As a professional skier I should be the kind of person who wants endless winter, yet I’m the person who can never get enough summer. Last night the temperatures dipped and we felt the first breaths of winter. Our gardens were safe, but I felt for sure that it might have frozen in Crested Butte, 3,000 feet above our farm in Paonia, Colorado. Between putting up food for the winter and work, I can only hope for several good months of riding here in the lowlands, dropping me fit as a fiddle into an epic powder skiing season.
I should preface this piece by stating that I am not an experienced Enduro racer, but rather one that has participated in several races, and likes the idea of a race that is like a ride with friends, but against the clock in the fun sections. The burgeoning excitement over this new style of racing is contagious, but I am unsure of whether to completely jump on the bandwagon of those claiming it’s the next big thing. Is it the next big thing? Can it dethrone the juggernauts that are DH racing and XC?
A group of Osprey team members, friends and family hit the trail for a Sunday ride at Stoner Mesa in San Juan National Forest, Colorado. After 26.5 miles—more than half of that climbing—the crew stopped for a quick photo and some much-needed refreshments.
Cheers to finding some singletrack in your neck of the woods this week!
For the second year in a row the USA Cycling Association Cross Country National Championships took place against the beautiful backdrop of Sun Valley, Idaho. Blue skies, warm temperatures, and calm winds greeted racers from around the country who showed up to challenge the best of the best and battle for the coveted national championship jerseys.
I was invited along for a weekend of riding in the Kamloops by a small crew led by Seb Kemp, who was writing a story on the Loops for Dirt Magazine, and Reuben Krabbe, who was capturing the images for the article. I had not been to Kamloops in a long while, focusing my travels on other parts of BC, and more exotic locales in the previous few years. I feel strong ties to that arid part of the province though, having spent many weeks there in the early days of my freeride career, shooting for the New World Disorder movies and getting into the youthful trouble that seemed to follow our film shoots around in those days.
The McKenzie River Trail (the MRT) is situated in Central Oregon, on the west side of the Cascades. This mountain range, predominantly made up of dormant and not-so-dormant volcanoes, does an efficient job of stopping the moisture from the Pacific Coast. On the west side you have temperate rainforests and old growth timber, and a stones throw to the east you are exploring an arid desert-like landscape. The MRT, being on the west side of the volcanoes, features towering Douglas fir, mossy forest floors, a raging river (complete with big waterfalls) and a cool climate. Apparently it rains frequently, but it was nice and dry for our visit down this renowned trail.
Freedom to roam has a very different meaning in Scotland than it does in the United States. In Scotland you can walk, mountain bike or ride a horse on any and all land — public or private, as long as you do so without damaging it. This is meaningful because it means, if you know where to go, there are trails and routes “up there in them hills.”
So, naturally, we got off the marked trails and with the help of our new friends (an amazing community of Scots who have lived in the Borders Region for their entire lives) we were treated to some spectacular riding — unmarked, undocumented and completely legal.
Head buzzing from wine, stomach full of cheese, meat and bread, I careened haphazardly down the mountain, the Rhone Valley far below and a group of howling bike riders in the exact same boat as I following closely behind.
We were mid-way through an eight-day sampling of some of the finest Swiss and French downhill mountain bike gems. Some days took us to established bike parks, and other days to obscure trails hidden to the general public, and only discovered through a combination of bribing locals, studying maps and some good ‘ol fashioned luck.
I am 11-year-old Jake Yackle and I live in Cortez, CO. For four years I’ve been XC Mountain Bike racing in the Four Corners States and for the past two seasons I’ve stepped up to race teenagers and adults in competition. My brother, Nye, and I traveled to the Sea Otter Classic last month to race against nationally ranked 13-14 year-old juniors that are closer to our age.
Before our XC race, each of the three consecutive days, we completed pre-rides on the dry, hot 14.5 mile Sea Otter course. The Osprey Verve 4’s ample water capacity and innovative lightweight design proved perfect to help keep us fresh and energetic for our second most important race of the season.