Thursday, January 29, 2009

more haven

A little video thrown together from our evening at Haven on 1-25

Here's the direct link to the video

Just had an amazing day snowboarding at Park City here in Utah. We hiked up off of Jupiter lift for quite a while. Got thigh-deep fresh tracks and many of them too! Two more days of riding Utah pow-pow. Then I come back to the east coast.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Haven SkatePark - Fixed with 700x23c

Tony Tyrant rented out Haven Skate Park last night with the financial donations from all of us at the Ghostship Collective and EC Scorchers.

I have no skatepark bike (yet) so I opted to tag along and pretend like I know how to take photos with my little point-and-shoot. I felt uncomfortable next to some of my friends with crazy SLRs (Tony, Drew, etc..).

After a brief while, Drew decided he was going to snap some photos so I borrowed his fixed gear to see what this fixed gear 'freestyle' is all about. Weird at first but I quickly got the hang of riding a brake-less fixed gear in a skate park. Ironically, I felt more comfortable on this bike and any other bike I've ridden [in a skatepark]. So comfortable that I began dropping lips and small gaps. Kept trying to bunny hop the pyramid box but couldn't quite get my speed fast enough. Did some wall rides but really liked the wooden pseudo bowl and the quarter pipe transitions. Rode the halfpipe a bit.

myself - trying out the 650c front wheel

decided to go back to 700c with some nice toe-overlap
Drew was partial to his new 650c wheel but I had full reign to destroy the 700c wheels if such a thing happened (it didn't, no matter how loose the spoke tension was)

Was it the handlebar mustache? Was it the Ghostship T-Shirt? Was it just the enjoyment of riding a bicycle? I think it was the fact that I couldn't rest. I was always pedaling and had to focus on what is next and do things in succession. This is how I ride snowboard parks. I can't just sit and stare at an obstacle. I have to ride it and be in my 'zone'. My mind works best that way.

Gary (co-owner of Pedal Power bicycle shop) laying out a nice turn-down

EC Scorcher Dan - fixed wheelie

EC Scorcher Sean - a nice fixed bunnyhop

Haven had a little bit of a rodent problem which Scorcher Drew did not take a liking to.

myself - a little bowl action

Mike Stock from the Ghostship Collective - killing it with a nice table on the wall-ride

myself - one of my favorite moves I figured out that night

More pictures reside here and also here.

More entries on the Scorchers blog

It was a ton of fun. We had a great collection of BMX riders, 26inch wheeled riders and fixies. We all rode well together and I thought it was a wonderful time.

Saturday, January 24, 2009


mailed it on on Tuesday the 20th.

Sunday, January 18, 2009


Thanks Bruce.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

don't cross those skis

We opted to go cross country skiing tonight rather than mountain biking since the woods are all snow-covered. A nice 2hrs of trying to figure out how to cross country ski (never done it before). Borrowed equipment from 'Shred and Glenn. Thanks guys.

When borrowing equipment you're always at the mercy of what is provided: one or two sizes too large in the boots and poles a tad too long. I made the best of what I had.

Well, the whole evening was interesting to say the least. I learned how to alpine ski back in '01-'02. Was only on the snow for about an hour or so at that time but picked up parallel turns and such. Being an avid snowboarder it took me a bit this evening to get use to my legs wanting to go in different directions. Crossed my skis a few times. Once that was figured out things seemed pretty good.

After about half an hour or so I figured out the basics. Had a nice rhythm on the flats and rolling terrain. Struggled a bit on the inclines. Still don't know if my struggling going uphill was my form, too large boots or the skis themselves. Lets blame it on my form for argument's sake. I realized late in the game that forward momentum is your friend. Without this I had trouble getting up some of the steeper inclines.

The descents were quite exciting. I remembered how to edge with skis and used that to control speed. Don't lean back. Leaning back is your enemy. Naturally, I went down a few times but overall I felt I did quite well. Think I'll do alright when I eventually learn how to telemark ski (something I want to do someday).

Coming up on 2hrs of skiing my feet started bothering me. Guess the large boots weren't helping since I felt like all my ski control was going through my toes rather than the ball of my foot.

So, if you know of any cross country ski equipment for sale let me know. I would like to do more of if this winter. Boot size is around a euro 47.

Thursday, January 01, 2009

pisgah - day 3

Happy New Year! What a better way to ring in the new year than an epic mountain bike ride in Pisgah National Forest down here in North Carolina?

Ohio Robb and I met up with a whole slew of locals that included the likes of Bruce, the man behind Pisgah Works, as well Justin and many others. I met these guys back at the SSWC08 out in California.

There were eleven (11) of us in all ready to embark on an epic journey. Seven of us were on singlespeeds. Six of those seven were fully rigid. My last jaunt through Pisgah on this trip. ETA for a re-arrival is yet to be determined but I can guarantee that I'll be back. I have had so much fun, ridden some amazing terrain and met some great and super cool people that I can not just disappear. Besides, I've always loved Asheville and the surrounding area(s).

The pedals started turning around 12:30 and it was a bit chilly. Probably upper 30s but the wind was nonexistent unlike yesterday. Not even 15minutes into the ride and we're climbing. I knew we'd be climbing for a while but did not realize 'a while' meant a few hours. Regardless, I was ready for an epic ride and stoked to be out riding Pisgah for the third day in a row.

Here is a zoom-out showing the neighboring towns and such..

total elevation gain: 7,448ft
total distance traveled: 25miles
ride time: around 4.5hrs including stops
temperature: 39F
gearing: 32x21

Maybe halfway up the first climb. I'm following Bruce.

Robb rocking the T6 jersey.

Three quarters of the way up Old Toll we caught a nice vista.
looking southwest I believe

That ridge behind Robb... That was our descent: Heartbreak. Took another 20-30minutes after this photo to climb up to the top before we dropped in Heartbreak.


That is Chris on the left and Marshall on the right.

The TOP!
2.5hrs of rocky doubletrack climbing up Old Toll. I think this is around 5200ft above sea level. We started around 2300ft. It was COLD up there and my feet were beginning to freeze. I layered just ride to keep my clothes from getting completely wet from perspiration so as long as I as moving I was warm.

Dunno how those campers got up there but I've been told they are used for the hunters.

about 30ft down Old Toll from the previous photo. Bruce is getting some water.

Time to drop down into Heartbreak. I aired down my tires to give me some form of suspension seeing as I was riding fully rigid. I think my tubeless tires went from 30psi at the start down to around 15psi for this descent. It was weird riding with such little air pressure but the Stan's sealant held and the bike felt good.

After some descending I stopped to snap some shots of where we came from:

Waay up there on that ridge.

break time. Turns out Chris double flatted so Robb was helping him while we were hanging out in the shade (and I was pretty damn cold).

A few turns later we're on the west side of the ridge and the sun is helping warm us up.


The bottom...

From here we had a gentle climb up a fire road to the tune of about 2500 vertical feet. A few left turns later we're back at the cars. Time is around 5pm-ish.

Awesome! I had so much fun today. Thank You everyone! I had so much fun the past two weeks. Thank you Robb and everyone else for their hospitality. Gonna have to do it again soon.