in-print

245 posts with this tag.
Dirt Rag issue 199 is here!

Dirt Rag issue 199 is here!

Welcome to our second annual Guest Editor issue. This time around we present none other than Joe Parkin, celebrated racer, writer, book author and former magazine editor. As an introduction to this special edition, he in part pens, “Photographers like to say that the best camera in the world is the one you’re carrying right ...


Specialty Files: 1982 TS Isaac

Specialty Files: 1982 TS Isaac

Words and photos by Jeff Archer These days, it’s tough to go on a group ride without at least one rider on a Trek mountain bike. Let’s take a quick look back to see how we got to this point. Trek was founded in 1976 and produced high-quality road bikes in Wisconsin. By 1980, the ...


Review: Four different hip packs

Review: Four different hip packs

Fanny packs, hip packs, bum bags. Call them what you want, but these things are making a comeback. Less cumbersome and sweaty than a backpack, more capacity than shoving stuff in pockets, these bags can be a great middle ground for those middle distance rides. Unless I need to carry a camera, you’ll rarely see ...


Review: Salsa Woodsmoke 29+ X01

Review: Salsa Woodsmoke 29+ X01

“Salsa—you have made some risky decisions before, but this time you have gone too far.” That quip is a sample of the feedback that Salsa received after the Woodsmoke launch. The company’s marketing manager admitted that the Woodsmoke pushed the boundaries as to what people expected from Salsa. He went on to say, “Mountain biking ...


Tour of the White Mountains of Arizona

Tour of the White Mountains of Arizona

Words and photos by Brian Leddy  High in the pines of northeastern Arizona lie 200-plus miles of sweet singletrack. Traversing the rocky, volcanic slopes of the White Mountains, the trails flow through ponderosa pine forests and high mountain meadows. If you’re looking for a place to get away from it all, this is a great ...


Dirt Rag 198 is here!

Dirt Rag 198 is here!

Dirt Rag 198 is all about backyard adventure and urban singletrack, riding from your back door, whether it’s for an hour or a few days. Get a sneak peek at what’s inside, and order your copy now! For this issue, we’ve also launched our new Dirt Rag Magazine app for an improved digital magazine experience. Cover ...


#VANLIFE: The Shark

#VANLIFE: The Shark

Words and photos by Montana Miller Gah, quit squishing me!” yells my wife. I’m trying to climb over to my side of the bed; there’s barely space for me to squeeze past against the roof of the cab-over. “Sorry, but it’s not my fault you need to sleep on the side with all the air,” ...


Review: Lezyne Super GPS

Review: Lezyne Super GPS

Tester: Mike Cushionbury Lezyne has been touting its entrance into the GPS market for quite some time and with good reason. The avant-garde pump, tool and accessory maker has released a smart looking, useful and easy to use 76 gram GPS. All the important features are here starting with a chip that combines GPS and ...


Review: Viral Skeptic

Review: Viral Skeptic

Tester: Mike Cushionbury × Age: 47 × Height: 5’10” × Weight: 155 lbs. × Inseam: 32” One thing is for certain, the new Viral Skeptic is not your ordinary hardtail. And before you get huffy about that weird looking black box nestled in the bottom bracket junction, it’s not an electric motor but a 12-speed ...


Dirt Rag Issue #197 is here!

Dirt Rag Issue #197 is here!

Get your copy now! Cover Illustration: #vanlife by John Ritter Columns and Readings Our columnist Rebecca Rusch muses on cycling storytelling with former Secretary of State John Kerry and his unwavering love of riding his bike beginning as a kid and continuing to this day. In Dog’s Bollix new columnist Simon Stewart tells a tale ...


The Rant: Deferred Maintenence

The Rant: Deferred Maintenence

Wheel sizes, tire sizes, suspension travel, frame material, suspension design, so many damn choices. And that is just from a single company. Add in everyone else making kick-ass bikes these days and it gets hard to think. How did we end up here? I’ve been thinking it is a case of deferred maintenance. Let me ...


Specialty Files: Industry 9 Shop Tour

Specialty Files: Industry 9 Shop Tour

Words and photos by Jeff Archer Industry 9 has a place in the history of cycling because of the wheels and hubs it has produced for the past decade, but it goes deeper than that through its parent company, Turnamics Inc. in Asheville, North Carolina. Turnamics produced some of the parts for the original RockShox ...


Catching Up With: Matt Miller

Catching Up With: Matt Miller

Words by Trey Richardson. Photos by Mike Cushionbury and David Wiltshire. A former mountain bike pro for the Giant Mid-Atlantic Pro Cycling Team turned mad scientist, Matt Miller took his hands-on racing experience and conjured up an idea that, quite honestly, both he and I couldn’t believe hadn’t been done before … and not just ...


Iron Bicycles and Buffalo Soldiers

Iron Bicycles and Buffalo Soldiers

Words by Adam Hunt, photos courtesy of Stan Cohen “The bicycle has a number of advantages over the horse, it does not require as much care, it needs no forage, it moves much faster over fair roads…it is noiseless and raises but little dust, and it is impossible to determine its direction from its tracks… ...


Beer Me: Smuttynose Really Old Brown Dog

Beer Me: Smuttynose Really Old Brown Dog

Words and photo by Burt Hoovis  For those of us who enjoy beer, there very well could be no better time to be alive than right now. It seems like every town with more than one traffic control device has a brewpub, and most are putting out very respectable products. While there are plenty of microbreweries, few can ...


Catching Up With: Dave Wiens

Catching Up With: Dave Wiens

The International Mountain Bicycling Association has just announced that Dave Wiens will be taking the position of Executive Director. Leslie Kehmeier caught up with Dave during his previous role as Chairman of the organization’s Board of Directors, a role to which he was elected this past November. This interview was also published in our latest issue, ...


Beer Me: 4 Hands Brewing Contact High Wheat Ale

Beer Me: 4 Hands Brewing Contact High Wheat Ale

Words & photo by Burt Hoovis Being the good wife she is, Mrs. Hoovis recently came home with several new and interesting varieties from her trip to the local beer monger. Among them was Contact High from 4 Hands Brewing in St. Louis, Missouri. Right off the bat, there were several reasons that I didn’t ...


Riding, Racing, and A Can of Beans: Surviving Ecuador

Riding, Racing, and A Can of Beans: Surviving Ecuador

Words by Eric Porter. Photos by Scott Markewitz. This story originally appeared in Dirt Rag #186. “Pull over! It’s burrito time!” snarled Scott as he reached his breaking point. Throughout our entire time in Ecuador, he had been carrying a bag of tortillas and a can of refried beans that he brought from the U.S. ...


Specialty Files: 1991 Mantis Valkyrie

Specialty Files: 1991 Mantis Valkyrie

Words by Maurice Tierney. Photos courtesy of www.firstflightbikes.com. Richard Cunningham founded Mantis Bicycles in 1981. Ever the innovator, Mantis made a variety of bikes, including the fillet brazed Sherpa, Pro Floater suspension bike and Flying V monocoque frame. Here we have an early Valkyrie X frame bike, made just before elevated chainstays came into vogue. ...


Ask the Expert: Gore-Tex Garment Care

Ask the Expert: Gore-Tex Garment Care

  Q: What is the best way to maintain or restore the water repellency of my Gore-Tex jacket after a season or two of use? A: All Gore-Tex shell fabrics are treated with an ultra-thin treatment called DWR, a durable water repellent polymer that is applied to the outermost fabric layer. DWR causes water to ...


Epic Israel: Holy rolling singletrack

Epic Israel: Holy rolling singletrack

It was an amazing adventure to a historic land littered with scenic trails, long climbs and high-speed descents. A holy land that hosts one of the best three-day mountain bike stage races I’ve ever done. Yet it almost didn’t happen. In early 2014, I received an invite to attend the Epic Israel. While some questioned ...


New Bike Wood

New Bike Wood

By Stevil Kinevil “New bike wood.” Robert Ives first uttered this phrase to me some 18 years ago in reference to that specific and very special feeling one gets when he or she has a new bike. Specifically, for those whose minds are not naturally in the gutter, it refers to an erection. Now, unlike ...


Issue #195 is here!

Issue #195 is here!

Cover illustration: Riding the primordial soup by Stephen Haynes This issue is all about daring and adventure! Get it right here right now! Columns and Readings Watts Dixon tells about making a gorilla adjustment in Hangdown In The Wheelstrings and Stevil Kinevil makes his thoughts very clear on hikers who throw their bag of pupper’s ...


Beer Me: Victory Storm King Imperial Stout

Beer Me: Victory Storm King Imperial Stout

Editor’s note: This “Beer Me” column first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #98, published in February 2003. Back then, kind readers would occasionally send in beer samples for our Quaffing Crew to evaluate (hint, hint). Words by Brad Quartuccio. Let the quaffing session begin! With a case of Victory Brewing Storm King Imperial Stout appearing on our ...


Beer Me: Anderson Valley Brewing Company Bourbon Barrel Stout

Beer Me: Anderson Valley Brewing Company Bourbon Barrel Stout

Editor’s Note: This “Beer Me” column first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #182, published in February 2015. Words and photo by Alastair Bland. When it comes to aging a special beer in a used booze barrel, most brewers follow a rather standard formula: They put a dark beer containing at least 10 percent alcohol by ...


Blast From the Past: High School Mountain Bike Racing

Blast From the Past: High School Mountain Bike Racing

Editor’s note: This story about the formative years of high school MTB racing, including the trend-setting NorCal High School Mountain Bike League, which spawned the current-day National Interscholastic Cycling Association, first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #106, published in April, 2004. Words by Jim Wallace. Photos by Matthew Fritzinger. Interest in mountain biking programs for ...


Blast From the Past: Italian Mud

Blast From the Past: Italian Mud

Editor’s note: This story first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #162, published in April 2012. Words by Steve Whitaker. Illustrations by Michael Byers. “There are three types of mud here,” says Luigi, enumerating first with his thumb upward, as Italians do. “Primo, the vegetable type you can spray off right after a ride.” He grabs ...


Get it now: Dirt Rag Issue #194

Get it now: Dirt Rag Issue #194

Our annual Personality Issue is now available in print! Flip through its pages to find out what Floyd Landis (yeah, that one), a leopard print-clad Sue Haywood and Ray Petro of Ray’s Indoor Mountain Bike Park are up to these days. Our editors also tested a bunch of new bikes and bike racks, and picked ...


The Legend of Blue Collar Bikes

The Legend of Blue Collar Bikes

Words: Robert Ives Photos: Courtesy of Amigos’ Archive Originally published in Issue #192 My name is Robert Ives, and to the best of my knowledge what you are about to read is a true story about making something from nothing and perhaps also about why that might be important to some, and most likely not ...


Review: Paul Components stuff

Review: Paul Components stuff

Tester: Stephen Haynes Paul Components has always struck me as a company born in the wrong era. They are the stuff of old school fabrication like Fender Stratocasters, Zippo lighters and straight six engines. Simple, well-designed products made to last a lifetime that have the added benefit of being easily serviced, providing you had the ...


Catching up with Greta Mudflap

Catching up with Greta Mudflap

As told to Stevil Kinevil Illustrations: Greta Mudflap Originally published in Issue #192 I’m Greta Mudflap. You may or may not have heard of me. What you are about to read is 100 percent true, except for the parts that aren’t, and even those are. MUDFLAP WAS PUBLISHED FROM 1990 TO 1995, SEVEN ISSUES IN ...


Review: Kona Process 153

Review: Kona Process 153

Tester: Justin Steiner Age: 33, Height: 5’7″, Weight: 165 lbs., Inseam: 31” Bike price: $5,000 Sizes: M, (tested) L, XL Kona first launched the Process lineup in 2013 for the 2014 model year. Since then, we’ve reviewed and revered both the 29 inch Process 111 (issue #178) and the 27.5 inch Process 134 (issue #184). Based on those ...


How to make your own DIY handlebar roll harness

How to make your own DIY handlebar roll harness

The market is awash with a huge assortment of very well-made bikepacking bags to fit in every nook and cranny of your bike. One of the simplest, and often over-complicated methods of transport is strapping a load to your bicycle’s handlebars. If it’s a small, light load you can get away with very little: I’ve ...


Blast From the Past: Insomnia

Blast From the Past: Insomnia

Editor’s note: this story first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #111, published in November 2004. Words by Marie Thomas. Art by Mike Pfaltzgraff. I woke up at 2 a.m., like every other night this week, and lay there waiting to fall back asleep. But the worries and sadness that I outpace by day—job, money and ...


Review: Salsa Pony Rustler

Review: Salsa Pony Rustler

Tester: Jon Pratt Age: 45; Height: 5’10”; Weight: 190 pounds; Inseam: 31” Salsa Cycles is not one to shy away from big tires, so it is only natural to see another one of its bikes with a bit of extra rubber show up at our door for review. This time around it’s the Pony Rustler, ...


Blast From the Past: Is Mountain Biking Niche-ing Itself to Death?

Blast From the Past: Is Mountain Biking Niche-ing Itself to Death?

Editor’s note: This story first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #123, published in July 2006, but it was rather prescient and still is worthwhile food for thought. Photos courtesy of contributors, except as indicated. Note that a lot of these people have probably moved on from the positions they’re listed in. In every industry, a ...


Review: Marin Four Corners

Review: Marin Four Corners

This year is Marin Bikes’ 30th anniversary, and it marks the introduction of an all-new “utilitour” model, the Four Corners. The neutral gray steel frame gives the bike a timeless look, while disc brakes, wide tire clearance and an upright riding position keep pace with cyclists’ expectations for adventure touring and bikepacking.


Feature: The Crossroads of Beauty and Insanity

Feature: The Crossroads of Beauty and Insanity

What it was like to help start Independent Fabrication Words: Steve Elmes Photos: Jasen Stickler Originally published in Issue #192 “What the proverbial fuck?” That’s pretty much what I thought the moment I was told that Fat City Cycles would be shuttering its Somerville, Massachusetts, doors and, in the process, laying everyone off. I had ...


The Rant: R-E-S-P-E-C-T

The Rant: R-E-S-P-E-C-T

Originally published in Issue #192 “Respect was invented to cover the empty place where love should be.” — Leo Tolstoy, “Anna Karenina” Repairing bikes isn’t a great way to make a living. On average, bike mechanics are paid less than the average high school dropout. Pretty sad state of affairs for an industry that seems ...


440 Miles to 24 Hours – Part 2

440 Miles to 24 Hours – Part 2

Words and photos by Devon Balet I came up with this great bad idea over beers at my favorite bike shop in my hometown of Grand Junction, Colorado. Shop mechanic Alex and I were discussing ideas of how to spend the first two weeks of February when the shop was closed and he was left with ...


Dirt Rag Issue #193 is out!

Dirt Rag Issue #193 is out!

Cover photo: Ryan Creary showcases the spirit of adventure. This issue is all about searching for adventures, and we think we dug up some pretty good ones for you. Read on for the preview and make sure to snag your own copy today! Columns and Readings This month we go to church with Stevil Kinevil and ...


Feature: Bones of Oaxaca

Feature: Bones of Oaxaca

Words and photos: James Murren Originally published in Issue #191 Shakedown in the Storm The evening light wanes, but we ride on into it. Carlos’ German shepherds weave and dart between our bikes, never dragging tail. I am on a shake-down ride in preparation for the big one coming up two days from now. Singletrack ...


Feature: No Rest for the Weary

Feature: No Rest for the Weary

Words and photos: Brice Shirbach Originally published in Issue #191 For most of us, the UCI World Cup downhill series is a somewhat nebulous arrangement, largely unfolding by means of online media, live video streams and an assortment of social-media posts from the athletes themselves. While fans of the sport are well aware of what ...


Review: Manitou Magnum fork

Review: Manitou Magnum fork

Plus-sized tires might be the next big thing in the mountain bike world, but for its latest product Mantiou reached back to its roots and revived a classic nameplate. While the original Magnum of 20 years ago used elastomers, the new model uses a version of the Dorado air spring in the left leg with ...


Review: FOX 32 Step-Cast fork

Review: FOX 32 Step-Cast fork

As forks get longer in travel, and trail and all-mountain become our favorite buzzwords, it’s refreshing to see a brand like Fox make a dedicated effort to address the cross-country segment—to the tune of shaving half a pound off its current 32 platform. You read that right: The new Fox 32 SC (Step-Cast) weighs right ...


Feature: No Sleep Till Denver

Feature: No Sleep Till Denver

Words and photos: Montana Miller Originally published in Issue #191 My back just went numb, right between the shoulder blades. Which actually feels a lot better than the shooting pain I had a few minutes ago. I hike slowly next to my bike; hopefully I can make the top of this pass before sunset. I’m ...


Rusch Job: Two Wheels Matter

Rusch Job: Two Wheels Matter

Words: Rebecca Rusch Illustration: Kyle Stecker Originally published in Issue #191 Since you are reading this column, I know that the simple act of moving around on two wheels has changed your life. Riding a bike might elevate your physical and mental health. It might fuel the competitive juices. It might be your social outlet, ...


Dirt Rag #192: The Story Behind the Cover

Dirt Rag #192: The Story Behind the Cover

By Stephen Haynes, Dirt Rag Art Director While the wicked winds of winter were still whipping through west Pennsylvania (bringing with them a bounty of alliteration apparently), Dirt Rag editor-in-chief Mike Cushionbury and I were hatching plans for our latest issue. Mike floated the idea of having blogger, artist and cycling personality Stevil Kinevil sit ...


Get it now: Issue #192, the American zine

Get it now: Issue #192, the American zine

For some insane reason, we decided to hand the reigns of Issue #192 over to Stevil Kinevil of All Hail the Black Market (AHTBM) infamy. Then we let our designer, Stephen Haynes, loose to make this thing look like an old-school zine, complete with several skull drawings done by all of our staff. (You can win ...


Feature: Maryland, An Old-Line State of Mind

Feature: Maryland, An Old-Line State of Mind

Words: Brice Shirbach Photos: Abram Eric Landes Originally published in Issue #189 Growing up, I’d often sit and stare at it. My obsession began the moment my family moved to Emmitsburg, Maryland. I was 7 years old and we piled into a single-story rancher a mile and a half down the road from town square. ...


Ones and zeroes

Ones and zeroes

Words and photo: Chris Milucky aka Bama From “On the Road With Bama,” a column in the print magazine Originally published in Issue #191 A child of the ’80s, I began my photography with a plastic 110-film camera. The pictures were pretty bad, and I think it’s fair to share the blame with both my ...


Review: Santa Cruz Hightower CC

Review: Santa Cruz Hightower CC

Tester: Eric McKeegan Age: 42 Height: 5’11”, Weight: 160 lbs., Inseam: 32” Price: $2,899 frame; complete bikes from $4,599; $6,499 (tested) Sizes: M, L (tested), XL  More info: Santa Cruz Bicycles Photos: Gary Perkin Santa Cruz was very late to the 29er ballgame, but came out swinging with the Tallboy. That was soon followed by the Tallboy ...


Catching up with Tony Ellsworth

Catching up with Tony Ellsworth

For Issue #190, contributing editor Adam Newman sat down with Tony Ellsworth to catch up on the last few years and talk about bike technology. Photo: Adam Newman You’ve been off the radar lately. What have you been up to the last couple of years? That’s a big question. I could write a book with ...


Beyond the Bike Park: Winter Park, Colorado

Beyond the Bike Park: Winter Park, Colorado

Words and photos: Zach White Originally published in Issue #190 When I was a kid, my great-grandmother’s humble backyard was my favorite place in the world. It couldn’t have been more than 1,000 square feet, yet within that confinement was a separate little area behind the broadside of a detached garage with a massive wall ...


Review: Specialized Stumpjumper FSR faceoff

Review: Specialized Stumpjumper FSR faceoff

Photos: Justin Steiner Graphic: Stephen Haynes As of this writing, very few manufacturers offer 27.5, 27plus and 29 inch wheels within one model lineup, but Specialized has embraced wheel size options big time for 2016. The venerable Stumpjumper FSR is available in 14 complete builds and five frame-only options across all three wheel sizes. Complete ...


Beyond the Bike Park: The Dirt Affluence of Park City

Beyond the Bike Park: The Dirt Affluence of Park City

Words: Matt Kasprzyk Photos: John Shafer Originally published in Issue #190 There’s a lot in Park City for the cosmopolitan, just as there is for the adventurer. We know that not everyone rolling up to its opulent resort in a Porsche is a millennial wearing sweatpants and an Affliction T-shirt—some have a roof rack on ...


Specialty Files: 1996 (20-inch) and 1998 (26-inch) Comtek

Specialty Files: 1996 (20-inch) and 1998 (26-inch) Comtek

Words and photos: Jeff Archer Originally published in Issue #190 Most cyclists have, at one time or another, thought about building their own frame. Some, such as myself, have taken the next step and taken a general welding class, while others ramp it up a notch and attend one of the many frame-building schools. The ...


Blast From the Past: “You’re Halfway There” — The Story of Ray’s Indoor Mountain Bike Park

Blast From the Past: “You’re Halfway There” — The Story of Ray’s Indoor Mountain Bike Park

Editor’s note: This story first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue # 112, published in February 2005. Words by Michael Browne. Photos by Brad Quartuccio. Ever seen the movie “Field of Dreams”? Of course you have. If you haven’t heard of it, you’ve been holed up in a closet somewhere in Iowa. No, wait; Iowa is ...


Rusch Job: Winning

Rusch Job: Winning

Words: Rebecca Rusch Photo: Pat R. Notaro for Red Bull Media House Originally published in Issue #190 What is winning to you? Is it KOM/QOM victories that you celebrate alone in front of your computer? Is it a medal or trophy that you take home to show your family? Is it proudly wearing the race ...


Review: Advocate Cycles Hayduke

Review: Advocate Cycles Hayduke

Tester: Adam Newman Age: 35, Height: 6’2”, Weight: 180 lbs., Inseam: 34” Price: $750 (frame). Complete bikes from $2,699 Sizes: S, M, L (tested), XL More info: Advocate Cycles The Hayduke is named for the infamous anti-hero of “The Monkey Wrench Gang,” Edward Abbey’s 1975 cult classic novel of radical environmentalism (and sabotage) in the ...


Beyond the Bike Park: Whistler, Canada

Beyond the Bike Park: Whistler, Canada

Words: Hailey Elise Photos: Mark Mackay Originally featured in Issue #190 She’s elusive. Cheeky, only showing glimpses of her true nature the farther in you find yourself. And by farther in think of an hour climb. Whistler’s trail systems are easily accessed by those who are looking for them, but outside of the bike park ...


Blast From the Past: The Serbian Connection

Blast From the Past: The Serbian Connection

Editor’s note: We published the following letter from Serbian mountain biker Daniel Ulijan in February 2004 in Dirt Rag issue #105. Along with the simple footnote: “Anyone want to help out Daniel?” Dear Dirt Rag, My name is Daniel Ulijan and I am mountain biker. I am 18 years old and I live in Serbia. ...


The Rule of the Road

The Rule of the Road

Words and photo: Chris Milucky aka Bama From On the Road With Bama, a column in the print magazine Originally published in Issue #190 It’s somewhere over here—just carry your bike towards that tree. Don’t walk in a straight line, either; we don’t want anyone to find our tracks.” We holstered our hardtails and hustled ...


Review: Surly Wednesday

Review: Surly Wednesday

This is our third annual roundup of trail bikes that aren’t priced to the stratosphere. We could call them affordable, budget, real-world, blue-collar or college-fund-friendly, but someone would take offense at our assumption of disposable income level. It doesn’t really matter though. These are great bikes for the price, and we’ll leave it up to ...


Dirt Rag Issue #191 is out!

Dirt Rag Issue #191 is out!

Cover photo: Ryan Creary captures Hayden Genoud splitting a gap in Kicking Horse Mountain Bike Resort, Golden, B.C. “Journalist: a person without any ideas but with an ability to express them; a writer whose skill is improved by a deadline: the more time he has, the worse he writes.” — Karl Kraus Columns and Readings ...


Blast From the Past: Specialty Files—1988 Trimble Carbon Cross

Blast From the Past: Specialty Files—1988 Trimble Carbon Cross

Editor’s note: This edition of “The Speciality Files” first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #148, published in April 2010. Word and photos by Jeff Archer. A short trip through the early history of the bicycle shows that there are very few new ideas in the world of two-wheeled human travel. Each evolutionary step brings with ...


Review: Transition Patrol 4

Review: Transition Patrol 4

This is our third annual roundup of trail bikes that aren’t priced to the stratosphere. We could call them affordable, budget, real-world, blue-collar or college-fund-friendly, but someone would take offense at our assumption of disposable income level. It doesn’t really matter though. These are great bikes for the price, and we’ll leave it up to ...


The Rant: What are we hiding from, anyway?

The Rant: What are we hiding from, anyway?

From Issue #190 Throughout the evolution of the mountain bike, we’ve seen new technologies and ideas introduced at a very rapid rate. Just 30 years ago most of what we take for granted while riding now wasn’t even on anyone’s radar. Some of the technology has been discarded along the way, usually with good reason. Dual-control ...


Blast From the Past: Spine Owner’s Manual

Blast From the Past: Spine Owner’s Manual

Editor’s note: This article originally appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #142, published in May 2009. Words by David Alden-St. Pierre, MS, PA-C. Medical illustrations by Molly Thompson of Thompson Medical Illustrations. There’s nothing like an epic day in the saddle: a few hours of riding, burning lungs, tired muscles, and for some riders, an aching ...


Review: Charge Cooker 4

Review: Charge Cooker 4

This is our third annual roundup of trail bikes that aren’t priced to the stratosphere. We could call them affordable, budget, real-world, blue-collar or college-fund-friendly, but someone would take offense at our assumption of disposable income level. It doesn’t really matter though. These are great bikes for the price, and we’ll leave it up to ...


Feature: The Legend of Victor Vicente of America

Feature: The Legend of Victor Vicente of America

Words: Christopher Harland-Dunaway Photos: Toby Kahn and courtesy of VVA Victor Vincente of America, a man born as Michael Beckwith Hiltner, stood on a dirt road that runs along the small mountaintop valley he calls home most of the year. “I mean look at this party!” he implored, as much to me as to the ...


Review: Marin Attack Trail 7

Review: Marin Attack Trail 7

This is our third annual roundup of trail bikes that aren’t priced to the stratosphere. We could call them affordable, budget, real-world, blue-collar or college-fund-friendly, but someone would take offense at our assumption of disposable income level. It doesn’t really matter though. These are great bikes for the price, and we’ll leave it up to ...


Review: Devinci Hendrix RS

Review: Devinci Hendrix RS

This is our third annual roundup of trail bikes that aren’t priced to the stratosphere. We could call them affordable, budget, real-world, blue-collar or college-fund-friendly, but someone would take offense at our assumption of disposable income level. It doesn’t really matter though. These are great bikes for the price, and we’ll leave it up to ...


Blast From the Past: Shoulder Owner’s Manual

Blast From the Past: Shoulder Owner’s Manual

Editor’s note: This article originally appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #138, published in October 2008. Words by David Alden-St. Pierre, MS, PA-C. Medical illustrations by Kerry Nicholson. Crash illustration by David Biber. You know the drill. Any number of things can send you flying through the air like Superman. Of course, Superman flies with his ...


Blast From the Past: Knee Owner’s Manual

Blast From the Past: Knee Owner’s Manual

Editor’s note: This article first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #135, published in May 2008. Words by David Alden-St.Pierre, MS, PA-C. Medical illustrations by Kerry Nicholson. As a mountain biker, at some point in your life, you’re going to have some knee pain. In fact, mountain biking and grinding, creaking, cracking, crunching knees almost go ...


Feature: Coming up short—In search of the truth about women’s-specific bikes

Feature: Coming up short—In search of the truth about women’s-specific bikes

By Kate Skrainka Get to the bottom of it. That was my goal: Once and for all, to clarify the murky, muddy waters that are women’s-specific bikes. I pored over vintage bike catalogs, read up on the mathematics of frame geometry, interviewed more than a dozen people and tested a few bikes. I heard a lot ...


Review: Guerrilla Gravity Megatrail

Review: Guerrilla Gravity Megatrail

Tester: Justin Steiner | Height: 5’7” | Weight: 165 pounds | Inseam: 31” The Megatrail is the second bike released by Colorado-based manufacturer Guerrilla Gravity. The company’s first bike was a full-bore downhill bike dubbed the GG/DH. Where the GG/DH was designed to punish downhill courses, the Megatrail strives to blend downhill prowess and pedaling ...


Blast From the Past: CamelBak Bandido Product Review

Blast From the Past: CamelBak Bandido Product Review

Editor’s note: If you think that lumbar waterpacks are a recent innovation, you’d be wrong. Back in 1998 Adam Lipinski reviewed the way-ahead-of-its-time Camelbak Bandido for Dirt Rag Issue #69. The Bandido is a lumbar pack that doubles as a water pack. The Bandido has two pockets on the sides for popular tools, money, power ...


2015 Literature Contest Winner: Green Bean’s Last Run

2015 Literature Contest Winner: Green Bean’s Last Run

Words: Hank Hansen Illustrations: Juliana Wang Green Bean’s chest hurt. Again. He didn’t quite know how to describe it—pressure, kind of, almost like something was overflowing inside him, but sharper. Not that he had tried to explain it to anyone. The lexicon of pain that Green Bean’s friends employed had no room for things like “tension” ...


Review: Juliana Furtado and Norco Fluid 7 Forma

Review: Juliana Furtado and Norco Fluid 7 Forma

Tester: Emily Walley | Height: 5’4” | Weight: 110 pounds | Insteam: 29.5” Originally published in Issue #189 As women’s mountain bike options continue to evolve, it can be difficult to find the ideal bike for your skill level as well as your wallet. If you are a new rider, with undetermined commitment, the options ...


Blast From the Past: Speciality Files—1995 Crestone S.A.S. Comp 202

Blast From the Past: Speciality Files—1995 Crestone S.A.S. Comp 202

Editor’s note: This edition of “The Speciality Files” first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #111, published in November 2004. Words and photos by Maurice Tierney. Lucien Lewis bought this bike new in 1995 for around $750. The French Canadian suspension design consists of rubber bands adjustable by switching between hard, medium and soft bands. “If ...


Just nod if you can hear me

Just nod if you can hear me

Words and photos: Chris Milucky, aka Bama From On the Road With Bama, a column in the print magazine Originally published in Issue #189 Dear Bike Industry: Roll down your window. Your lips move, but I can’t hear what you’re saying. When I was a child, I used to ride my bike over to your house. We’d cut paths ...


Review: Trek Fuel EX Jr

Review: Trek Fuel EX Jr

Testers: Eric and Oona McKeegan Originally published in Issue #138 Buying your kid a bike is a good idea. Is buying your kid a better bike a better idea? Fortunately my daughter and I got the chance to find out with the new Fuel EX Jr. Unlike the full-suspension kids bikes that are often all ...


Opinion: Let me be direct

Opinion: Let me be direct

In an era when consumers can research and purchase almost anything online and have it shipped directly to their door, bicycle consumers must take the extra steps to visit their local bicycle retailer to get bikes from major brands. It isn’t as though consumer direct sales are impossible for something like a bicycle—similarly high-risk products ...


Review: Cannondale Habit Carbon 1

Review: Cannondale Habit Carbon 1

Tester: Mike Cushionbury | Height: 5’10” | Weight: 155 lbs. | Inseam: 32” Bike sizes: S, M (tested), L, XL | Price: $7,460 Before Cannondale’s new 27.5 Habit had even been released, it gained considerable momentum and interest when WTB/Cannondale rider Jason Moeschler won the coveted “All-Mountain World Championships” in Downieville, California, thanks to a ...


Blast From the Past: Cheapo Bike Rack

Blast From the Past: Cheapo Bike Rack

Editor’s note: This article by Truls Johnsen first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #101, published in July 2003. Mountain biking eats some serious dough, and after I acquired the perfect dirt bag mountain bike road trip vehicle (an ‘84 Vanagon camper) I realized that I could use a cheap roof rack to carry bikes in ...


Dirt Rag Issue #190 is out!

Dirt Rag Issue #190 is out!

On the Cover Photo: Ryan Creary “On the mountains of truth you can never climb in vain: either you will reach a point higher up today, or you will be training your powers so that you will be able to climb higher tomorrow.” — Friedrich Nietzsche Columns and Readings Watts Dixon writes about learning to ...


Review: Polygon Collosus N8

Review: Polygon Collosus N8

Tester: Justin Steiner | Height: 5’7” | Weight: 165 lbs. | Insteam: 31” Bike sizes: S, M (tested), L, XL | Price: $4,899 Polygon is a name much more well known outside the United States. Unless you follow World Cup DH racing, where you’ve surely seen Tracey and Mick Hannah rocking Polygon’s Collosus DHX race bike, ...


Feature: Singletrack, Spiders and KFC

Feature: Singletrack, Spiders and KFC

Words and photos: Jay Goodrich The City: Chiang Mai, Thailand Chiang Mai is a city built upon a city. A place where history totals many hundreds of years instead of the mere 100 that my current home in Wyoming has under its belt. It’s a place in northern Thailand that boasts the highest mountains in ...


The Rant: My Enduro

The Rant: My Enduro

Illustration: Stephen Haynes My event would allow only two bikes—any two bikes the racer wanted, but only two, with just tire swaps allowed between stages. No question, the Enduro World Series is a great racing event. It’s well run, truly global in locations and is attracting some of the fastest riders on two wheels. I ...


Blast From the Past: Bicycle-Themed Children’s Books

Blast From the Past: Bicycle-Themed Children’s Books

Editor’s note: This “Recommendo” column by Jeff Lockwood appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #113, published in April 2005. All of the books reviewed are still available. We don’t watch much television in our house. In fact, by the time you read this, our daughter Kaya will be 2 years old, and I can say with confidence ...


Blast From the Past: Vintage Racing

Blast From the Past: Vintage Racing

Editor’s Note: This letter from Sky Boyer appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #121, published in May 2006. Photo of Don Whitehead (no relation to Cindy) racing on a 1985 custom Ibis bearing serial number 102 by Chris Poese. Dear Dirt Rag, About a year ago some friends and I decided that we wanted to take ...


Rusch Job: Zen and the art of fat biking

Rusch Job: Zen and the art of fat biking

Words: Rebecca Rusch Illustration: Chris Escobar In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities, but in the expert’s there are few. – Zen master Shunryu Suzuki Fat biking is not a fad. It’s here to stay and has opened the doors to a whole new segment of riding, especially in winter climates. I was not ...


Feature: One if by Bike, Two if by Kayak

Feature: One if by Bike, Two if by Kayak

Words and photos: Dan Milner From Issue #188 “It looks farther when looked at through sober eyes,” mutters Taj Hendry, more with surprise rather than alarm. Laid out before us on the gravel beach is a map showing the trail we’re going to ride. But it’s not the trail that has Hendry rubbing his beer-blurred ...


Blast From the Past: Last Chance for Gas: Issue #172

Blast From the Past: Last Chance for Gas: Issue #172

Editor’s note: This haunting letter from Tomas Drew-Bear first appeared in the “Last Chance for Gas” column in Dirt Rag Issue #172, published in August 2013. Illustration by Ana Benaroya. Dear Dirt Rag, I guess I’m writing this ‘cause I need some therapy, need to find some way to close these demons … Haven’t slept ...


Blast From the Past: The 2000 Single Speed World Championships

Blast From the Past: The 2000 Single Speed World Championships

Editor’s note: Mark Tierney takes readers on a Minneapolis trip, deep into the underbelly of the 2000 Single Speed World Championships. This story originally appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #80, published in July 2000. Photos by Maurice Tierney and Karl Rosengarth. Ha! Of course I reserve my young ass a seat on the magic Dirt ...


Dirt Rag Issue #189 is out!

Dirt Rag Issue #189 is out!

On the Cover Sarah Rawley shreds Captain Ahab in Moab, Utah, during a video shoot with Big Mountain Enduro. Photo: Devon Balet.   New Columns and Readings We welcome Davy J., a best-selling food author and cyclist, who will be penning “Eat Me,” which has to do with the intersection of grub and bicycles and ...


How to Rebuild Your Singlespeed Freewheel

How to Rebuild Your Singlespeed Freewheel

Editor’s note: This article by Brad Quartuccio and Michael Browne first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #96, published in October 2002. Singlespeeders are obsessed with simplicity. No derailleurs to mess things up, no shifters to backfire and leave you stranded. But what happens when one of very few moving parts stops working? Most people think ...


Blast From the Past: The Crack House

Blast From the Past: The Crack House

Editor’s note: This story by Elizabeth Boyle first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #97, published in November 2002. When I was a sophomore in college I lived with my older brother Joey and three other guys. There was also a five-foot blacksnake named Slobbers that lived beneath the porch, a family of wolf spiders that ...


Grooming fat: The fight for winter fat bike access

Grooming fat: The fight for winter fat bike access

Words: Sarah Galbraith In parts of our country, when winter takes a firm, frosty grip on your core, some mountain bikers mark the turn of seasons by putting away their bikes and tuning up their skis. But explosive growth in winter fat biking has taken hold in the past few years: Sales grew 44 percent ...


The International Van’ers Guild

The International Van’ers Guild

On the Road With Bama Words and photo: Chris Milucky aka Bama. From Dirt Rag Issue #188 The first time I quit climbing the ladder of public opinion, I moved into a house with six other people, three dogs and a cat; the cat was smart enough to soon skip town and live someplace less ...


Blast From the Past: Gettin’ Freaky in Florida

Blast From the Past: Gettin’ Freaky in Florida

Editor’s note: This story by Kenny Prather first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #134, published in April 2008. Photos courtesy of the author. Like countless singletracks before it, our trail was doomed to “progress.” When we finally lost our trail of eight years to yet another strip mall, the local riders went in different directions—some ...


The Rant: Empty Ashtrays and Bluebird Hearts

The Rant: Empty Ashtrays and Bluebird Hearts

With my apologizes to Bukowski. Life continues to surprize me, and frustrate me, and bring moments of unmitigated joy. I quit smoking almost 12 years ago. It was cold turkey, and it wasn’t fun. I fell off the wagon a few times, including a few months of stress smoking involving hand rolled cigarettes and a ...


Blast From the Past: Koski Ski Bike Review

Blast From the Past: Koski Ski Bike Review

Editor’s note: This report by Dirt Rag’s special operations team, known only as “The Committee,” appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #78, published in April 2000. Status: For your eyes only. Target: Mono Trac (ski bike) Source: Koski Snow Sports, Mill Valley, California Creator: Don Koski Suggested Retail: $1,500 Description: Dual-suspension ski bike, with 8 inches ...


Feature: North Carolina’s Appalachian Beer Trail

Feature: North Carolina’s Appalachian Beer Trail

Words and photos by Logan Watts Originally featured in print in Dirt Rag Issue #181 “I’m about ready for that beer,” Dustin bellows as we plummet the last downhill of the day. If I had a nickel for every time I’ve heard that statement echo down a ribbon of singletrack, I’d have a sizable collection ...


Review: Swept-back handlebars from Fouriers and SQlab

Review: Swept-back handlebars from Fouriers and SQlab

Fouriers Trailhead (HB-MB017-M) – $90 Tester: Eric McKeegan Fouriers has teamed up with Chris Sullivan, the man behind the Gnar bars. The Gnar bar and the Trailhead feature the Control Curve bend—an extra bend in the grip area said to match the curve of a palm. The Trailhead sweeps forward then back at 28 degrees, ...


Essay: Sharing the Wealth

Essay: Sharing the Wealth

By Stevil Kinevil This is the landscape of your standard local ride. You’ve seen it all a hundred times before, but have you really? Taking a friend to your usual stomping grounds and showing them your loop is a fantastic way of blowing the dust off of your proverbial routine. It slows things down and ...


Blast From the Past: Gunnar Shogren Interviews Floyd Landis

Blast From the Past: Gunnar Shogren Interviews Floyd Landis

Editor’s note: This interview originally appeared in Gunnar Shogren’s regular “Wuzzupdiddat?” column in Dirt Rag Issue #39, published in August 1994. Photo by Tom Moran. Summit Near the Summit, or “Clowns at the Round Table” When: July 17,1994, the day following NCS #5. Where: Spokane, Washington. Who: Floyd Landis riding for GT Bicycles, Willy Goeghegan ...


Blast From the Past: The Jacquie Phelan Interview

Blast From the Past: The Jacquie Phelan Interview

Editor’s note: This Colleen Corcoran interview of Jacquie Phelan first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #127, published in April 2007. Illustration by Damara Kaminecki. Founder of WOMBATS—Women’s Mountain Bike and Tea Society—Jacquie Phelan (alter ego: Alice B. Toeclips) sleeps beneath an electric blanket in a treehouse named Offhand Manor at the foot of Mount Tam. ...


Blast From the Past: Made in North America: Ventana

Blast From the Past: Made in North America: Ventana

Editor’s note: This story first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #161, published in February 2012. Words and photos by Maurice Tierney. Ventana, Spanish for window, is a 240,000 acre Wilderness Area near Big Sur, California. That special place was the inspiration for the naming of Ventana Mountain Bikes in 1988. Today, the Spanish naming convention ...


Feature: The Voice of Amanda Batty

Feature: The Voice of Amanda Batty

Words by Chris “Bama” Milucky Photos by John Shafer Originally published in Issue #187 Amanda Batty gained a degree of notoriety [in 2015], not because of her race results as a professional downhill and enduro racer but because she abruptly resigned from a position as an online columnist due to sexism, double standards and misogyny ...


Bikes and Craft Beer—Exploring a Passionate Relationship

Bikes and Craft Beer—Exploring a Passionate Relationship

Editor’s note: This story first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #176, published in April 2014. It’s technically a “Blast from the Past” story, but is still (and probably always will be) relevant. Words by Jeff Lockwood. Photos courtesy of Dogfish Head, New Belgium Brewing, Oskar Blues, Trek and Tröegs Brewing. As someone interested in mountain ...


Blast From the Past: Trans Iowa and The Rise of Gravel Grinders

Blast From the Past: Trans Iowa and The Rise of Gravel Grinders

Editor’s note: This story first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #157, published in July 2011. Words by Guitar Ted. Photos by Steve Fuller and Jeremy Kershaw. Not beholden to any sanctioning body, having devised their own rules, and in a lot of cases with no entry fees, these events are carving out a sub-culture of ...


The Rant: Quality

The Rant: Quality

From Issue #187 “Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance” is book I read in my 20s. Looking back, the thing I most liked about it was how it made me feel not alone. At the time, I was too young to really understand author Robert Pirsig’s battle with schizophrenia, marriage and fatherhood, but his ...


Editor’s Choice 2015: Our favorite ride gear

Editor’s Choice 2015: Our favorite ride gear

This is Dirt Rag’s second year doing an official “Editor’s Choice.” With editorial staff of all shapes and sizes, spread out all over the country, we can’t just pick one product per category and call it the best. Also notice our timing. While we could do this in the early spring, how much ride time ...


Editor’s Choice 2015: Our favorite bikes

Editor’s Choice 2015: Our favorite bikes

This is Dirt Rag’s second year doing an official “Editor’s Choice.” With editorial staff of all shapes and sizes, spread out all over the country, we can’t just pick one product per category and call it the best. Also notice our timing. While we could do this in the early spring, how much ride time ...


Blast from the Past: Dirt Rag’s 2005 Interview with Theodore Stroll

Blast from the Past: Dirt Rag’s 2005 Interview with Theodore Stroll

Editor’s note: In 2005, Philip Keyes interviewed Theodore Stroll for an article on the legal issues surrounding Wilderness access that ran in Dirt Rag Issue #112. Stroll is the author of the law review article: “Congress’s Intent in Banning Mechanical Transport in the Wilderness Act of 1964.” Theodore J. Stroll; Penn State Environmental Law Review (Volume ...


Blast From the Past: The Bobby McMullen Interview

Blast From the Past: The Bobby McMullen Interview

Editor’s note: Then-editor Michael Browne interviewed blind mountain bike racer Bobby McMullen for Dirt Rag Issue #122, published in July 2006. We’re happy to report that McMullen is still shredding. You can follow him via Facebook or rideblindracing.com. The act of riding a mountain bike requires amounts of athleticism, coordination, balance and attention that most ...


Blast From the Past: By Law, Mountain Bikes in Wilderness

Blast From the Past: By Law, Mountain Bikes in Wilderness

Editor’s note:  It’s been over 50 years since the Wilderness Act was enacted, 30 years since mountain bikers were banned from Wilderness, and over 10 years since Ted Stroll wrote his article in the Penn State Environmental Law Review showing that the original congressional act had no intention to kick bikes out. Last year Stroll ...


Blast From the Past: Repair Tags We’d Like to See

Blast From the Past: Repair Tags We’d Like to See

Editor’s note: This contribution from GorillaNet first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #72, published in May 1999. Problem: Bike makes klunking noise. Fix: Sat bike in corner, listened for two hours. No clunking noise noted. Problem: Frame shimmies at high speed. Fix: Tightened brakes, packed hubs & bottom bracket with sand. High speeds now much ...


The One-Bike Challenge

The One-Bike Challenge

Rocky Mountain Thunderbolt 790 MSL BC Edition How far can a short-travel trail bike take you? From Issue #187 We are at an interesting point in the technological advances in mountain bikes. For years the idea was always more. More travel, more gears, more bigger wheels. But now we’ve started to dial things back: Single ...


Review: Scott Spark 700 SL

Review: Scott Spark 700 SL

From Issue #182 The dry, kitty-litter-covered trails of Bootleg Canyon in Nevada can be a cruel testing ground. The twisty singletrack is nearly traction-less and the many rock formations are often not for the faint of heart: While small, they can be steep and often located in turns. In the realm of modern mountain biking, ...


Blast From the Past: The Power of Pump

Blast From the Past: The Power of Pump

Editor’s note: This article by Lee McCormack first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #123, published in August 2006. These days you don’t have to reel in 20 miles of singletrack to feel like a mountain biker. You can blitz a downhill run, mess around at a skatepark, session some jumps or make a playground out ...


Personality: Andreu Lacondeguy

Personality: Andreu Lacondeguy

Words and photos by Malcolm Mclaws From Issue #187 Andreu Lacondeguy made his Crankworx debut in 2006. His arrival in Whistler, British Columbia, as a fresh-faced, clean-cut unknown was an introduction to someone who would become one of the most well-known and colorful riders ever. This is Little Andy. With a riding style that has ...


Dirt Rag Issue #188 is out! Editor’s Choice awards inside

Dirt Rag Issue #188 is out! Editor’s Choice awards inside

On the cover Andrew Whiteford does some tree splitting in Northern Thailand. Photo by Jay Goodrich. The Dirt and Readings This year history was made when the U.S. held its first ever World Cup cyclocross race. We show you in The Dirt along with a first hand account by American ‘cross racer Adam Craig in ...


Blast From the Past: Incidente

Blast From the Past: Incidente

Editor’s note: Incidente originally appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #85, published in April 2001. Words by John Freeman. Art by Rudi Nadler. They have brought in the young American from very high up in the mountains —dark and Italian— one of them speeding dangerously down its spiraling curves the other waving a frantic handkerchief in ...


The Rant: Genetic predisposition

The Rant: Genetic predisposition

Originally published in Issue #182 Some people claim there is a “wheelie gene” and either you are born with the innate balance needed to wheelie or you are doomed to a life of dull, two-wheels-on-the-ground riding. I’m not sure if I subscribe to that theory, but I do buy into the idea that some of ...


Feature: Riding the forgotten Argentina Railroad

Feature: Riding the forgotten Argentina Railroad

Words and photos by Dan Milner This story originally appeared in Issue #183  “It’s the most shitty looking, crappiest trail I have ever seen,” says Hans Rey, not mincing his words. We’re tired, hungry and cold and have found ourselves passing the night in the one-horse Argentinean border town of La Quiaca—a town that seems ...


Feature: Fat biking through the Arctic

Feature: Fat biking through the Arctic

Words and photos by Bjørn Olson From Issue #182 “Mend your equipment if you are to prevail” Both hands gripped our handlebars tight, squeezing the brake levers, often dragging a foot to slow our steep and icy descent from Rainy Pass. Instead of snow, typical on the Iditarod Trail in early March, we were riding ...


Blast From the Past: What About B.O.B.? — Mountain Bikes and Cash Crops in the San Bernardino Mountains

Blast From the Past: What About B.O.B.? — Mountain Bikes and Cash Crops in the San Bernardino Mountains

Editor’s note: This story first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #77, published in February 2000. Words by Matt Artz. Art by Robert Rose. The first time I heard the term B.O.B., Clem and I were discussing a planned five-day bike extravaganza across Santa Catalina Island. He explained how a “Beast Of Burden”—a one-wheeled mountain bike ...


Musings on East San Diego County Singletrack

Musings on East San Diego County Singletrack

Words and photos by James Murren Feature story from Issue #182 The Cuyamacas My bike leans against a tree as I walk in cleated shoes through the green spring grasses in the direction of granite slabs slightly visible from the trail. Remembering a group of picnicking students that had piqued my interest during a previous ...


Field Tested: BMC Speedfox SF02 29

Field Tested: BMC Speedfox SF02 29

From Issue #186 BMC from Switzerland is certainly well known as a racing brand. Internationally, Julien Absalon, who is arguably the most famous and winningest cross-country racer on the circuit today, won last year’s world championship on his full-suspension BMC Fourstroke FS01 29. Here in the U.S., Stephen Ettinger won a cross-country national championship while ...


Blast From the Past: Stupid Girl, Stupid Bike

Blast From the Past: Stupid Girl, Stupid Bike

Editor’s note: This story by Silja J.A. Talvi first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #67, Published in August 1998. Art by Mark Tierney. As a young girl living in a cold, rather depressing Scandinavian town, I remember relishing the freedom afforded me by my three-speed bicycle, which had been graduated from training-wheel infancy to two-wheeled ...


Field Tested: Santa Cruz Highball 27.5

Field Tested: Santa Cruz Highball 27.5

From Issue #186 Earlier this year, the Santa Cruz Highball 29er welcomed a 27.5 little brother to the family, and the siblings are like two peas in a pod. The 27.5 Highball is designed to mimic the cross-country-oriented trail manners of its 29er predecessor. Sure, 27.5 and 29 bikes inherently “feel” different. But that’s exactly ...


Blast From the Past: Beware of Fools With Good Ideas—The Uncle Ed Interview

Blast From the Past: Beware of Fools With Good Ideas—The Uncle Ed Interview

Editor’s note: This story first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #69, published in November 1998. We met Uncle Ed in a parking Lot in Brian Head, Utah. In fact, what happened was, our kindhearted shuttle driver had seen the “Need Ride” sign strapped to the back of a pile of crap hanging off the back ...


Blast From the Past: Inside Spooky Cycles

Blast From the Past: Inside Spooky Cycles

Editor’s note: This story first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #63, published in February 1998. Words and photos by Jeff Lockwood. This story was inspired by our conversation with Frank “The Welder” Wadelton, head welder at Spooky Cycles, at the Interbike show back in August. And, let’s just say that he is an interesting fellow. ...


The Rant: Where goest thou, gnar?

The Rant: Where goest thou, gnar?

From Issue #186 The axiom we hear is this: If we can make enough easy-to-ride trails, more people will ride mountain bikes, which will mean more trails and more access for everyone. My favorite trails have always been a mess. Hell, some of my favorite rides have involved me walking down stuff I found too ...


Blast From the Past: The Malicious Variable

Blast From the Past: The Malicious Variable

Editor’s note: This article by John “Bones” Branum first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #60, published in August 1997. V-brakes will stop you! As a tall rider, this impressive promise scares me. A high center of gravity is a playground for stiff stoppers. A while back, I was standing on a trail. While looking for ...


Blast From the Past: V-Brake Clone Linear Pull Plus Shoo Tout

Blast From the Past: V-Brake Clone Linear Pull Plus Shoo Tout

Editor’s note: This product review by Adam Lipinski first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #56, published in February 1997, back when V-brakes were all the rage. Welcome to the Dirt Rag V-Brake Clone Linear Pull Plus Shoo Tout. This test consists of the Curve Jaws II FS, Hershey Longneck Billet, Paul Motolite, Shimano XTR V-Brake, ...


Dirt Rag Issue #187 is Here!

Dirt Rag Issue #187 is Here!

On the Cover Amanda Batty riding on her local trails. Photo by John Shafer.  The Dirt and Readings In The Dirt and Readings, Bama writes about meeting Jesus while Stevil offers his thoughts on keeping the world from crushing every last semblance of peace in his life. Rebecca Rusch gives her advice for riding with the ...


Interview Preview: The voice of Amanda Batty

Interview Preview: The voice of Amanda Batty

Cover story from issue #187 Words by Chris Milucky Photos by John Shafer   Amanda Batty gained a degree of notoriety earlier this year, not because of her race results as a professional downhill and enduro racer but because she abruptly resigned from a position as an online columnist due to sexism, double standards and ...


Blast From the Past: ‘Just One Word. Plastics.’

Blast From the Past: ‘Just One Word. Plastics.’

Editor’s note: This story by Bob Ward first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #74, published in August 1999. I journeyed to the bike industry’s annual trade show extravaganza last year expecting to be underwhelmed with the latest and greatest that the bike industry could assemble. I figured if freeriding was the best that the marketing ...


Blast From the Past: Original RockShox product review from 1990

Blast From the Past: Original RockShox product review from 1990

Editor’s note: Maurice Tierney was one of the first journalists to get his grubby mitts on the original RockShox suspension fork. Here is his product review from Dirt Rag Issue #13, published in November 1990.  Photo by Maurice Tierney who had this to say: “I used to shoot the photos on black and white film ...


Blast From the Past: Libra — 2009 Literature Contest Winner

Blast From the Past: Libra — 2009 Literature Contest Winner

Editor’s note: Libra, written by Kevin MacGregor Scott, won the 2009 Dirt Rag literature contest and first appeared in Issue #145, published in October 2009. Original illustrations by John Hinderliter. I returned to my hometown a year from the date the last letter came from my brother Frank. The dispatches arrived in three week intervals ...


Blast From the Past: Naked by Katrine-Mari

Blast From the Past: Naked by Katrine-Mari

Editors’ note: One of our most moving and beloved stories, “Naked” by Katrine-Mari first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #62, published in November 1997. I want to walk naked in the snow I danced naked in the rain I lie naked in the sun I want to cry naked in a thunder storm I scream ...


Blast From The Past: Diminished Capacity Adventures

Blast From The Past: Diminished Capacity Adventures

Editor’s note: This story first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #61, published in October 1997. Words and art by John Hinderliter. Sit right back and hear a tale, A tale of a fateful slip. It started with a hacksaw blade, and almost made me flip. Almost made me flip. Like most guys who are the ...


Blast From the Past: Reader Submitted Tattoo Gallery

Blast From the Past: Reader Submitted Tattoo Gallery

Editor’s note: In Issue #137, Jonathan Logan of Rochester, New York, wrote in and asked if we could publish a section of reader’s tattoos. We challenged our readers show us the ink. The response was impressive, and in Dirt Rag Issue #139 we ran a two-page spread that included the reader-submitted photos proudly displayed below. ...


Blast From the Past: Five Freeride Fork Reviews From 1998

Blast From the Past: Five Freeride Fork Reviews From 1998

Editor’s note: This “shootout” style product review first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #66, published in July 1998—back when 100 mm of travel was considered “freeride” territory. This look back offers perspective on how far mountain biking, and suspension technology, has evolved since then. These five so-called double-triple clamp forks are good for something besides paperweights. ...


Blast From the Past: Recomm Endo (Worthy Recordings)

Blast From the Past: Recomm Endo (Worthy Recordings)

Editor’s note: In the Readings section of Issue # 38, published in August 1994, Mark Tierney curated the following selection of music reviews under the headline: “Recomm Endo (Worthy Recordings).” While there was no long-range plan at the time, Mark’s idea would eventually morph into our semi-regular music/movie/book/etc. review column now known as Recommendo. Frank Zappa ...


Blast From the Past: Translations

Blast From the Past: Translations

Editor’s note: Paul Angiolillo contributed the words and John Hinderliter inked the drawings in this illustrated piece from Dirt Rag Issue #42, published in February 1994.                       Keep reading We’ve published a lot of stuff in 26 years of Dirt Rag. Find all our Blast ...


Blast From the Past: Reader Rants Revisited

Blast From the Past: Reader Rants Revisited

Editor’s note: This vintage trio of reader letters reminds us that mountain bikers were adept at ranting long before the Internet made it all too easy to blow off some steam. Here’s some favorites we found in the archives. Rear suspension sucks! One thing in your last issue annoyed me. It was your claim that ...


Blast From the Past: Confessions of a Hamfist

Blast From the Past: Confessions of a Hamfist

Editor’s note: This story first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #48, published in November 1995. Words by Chip Baker. Art by Craig Foster. It starts out innocently enough: Your chain starts skipping manically over your gears for no apparent reason—as you’ve worn out your welcome at Sid’s Bike and Tackle Shop, you think “why not ...


Dirt Rag Issue #185 is on its way

Dirt Rag Issue #185 is on its way

On the cover Rambling along. Photo by Mattias Fredriksson.   The Dirt and Readings Tech Editor Eric McKeegan rants in defense of spoiled bicycle-media types, check out some amazing images from the famous Duryea Downhill road gap as well as CruzFest—the first time this European-based, invite only series came to America. Plus, a thank you ...


Blast From the Past: A Letter From “The Captain”

Blast From the Past: A Letter From “The Captain”

  Editor’s note: In this letter from Dirt Rag Issue #85 (April 2001), serial art contributor “Captain Black” explains how he eschewed proper engineering principles and created a magical machine for sharing the joy of cycling with his son. Keep reading We’ve published a lot of stuff in 25 years of Dirt Rag. Find all ...


Blast From the Past: Singletrack Hounds

Blast From the Past: Singletrack Hounds

Editor’s note: This story first appeared in Dirt Rag #111, published in November 2004. Words by Karen Brooks. Photos by Brad Quartuccio. If you’re reading this, chances are you know the joys of gliding through the woods, the satisfaction of making it up that hill, and the release of elevating your heart rate. It makes ...


FBM: Build Your Own Fun

FBM: Build Your Own Fun

I had never seen much of society outside of the metro-suburban areas in and around New York City, where I lived most of my young life, and now as a seventh-grade kid in upstate New York, I was in a whole new world. The fringe was filled with rednecks, hippies, young punks and more rednecks. ...


30 Months of Rust Belt Mud

30 Months of Rust Belt Mud

The oldest continuously operating mountain bike race series in America (or at least on the East Coast) is a low-budget, unsanctioned, volunteer-run event that you’ve probably never heard of. Sure, Leadville 100 has been running longer, but that’s just one race. Pearl Pass Tour and Downieville also predate this Pittsburgh-area institution, but they aren’t series ...


Road to Gold – Exploring the Yukon

Road to Gold – Exploring the Yukon

Road-Trip Objective: Explore the northern Canadian territory known as Yukon. See, bike and experience its rarely spoken-of bike culture. Hosting more trails than the total population of riders, this remote location supports a thriving bike world thanks to an abundantly passionate community and a supportive history. We were positive that the people and the trails ...


SWTPYITFB#32

SWTPYITFB#32

When I was a small child, I was completely fixated with a magazine called CARtoons. Essentially it was a black-and-white comic book featuring artists like George Trosley and his feature, “Krass and Bernie.” And then there was my other favorite, Shawn Kerri. If you’re not familiar with her, head to the internet and get up ...


Passing Through: Windham, New York

Passing Through: Windham, New York

Settlers first moved into the northeastern reaches of New York’s Catskill Mountains in the 1780s, and the town of Windham was formed along the banks of the Batavia Kill in 1798. Tanneries, sawmills and gristmills eventually sprouted along the watercourse. By 1851, the original expanse of Windham was divided to create six additional towns: Ashland, ...


Hangdown in the Wheelstrings: Our Brand Could Be Your Life

Hangdown in the Wheelstrings: Our Brand Could Be Your Life

The whiskey bottle was in the air before I could even register what was happening. A long, beautiful arc across the artificial daylight of too many streetlights, the only witnesses being the hidden stars … and literally everyone at the party. There was a cacophonous silence of anticipation as the bottle hit its apex and ...


Be Kind Rewind: Carbonframes Onyx

Be Kind Rewind: Carbonframes Onyx

Walking the expo at this spring’s Dirt Fest Pennsylvania, I couldn’t help but marvel at all the killer new bikes on display. As a fan of vintage bikes, a vast majority of my experience with frame construction materials is constrained to steel, aluminum and titanium. Carbon fiber, at least as we know it today, was ...


This Land Is Your Land

This Land Is Your Land

For the better part of 20 years, I called myself a cartographer. So what nerdier thing could I do to pay homage to a career that eventually merged with my mountain bike life than to travel to the last-mapped region in the United States? Even though I knew that Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument and Capitol ...


Hangdown in the Wheelstrings: Sung to the tune of “Jolene”

Hangdown in the Wheelstrings: Sung to the tune of “Jolene”

“So … is Marlene your partner?”   It was, in hindsight, the wrong question. But it’s what came out. My own politics and experience taking the minimal number of facts I had gleaned from the limited conversations I’d had with Darlene, applying poor multiplication and manufacturing a product.  The factors:  (She lived with a woman) x ...


The Walkers and Stalkers of Scotland’s Munros

The Walkers and Stalkers of Scotland’s Munros

The United Kingdom’s mountains lie mostly on its western flank and bear the marks of the Ice Age several thousand years past. Our tallest peaks are modest when compared to even our continental neighbors and certainly to the likes of the Himalayas, Atlas Mountains, Andes and Rockies. Altitude sickness is something you cannot experience here, ...


SWTPYITFB #30

SWTPYITFB #30

A Friend Like This To throw a leg over a bike is a release. To push the pedals and make it move forward offers vast catharsis. The components of the simple act of riding a bike are many, yet all fall in lockstep when it comes to parting mental clouds that obscure and confuse. It’s ...


Passing Through: Gunnison, Colorado

Passing Through: Gunnison, Colorado

Nestled in the shadows of the Rocky Mountains along Highway 50 sits the city of Gunnison, Colorado. The town received its name in honor of United States Army General John W. Gunnison, who was sent to survey the land for the railroad. In the late 1800s, miners, ranchers, and mountain men settled into Gunnison once ...


Glenn Vanzig: Live Feral or Die

Glenn Vanzig: Live Feral or Die

Editors Note: I have to be honest, I was digging through the back catalog of Dirt Rag’s searching for a ghost story, something Halloween related when I stumbled upon Watts’ “Vanzig” story from a few years back. While not a spooky story per se, it is a story I quite enjoyed. So while we are ...


Old Bike, New Look

Old Bike, New Look

By Stephen Haynes Whether cutting the sleeves off a brand-new T-shirt or remodeling the interior of a home, the desire to tailor one’s possessions is a siren song most of us succumb to at some stage of our existence. It’s human nature to personalize artifacts to reflect whatever self-image we’ve contrived, imbuing these things with ...


213 Is Kicking Up Dust!

213 Is Kicking Up Dust!

The time has come! Issue 213 is peeling out of the parking lot and burning up the highway on its way to your door! It’s been a wild year, and 213 is the final chapter of Dirt Rag 2019. Part Gumball Rally, part Smokey and the Bandit, and all Mad Max, we have left a ...


Blast From the Past: How to Have a Retro Ride

Blast From the Past: How to Have a Retro Ride

Editor’s note: This story by Karl Rosengarth first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #76, published in December 1999. It’s all about fun. I ride my mountain bike in search of maximum smiles per hour, and I’m not shy about spreading this philosophy. Occasionally, my riding crew loses their perspective, and I feel like I’m riding ...


Dirt Rag Issue #184 is here

Dirt Rag Issue #184 is here

On the cover Gettin’ after it in Sedona, Arizona, by Emily Walley. The Dirt and Readings This month we travel to the Sedona Mountain Bike Festival and road trip to 24 Hours in the Old Pueblo. Also, featured columnist Stevil Kinevil laments being off the bike for a bit due to a nasty crash. Plus, ...


Blast From the Past: The Zapata Espinoza Interview

Blast From the Past: The Zapata Espinoza Interview

Editor’s note: “Zap” Espinoza is a Mountain Bike Hall of Famer who got his start with Hi-Torque Publications’ Mountain Bike Action magazine in 1987. He moved on to Mountain Bike magazine in 1993, where he filled the editor’s chair until taking the reigns as Trek’s mountain bike brand manager in 2004. In 2006 Zap returned ...


Blast From the Past: Tallbiking

Blast From the Past: Tallbiking

Editor’s note: This story first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #120, published in April 2006. Words by James Flynn. Photography by Ian Merritt. Let me tell you about the time I made my tallbike. Shortly after I moved to Chicago, my friend Mike showed up to my place to sit on the stoop. He rolled ...


Blast From the Past: Massasauga

Blast From the Past: Massasauga

Editor’s note: This story first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #119, published in February 2006. Words by Nick Verstain. Art by Philip Newsom. Socially awkward. That’s what Mom used to say about me. She was only partly right. I was awkward socially, physically, romantically and spiritually. There were only 334 kids at Massasauga High, but ...


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. ...


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 ...


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 ...


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 ...


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 ...


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 ...


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 ...


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 ...


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 ...


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 ...


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 ...


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 ...


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 ...


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 ...


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 ...


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 ...


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 ...


Blast From The Past: The Tao of Singlespeeding

Blast From The Past: The Tao of Singlespeeding

Editor’s note:The Tao of Singlespeeding first appeared in Dirt Rag #110, published in October 2004. Adapted by Corvus Corvax from The Tao Te Ching, translation by Gia-Fu Feng and Jane English, Random House, Inc., New York (1972), with apologies to Lao Tzu. Illustrations by Michael Pfaltzgraff. The ride that can be finished is not the perfect ...


Blast From The Past: The Textbook Faceplant

Blast From The Past: The Textbook Faceplant

Editor’s note: This story first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #8, published in April 1990. Words and drawings by Mark Tierney One of the most notorious of mountain biking maneuvers is a feat referred to as the faceplant. This action is one in which a bicycle rider is thrown forward over his or her handlebars, ...


Book Excerpt: Fat Tire Flyer by Charlie Kelly

Book Excerpt: Fat Tire Flyer by Charlie Kelly

Editor’s note: Charlie Kelly’s Fat Tire Flyer began in 1980. It is considered the first ever mountain bike publication and until 1987 it was the only one. Kelly wrote most of the copy himself using different names, took photos, did the layouts, edited submissions, handled publishing and took care of the mailing list. The magazine closed ...


Blast From The Past: Coaster Brake Bacon

Blast From The Past: Coaster Brake Bacon

Editor’s note: This story first appeared in Dirt Rag issue #173, published in October 2013. By Paul de Valera Mountain biking is a province of firsts. Repurposing cruisers for dirt duty: a first. Bikes with suspension on the front and back (that work): a first. Hucking huge gaps: a first. Using your coaster brake to ...


In Print: Tale of the Fox—Inside the FOX Factory

In Print: Tale of the Fox—Inside the FOX Factory

Editor’s note: This feature originally appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #180. Order one here, or best of all, order a subscription and never miss an issue. Words and photos by Jay Goodrich It took me all of 15 minutes from the time I parked my rental car in the visitor’s spot at FOX in Scotts Valley, California, to create ...


Blast From The Past: Specialty Files—1981 Lawwill-Knight Pro Cruiser

Blast From The Past: Specialty Files—1981 Lawwill-Knight Pro Cruiser

Editor’s note: This edition of the Speciality Files first appeared in Dirt Rag issue #168 in February of 2013. By Jeff Archer Back in the earliest days of off-road cycling, there were two different sources for bikes: klunkers and cruisers. Klunkers were typically based on prewar balloon-tire machines that were modified for off-road use with ...


Long-term review: Yeti 575

Long-term review: Yeti 575

When the 575 was first introduced a decade ago, it broke the mold for trail bikes. With 5.75 inches of travel, it doubled what other companies were offering, plus it featured a 69-degree head-tube angle, which was unheard of at the time. Back then, it was considered so slack that Yeti told dealers it was ...


Issue #181 Is Here!

Issue #181 Is Here!

On the cover This year’s Red Bull Rampage winner Andreu Lecondeguy shows some attitude. Photo by Malcolm Mclaws   The Dirt Stevil Kinevil laments being lost and alone, Bama connects the hug of Lady Winter with drinking a 40 under a bridge, and we catch up with the “Fit Chick,” Selene Yeager.   Readings What ...


Monday morning rant: ‘No one is ruining anything’

Monday morning rant: ‘No one is ruining anything’

Take a look at the bikes above. They seem to share very few things in common. One is a stripped down rigid bike, or as they say on the in Internets, “ridged.” The other is a very modern all-mountain bike, able to survive weekend trail rides and the worst downhill tracks imaginable. What are they ...


In Print: The Making of Stafford Lake Bike Park

In Print: The Making of Stafford Lake Bike Park

Editor’s Note: This article originally appeared in Dirt Rag #178. Order a subscription to make sure you never miss an issue. By Kristen Jones Neff, Photos by Forrest Arakawa Construction on the much-anticipated Stafford Lake Bike Park in Novato, California, has begun—with  some dramatic twists along the way, and a whole cast of characters working ...


At the Helm – Mike Sinyard of Specialized and the Stumpjumper Expert Carbon World Cup

At the Helm – Mike Sinyard of Specialized and the Stumpjumper Expert Carbon World Cup

Editor’s note: “At the Helm” was a project we undertook earlier this year as part of our 25th Anniversary celebration. Four bikes, four companies, four founders. Much like Dirt Rag’s own history, each of these founders has seen rough times, but the ship still sails with a firm hand on the wheel. The stories you’ll read ...


Issue #179: The great e-bike controversy

Issue #179: The great e-bike controversy

Issue #179 is available now. Within its pages, you’ll find a great El Paso, Texas and Juárez, Mexico travel story, a riveting Access Action piece that found the legendary Hugh Jass team today and examines how they’ve given back to their mountain biking community more than any “organized” team I can think of, and coverage ...


Irreverent Reverend: Bob Seals Interview Outtakes Part 2

Irreverent Reverend: Bob Seals Interview Outtakes Part 2

In the current issue of Dirt Rag (#178, on sale now) you’ll find a ground-breaking interview with Reverend Bob Seals of CoolTool, Kleen Kanteen and Retrotec fame. This multi-faceted artist, activist, frame builder, race promoter and team owner, if not agitator, ran his whole operation out of his ranch just outside of Chico, California. Seals was ...


In Print: Cruzing to the Top, The Ben Cruz Interview

In Print: Cruzing to the Top, The Ben Cruz Interview

At the end of June American enduro racer Ben Cruz of Team Cannondale OverMountain finally earned his first ever international victory at round 3 of the Superenduro Series in the Lombardia Alps of Madesimo, Italy. It was a nasty, rainy event where weather definitely played a role. Like his WTB-Cannondale OverMountain teammates Mark Weir and ...


In Print: OG to OG — Maurice interviews Paul Price of Paul Component Engineering

In Print: OG to OG — Maurice interviews Paul Price of Paul Component Engineering

Paul Components is having a party! We’ll let them invite you themselves, just after this interview with Paul Price of Paul Components. That’s right, *the* Paul. Dirt Rag and Paul Components both turn 30 this year! Read our interview, attend their party, and subscribe to Dirt Rag so you don’t miss future rad content featuring ...


Be Kind Rewind: Fat Chance Team Comp

Be Kind Rewind: Fat Chance Team Comp

Editor’s note: This story first appeared in issue 211 of Dirt Rag Magazine. Like what you see? Subscribe now to catch the last issue of the year, and stop by your local bike shop to pick up issue 212, hot off the presses. by Martin Kozaczek You’d be hard-pressed to throw a rock into the ...


Dirt Rag 212 is on its way! How will you get yours?

Dirt Rag 212 is on its way! How will you get yours?

Issue 212 of Dirt Rag Magazine has hit the doorstep of Dirt Rag Headquarters, which means it’s on its way to bookstores, bike shops, ports, rabbit holes, hobbit huts, sasquatch pits, alligator caves, marmot nests, clown fortresses and, of course, subscriber mailboxes. If you haven’t already subscribed, be sure to stop by your local bike ...


In Print: Be Kind Rewind — 1990 Doug Bradbury Manitou

In Print: Be Kind Rewind — 1990 Doug Bradbury Manitou

Editor’s Note: This feature first appeared in issue 210 of our print edition of Dirt Rag Magazine. Like what you see? Subscribe today to catch issue 212, in production now and soon to set sail. Be Kind Rewind 1990 Doug Bradbury Manitou Mountain biking is a unique sport in several ways, different in its culture ...


In Print: Mojo HD4

In Print: Mojo HD4

Editor’s Note: This feature first appeared in issue 210 of our print edition of Dirt Rag Magazine. Like what you see? Subscribe today to catch issue 212, in production now and soon to set sail. Ibis Mojo HD4 Price: $6,999 Sizes: S, M, L (tested), XL Online: ibiscycles.com Tester: Brett Rothmeyer Age: 41 Weight: 170 ...


In Print: Trek Slash 8

In Print: Trek Slash 8

Editor’s Note: This review originally appeared in issue 210 of Dirt Rag Magazine. Like what you see? Subscribe now to catch issue 212, flying into mailboxes soon. by Zach White 2019 Trek Slash 8 review Price: $3680 Sizes 15.5, 17.5, 18.5, 19.5, 21.5 (tested) Online: trekbikes.com Tester: Zach White Age: 45 Weight: 195 lbs. Height: ...


In Print: Our Once and Future Sport

In Print: Our Once and Future Sport

Editor’s Note: This feature first appeared in issue 210 of our print edition of Dirt Rag Magazine. Like what you see? Subscribe today to catch issue 212, in production now and soon to set sail. By Carolyne Whelan, illustrations by Stephen Haynes Anissa Lamare may be the only female downhill mountain biker in India. She ...


In Print: Fast and Loose — PUSH Industries

In Print: Fast and Loose — PUSH Industries

Editor’s note: This story originally ran in issue 210 of Dirt Rag Magazine for our Fast and Loose segment. Like what you see? Subscribe today to catch issue 212 before it flies off the shelves. By Zach White Tucked away in an unassuming, moderately industrial cul-de-sac in Loveland, Colorado, sits the purpose-built, 7,300-square-foot headquarters of ...


In Print: Bike-Park Generation

In Print: Bike-Park Generation

By Brett Rothmeyer The sun is just cracking over the Uintas in Park City, Utah. Main Street is starting to chatter as the doors to cafés open; the wisp of a broom on the sidewalk is overtaken only by the occasional slow-moving vehicle headed up the hill. I had long daydreamed about riding Park City ...


Windrock Beyond Thunderdome

Windrock Beyond Thunderdome

Editors Note: This story originally appeared in issue 210. Now that the riding season is fully upon us we would like to share our experience from the Windrock Bikepark located in Oliver Springs, TN. Consider becoming a subscriber and keeping independent mountain bike journalism like this alive and well.  Words and photos by Brett Rothmeyer ...


In Print: Making Do on the Colorado Trail

In Print: Making Do on the Colorado Trail

Editor’s note: This article originally appeared in issue 208 of Dirt Rag Magazine. Like what you see? Subscribe now at dirtragmag.com/subscribe to catch issue 211, coming real soon.  by Carolyne Whelan When Rim Tours invited me along for their Colorado Trail guided trip, I was warned that it was “advanced,” due largely to exposure and ...


Titanium Grit: In The Studio With Firefly Bicycles

Titanium Grit: In The Studio With Firefly Bicycles

Editors Note: This story originally appeared in issue 209 as part of our new column “Fast and Loose.” Like what you see? Become a subscriber to help support independent mountain bike journalism and have Dirt Rag delivered to your door! By Carolyne Whelan Photos by Brett Rothmeyer It’s easy to miss, but tucked in a ...


Beyond the Troll Bridge

Beyond the Troll Bridge

Editors note: This story originally appeared in issue 209, our island adventure issue. If you like what you see and would like to see content like this more often, consider becoming a subscriber or invite us to your adventure Island! Photos and Words by Brett Rothmeyer A voice breaks through the crackle of AM radio: ...


Feature: Ticks Suck!

Feature: Ticks Suck!

Words: Gregory A. Cummins, D.O., M.S. American Board Internal Medicine Fellow Candidate (as of original writing), American Academy of Wilderness Medicine Illustrations: Andy Jones Note: This article originally appeared in Issue #155 (2011), but was one of our most popular stories and is still entirely relevant. Read, learn, then enjoy your rides! Ever notice that your biking ...


In Print: Eat Me 209 — Hippie Speedball

In Print: Eat Me 209 — Hippie Speedball

Editor’s note: OK, so a couple of things. First, this article originally appeared in issue 209 of Dirt Rag Magazine. Like what you see? Subscribe now at dirtragmag.com/subscribe to catch issue 211, coming soon. Second, quite a few folks took issue with this story running in our print magazine. I wrote a response in issue ...


Catching the last rays on the Sunshine Coast

Catching the last rays on the Sunshine Coast

Editor’s note: This article originally appeared in issue 209 of Dirt Rag Magazine. Like what you see? Subscribe now at dirtragmag.com/subscribe to catch issue 210, coming real soon.  by Abby Cooper Single droplets fell from the heavy grey skies and temperatures threatened snow. The timing for a trip to the sought-after loamy trails of Canada’s ...


The Future is Now! Issue 210 has landed on the moon (and in your boxes)

The Future is Now! Issue 210 has landed on the moon (and in your boxes)

A cartoon I love told me that Today is Tomorrow’s Yesterday. Just think: last month we were working on a magazine that now exists in my hands and will soon be in yours. That’s right, issue #210 of Dirt Rag Magazine is on its way to you, and future readers have a lot to look ...


D.R.A.T.: Bike, Boat, Cook

D.R.A.T.: Bike, Boat, Cook

What would a triathlon look like if organized by a group of people who have no interest in triathlons, and very little interest in racing, and have an unignorable urge to make fools of themselves? You know, a Dirt Rag triathlon?


In Print: Be Kind, Rewind— 1992 Cunningham Racer

In Print: Be Kind, Rewind— 1992 Cunningham Racer

Editor’s note: This article originally appeared in issue 208 of Dirt Rag Magazine. Like what you see? Subscribe now at dirtragmag.com/subscribe to catch issue 210, coming real soon.  By Martin Kozaczek A consummate tinkerer, Charlie Cunningham started making magnesium stems and aluminum seatposts for road bikes in the mid-1970s. By the end of the decade ...


In Print: MTB on LSD

In Print: MTB on LSD

Editor’s note: This article originally appeared in issue 207 of Dirt Rag Magazine. Like what you see? Subscribe now at dirtragmag.com/subscribe to catch issue 209, coming real soon.  Can a miniscule dose of LSD make you a better mountain biker? There’s only one way to find out. By Adam Hurlburt WARNING: This story begins with ...


Review: Specialized Enduro Coil 29

Review: Specialized Enduro Coil 29

Editor’s note: This review originally appeared in issue 207 of Dirt Rag Magazine. Like what you see? Subscribe now at dirtragmag.com/subscribe to catch issue 209, coming real soon.  Tester: A.J. Collins Age: 40 Height: 5’10” Weight: 165 lbs. Inseam: 31” Price: $5,800 Sizes: S, M, L (tested), XL Online: specialized.com Reach: 18.2” Stack: 24.4” Top ...


Hark! 208 is on it’s way! Sound the trumpets!

Hark! 208 is on it’s way! Sound the trumpets!

Issue 208 – Making do with what we got This is the final issue of 2018, so don’t miss out, there is a bit of a wait between now and the first of 2019. Inside you’ll find some good stuff. The inaugural Dirt Rag Asinine Triathlon. Bike. Boat. Cook. Imagine mountain biking meets D.I.Y. boat ...


In print: Carbon Bike Repair

In print: Carbon Bike Repair

Editor’s note: Dirt Rag #206 was our DIY issue, where we built a bamboo bike, a steel frame, and fixed a carbon bike. This is the carbon edition, written by Scott, our Operations Manager. Like what you see? Subscribe now to catch all of 2019 and follow along on all our hijinx. Dirt Rag #208 ...


Review: Santa Cruz 5010 X01

Review: Santa Cruz 5010 X01

Editor’s note: This review originally appeared in issue 206 of Dirt Rag Magazine. Like what you see? Subscribe now at dirtragmag.com/subscribe to catch issue 208, coming real soon.  Name: Eric McKeegan Age: 44 Weight: 165 lbs. Height: 5’ 11” Inseam: 32” Price: $6,799, $7,999 with carbon wheels Sizes: XS, S, M, L, (tested) XL Online: ...


Review: Rocky Mountain Thunderbolt Carbon 70

Review: Rocky Mountain Thunderbolt Carbon 70

Editor’s note: This review was originally published in issue 206 of Dirt Rag Magazine. Want to see more? Subscribe today at dirtragmag.com/subscribe to catch issue 208, coming soon! Price: $5,999 Sizes: XS, S, M, L (tested), XL Online: www.bikes.com Tester: Brett Rothmeyer Age: 40 Weight: 165 lbs. Height: 6’1” Inseam: 32” Reach: 17.9” Stack: 24.0” Top ...


Passing Through, Newark, DE

Passing Through, Newark, DE

Editor’s note: This story originally ran in issue 206 of Dirt Rag Magazine. Like what you see? Issue 207 is out now on newsstands. Click here to subscribe today to ensure you never miss a story. Located just a mile southeast of the tripoint where Maryland, Delaware and Pennsylvania meet, Newark may be the best ...


Be Kind, Rewind:  Yeti Arc prototype

Be Kind, Rewind: Yeti Arc prototype

Editor’s note: This story originally ran in issue 206 of Dirt Rag Magazine. Like what you see? Issue 207 is out now on newsstands. Click here to subscribe today to ensure you never miss a story. By Martin I love a good barn find. I mean, who doesn’t love a story about an old relic ...


Blast from the Past: A Spine Owner’s Manual

Blast from the Past: A Spine Owner’s Manual

Editor’s note: This article originally appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #142, published in May 2009. Words by David Alden-St. Pierre, MS, PA-C. Medical illustrations by Molly Thompson of Thompson Medical Illustrations. There’s nothing like an epic day in the saddle: a few hours of riding, burning lungs, tired muscles, and for some riders, an aching ...


Review: Search and State S2-R Performance Bib Shorts

Review: Search and State S2-R Performance Bib Shorts

Reviewer: Brett Rothmeyer Search and State S2-R Performance Bib Shorts: $215 When it comes to cycling clothing, there is nothing more important than a solid pair of bib shorts while tackling long days in the saddle. Multiple days of grueling riding are hard enough without having to worry about comfort and the wear and tear ...


Drink Me: Sparkling water

Drink Me: Sparkling water

Sometimes after a long ride, beer just isn’t the right thing, nor is more warm water from a hydration pack, gross drink mix in the bottom of your bottle, or a can of sickeningly sweet soda. Thankfully, we’ve learned to enjoy LaCroix. A blend of sparkling water and light flavoring, the LaCroix disappears from the ...


Review: Shimano AM7 MTB shoe

Review: Shimano AM7 MTB shoe

Shimano’s component arm moves slowly with new product development, but when it comes to its shoes, Shimano clips along at a pretty fast rate. The new AM7 is Shimano’s newest clipless all-mountain/gravity shoe, also known as the SH-AM701. The old AM700 was a platform pedal shoe. The platform pedal version of this new shoe is ...


Bike Review: Canyon Strive CF 7.0

Bike Review: Canyon Strive CF 7.0

Tester: Eric McKeegan Age: 44 Height: 5’11” Weight: 165 lbs. Inseam: 32” Canyon has made its long-awaited entry into the U.S. market. One of the biggest consumer-direct brands in Europe, the looming threat of Canyon has been touted as the best thing ever for consumers and the worst thing ever for established brands and their ...


Review: BMC Speedfox 01. KR

Review: BMC Speedfox 01. KR

Name: Brett Rothmeyer Age: 40 Weight: 165 lbs. Height: 6’1” Inseam: 32” The Speedfox 01 by BMC is touted as the latest in a long line of proclaimed, “quiver killers.” Labeled as a trail bike, the Speedfox looks to straddle the line between fun and performance, cross-country and trail. Falling into the medium travel category ...


Blast From the Past: Guerrilla Girls

Blast From the Past: Guerrilla Girls

Editor’s note: This story originally appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #85, published in April 2001. Words by Cynthia Carbone Ward. Art by Sherri Dobay. I arrived in California on Groundhog Day of 1982, a refugee from New York in high-heeled shoes and too much makeup. My home was a 1973 Buick, avocado green, of course, ...


Issue 201: Our third personality issue is here!

Issue 201: Our third personality issue is here!

Cycling is full of unique personalities and here at Dirt Rag, we love to embrace them all. Peek inside issue 201 and see what we have in store. Get issue 201 now Editor’s Letter Welcome to our third Personality Issue. It’s a favorite of mine for reasons beyond just the final product you’re holding right ...


Catching Up With: Maurice Tierney

Catching Up With: Maurice Tierney

By Captain Dondo Like the 25th anniversary of that drunken wedding you had in Las Vegas that seemed like a good idea at the time (but knew deep down had no chance of going the distance), Dirt Rag is still here. The 25th anniversary passed a while back and recently we celebrated the 200th issue, ...




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