don’t volunteer to maintain have to pay more? Above and beyond their MORC dues and possibly even more if they aren’t a MORC member? Some people think so, do I?
In short, no, I don’t think that we should have to pay anymore to use the public land then we already do with our blood sweet and tears, taxes and donations to the organizations that maintain these facilities. However if money is truly needed and these facilities are endanger of going away would I be opposed to such fees? No, if the money is truly needed and will be used to maintain the facilities, build new trails and go directly toward this location even if it isn’t used for materials but used to pay salaries of the works, that is fine and I am all for this but ONLY IF NEEDED. Also, if they do charge a fee it better not just go back into the city or county fund and be used on non-park things or to pay some politician more money that they don’t deserve!
How should this be approached? Well first off let me give you a little background, this topic has been going on for years throughout the MTB community here in MN and there are multiple threads on the MORC site but just recently a post was posted with a link to an article from GA where they state is considering charging to ride MTB in many of the most popular sites. (http://www.singletracks.com/blog/mtb-trails/advocacy-alert-three-ga-state-parks-to-target-mountain-bikers-with-a-trail-fee/)
The major difference here is that these sites are all in state parks and governed by one body. They can set a flat fee across the board and riders know what to expect. We already have a couple places that do charge to ride and none of them are MORC sanctioned trails. Hill Side in Elk River which is in a city park, they charge a small fee I can’t recall but I feel it’s like $3-4, there is no one there that requires you to check in or makes sure you pay but it is required to my understanding and their might be a fine if you don’t. I’m not sure. The other is Afton Alps, this is privately owned ski area and they have the right to charge what they please and that is currently $9 and that is why I have not rode there and it’s not high on my to do list. I haven’t heard many great things about the course and at $9 a pop don’t have much desire to ride there. It is a shame because with the location, they could have the best MTB course in the state and justify such a price. I know of a fact that this course doesn’t see near the use out as other locations such as Lebanon Hills which is free and has a much better reputation.
I would be willing to pay $25 or so to ride a lift assisted MTB Park! I know lots of people that would but again it would have to be a quality built facility with awesome runs. A lift to old boring repack isn’t going to cut it.
So if we are to start charging to ride or paying a fee to, will this affect how much or often people ride or discourage new riders from trying out our already extremely expensive sport? It might…. I really feel that if you are going to charge more than a couple dollars to use it, it really needs to justify the price tag. The trails will have to be high quality, which they pretty much are already and that will be in the eye of the beholder to a point, and their will need to be a certain requirement of the amenities at the location. I don’t feel that a place could charge even $5 a day to ride if they do not offer running water and bathroom facilities.
I don’t know how paying to ride the metro trails would work out or how it would be organized. Would all the trails be pay to ride? Would all the trails be the same price? Should they be?  How would one differentiate the pay scale? Who would be the governing body? Not very many trails are in the same city or even the same county. Who would be collecting the money? How would it be spent? Would there be season passes? Would you have to have one or multiple season passes? Would there be a discount or a benefit to being a member of MORC? Say a 25% discount or something. Would there be a way to earn a free pass through volunteer work as they do in GA? There are so many unanswered questions that would need to be covered before this could really happen.
I can’t answer all these questions, nor do I want the responsibility of doing so. IMO if they start charging for trail use I don’t think it will affect the core users, as most of them are adults with “real” jobs and can afford to pay for their hobbies, however you might ostracize the younger people from getting into the sport or from parents from letting a child try another new and expensive sport as MTB already demands hundreds to thousands of dollars to get started and to keep riding. Also it might tax lower income people right out of the sport.
I personally don’t think it is a good idea but is it inevitable? Probably, how long till it happens or how much it is going to cost , I don’t know but I know if there is a politician someplace involved in this decision they will be looking to make a buck so it’s only a matter of time!
It’s something to think about and even talk about! Let me know what you think……
Keep it real!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Trail bike guide

Wow this could be the most extensive guide I've ever seen and the nice thing is that it lets you click compare and compare the bikes specs head to head right there! I think there is every bike that is worth considering listed on here as it is multiple pages long and the bikes range in all price ranges. Some of the bikes have reviews on but not all, unfortunately. The bike that caught my eye the most wasn't because of its looks but because it's price and review was the Airborne Marauder, it is heavy but the specs are decent and it only costs $700! Holly crap, it is a mail order bike, which has its drawback for sure but if you want to break into the full squish mtb scene and don't have much money and are willing to pedal a beast, this bike is for you and you can upgrade it piece by piece and lighten your load at the same time. It looks very similar to the Santa Cruz Heckler or Butcher IMO and it is also a single pivot bike.
I don't know judge for yourself but definitely check this list out first if you are looking at getting a new bike!


Friday, January 13, 2012

The Upper Hixon Forest is safe!

Last night's vote makes it official! From today's La Crosse Tribune:

"The council voted unanimously to make 160 bluffland acres known as the Upper Hixon Forest a city park.

The city acquired the former Experimental Farm on Hwy. FA in 1963 with the understanding it would be a park, but it never was formally designated.

Human Powered Trails now maintains a network of public trails on the land they say draws bikers from across the nation. More than 100 supporters of the public trails attended a meeting Tuesday, and thousands of people online and through petitions had urged the city not to open the land for development, as had been suggested in December."
Thanks to everyone that signed the petition!
Keep it real!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

where are we going? we need a U-Turn

So there has been an ongoing debate on the MORC forum basically ever since I have joined, I don’t think it is my doing but it might have something to do with it but I doubt it. The debate is about what bike to ride and trail difficulty and rating. I have always been on the stance that the trails are too easy and that there should be more difficult sections to choose from.
Here is a great quote from an interview I read a couple days ago:
Response from industry professional (Justin Frey from fox):
“Question: Can you believe that full-rigid carbon mountain bikes exist in 2012?
Answer: I wish I didn’t because it’s kind of like a bad nightmare that won’t go away. At that point, isn’t that just a road bike with knobby tires and straight bars? I really think that XC race venues need to make their tracks more technical and challenging so that racers actually feel that riding a bike with 100mm or 120mm of travel is an advantage. After all it is MOUNTAIN BIKING not fire road biking."
I totally have to agree with that statement but every time this gets brought up in discussion I end up on the short end of the stick, like I’m attacking someone or their credibility and I’m totally not. We have amazing trails and incredible trail builders as well as a great organization MORC backing all of this.
What I mean or am trying to say, is that there is what 3-5miles of Green (easy) trail, 7-8 miles of Blue (intermediate) trail, and about 2-3 miles of Black and Double Black (difficult and hard) trail at Lebanon alone, I believe that is close, and way more Green and Blue compared to black in the metro area? The Black and Double black should be something that is earned, IMO, it is not your right to be able to ride that section it’s a privilege earned over seasons of riding and practice to hone your skill to reach that level or riding.
Green trails- be able to be ridden by just about any able bodied person
Blue trails-be able to be ridden by most people and a slight challenge for Green level riders mildly intimidating.
Black trails- only be able to be ridden by advanced riders, not because others are banned but because they are not physically able or at that skill level. It should not be able to be completed by a Green level rider without them walking and/or carrying their bike and it should be intimidating to that level of rider to the point that they don’t want to ride that trail and it should be at the top of a blue level rider’s skill/ability level and be a difficult challenge for them to ride but do able with maybe walking a part or two but intimidating.
Double black trails- only be able to be ridden by expert level riders and should be both physically and mentally demanding and taxing on your skill set. This trail should be extremely intimidating to Green level riders, very intimidating to Blue level riders- to the point that they need to really question if they are good enough to ride it, and slightly intimidating to a Black level rider, a trail that pushes their skill set and puts them in sections that make them pucker up. This section of trail should be at a level that if you do not belong on this trail you should know it and if not the trail will tell you or show you very quickly and it might result in you crashing, getting hurt, breaking bike parts or all of the above.
There are plenty of trails that can be ridden by lesser riders 10-13 miles worth at Lebanon alone. I guess it is up to the rider to choose and dictate to a point which level they are at but the trail should let you know where you are as well as it does in rock climbing. A 5.5 rider is not going to be able to complete a 5.10 route and if they try they will fail and quickly be humbled back to their rightfully earned place, until they have put in the time and effort to improve to that level and develop the needed skills. I can also add the example of down hill skiing. If by chance you catch yourself on a black or double black level ski run you will most likely crash, probably hard or end up walking down the hill. Now that is humbling. Sports like these have different levels to encourage development and progression. As well as provide challenges to different levels of riders but each level must be earned. It can not be given to you with out the trials and tribulation of years or of hard work and practice.
Can a bike or equipment help a lesser rider move up quicker? Oh definitely, at that point it would be considered a crutch and there are tons of products in our sport that get misused and turned into crutches- Clipless pedals, suspension and 29er wheels to name a few. Are there advantages to these products? Most definitely but you can only gain their full potential by gaining yours first. When you have pushed your skills to the level that your current rig is no longer supporting your riding or the trails you are riding then you need to upgrade.
With that said top level trail (double black) should mandate or at least highly encourage some pieces of equipment, such as suspension. Could that trail be ridden on a fully rigid bike? Yes of course, a very skilled rider could ride a rigid. Would that rider, ride that trail as well or as fast as they would with a full suspension bike? No, and that is my point the trail should dictate to a point what equipment is needed and what equipment has its advantages. Can a rider on a full rigid or even hard tail bike ride an extremely rough and technical downhill section? Yes of course. Can that rider ride it as fast or smooth as they could on full suspension bike? No or be able to take routes that one could take on a full suspension bike? No.
I understand that there are some hurdles and restrictions imposed by land owners and maybe insurance companies but we as a mountain bike community are quite large and MORC has a lot of influence on these entities but I don’t feel that it is being used. I feel that mountain biking community as a whole is rather conservative and content with what they have which in my opinion goes against mountain biking at its very being!
Mountain biking as a whole is very progressive and motivated sport that is always changing and pushing the limits of what is possible and the abilities of its participants. If we forget this we will not only hold our selves back but our entire sport. The mid west is not really on the map when it comes to mountain biking but it damn well could be! We don’t have mountains but we have a lot of hills and a lot of interesting terrain that is not being used to its potential.
I hope that with the advent of this new High School Mountain Bike League it will bring a new crop of young and progressive riders on to the scene that will demand more out of mid west mountain biking. This will only happen if their young moldable minds are exposed to a large and diverse viewing of what mountain biking has to offer. I hope that the people that have decided to coach are not close minded and will not push their conservative Lycra wearing smooth pedal fest xc beliefs onto these kids. I am almost tempted to try and become one of these coaches myself. I will see what this season has to bring and if the league will be around for years to come, hopefully and if so I will look closer to what it takes to join up.
I hope this encourages you to push yourself, test your limits and boundaries and thrive to be the best mountain biker you can be!
Keep it real!
And big props to my boy Tim on his 4 year wedding anniversary!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

pedal and shoe guide

I know that I've had this question in the past and I just ran across this on vitalmtb.com and thought I would share them. They are great to review a bunch of options at once!

shoe guide

pedal guide


Monday, January 9, 2012

all systems down

Well system outage at work so what better time to get caught up on blogging, am I right or am I right? haha.
Ok so this last week went rather quick and was uneventful. The weather sucks, well I guess it is nice but it's not much of an off season this year, I could theoretically ride my bike everyday on dirt to boot! I haven't been but I have been on my bike quite a bit. I went for an urban ride, it went well. I have really been working on the things I have been reading in the Mastering Mountain Bike Skills by Lee McCormick and Brian Lopes, great book, no BS, straight to the meat. Much better then my first skills book I bought which was Chris Ball's Mountain Biking the Manual, not saying it was a bad book but it was more of a book for complete noobs, it was more of a history reader about mountain biking then an instructional book but it did have some bad ass pictures.
Lee is coming up to MN this April sometime to help with the High School Mountain Bike League coaches summit and sounds like he might be doing some clinics, I will be the first in line for that! and you should be right behind me. I guarantee you won't get better instruction from anyone around here. They will just tell you to were Lycra, get clips and a 29er, haha jk but seriously you should check it out and I will keep you up dated as I find out more info.
The weekend:
Friday we went out to eat with our friends Mel and Adam, had a couple drinks and then went home and watched this God awful movie American Loser with Sean William Scott, I fell asleep, it was one of the worst movies I've ever seen!
Saturday we ran a bunch of errands and cleaned the house and then rented Mr. Poppers Penguins, this was actually pretty good and pretty funny. Miles better then Friday's choice.
Sunday my buddy Stu hit me up and we met up with 3 other guys and headed to Sandstone MN the Ice Quarries for a nice day of climbing. Surprisingly the ice was fabulous. The main reason is that it is on a south facing wall in a valley by a river, so it is always cooler and well protected from the sun. The weather was amazing though, mid 30s! I only did 3 climbs and the others did like 5 or so but it was my first time out this season and I was pumping out pretty hard and I wasn't really on my game so on the harder routes I just bowed out with the shit got hairy. Your head has to be really be in it to commit to some of the more technical stuff. Pictures to come! I took a bunch.
That night we just hung out and watched TV, I fell asleep early, laying with the dog on the couch watching junk TV.
I hope you all had a good weekend!

Keep it real!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Duluth Traverse

Wow, I have heard rumors about things happening up in Duluth but this is going to be epic! Duluth and the North Shore area, IMO has it going on! They can almost live up to the "North Shore" BC style if this is done right! They have the topography and natural terrain to make some serious epic trails! I hope they bring out the big guns for this. They received a $250,000 Legacy grant, so money shouldn't be the issue, I know COGGS is leading this and is backed by IMBA and I'm sure MORC will be throwing their 2 cents in. That means a lot of trail creating genius involved in this!
Check on the proposed plan here!
and diagram of projected lay out here:
also more information on riding Duluth here:


Well hello winter, how was your vacation? Good, well I'm glad you enjoyed it...  Are you going to stay long? no, why not? Oh you like the southern jet stream.... interesting isn't it a la nina year? Oh you don't care, interesting well I think next year is the start of the el nino year, so you're just going to stay on vacation through that cycle? Probably... well that is not good. I hope you change your mind, I'd like to see some more snow. We'll see...click
Yeah that was my talk with winter this morning when I gave him a call after I woke up to 6 degrees for my morning dog walk. A bit brisk but actually refreshing in a way. I'm ready for a month or so of single digits, I would really like to swing my ice axes a couple times this winter, play some hockey and maybe even put a few miles on my skis as well. I guess we will have to wait and see, starting tomorrow back in the 30's and 40's for Thursday and Friday. Is crazy Al Gore right? Is there really such a thing as global warming or is it just a normal cycle of mother nature. You know those women and their cycles... don't want to fuck with that! haha
Keep it real!

Monday, January 2, 2012

what's to come this year?

What is on your schedule for the 2012 season/year? Well for me it is going to be a jam packed year and probably go super fast. Not sure if that is a good or bad thing but it is what it is.
This year in general Kelly and I are getting married on June 2nd, very exciting! and then going to Whistler for a week for our honey moon. I believe we have a couple weddings we will be going to and we will be going out to the Black Hills in September. That is all I can think of for sure.
As for involving biking, as soon as spring comes I will be busy building the Lexington Street Bike Park, not sure how long that is going to take but I'm hoping not that long. The quicker the better. I would like to have it mostly completed before our wedding and trip to Whistler. This will depend on the weather but it's looking promising so far.
I will also be involved in Lebanon Trail work. I will help as much as I can but you probably wont see me there in the spring, at least not until Lex is complete.
Whistler, of course I can't go there with out riding! I'm pretty stoked to shred the shit out some real big mountain riding! I just hope my skills will be up to par. I have been studying my skills books, Mastering Mountain Bike Skills by Lee McCormick and Mountain Biking The Manuel by Chris Ball as well as getting out while the weather allows and focus on proper technique and will increase as spring comes. You can gain a lot by just doing cornering drills in the parking lots, riding curbs, practicing track stands, manuals and doing some urban assault riding. I have been in the gym 3-4 days a week all winter and I'm going to step up my gym training about 6 weeks prior to make sure I  can physically handle the 8hrs straight of riding because that is all I will get, so I have to make the most out of it!
I would like to do the Cuyuna Fat Tire festival but I'm not sure if that will happen. Depends on the weekend they pick.
As for races, I'm not sure if I'm going to be doing much of it or not. I would like to do some Super D races but haven't found that many close to home yet, so we will see. As it goes now I will be competing at the Giant's Ridge DH race. The only DH race in MN in 2012. I am also thinking of doing the Dakota 50 race with some friends. I have until April to choose if I'm going to commit to this or not, as that is when registration opens. I might also do some of the Buck Hill XC races, could be good cross training as well as I might try to organize some under ground super d races at BC. More like a poker night, couple bucks to enter and pay out a couple spots, we'll see.
Riding trips? Well as it stands right now. I will for sure be going to Whistler. I will for sure be going to Cuyuna to ride with my uncle at least once but probably more. I am also planning on making a trip to copper harbor with some buddies, I would like to hit up the tech trails and Marquette while I'm up there as well. Also tons of local riding. I will be trying out as many of the metro trails that I haven't rode yet. I have heard really good things about the rawness of Mammoth in Chaska. I'm sure there is more  cool places I will hear of as the season goes on and I will definitely ride as much as possible when we go out to the Hills! I can't wait!
I hope you all have some sweet stuff planned! It is always a good idea to have one big thing planned for riding, such as a race or a big trip, as it will give you something to train for and will keep you going!
Keep it real!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Happy New Years!

Happy New Years all, well looks like we got a white new years since the white Christmas evaded us, haha. I hope you all had a great New Years, I hope non of you made any stupid choices and drove home or rode home with a drunk and if you did I hope even more that you made it home safe!
My New Years Eve started out with a sick ass ride at BC. I got there first and rode up and did a couple of the cool spots until I saw Trevor show up. We called Tim to see where he was and he was still 30mins away so we headed down to the luge but took a detour down the wall of death trail. I love that one because it's pretty technical, unfortunately it's a bit short but I'll take what I can around here. Honestly if MORC or the land managers would spend even half the money and time at BC as they did at places like Lebanon or Cuyuna, they could probably have one of the best mtb courses in the state and probably the best trails in the cities for sure! There is so much elevation gain and loss there its crazy. Tons of sweet chutes and bluffs, it could be endless switch back climbs and flowy and technical descents!
That  being said as we (Trevor and I) were pushing up to the top of the luge we noticed the couple chutes that have always intrigued us and Trevor said some day we should ride those and we started looking more at it and I was like F it lets clear some leaves and do it!
So we picked the less intimidating of the two and started to clear the leaves. As we started to work towards the top, we quickly realized how steep it was. We could hardly walk up it and at the top we had to pull our selves up with the help of trees. Thankfully we don't have to pull out bikes up that way, there is a trail that leads to the top. We rode to the top and were looking around and saw the start of the other chute we wanted to run, so we knew where we were going next but first we had our challenge ahead. I was looking at it and Trevor was talking about route and was like F it and just went for it and got a bit down the first steep and my back kicked out and I slide a bit and then grabbed a tree and pulled myself and my bike back to the top. Less rear brake this time! and wham bam thank you ma'am! I made it and it was fricken awesome, I was jacked! Midwest free ride at it's best or at least twin cities free ride haha yeah!
Trevor nailed it too and we were quickly pedaling back to the top to check out the other one and start clearing the leaves.
After we started walking this one we both agreed that this one was cooler and not as steep as the other line. First run for me was lookin' good till right before the sweet little drop at the end and my handle bar clipped a tree and spun me out, Trevor nailed it first run. We went back to the top and did it again, this time perfect! I love that line. I wish there was more trail like that. I love the steep runs. The ones that push your skills and make you pucker up! To me that is what "MOUNTAIN" biking is all about! and around here we don't have mountains so we need to make up for it with what ever we can find!
We continued to session the luge for a bit longer, can't go wrong with that, love railing those berms and hitting that table!
After riding I went home picked up Kelly and Jerry and headed to the dog park for a bit. The plan was to go see the Root City Band down in Burnsville but after we thought about it we had spent enough money going to watch Brock Lesner get his ass kicked by Alister Overeem so we would go see a movie instead. I was fine with that.
We went to see The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, man that movie was bad ass. One of the best movies I'd seen in a long time. It really kept you thinking and was full of twists and turns. After the movie we went home and watch the ball drop and played with Jerry.
The one thing I'm glad about is not having that ridiculous hang over I would have had if I would have gone out.
I hope you all had a great New Years! Make some great resolutions! Mine is to save some more money and become a better rider and ride as many new places and trails as possible!
Keep it real!