Bike Shop Dad: The Reset Button- Camp Dirtbag

“That sidewinder almost got me!” said Rod as he emerged from darkness at the top of a sand wash. KC and I were waiting at the road intersection at the top of the wash, contemplating the newfangled casino lights flickering in the distance. Apparently we’d taken a slightly different route to the road and avoided the hostile snake. An hour earlier, I’d just rolled into town, unloaded my bike and stuffed a sub sandwich into my pack. Sunset came like a light switch, and we were in the desert, amongst sidewinders, tarantulas, and other critters. 29 Palms is a desert town … Continue reading Bike Shop Dad: The Reset Button- Camp Dirtbag

Stagecoach 400 Gear List

“What should I bring?” I can’t answer that directly, but you can use my own list as a baseline. Ultimately, there is no perfect packing list. Variables can include weather, conditioning (riding & campcraft) and personal preferences. This is what I’ve carried, and where I carry it. Some of these items end up moving to different areas of the bike. My goal is usually to have a 60% weight distribution favoring the rear of the bike, or the seat pack. In the Seat Bag (packed in order): – A ziplock bag with pre-portioned robot food powder (such as Hammer Perpetuem). … Continue reading Stagecoach 400 Gear List

First Impression: Rocky Mountain Sherpa

We’ve brought in a pair of Rocky Mountain’s “Overland” bikes for demo and have been busy getting their tires dirty.  Rocky Mountain’s new Sherpa model is loosely based on the venerable Element, which has stood the test of time in the XC/endurance categrory, but with a 27.5+ tire size twist to bring a bit more soft terrain capability. They’re pitching it as the first “bikepacking” bike you can actually have some fun with in the chunder. We’ve been excited to see more of this bike since becoming a dealer; admittedly their well produced video with 5 guys on AZT was … Continue reading First Impression: Rocky Mountain Sherpa

Kevin’s Bikepacking Rig- Custom Siren John Henry

We worked with Siren to build up Kevin’s dream bike.   We met Kevin Hinton a few years ago when he came up to ride the San Jacinto Enduro with us, and later I had the honor of bringing him out on his first bikepacking trip, a 5-day scouting run of the Stagecoach 400 route. We had a great time, and it’s safe to say he’s since been bitten pretty hard by the bikepacking bug, also getting into self-supported racing. We’ve have had a number of adventures with Kevin in the last few years, and most recently we’ve been honored … Continue reading Kevin’s Bikepacking Rig- Custom Siren John Henry

Surly ECR

Bikepacking on very rough dirt roads? Bikepacking anywhere? Surly ECR could be for you. It’s safe to say the 29+ wheel and tire platform is gonna be here for a while. It’s not really a 29er, and it’s not really a fatbike, but you can’t really talk about these new bikes without making the comparison to both. What is 29+? First let’s define “fatbike:” You know, those big balloon tires you’ll see on a Salsa Mukluk? Those are usually 4″-5″ wide, mounted on the same rim diameter as your traditional 26″ mountain bike uses. (559 ISO) These 29+ models use … Continue reading Surly ECR

Saddledrive Highlights, Reviews, and Thoughts For 2015

QBP & Salsa Cycles had me out to their annual Saddledrive product release & dealer camp at Snow Basin, near Ogden UT these last few days. I came back energized and excited to be a part of the growing “Adventure by Bike” category.  My two days were spent meeting with folks- brand reps, technicians, and other dealers- and discussing the ways the new bikes might be able to benefit our riding communities. We exchanged ideas, learned a bunch, and rode some great bikes. I’ll get into the particulars of the bikes in a moment. First, a couple ideas that I … Continue reading Saddledrive Highlights, Reviews, and Thoughts For 2015

Leonard’s Surly Ogre

We are wrapping up Leonard’s custom camp/endurance bike. The Ogre is Surly’s 29er hardtail “camp” bike, and like so many Surly models is designed to offer max versatility and allow the rider to try new things. It is based on the geometry of the popular Karate Monkey (my first 29er) but boasts fitament for just about any drivetrain, racks, fenders, BOB Nuts, Anything Cages, cantilever brakes or discs. Whew, that’s a lot of braze-ons. The Ogre is a great bike for somebody getting into bikepacking, any maybe would like to experiment with some different configurations. Leonard spec’d his bike with … Continue reading Leonard’s Surly Ogre