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Sea Otter Report: Turner Czar

Sea Otter Report: Turner Czar

By Eric McKeegan

This is Turner’s first foray into carbon frames, and the Czar does not look like a product hurried to market. The Czar is a XC 29er race bike, but is designed to handle trails more burly than the average cross-country race course.


Specialized unveils its first women’s full-suspension 29er

Specialized unveils its first women’s full-suspension 29er

News landed in our inbox today of a new full-suspension 29er from Specialized designed specifically for women. The Rumor uses Specialized’s M5 alloy frame with 110mm of travel front and rear with a tapered head tube, internal cable routing, a super low standover height and somehow still manages to fit a water bottle. In a size small, the standover is just 706mm.


Sea Otter Report: First Rides With the Bell Super Helmet

Sea Otter Report: First Rides With the Bell Super Helmet

By Mike Cushionbury

Bell’s new $125 Super (available in May) is the company’s first dedicated enduro/trail/all-mountain helmet. It combines the protection of a gravity helmet with the light weight and ventilation of an XC lid. Additionally, there are plenty of other useful features built into the package.


Sea Otter Report: Yeti introduces two new carbon bikes

Sea Otter Report: Yeti introduces two new carbon bikes

By Mike Cushionbury

Yeti Cycles held a special off-site ride day to introduce its two newest carbon offerings: The SB95 Carbon and the ARC Carbon. Both are based on the iconic brands successful aluminum versions of the same names.


First Impression: Trek Lush 29 SL

First Impression: Trek Lush 29 SL

By Emily Walley. Photos by Emily Walley and Justin Steiner.

The new-for-2013 Trek Lush 29 SL is the fast, stable, big-wheeled sister in the Lush family, which began in 2012 with her 26-inch wheeled siblings. Flaunting her 29-inch wheels along with frame sizes as small as 14-inches, this full suspension trail woman is proof that a small frame size doesn’t have to mean small wheels.


Sea Otter Report: Lake Shoes

Sea Otter Report: Lake Shoes

By Mike Cushionbury

With a change in owners and investors last year, Lake is considering 2013 a bit of a relaunch in the U.S. The Illinois-based cycling shoe company, which was founded in 1982, has a new North American distributer and it just signed a three-year sponsorship deal with the Sea Otter Classic. With 10 new models scheduled to come down the pike in 2014 Lake previewed two of those over the weekend.


Sea Otter Report: Race Face

Sea Otter Report: Race Face

I was chatting with Banshee bikes about the new prototype short travel 29er they have at Sea Otter. I’ll have more info on that bike later, but I noticed the 1x drivetrain was running a Race Face ring. Looking closer, it was a wide/narrow tooth style ring, much like SRAM’s XX.

 


Sea Otter Report: Teva Pivot Clipless Shoes

Sea Otter Report: Teva Pivot Clipless Shoes

Teva Pivot clipless shoes

We’ve tested a few pairs of Teva shoes for flat pedals, and all of them have won us over with a high level of comfort and performance, both on and off the bike. At Interbike last fall, Teva showed off a pair of prototype Pivot clipless shoes that looked like just thing for trail riders hooked on clipless, but not the standard three strap shoes that usually goes along with the pedals.


Sea Otter Report: Shimano XTR Race brakes and carbon tubular wheels

Sea Otter Report: Avid and Rock Shox

Sea Otter Report: Three new 27.5 bikes from Norco

Sea Otter Report: Three new 27.5 bikes from Norco

Norco

Norco embraced 27.5” wheels in a big way with the Sight and Range models. In 2014 Norco looks to expand that embrace even more. We got a glimpse of what lies ahead, check it out!

Sight Carbon


Sea Otter Report: Brand-new Niner RIP 9

Sea Otter Report: Brand-new Niner RIP 9

Niner RIP 9

A few days ago Niner sent around press release about the new RIP 9. The original RIP was long time favorite and a great selling bike for Niner, it was only with some trepidation that a redesign was undertaken.

The carbon RIP gets most of the attention for being high tech, but the new aluminum framed RIP should not be dismissed at low tech in any way.


Sea Otter report: Kona Hei Hei Supreme and Operator Carbon

Sea Otter report: Kona Hei Hei Supreme and Operator Carbon

Kona’s been on a bit of a tear lately, with lots of new bikes that show a revitalized spirit at this long time player in the mountain bike scene.

 

Hei Hei Supreme 


Sneak preview: Artists and photographers in issue #170

Sneak preview: Artists and photographers in issue #170

By Matt Kasprzyk

Issue #170 is done and done. It’s being shipped and will soon be fondled by lucky subscribers. It won’t be long before you’ll be marveling at the issue in its entirety, but here’s a little insider bump to hold you over.


Pivot unveils 27.5 Firebird with 167mm of travel

Pivot unveils 27.5 Firebird with 167mm of travel

The 26-inch version of the Firebird was so well received it made its way into the permanent fleet of the Dirt Rag staff. Now Pivot has upped the ante by developing a completely new, 27.5-inch version.


Sea Otter report: Scott Scale 27.5

Sea Otter report: Scott Scale 27.5

By Eric McKeegan

Scott invited us to a media event the day before Sea Otter opened to the public. Adrian Montgomery, Scott’s PR Director sent this invite, but didn’t share any other info about what bikes we’d be riding.


Singletrack High shows to national audience at Sea Otter Classic

Pulp Stiction: Pisgah National Forest

Pulp Stiction: Pisgah National Forest

By Montana Miller

The Basics

Town: Brevard, North Carolina (4 miles from trailhead)

Brevard is an arty little town. It has a good bakery, plenty of restaurants, coffee shops and white squirrels. It’s a pretty excellent place to stage a mountain bike trip.

Beers: The Pisgah Tavern (2 miles from trailhead)


Santa Cruz Mountain Bike Festival celebrates record weekend

Santa Cruz Mountain Bike Festival celebrates record weekend

By Joh Rathbun

Cycling fans from as far away as Pennsylvania flocked to the Santa Cruz Mountain Bike Festival this past weekend with approximately 6,000 folks in attendance on each day. The genesis of the festival was showcasing mountain biking as a great form of recreational tourism in Santa Cruz County, driven by the Mountain Bikers of Santa Cruz.


Riders hone skills at the Michaux Mountain Bike School

Riders hone skills at the Michaux Mountain Bike School

The author, lugging the ever-present load of camera gear, with Adam Craig looking on.

By Adam Newman. Photos by Adam Newman A. E. Landes Photography.


First Impression: Intense Spider 29 Comp

First Impression: Intense Spider 29 Comp

By Shannon Mominee. Photos by Shannon Mominee, Jon Pratt and Justin Steiner

The Intense Spider 29 Comp is the bigger and bolder brother of the Spider 29. Intense should have picked a different name for the Spider 29 Comp, because unlike the Spider, this machine has a carbon fiber frame with more rear travel, shorter chainstays and a slacker head angle than its aluminum counterpart. It’s pretty much an entirely different beast except for the suspension design.


The UCI vs. TSE: One racer’s dilemma

The UCI vs. TSE: One racer’s dilemma

By Michael Wissell

My apologies in advance for this text-heavy entry. This post was going to be about trying to get in enough training to perform at a reasonable level over a seven-day stage race while juggling job, family, and other extracurricular activities. I even had adorable pictures of cats.


Dirt Rag is headed to the Inca Avalance

Dirt Rag is headed to the Inca Avalance

Based in Ollantaytambo, Peru, just around the corner from Machu Picchu, starting at nearly 16,000 feet altitude, the Inca Avalanche, protected by Bell Helmets, motion by Kenda Tires, holds the title as the second highest race in the world. Now in its 6th running, the Inca Avalanche is set to host more than 13 nations during the two day event June 1 and 2, 2013.


Finding new motivation to ride

Finding new motivation to ride

By Stephan Kincaid

I don’t like to let people down. It’s a weakness disguised as a strength that sometimes wears lycra. For those of you that don’t know me, that would be 99% of you reading this, my name is Stephan Kincaid. Most people call me Geronimo.

For a few weeks I’ll be guest blogging my adventures (a.k.a. daily life as a working stiff trying to ride bikes trying to achieve life balance) leading up to the Trans-Sylvania Mountain Bike Epic.


SRAM introduces new trail/all-mountain wheelsets

SRAM introduces new trail/all-mountain wheelsets

By Eric McKeegan

The market for complete wheelsets looks to be getting even more crowded with the announcement of three new models from SRAM. These new wheels are aimed squarely at the trail/all-mountain market, joining SRAM’s existing cross-country oriented Rise line of wheels.


Join us at the Santa Cruz Mountain Bike Festival

Join us at the Santa Cruz Mountain Bike Festival

By Joh Rathbun and Adam Newman

For the fourth straight year, the Mountain Bikers of Santa Cruz will welcome riders and visitors to Aptos Village, Calif., for the Santa Cruz Mountain Bike Festival this weekend, April 13 and 14. Conceived in 2009 by a few officers of MBoSC, the festival raises funds for neighborhood bike parks and legal, multi-use trails.


VP Components hosts the second stop on the CA Enduro Series

How We Roll: Montana Miller’s fat-front Kona Honzo

How We Roll: Montana Miller’s fat-front Kona Honzo

Editor’s note: While we at Dirt Rag get to ride a lot of very nice bikes, most of them are bone stock or very close to it. I’ve always enjoyed seeing how individual riders personalize their bikes with component choices, accessories or other little touches that really make them their own. We’re starting a new feature called How We Roll to highlight some of the cool, unusual or just awesome bikes we see out in the wild. Up first: our current intern Montana Miller.


Mountain bike world rebels against USAC and UCI

Mountain bike world rebels against USAC and UCI

Many riders will be forced to choose between racing events like the Whiskey 50 or staying home to stay in the good graces of USA Cycling and the UCI. 

By Mike Cushionbury. Photo courtesy of Epic Rides


In the house: Santa Cruz Bronson

In the house: Santa Cruz Bronson

By Eric McKeegan. Photos by Justin Steiner and Jon Pratt.

Santa Cruz didn’t seem to need another trail bike. It already has the well-regarded 26-inch Blur TR and Blur LT with 125mm and 140mm travel respectively; the 29-inch Tallboy LT at 135mm; and the evergreen single pivot Heckler at 150mm. Bookend those with the Nomad at 160mm, and the 100mm Tallboy, Superlight 29 and Blur XC, and it gets hard to see a gap in there to fill.


Breck Epic organizers announce new consumer expo show

Breck Epic organizers announce new consumer expo show

The Breck Epic stage race traverses 240 miles of Colorado singletrack over the course of six days and is one of the most popular mountain bike events on the calendar.


Vicki Barclay: Thawing out as training heats up for TSE

Vicki Barclay: Thawing out as training heats up for TSE

By Vicki Barclay. Photo courtesy of Dave MacElwaine.

One of the things I love about mountain biking is the way that people refer to trails as if they are living entities. I often hear local people here in State College talking about how the harsh winters in Pennsylvania allow the trails to “get a rest” under the blankets of snow, like a sleeping beast waiting for spring.


RockShox revives Pike name for new trail/all-mountain forks

RockShox revives Pike name for new trail/all-mountain forks

By Adam Newman and Eric McKeegan.

The Pike name has been absent from the RockShox lineup for the past few years. First used on a 140mm travel 32mm chassis fork, the Pike was a favorite for hard chargers and even showed up on some dirt jump bikes. As the market evolved, other forks, such as the Revelation and Argyle took over and the Pike quietly disappeared.


Gallery: Dirt Rag rides Sedona

Gallery: Dirt Rag rides Sedona

By Jon Pratt

Recently a few select, privileged, cooler-than-the-rest, Dirt Rag staffers hit up Sedona for a couple of days of fun in the desert. With the guiding hands of Matt McFee, Kevin Waterbury, and Hermosa Tours we sampled some of the best singletrack and crazy crystal-powered-UFO folklore the region has to offer. Look for the story in the new issue of the magazine: 


Race with the Kenda/Felt pro team at TSE

Race with the Kenda/Felt pro team at TSE

The Kenda/Felt Pro Mountain Bike Team is inviting two riders to be part of the crew for the 2013 TSE. From pro bike prep before and after each stage to a daily post-ride massage, this is a chance to make the most of your Trans-Sylvania Epic experience.


Danny MacAskill teases new film project

Danny MacAskill teases new film project

Danny MacAskill is back with a new project, Imaginate, in which he seeks to push the limits of his sport even further than he has previously.

Sometimes being told you can do whatever you want can be more intimidating than being held back and it’s the sign of a true champion to be able to grasp their dreams and make them come to life.


Two new Specialized models spotted in the wild

Two new Specialized models spotted in the wild

Spring is here at that usually means new bike models come out to play. Fresh off the release of the Enduro 29er, Specialized shows no signs of slowing down, with two new prototypes being ridden by pros.


Hermosa Tours launches Enduro Trips in Colo.

Hermosa Tours launches Enduro Trips in Colo.

Our friends over at Hermosa Tours announced today a new trip offering beginning in Summer 2013: Monster Enduro Weekends: Durango & Telluride. These self-guided trips will take place over three days in Southwest Colorado, as Hermosa shuttles riders thousands of feet into the San Juan Mountains for some of the biggest rides anywhere totaling nearly 15,000 feet of descending over the three days.


No joke: Santa Cruz unveils new 650b bike, the Bronson

No joke: Santa Cruz unveils new 650b bike, the Bronson

Santa Cruz has been teasing the mountain bike world pretty hard over the last several months after it bought prominent ad space in Dirt Rag with the tagline "And now for something completely different."

The speculation ran wild: A 6-inch travel 29er? A new variation on the VPP platform? A unicycle?

No, it seemed most of the world was holding its breath for what would likely be the first 650b platform from 104 Bronson St.


Dirt Rag Spring Breakers: By the Numbers

Dirt Rag Spring Breakers: By the Numbers

By Stephen Haynes.

Click to see ithe infographic full-size.

 


Vote for your favorite in the BC Bike Race video contest

Vote for your favorite in the BC Bike Race video contest

Ever wanted to do the BC Bike Race but it was ‘Sold Out’? Ever wanted a Rocky Mountain Bike but couldn’t afford it?

Four lucky finalists have a chance to ride the 2013 BC Bike Race with the ‘Godfather’ of Fun, Wade Simmons, on a brand new Rocky Mountain Element 970 RSL BC Edition bike with a huge pile of other prizes. 


New Fox 40 Float RC2 fork brings air springs to DH racing

New Fox 40 Float RC2 fork brings air springs to DH racing

By Eric McKeegan. Photos by Thomas Dietze and Matt DeLorme.

Fox recently released news of redesigned forks and rear shocks, upping the ante in the gravity arms race. While Dirt Rag couldn’t snag an invite to Spain for the official unveiling, we got the low-down on the new suspension bits, and we’ve got a request in for review samples.

Let’s breakdown the new stuff:


CA’s Demo Forest demonstrates how conflicting interests can work together

CA’s Demo Forest demonstrates how conflicting interests can work together

By Joh Rathbun. Photos by Brad Davies.

The Soquel Demonstration Forest is a unique forest located on Santa Rosalia Mountain about an hour away from San Jose, California. It’s unique not just for its amazing beauty and great riding, but because it’s owned by the California State Fire Department and it leases out the land for logging and recreational activity.


First Impression: Pivot LES

First Impression: Pivot LES

By Jon Pratt. Photos by Justin Steiner.


The 650b fork meets the Yeti SB-66c — a love story

The 650b fork meets the Yeti SB-66c — a love story

By Matt Kasprzyk

Why mess with a good thing? To make it better, of course. If you agree with the reviews and press; Yeti’s SB-66c is a good thing – if not a great thing. So good that I leapt at the chance for the super-bike to kill my quiver. Yeti has already received several accolades from our staff and many others for their Switch Technology suspension bikes. They must be a good thing, right? So why f’ck with it?


New RockShox fork brings performance at a lower price

New RockShox fork brings performance at a lower price

Aside from the frame itself, nothing has a greater impact on the quality of your ride than the fork, and a good suspension fork is anything but cheap. Top-level offerings cost as much as—or more than—many frames.

RockShox has always offered forks at many pricepoints, but the new RockShox 30 Gold offers many of the technologies of the higher-level forks but at an impressive price, starting at only $330.


Gallery: The BC Bike Race team visits Jamaica

Gallery: The BC Bike Race team visits Jamaica

By Andreas Hestler. Photos and video by Connor MacLeod.


First Impression: Specialized Enduro Comp 29

First Impression: Specialized Enduro Comp 29

By Justin Steiner. Photos by Justin Steiner and Jon Pratt.


No Boys Allowed, Take 2 – Another Women’s Weekend at Ray’s Indoor

No Boys Allowed, Take 2 – Another Women’s Weekend at Ray’s Indoor

By Trina Haynes. Photos by Emily Walley.

There were a record-breaking 203 women at Ray’s Indoor Mountain Bike Park’s Women’s Weekend in Milwaukee and a record 218 at the same event in Cleveland. I feel like I can say with confidence there is a growth of woman who are embracing the fun and challenging sport of mountain biking. 


It’s finally here: Ibis unveils Ripley 29er

It’s finally here: Ibis unveils Ripley 29er

By Adam Newman, photos by Nathan Kraxberger

One of the most anticipated and long-awaited bikes in years, the production version of the Ibis Ripley is here. Built around 120mm of rear travel through a dw-link suspension and a full carbon construction, it’s sure to be one of the most sought-after bikes of the spring.

Rather than redesign the very popular Mojo series around 29-inch wheels, Ibis CEO Hans Heim says they knew that to make the best possible bike Ibis needed to start with a clean-sheet approach. 


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