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Life on the road with the IMBA Trail Care Crew

Life on the road with the IMBA Trail Care Crew

By Lani Bruntz Everyday it happens like clockwork: I meet another rider on the trail, or am just pumping gas, and I get asked, “So, where do you live?” I still stumble over the answer, which usually ends up being, “On the road,” or, “In that there Subaru.” Before I can explain, I am interrupted with, ...


2014 Dirt Rag Literature Contest: ‘Everything Flowed’

2014 Dirt Rag Literature Contest: ‘Everything Flowed’

Editor’s note: Each year Dirt Rag solicits readers’ fiction, essays and poetry in our annual Literature Contest. In Issue #182 of Dirt Rag you’ll find the winner of our 2014 Literature Contest, but we received many submissions worth sharing, so we will be posting some of the finalists here over the next few weeks. We hope ...


Inside Line: New SRAM GX group offers 1×11, 2×11 or 2×10 versions

Inside Line: New SRAM GX group offers 1×11, 2×11 or 2×10 versions

SRAM’s latest drivetrain component set not only offers an even lower price barrier to 1×11 shifting, it’s available in a new 2×11 shifting option for the first time, as well as a 2×10 version. The GX components are largely designed with trickle-down technologies pioneered in the XX1, XO1 and X1 groupsets and it slots in between X1 and ...


Blast From the Past: The Boyfriend

Blast From the Past: The Boyfriend

Editor’s note: This “Last Chance for Gas” story by Amy Szczepanik first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #116, published in August 2005. Art by Olivia Edith. My athletic life is divided into two eras: before him and after him. Before him, I was an all-around athlete participating in mainly team sports: basketball, softball and volleyball. ...


Trek Factory Racing introduces 2015 enduro roster

Trek Factory Racing introduces 2015 enduro roster

Photos courtesy of Trek Bikes Back-to-back Enduro World Series champion Trek Factory Racing returns with with eyes focused on an unprecedented three-peat in 2015. The team’s European-based squad consists of 2013 and 2014 series champion Tracy Moseley (GBR), Rene Wildhaber (SUI), and Justin Leov (NZL). American enduro power-couple Jeremy Horgan-Kobelski (USA) and Heather Irmiger (USA) ...


Enter to win a free pair of Paul Components quick release skewers

Enter to win a free pair of Paul Components quick release skewers

Paul Components has been making the highest quality parts and accessories in California for more than 25 years. One of its first products was a quick release skewer and this week we’re excited to give away a pair to a lucky Dirt Rag reader. The stainless steel shafts screw into orange 7075 aluminum heads, which are ovalized ...


First Impression: Kona Process 134 SE and 134 DL

First Impression: Kona Process 134 SE and 134 DL

By Emily Walley and Justin Steiner Kona launched its Process line of enduro bikes back in 2014 with the 111, 134 and 153, with each of the numeric model names referring to the bike’s rear wheel travel in millimeters. The 134 and 153 were initially available at two price points, with just one price point ...


Inside Line: Fox unveils new Float 34 fork and DPS Float shock

Inside Line: Fox unveils new Float 34 fork and DPS Float shock

We’ve ridden a lot Fox 34 forks and Float CTD rear shocks and they’ve been reliable performers that just needed a few changes to really bring them to the next level. While you could send your suspension bits away for tweaking, it seems that Fox has been paying attention to what riders are after, and updated the ...


Inside Line: SRAM releases new four-piston Guide Ultimate brakes

Inside Line: SRAM releases new four-piston Guide Ultimate brakes

SRAM went back to the drawing board when it designed the Guide brake series introduced last year. We tested and reviewed the RSC model and found they are vastly improved over previous SRAM/Avid designs. The new Guide Ultimate model takes the design a step further with a slightly revised caliper and carbon fiber lever arms. ...


The Adventure Diaries: ABSA Cape Epic Stages 4-5

The Adventure Diaries: ABSA Cape Epic Stages 4-5

Dusty desert riding Stage four in Worcester (a city in the Western Cape) was long and hot with tons of dust, as is common late summer on the desert side of the mountains. We started hard. Matthys Beukes and his teammate Phillip Buys from Scott factory Racing nailed the first climb hard and got a ...


Velocity USA’s Wheel Department now offering American-made wheels

Velocity USA’s Wheel Department now offering American-made wheels

A few years ago Velocity moved all its rim production from Australia to the United States and became Velocity USA, building rims in its Jacksonville, Florida, factory and lacing them by hand in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Now it’s paired with North Carolina’s Industry Nine components to offer an American-made wheelset from its in-house Wheel Department. ...


2014 Dirt Rag Literature Contest: ‘The Cup’

2014 Dirt Rag Literature Contest: ‘The Cup’

Editor’s note: Each year Dirt Rag solicits readers’ fiction, essays and poetry in our annual Literature Contest. In Issue #182 of Dirt Rag you’ll find the winner of our 2014 Literature Contest, but we received many submissions worth sharing, so we will be posting some of the finalists here over the next few weeks. We hope ...


Blast From the Past: The Knife Sharpener

Blast From the Past: The Knife Sharpener

Editor’s note: This story by Jason Hyatt first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #108, published in July 2004. This photo shows one of two brothers who run a pedal-powered blade sharpening business in Rome, Italy. According to my mother-in-law, they visit a certain part of the city each week and have done so for many ...


Win a pair of Exustar clipless sandals

Win a pair of Exustar clipless sandals

Let your toes feel the rush of the wind as you wear your $99 Exustar SS503 clipless sandals on your ride to the beach, store, coffee shop or school. Three top straps secure your foot in the ultra-comfortable footbed, while the ankle strap provides a truly custom fit to these casual clip-in sandals. Enjoy the latest from the ...


Video: Mountain biking with Brendan Fairclough

Video: Mountain biking with Brendan Fairclough

It might not be the Alps or Whistler, but riding your favorite hometown trails again and again is what mountain biking is all about. For Brendan Fairclough it’s heading out into the Surrey Hills with his Scott Genius 700.


The Adventure Diaries: ABSA Cape Epic Prologue and Stages 1-3

The Adventure Diaries: ABSA Cape Epic Prologue and Stages 1-3

Here we go The Table Mountain Prologue was a short, intense and exciting opener to the Cape Epic. In this team time trial, my Topeak Ergon Racing teammate Robert Mennen and I nabbed ninth place. The exhilaration of racing in the world’s biggest mountain bike race, with a TV helicopter shadowing you along the cliff-side, ...


Video: Pivot’s Eliot Jackson shreds Queenstown

Video: Pivot’s Eliot Jackson shreds Queenstown

Summer is coming to an end in New Zealand, but that means Pivot Cycles’ Eliot Jackson is in great shape for Crankworx Rotura this week and the World Cup downhill circuit beyond. Get your Monday morning moving with this video of him tearing up the Queenstown trails aboard his Pivot Phoenix Carbon DH.


2014 Dirt Rag Literature Contest: ‘The Sleepy Girls of Hurricane Creek’

2014 Dirt Rag Literature Contest: ‘The Sleepy Girls of Hurricane Creek’

Editor’s note: Each year Dirt Rag solicits readers’ fiction, essays and poetry in our annual Literature Contest. In Issue #182 of Dirt Rag you’ll find the winner of our 2014 Literature Contest, but we received many submissions worth sharing, so we will be posting some of the finalists here over the next few weeks. We hope ...


First Impression: Pivot Mach 429SL

First Impression: Pivot Mach 429SL

The new carbon Mach 429SL from Pivot Cycles shaves half a pound off the previous frame to come in at a very respectable 5.3 pounds. Match that to 100 mm of potent dw-link controlled suspension and this venerable favorite becomes even more attractive. New hollow-core carbon technology from Pivot not only reduces weight but also increases ...


Sombrio launches Luxury of Dirt video series and contest

Sombrio launches Luxury of Dirt video series and contest

Sombrio and its athletes are launching a new video series and fans are invited to participate. The Luxury of Dirt series highlights their passion for life on two wheels through four episodes focusing on Sombrio Cartel athletes. Fans can contribute their own stories and enter to win some serious prizes, including a trip to British ...


Video: Felt Bikes’ Double Dare

Video: Felt Bikes’ Double Dare

The Double Double is Felt’s all-conditions fat tire bike with 80mm drilled out rims and 26 x 4” tires.  The responsive aluminum frame with a custom hydroform fork, plus Shimano’s 20-speed XT shifters and Deore disc brakes, makes the bike capable of rolling over anything. From powdery snow, to loose sand, to loamy dirt, the ...


Ned Overend and Todd Wells host first Durango Dirt Fondo

Ned Overend and Todd Wells host first Durango Dirt Fondo

The legendary Ned Overend and his Specialized teammate, multi-time, multi-disciplined USA National Champion Todd Wells, are teaming up to present the first Durango Dirt Fondo. The two D-town locals are inviting 500 guests to join them in their backyard on September 12 for a mountain bike adventure that will feature challenging single-track that has served ...


Win a copy of Fat Tire Flyer

Win a copy of Fat Tire Flyer

They were pioneers—creative and courageous. Before Dirt Rag, before the term “mountain bikes” even existed, Gary Fisher, Tom Ritchey, Joe Breeze and others were chronicled in Charlie Kelly’s Fat Tire Flyer. Now collected into a book, it is the true, complete and often unbelievable story of the creation of the sport we all love. This ...


Inside Line: RockShox and SRAM introduce Boost components

Inside Line: RockShox and SRAM introduce Boost components

The new product news continues to roll in, with SRAM and RockShox releasing a pile of new parts related to the new Boost axle standards. Boost 110 Both the 27.5 and 29-inch versions of the Pike, Reba and SID are being made available with a new 110×15 axle standard. The wider forks will allow for the ever-growing tires ...


Inside Line: WTB adds more 27.5+ tires and rims, plus new lightweight saddle

Inside Line: WTB adds more 27.5+ tires and rims, plus new lightweight saddle

WTB was one of the first out of the gate with products in the new 27.5+ category, specifically rims and tires for a 27.5×3.0 (or so) wheel and tire combo. The new Bridger 3.0 27.5+ is aimed squarely at the aggressive trail and enduro market, and should pair up nicely with the Fox 34 released ...


Access Action: Portland, we still have a problem

Access Action: Portland, we still have a problem

Editor’s note: We will be updating this post at the bottom as news develops. Photos by Adam Newman Portland, Oregon, has a reputation as a progressive and welcoming city for cyclists. It has one of the highest rates of bicycle commuting in the country and it supports a huge road and cyclocross race scene. In ...


Finding new limits at the VIDA MTB women’s skills clinic series

Finding new limits at the VIDA MTB women’s skills clinic series

Photos by Emily Walley and Justin Steiner. The VIDA MTB Series is a multi-city women’s clinic tour spearheaded by Sarah Rawley and Elena Forchielli that evolved out of the Beti Bike Clinics of 2013 and 2014. The Sedona MTB Festival was the debut of the VIDA MTB Series and the first of five stops for 2015. ...


The Adventure Diaries: Jeremiah Bishop starts the season

The Adventure Diaries: Jeremiah Bishop starts the season

By Jeremiah Bishop This winter, I have been training like a blacksmith making armor for an epic battle looming on the horizon. So I was eager when it was finally time to travel to the first race in mid-February. I was headed for the Andalucía Bike Race in southern Spain. With so many weeks spent ...


Trail Tested: Kona Process 111 DL

Trail Tested: Kona Process 111 DL

The Process 111 is the shortest of travel and biggest of wheel in Kona’s lineup of enduro bikes. Focusing on a slight 111mm of rear suspension and 29-inch wheels, it’s easy to wonder how an XC bike ended up with the longer-travel 27.5 offerings, which includes the Process 134 and 153. But, taken as a ...


Dirt Rag Issue #183 is here

Dirt Rag Issue #183 is here

On the cover Seeking adventure with your best friend by Ryan Creary. The Dirt and Readings Check out exclusive stories and images of Dirt Rag’s mountain bike trip to Israel by Stephen Haynes and the Singletrack 6 stage race in British Columbia by Barry Wicks. Plus, Catching Up With Seamus Powell and a classic Bontrager trials bike ...


A Ride Through Time – A Dirt Rag special feature

A Ride Through Time – A Dirt Rag special feature

By Stephen Haynes. Photographs by Alon Ron and the author Music from an unseen collection of folk instruments echoes down the cramped, dark alley as we make our way steadily towards its origin. David’s Gate is at our back, having crossed the threshold into another dimension. We were told you must enter the gate on our ...


Revamped Sedona MTB Fest welcomes riders with sunny skies, new trails

Revamped Sedona MTB Fest welcomes riders with sunny skies, new trails

Photos by Jeff Swigart, Michael Raney, Emily Walley and the author. There’s no denying the pull of Sedona’s aura for mountain bikers. Aside from being on nearly every “top 10” list of mountain biking destinations in North America, we all recognize the mystique of the city’s gorgeous red rock landscape and copious singletrack. As such, ...


Inside Line: 2016 Fox Float 34 Fork for 27.5+ Tires

Inside Line: 2016 Fox Float 34 Fork for 27.5+ Tires

Fox kicks off the 2016 product news with an announcement that may signal widespread industry acceptance of the plus size tire as something more than an oddity: A Fox Factory 34 fork for 27.5+ tires. Fox claims plenty of clearance for tires up to 27.5 x 3.25, travel from 110 mm to 150 mm, 51 ...


Blast From the Past: The Shaming of the True

Blast From the Past: The Shaming of the True

Editor’s note: This story first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #122, published in July 2006. Words by Bill Ketzer. Art by Kevin Nierman. “I find your lack of faith disturbing.” – Darth Vader This year sucked for riding. It wasn’t the weather. In fact, the pestilent, blistering hellfires of July and August the gods bequeathed ...


The best and worst of NAHBS in photos

The best and worst of NAHBS in photos

Being around the industry as long as I have I know a lot of people, many of whom congregate once a year in a different location to look at the fashionshow we call The North American Handmade Bicycle Show. Where artisan framebuilders show off their latest and greatest creations, which are judged and given giant ...


Win a Hurricane Mountain Bike Festival Stay & Ride Package

Win a Hurricane Mountain Bike Festival Stay & Ride Package

Enter to win hotel accommodations and two Hurricane Mountain Bike Festival passes (March 27-29). There will be live music, a beer garden, demo bikes, western style contests (practice your barrel riding) and good trails. Vendors include: Felt Bicycles, Osprey, Knolly, Club Ride, Rocky Mountain, Ibis, BMC, KTM, Ellsworth and much more. Want more information, visit www.hurricanemtbfestival.com. To enter the contest, fill ...


Field Tested: Blackburn Outpost front rack

Field Tested: Blackburn Outpost front rack

Since the 1970s Blackburn has been making high quality touring equipment that has traveled the world over. A resurgence in the popularity of touring in recent years has led to a renaissance in products from the brand, including the new Outpost front rack. Unlike traditional low-rider racks that mount to dedicated eyelets, the Outpost can ...


Introducing the new Juliana-SRAM women’s mountain bike team

Introducing the new Juliana-SRAM women’s mountain bike team

Photos by Gary Perkin and David Smith. Juliana Bicycles has announced the launch of the new Juliana-SRAM Professional Mountain Bike Team. Anka Martin (RSA) is joined by Kelli Emmett (USA) and Sarah Leishman (CAN) to complete a trio of female athletes who will be racing the Enduro World Series and select international events in 2015. A ...


Trail Talk With Cush – Camping and racing

Trail Talk With Cush – Camping and racing

I’m not sure about camping these days. I used to camp in the desert a lot on dirt bike trips but more often than not it was in a tent or the back of my pickup next to my parent’s motorhome so, while I could say I was roughing it, I had all the necessities ...


First Impressions: Trek 720 Disc light adventure touring

First Impressions: Trek 720 Disc light adventure touring

For decades Trek has offered its model 520 steel touring model, specced with bar-end shifters, a rear rack, braze-ons for fenders and low-rider front rack, and clearance for chubby tires to tackle any terrain. For 2015, two new models are joining it in Trek stores: the rugged 920 adventure bike and the lightweight 720, both made ...


Blast From the Past: À la flahute

Blast From the Past: À la flahute

Editor’s note: This story first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #101, published in July 2003. Words by flexiflyer. Art by Rudi Nadler. … I always lose my hours in the driver’s seat … —Radar Bros. “Distant Mine” The old-school guys were tough as hell. There were Flandrian diesels that rode 200 km a day, every ...


Introduction to Project 27Plus – WTB Scraper rims and Panaracer Fat B Nimble tires

Introduction to Project 27Plus – WTB Scraper rims and Panaracer Fat B Nimble tires

If the past decade is any indication, there may soon be as many tire sizes as there are gears in a cassette (though that is also growing year after year). 26 is too small. 29 is too big. 3.7 isn’t fat enough. 4.8 is too fat. Where will it end? Perhaps it never will, but Dirt ...


Santa Cruz Mountain Bike Festival returns April 11-12

Santa Cruz Mountain Bike Festival returns April 11-12

Mountain Bikers Of Santa Cruz (MBOSC) is proud to announce the Santa Cruz Mountain Bike Festival returns for its sixth annual event on April 11-12, 2015. The Santa Cruz Mountain Bike Festival (SCMBF) is the premier mountain biking event for Santa Cruz County. Featuring an impressive array of cycling inspired events and resources, the festival ...


Barry Wicks: Searching through stage racing

Barry Wicks: Searching through stage racing

By Barry Wicks. Photos by John Gibson/Gibson Pictures. When I first started racing bikes, my mom used to drive me to races in her blue Dodge minivan. My bike, my most prized possession, would be carefully tucked into the back seat, protected from scratches and the elements. We would listen to the alt-rock station or ...


Trail Tested: SRAM Guide RSC brakes

Trail Tested: SRAM Guide RSC brakes

 The long awaited change to SRAM’s brake line is finally here. Don’t look for the Avid name or the usual XX or X0 style designations, the new brakes are named SRAM Guide, and model level is identified by features rather than drivetrain family. We received one of the first sets available back in May ...


Friend or Flow: Are trails being too “dumbed down?”

Friend or Flow: Are trails being too “dumbed down?”

Words by Sarah Galbraith. Photos by Tristan Von Duntz. The notion of flow exists in all kinds of sports,” says Mark Eller, Mountain bikers have, of late, seen the development of communications director with the International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA). Eller has worked in skiing, snowboarding, surfing, and climbing, and now mountain biking. He points out ...


Enter to win a free Strider kids balance bike

Enter to win a free Strider kids balance bike

Balance bikes are a great introduction to learning to ride. They teach balance, gliding, and how to start the initial forward movement on a bike, unlike training wheels that teach children to start with both feet on the pedals. If you’ve got a little tyke at home, or know of one who needs a ride, ...


Oregon’s Disciples of Dirt promote trailwork with a friendly challenge

Oregon’s Disciples of Dirt promote trailwork with a friendly challenge

Video courtesy of KMTR News Cycling can be a competitive pastime, but trailwork days are one time when everyone can come together and unite to improve their experience. That doesn’t mean a little friendly competition can’t still have a role to play however, as the Disciples of Dirt in Oregon demonstrated. Last month the club, based ...


Trail Tested: Shimano XTR Race brakes

Trail Tested: Shimano XTR Race brakes

By Eric McKeegan The Trail version of Shimano’s excellent XTR stoppers gets all the attention, but there is a Race version that deserves some attention as well. The power and control of the Trail brakes are well documented, but we’ve never had a chance to put the Race version through its paces, until now. Visually ...


Whiskey Off-Road and Grand Junction Off-Road expand festivals with headlining acts

Whiskey Off-Road and Grand Junction Off-Road expand festivals with headlining acts

Courtesy of Epic Rides Today Epic Rides announced headlining musical acts for the 12th Annual Whiskey Off-Road on April 24-26 and the 3rd Annual Grand Junction Off-Road presented by U.S. Bank on May 29-31. Music and mountain bikes create lasting memories, which is why Epic Rides events bring both together in a weekend-long experience that’s ...


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