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Specialty Files: 1982 Fat Chance

Specialty Files: 1982 Fat Chance

Words and photos by Jeff Archer In the world of vintage mountain bikes, the 2014 Interbike show was an exciting event. The annual Mountain Bike Hall of Fame induction ceremony had some company this year with the debut of the Fat Tire Flyer book, written by Charlie Kelly, which chronicles his take on the birth of ...


Field Tested: Trek Lync 5 commuter bike

Field Tested: Trek Lync 5 commuter bike

So, you’re kinda still married to riding that old Trek carbon racer from 1998, the one with the garish red, white and blue graphics and a Shimano rear shifter that doesn’t work that well anymore? While it was fun watching you-know-who dominate the Tour de France for seven consecutive years, it’s time to step up ...


Shimano unveils revamped Acera line

Shimano unveils revamped Acera line

In its unending march of product development, Shimano has announced its latest Acera line of mountain bike and trekking components will feature many of its technologies that once debuted at a higher price point. The new M3000 series features a new compact triple crank, the introduction of the Shadow rear derailleur design, and shifters that stand ...


Mountain biking in Vermont continues to grow with new trails in ski areas, national forests

Mountain biking in Vermont continues to grow with new trails in ski areas, national forests

Courtesy of Sarah Galbraith, Ambassador to Vermont Mountain Bike Association. Photos courtesy of the VMBA.  When most folks think of Vermont they might think of maple syrup and skiing, but the Green Mountain State has seen an explosion in mountain biking in recent years. The Vermont Mountain Bike Association is leading the charge thanks to a ...


Blast From the Past: Gus’s Last Ride

Blast From the Past: Gus’s Last Ride

Editor’s note: This story first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #158, published in August 2011. Words by Landon and Mary Monholland. Illustrations by Ashely Swidowski. I give two excited dogs a whistle. I mimic the whistle of The General Lee from the “Dukes of Hazard”—ya know, the first 12 notes of “Dixie.” That’s the whistle ...


Join us Sunday, March 1, for the Ray’s indoor XC time trial

Join us Sunday, March 1, for the Ray’s indoor XC time trial

Feeling pretty sluggish this time of year? It’s time to blast out the cobwebs with an indoor cross-country race at BOTH Ray’s Indoor Bike Park locations: Cleveland and Milwaukee. Both venues are tearing down walls, rerouting trails and creating a one-of-a-kind opportunity to get back on your bike and ride hard in a one-lap, time-trial ...


Trail Tested: Cannondale Trigger 27.5 Carbon Team

Trail Tested: Cannondale Trigger 27.5 Carbon Team

Cannondale designed the Trigger 27.5 Carbon Team to be the quintessential quiver killer—the one bike to replace all others hanging in your shed. Featuring a 140mm-travel carbon Lefty SuperMax fork and Fox DYAD adjustable rear suspension, the Trigger is meant to climb just as well as it descends and comfortably whisk you through everything from ...


Frostbike gallery and tech roundup, Part 2

Frostbike gallery and tech roundup, Part 2

Over the weekend we traveled to Quality Bicycle Products’ headquarters in Bloomington, Minnesota, to see what was new from their own brands and the brands they distribute to most of the local bike shops in America. e-Thirteen The LG1+ chainguide is one of e-Thirteen’s best selling products, and the new generation makes the popular gravity ...


Frostbike gallery and tech roundup, Part 1

Frostbike gallery and tech roundup, Part 1

Quality Bicycle Components is the largest bicycle products distributor in the U.S. and is the brand that supports nearly every bike shop in America. It owns several of its own brands and distributes dozens of others. We traveled to QBP’s home office and distribution warehouse in Bloomington, Minnesota, for FrostBike, its annual dealer show, to ...


Salsa introduces Powderkeg tandem 29er, plus redesigned Warbird gravel bike

Salsa introduces Powderkeg tandem 29er, plus redesigned Warbird gravel bike

Each year, Quality Bicycle Products, the parent company of Salsa (as well as Surly, All-City and others) hosts a dealer show at is Minnesota headquarters. Salsa took the opportunity to announce it would be officially offering a production version of the Powderkeg tandem that has been floating around in prototype form for years. Powderkeg Not ...


45NRTH unveils two new front/rear specific fat bike tires

45NRTH unveils two new front/rear specific fat bike tires

45NRTH is committed to pushing cold-weather cycling technology, and its latest two tires continue that trend, following closely behind the launch of the brand’s Ride Groomed website. The Flowbeist and Dunderbeist are front and rear specific, respectively, and measure out at 4.6 inches, a good middle ground that should fit a wide variety of fat ...


Zen Fabrication introduces new line of mountain, road and cyclocross bikes

Zen Fabrication introduces new line of mountain, road and cyclocross bikes

If you buy an American-made steel or aluminum frame and it isn’t from a small, boutique brand, there’s a good chance it was made in Portland, Oregon, by Zen Fabrication. Born from the ashes of Ellsworth’s U.S. manufacturing business and the withdrawal of the Sapa framebuilding enterprise, Zen has been building frames for other bike ...


Dirt Rag’s first test-ride on Shimano’s electronic XTR Di2: Part 2

Dirt Rag’s first test-ride on Shimano’s electronic XTR Di2: Part 2

This is Part 2 of my first real shakedown rides with the new Shimano XTR Di2 group. Read Part 1 here. In the span of just a few days since receiving the goods I was able to put almost 150 off-road miles on Shimano’s exciting new XTR Di2 electronic components. Here’s a rundown of how it ...


45NRTH launches website tracking groomed fat bike trails

45NRTH launches website tracking groomed fat bike trails

Riding fat bikes in the snow isn’t as simple as many folks might believe. Just like skiing, different conditions can make for vastly different experiences, as anyone who has pushed their bike while post-holing through deep snow can tell you. 45NRTH is hoping to help, with a new website called Ride Groomed that tracks trail ...


Blast From the Past: A slot machine made from bike parts

Blast From the Past: A slot machine made from bike parts

Editor’s Note: This story first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #131, published in October 2007. By Steinar Smith, with photos courtesy of the author. There was a New Mexico Off Road Series (NMORS) race down in Silver City called the Signal Peak Challenge on Aug. 19. When Barin Beard of Mimbres Man (a Silver City ...


Santa Cruz Stigmata returns, along with a refreshed Highball carbon

Santa Cruz Stigmata returns, along with a refreshed Highball carbon

Photos by Sven Martin. After much speculation, Santa Cruz dropped a somewhat unexpected pair of bikes on the public, with a return of the Stigmata cyclocross bike and a refreshed Highball carbon hardtail with new geometry and a second wheelsize. The bikes were introduced on the South Island of New Zealand, perhaps the most picturesque place I’ve ...


Trail clubs in Wisconsin embracing fat bikes

Trail clubs in Wisconsin embracing fat bikes

Courtesy of the Chequamegon Area Mountain Bike Association. Photos by Kelly Randolph. Through the efforts of a dedicated group of volunteers and enthusiasts, winter fat biking has really begun to take off in the Chequamegon area of northern Wisconsin. The most visible evidence is the Fat Bike Birkie, put on by the American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation ...


Ladies’ Last Hurrah to celebrate final weekend of Aptos jumps

Ladies’ Last Hurrah to celebrate final weekend of Aptos jumps

It’s the end of an era. The Aptos Post Office Jumps and the accompanying pump track in Aptos, California, are being razed in February. Earning notoriety for their death-defying vert doubles and the local kids that have grown up with these jumps—both the jumps and kids are now internationally-known entities. While on Saturday, February 14, ...


Blast From the Past: Machine Soul

Blast From the Past: Machine Soul

Editor’s note: Machine Soul first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #21, published in February 1992. Words by John Gurklis. Dirt Rag #21 cover art by Mark Tierney. This is defined as the ethereal component of the machine, in this context a bike. Machine soul is acquired as the rider’s mental energy becomes infused into the ...


Riding in the snow, the modern mud

Riding in the snow, the modern mud

By Harlan Price Snow riding today is all that’s left of the version of the chaotic two-wheel drifting we regularly did before trail stewards were abundant. Fortunately, some time riding the white-capped seas will benefit you in ways that only the traction-less trail can. A dirty little secret about this enlightened age of trail stewardship ...


Dirt Rag’s first test-ride on Shimano’s electronic XTR Di2: Part 1

Dirt Rag’s first test-ride on Shimano’s electronic XTR Di2: Part 1

Shimano unveiled its fleet of long-term test bikes for its revolutionary electronic XTR mountain bike shifting in sunny Palm Springs, California. My bike is the potent Pivot Mach 429 Carbon, which is one of the first available to be designed specifically for all internal Di2 wire routing as well as battery storage. After a few ...


Review: currexSole BikePro insoles

Review: currexSole BikePro insoles

If you think about it, the connection between your feet and the pedals is the most important between you and your bike. It’s where the power generated by your body becomes forward motion through the gears. Naturally cyclists spend a lot of attention on their shoes, but what is often overlooked is the insoles inside ...


Woodruff and Blevins to race as new Team Stan’s NoTubes-Niner

Woodruff and Blevins to race as new Team Stan’s NoTubes-Niner

   Chloe Woodruff, left, and Kaylee Blevins, right, have paired up on the brand new Team Stan’s NoTubes-Niner for 2015. The two American women got to know each other while they were traveling together to compete for the US National Team last year. “Team Stan’s NoTubes-Niner includes a more seasoned rider matched up with a ...


The Flow Zone introduces QR axle for Fox 36 forks

The Flow Zone introduces QR axle for Fox 36 forks

The latest generation of the Fox 36 fork is plenty versatile and capable, in all ways but one: fast wheel removable. The creative dropout design that can accommodate both 15mm and 20mm axles requires a tool to install and remove—not so fun when you get a flat out on the trail. The Flow Zone has a solution: ...


Sony unveils new 4k ActionCam

Sony unveils new 4k ActionCam

Sony has been pushing hard for a larger segment of the POV camera market in recent years and it’s confident that it can become a major player. The electronics company certainly has the brand recognition as well as a growing list of athletes and ambassadors. It hasn’t shied away from the comparisons to the GoPro juggernaut that’s been ...


Spring Break at the Sedona MTB Festival

Spring Break at the Sedona MTB Festival

With much of the country blanketed in snow and cold temperatures, it’s only natural our collective cabin fever has us dreaming of sunshine, warm temps and dry singletrack. Fortunately for all of us, the Sedona MTB Festival looks to be just the excuse to make the journey to the southwest for a long weekend of ...


2014 Dirt Rag Literature Contest: ‘Bandana Man’

2014 Dirt Rag Literature Contest: ‘Bandana Man’

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: Cannondale Rush 29 2

First Impression: Cannondale Rush 29 2

Editor’s note: This is one of six bikes we’ve gathered together that fall between $1,900 and $2,600. Read our introduction to see the other five and watch for our long-term reviews of each in Dirt Rag #182, due on newsstands and in mailboxes any day now. Subscribe now and you’ll never miss a bike review.   ...


Blast From the Past: Beer Me! — Brooklyn Pennant Ale

Blast From the Past: Beer Me! — Brooklyn Pennant Ale

Editor’s note: This “Beer Me” column, which was written by our good friend Max Kellogg, first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #107 in May 2004.   Perhaps the best perk about moonlighting in a hot dog/beer bar, besides all the bacon you can eat, is sooner or later you’ll have to sample some of the ...


First Impression: GT Helion Elite

First Impression: GT Helion Elite

Editor’s note: This is one of six bikes we’ve gathered together that fall between $1,900 and $2,600. Read our introduction to see the other five and watch for our long-term reviews of each in Dirt Rag #182, due on newsstands and in mailboxes any day now. Subscribe now and you’ll never miss a bike review. GT’s ...


Injured veterans invited to fifth Warrior 100k

Injured veterans invited to fifth Warrior 100k

Photo courtesy of the Bush Institute’s Military Service Initiative It’s hard to imagine mountain biking being a priority of the United States military, but without the sacrifice of men and women in uniform, it’s possible many of us would not be able to enjoy our favorite sport the way we do today. Former President George W. ...


Field Tested: Jamis Aurora Elite

Field Tested: Jamis Aurora Elite

The Aurora series has been part of the Jamis stable of bikes since the late 1990s and has included the Elite build since 2008. The Aurora Elite comes outfitted with all the basic building blocks for a bike that could be used in any number of ways: full aluminum fenders and aluminum rear rack, both painted ...


Issue #182 is Here!

Issue #182 is Here!

Get a copy of Dirt Rag #182 in our online store. On the cover Evening moodiness at sunset captured by Ian Hylands   The Dirt Mark Weir reflects on chasing the sunrise and why it’s the most motivating time to ride in. Ever wondered why mountain bike stage races cost so much? Trans-Sylvania Epic promoter ...


First Impression: KHS SixFifty 7200

First Impression: KHS SixFifty 7200

KHS was one of the first brands to wholeheartedly embrace 27.5 wheels, putting its first model on the market in 2009 and now offering 19 models across the line. It was able to do so because it is one of the largest manufacturers in the bike industry, building its own bikes as well as those ...


First Impression: Niner Jet 9 1-Star

First Impression: Niner Jet 9 1-Star

Editor’s note: This is one of six bikes we’ve gathered together that fall between $1,900 and $2,600. Read our introduction to see the other five and watch for our long-term reviews of each in Dirt Rag #182, due on newsstands and in mailboxes in February. Subscribe now and you’ll never miss a bike review. I picked ...


Blast From the Past: Pain

Blast From the Past: Pain

Editor’s note: The poem “Pain” by Philip Walter—with art by Jim Harris—originally appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #121, published in May 2006.   I’m racing down through unknown track and, I’ll admit, a bit too fast. The air is dry, the soil loose. Naught on my mind but rocks and roots. When suddenly the turn gets ...


First Impression: Kona Precept DL

First Impression: Kona Precept DL

Editor’s note: This is one of six bikes we’ve gathered together that fall between $1,900 and $2,600. Read our introduction to see the other five and watch for our long-term reviews of each in Dirt Rag #182, due on newsstands and in mailboxes in February. Subscribe now and you’ll never miss a bike review. Kona’s line ...


Review: 45NRTH Sturmfist Gloves and Jaztronaut Insoles

Review: 45NRTH Sturmfist Gloves and Jaztronaut Insoles

As you might expect with a name like 45NRTH, as in the 45th Parallel, this company knows a thing or two about cycling in extreme winter conditions. The Minneapolis-based brand was founded under the Quality Bicycle Products (QBP) umbrella back in 2011. 45NRTH’s initial product offerings were tires, but they’ve since branched out to offer ...


Shimano unveils 25th Anniversary SPD shoes and pedals

Shimano unveils 25th Anniversary SPD shoes and pedals

There are few products in mountain bike history as transformative as the Shimano SPD pedal system. In 1990 the very concept of clipless pedals was still new to cycling and most mountain bikers were still using hiking boots and flat pedals. While mountain bikes, shoes and pedals have transformed radically around it in the past quarter-century, the ...


Video: Mitch Ropelato shreds the Specialized Fatboy

Video: Mitch Ropelato shreds the Specialized Fatboy

Specialized’s enduro racer Mitch Ropelato is the latest to show the world what he can do with a fat bike, in this case Specialized’s Fatboy. Looks like it’s right at home just about anywhere.


Downhill unicycling on the highest mountain in Iran

Downhill unicycling on the highest mountain in Iran

After a decade of unicycling and three years of planning this attempt, Lutz Eichholz succeeded in the first unicycle descent from the 18,000-foot Mount Damavand in Iran. Despite problems with the elevation, injuries to the crew and temperatures that ranged from the teens to more than 100 degrees, the team achieved its goal.


First Impression: Giant Stance 27.5 1

First Impression: Giant Stance 27.5 1

Editor’s note: This is one of six bikes we’ve gathered together that fall between $1,900 and $2,600. Read our introduction to see the other five and watch for our long-term reviews of each in Dirt Rag #182, due on newsstands and in mailboxes in February. Subscribe now and you’ll never miss a bike review. Giant’s Stance ...


Join Dirt Rag for WoodFest at the Wheel Mill

Join Dirt Rag for WoodFest at the Wheel Mill

This time of year isn’t ideal for mountain biking in the Midwest, so we’ve become huge fans of the Wheel Mill in Pittsburgh, a massive indoor bike park with flow lines, jump lines, a pump track, a skills park, a foam pit and more. It’s the perfect antidote to the winter blues. This year on January ...


First Impression: Raleigh Clubman Disc

First Impression: Raleigh Clubman Disc

Editor’s note: Here at Bicycle Times we are as mindful of price as you are. So we gathered together a group of six very diverse bikes to showcase what you can find right now at the $1,000 price point. See our introduction here. Way back in issue #2, I reviewed the Raleigh Clubman (with rim ...


Blast From the Past: Pimped Reader Ride from 2003

Blast From the Past: Pimped Reader Ride from 2003

Editor’s note: The following reader letter appeared in Dirt Rag issue #116, published in February 2003. Hey Dirt Rag, Not too long ago, I decided that my perfectly good paint job of stock primer gray on my 2003 Bianchi S.I.S.S. was just too familiar. So in a quick decision, it was stripped, primed and painted ...


Elephant In The Room: The Great E-Bike Controversy

Elephant In The Room: The Great E-Bike Controversy

By Jeff Lockwood. Ilustrations by Stephen Haynes One should never dwell too deeply on any polarizing statement frivolously tapped out in the comments section of any online article or posting. The stunning language, poorly argued opinions, hilarious misspellings and ill-informed “facts” expressed by virtually anonymous people can boil the blood of even the most level-headed, stable ...


Kali Protectives unveils new Maya trail helmet

Kali Protectives unveils new Maya trail helmet

Not all foam is created equal. While all bicycle helmets sold in the United States have to pass the same safety regulations, there is a lot of room above and beyond those tests where impact absorption can be improved. Kali Protectives‘ Composite Fusion Plus technology uses a dual-layer foam construction better absorb impacts and help ...


Endurance legend Rebecca Rusch signs with Niner Bikes

Endurance legend Rebecca Rusch signs with Niner Bikes

Rebecca Rusch has announced she will be riding for Niner Bikes in 2015. This marks the end of a lengthy relationship with her former bike and equipment sponsor. Rusch says this partnership is a perfect fit for where she is in her career and passions. “My mission has always been to push my own limits. I’ll ...


First Impression: Santa Cruz Bantam D

First Impression: Santa Cruz Bantam D

Editor’s note: This is one of six bikes we’ve gathered together that fall between $1,900 and $2,600. Read our introduction to see the other five and watch for our long-term reviews of each in Dirt Rag #182, due on newsstands and in mailboxes in February. Subscribe now and you’ll never miss a bike review. Santa Cruz ...


Surly teases new Moonlander Special Ops, narrow/wide chainrings

Surly teases new Moonlander Special Ops, narrow/wide chainrings

In a few weeks Surly will join its parent company, Quality Bicycle Products, at its annual product show dubbed Frostbike. Well, they couldn’t keep the cat in the bag, so today it announced a few new goodies we’ll be “officially” seeing for the first time at the show: First up is the Moonlander Special Ops, ...


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