Thursday, April 27, 2017

Muddy Onion Gravel Ride 2017, Montpelier, VT

I'd have to say, by all accounts, the 2017 Muddy Onion gravel ride presented by Onion River Sports was a success.

Perfect weather, great course, excellent support and an all-around great vibe for the nearly 600 riders.

Jean and I had done this ride last year and it really set the tone for gravel rides for the remainder of 2016, and since then, we've been looking forward to this year's event. Read More

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Gravel Knowledge

So, you're thinking about participating in a gravel ride, or, as the kids call 'em, a "Gravel Grinder."

Maybe you're wondering, "how do I prepare?"
Or, "what are the best tires?"
Perhaps, "do I need a gravel bike?"
Well, read on to become enlightened...

Friday, April 14, 2017

My Bad Habit

Cannondale Bad Habit 1
Cannondale hasn’t been a stranger around my house, but for the most part, it’s been my wife who’s been the fan-girl. I’ve owned one C'dale, an F500 which was ultimately used primarily for cyclocross racing and some off-road duathlons. And while I’ve had that one, my wife has had (or still has) a Scalpel, Rush, Habit, R1000, 1FG, and SL 2...

Anyway, I’ve been looking to fill a gap in my quiver and I’ve been intrigued by the whole 27.5+ segment since renting one in Santa Cruz last year. With that in mind, the Bad Habit has been on my radar ever since my friend Glen sent me one of those “check this out,” text messages.

Sunday, March 12, 2017


It's almost the middle of March and the weather is still nasty, with a wind chill today estimated at well below zero F and a blizzard or winter storm coming along in a couple of days. Damn.

Between the weather, and my schedule for the first couple of months of 2017, I've been sorely missing my bike(s). My schedule has not only kept me off the bike, but it's also been getting way of putting together any good content for the site. Double damn. Read on...

Monday, January 9, 2017

Dreaming of Warmer Weather

As I delve deeper and deeper into winter survival mode, I think back fondly on a great trip the wife and I took to Tortola in the British Virgin Island a couple of years ago. Aside from almost drowning, it was a great trip.... Not a mountain bike destination per se, but the riding was fun and the weather was warm!

Friday, December 30, 2016

Obligatory 2016 Year End Post

'Tis the season to post a year-end "Best Of" list or re-cap. Not to be left out, I've decided to follow the crowd and do the same. Mostly because I do enjoy taking a look back and thinking about my past full trip around the sun.

First off, I took LOTS of photos (Instagram)...

I didn't ride as much as I would have liked... I don't think I *could* ride as much as I would like, not with that pesky job getting in the way. But, looking back, I did have some great rides, and quality always trumps quantity.

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

MTB Video Reviewzzzzz...

Well, it's that time of year when I can get caught up with my TV and movie watching because I'll be putting some time in on the rollers.

I'm NOT a fan of winter nor winter sports. You can keep your skis, snowshoes, snowboards, fat bikes and everything else, I'll be inside bitching. And I'm okay with that.

For the past couple of year however, I've had a really hard time finding any good MTB videos to watch.

ChainSmoke, from the mid-90's was one of the first videos, and still fun to watch.  And then the New World Disorder series of videos in the early 2000's were a blast too.

And then, it seems, things got lame. (read more)

Friday, December 2, 2016

The Freaks Come Out At Night

Night Mountain Biking
It’s the time of year when the days are short, the nights are chilly, and the trails are still calling. It’s time for night rides.

I was thinking about writing something about night riding and then I remembered that I had done some articles on the subject a few years ago… make that about 17 years ago! I published a couple of articles in 1999 on the subject, in Men’s Health and Fitness and MetroSports Boston.

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Precious Pressure

I spend a good amount of my time at work worrying about pressure. Specifically blood pressure. I can let pressure that's a bit too high slide for a bit there are usually more problems with pressure that's too low. I think it's the same for bike tires. Too high might decrease traction, but too low will make a bike feel like it's not tracking right. And, if it's too low and you run tubes, you've got a higher risk of getting pinch flats. Too low on a tubeless set up and you can "burp" more air out of the tire and break the seal at the rim/bead. There's a sweet spot for tire (and blood) pressure, and sudden loss of pressure  isn't good in either situation.

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Rose Mountain Rumble

Rose Mountain Rumble Gravel Ride
Another gravel ride is in the books, and I'm happy to say that I had a great ride at this year's Rose Mountain Rumble!

Awesome route and awesome weather... what more could a rider ask for?

My buddies Jason and Dave had done this ride last year and they raved about it.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Running or Riding?

Runners just might be smarter than bikers...

I've been thinking back to when I had injured my hand; I couldn’t hold my handlebars and I needed to find another way to get my endorphin fix. I’ve been running off and on for years, but this was the first time that it was my sole (pun) source of exercise and trail time.

We all know that you can burn more calories running in a short time and that running promotes bone health better than cycling, but it wasn’t the physiological aspects that caused this revelation, it was just the beautiful simplicity of the sport.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Bikes are good, friends are better.

I've got two sets of friends in my life, my "bike" friends and then some other people that I know. Not that there is anything wrong with my non-bike friends, they are all great people. But there is something special about my biker buddies. It's like we all share a great secret, and every time someone gets on a bike and gets hooked on riding, we know that now they know the secret too. Read more...

Sunday, August 7, 2016

WTB Valcon Saddle Review

WTB Valcon pro saddle
Don't ya hate it when there's a product you like but then a company discontinues it?

I've been a fan of WTB products since SST saddles and Velociraptor tires (1999?), so I wasn't surprised the be happy with the fit and feel of the Valcon.

The Pro version is 135mm wide which makes it super easy to negotiate when getting back behind the saddle. No, I don't have a dropper post, and no, my frame's 27.2 seat tube won't accommodate one.

Friday, July 29, 2016

Mainly Maine

Travel Trailer Camping in Georgetown Maine
Back to Maine again? Yes, this is our third trip to Maine this summer (Acadia National Park and Bradbury Mountain State Park) as we try to get some use out of our travel trailer.  This trip was to Georgetown Island, sort of near Bath.

We didn't have a specific agenda in mind, and didn't even bring the mountain bikes! Our main plan was to hang out with our friends James & Jessica and just enjoy the Maine coast line.

As is almost always the case, we didn't get on the road as early as we had hoped on Friday morning but go to our destination without incident.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

North Conway, NH

I really need to spend some more time riding in North Conway. The trails are awesome and I have a skinny younger brother who seems to enjoy reminding me that it's damn flat on my home trails.

Spending the majority of the time riding in the Boston area, I develop a false sense of security. I feel comfortable riding just about everything on my fully rigid single speed, and then when I occasionally hit some gnar in New Hampshire I start thinking about how I can get "just one more low gear" on my bike and how I can eek out a little more travel in the suspension.

Friday, July 22, 2016

The Quest for the Elusive Cassette

Had QUITE the journey to convert my wife's bike to a 1x10 with one of e13's extended range cogs and a Race Face wide/narrow chainring. I've done this on a few bikes already and the process only takes about an hour total...

I had done my research and ordered a 40t cog compatible with the Shimano cassette which was already on the bike. Upon the cog's arrival, I found that a special tool was required to remove the crank arms. D'oh! I have two huge Craftsman rolling tool chests full of bike tools, but I love needing one more special tool that only does one thing on one bike. Argh.

I headed up to Riverside Cycles, a local Cannondale dealer about 45 min away. They had the tool and had me on my way in only a couple of minutes, but that still took almost 2hrs. I did ask them to order one of the tools for me also. There's always room for more in my workshop. Read more...