Entries for Category: Ride Review

Campus Wallride

{ Saturday March 15th, 2008 }

I got peer-pressured into ducking out of work early for a street session at the University of Minnesota campus with Tony and Buck. I got a chance to take the Riot out for the first time. While I still suck at street riding, I really liked the bike and I can’t wait to try it out on some dirt jumps.


Bootleg Canyon – Jan. 2008

{ Thursday February 14th, 2008 }

» Click here to see the photos

Nik called me the day before I was supposed to board a plane bound for Las Vegas. We had been planning this trip to Bootleg Canyon in Boulder City for a month and I was ready to leave the cold and snow of the Minnesota winter behind and get some DH time in on some dirt that didn’t require that I clear it of snow first. Nik was calling to tell me that a huge storm was rolling into Santa Barbabra. The streets were flooded and the stoplights were out. More omnious for us were the tales of 8 inches of snow that had fallen on the mountians outside of town. “If it’s snowing in SB, it’ll definately be snowing in Bootleg.”, Nik told me. Nik has many skills but thankfully meterology isn’t one of them. When I landed in Vegas the skies were clear and the temps were in the 50s. Coming from the frozen north it felt positively tropical.

P1010005.jpg While Bootleg Canyon has excellent XC trails including a IMBA Epic ride, we were there for the DH action. The local bike shop All Mountain Cyclery runs a shuttle on the weekends but since we had had problems with the reliability of the shuttle vehicle and also since we wanted to ride on Monday and the shuttle only runs on the weekends, we decided to rent a pickup truck and run some hot laps with each of us taking turns driving.

The first day there were no signs of the storms brewing to the west of us and we were greeted with perfect winter riding conditions; bluebird skies, temperature in the high 50s and most importantly, no wind. The terrain at Bootleg ranges from technical, is-this-really-a-trail type terrain, to fast flowy, carveing-the-ridges type sections at the bottom. We spent the day reacquainting ourselves with the trails and getting used to the alternately grippy rocks and loose dirt. Near the end of the day Nik and Brady dropped into the upper section of Ginger. The trail was so exposed and steep in some sections that they questioned whether it could be ridden clean. We ended the day riding the jump park until it was too dark to be safe.

We awoke on day two to the sounds of rain outside our hotel room. By the time we had finished breakfast the rain had ceased but the air was damp and the clouds hug low. Getting to the top of the downhill trails requires a ten minute hike-a-bike. The clouds were thick and five minutes into the push we could no longer see the truck or the road. Rounding the last corner we were met with a fierce wind. The fog made it difficult to let the bike run in the open sections as the tech sections would jump out at me with little to no warning. As the day progressed the fog burned off and the wind picked up. As long as I kept my wheels on the ground the wind didn’t pose much of a problem.

The run of the day was Armaggedon to Snakeback to Diva. Armaggedon starts off with some rocky tech carved out of the side of the hill. The first move is the “Toliet Bowl” a tight left hard turn over steep rock. Armaggedon gives way to Snakeback right before a small drop which can be tricky when the wind is blowing. The entrance to Diva comes in the middle of a loose right hand turn that was preceded by a extended loose straightshot. Upon entering Diva, the rocky tech is left behind and is replaced with ridgeline trails that are fast with flowing banked turns that are broken only the occational braking bump and random rock garden. On the last run of the day my connected with a trail-side rock. I hit it hard enough that it blew my foot off the pedal and my toe went momentarily numb. Unfortunately the numbness didn’t last long.

On Day 3 the wind came. It started strong and kept growing stronger. Any time our wheels left the ground we were in danger of being blown off the trail. On my last run I had to maintain a 45 degree lean into the wind to keep from being blown off the ridgeline trails. Every bump mashed my swollen big toe against the front of my shoe. It was unpleasant and I called it quits after two runs.

The wind was blowing so hard that I had to find an indoor spot to break down the bike. We had already checked out of the hotel and I wasn’t excited about the prospect of packing the bike up in the airport parking ramp. Luckily the bathrooms at the at the trails was pretty spacious. So while the wind howled outside I got the v-10 broken down and packed up in under 25 minutes; a new record for me.

While the wind sandblasted our cars in the parking lot, Brady, Nik and I said goodbye. It was our most successful Bootleg trip to date in terms of most runs completed and most fun had. I look forward to returning next winter.

» Click here to see the photos

Dirt Jum . . um . . Snow Jum. . no . . Snirt Jumping

{ Sunday December 2nd, 2007 }

Tony called me last night and told me that the Sunday session was still on. A little snow on the jumps doesn’t keep us down in Minnesota. Buck pulled himself out of his sick bed to shoot some video.

Digging out the jumps took a surprisingly short amount of time with Tony and I shoveling and Buck buffing everything out with the broom. I broke a personal record when on the first run I clipped a pedal and went over the bars on the run-in to the first jump. Bruised, pissed and limping with a swollen knee, I got back on the bike and eventually hit the whole line but the fall knocked me off my game and I spent most of the day taking pictures.

Tony stepped up and killed it for the cameras. The whole thing worked out much better than I expected. Here’s to more winter jumping sessions!

Hwy 8 Jump Session

{ Sunday November 25th, 2007 }

We had a great session at the Hwy 8 jumps this morning. There were at least 15 mountain bikers and bmxers out there sessioning the jumps. Scott took some amazing photos as usual and Shad put together a great video.

My First Attempt at Nighttime Photography

{ Thursday November 8th, 2007 }

Last night I took a solo night-ride at Lebanon Hills. I took all the photo gear because I wanted to try taking some nighttime photos. The results are less than spectacular but not a bad start I think. I had several more spots that I want to set up on but I ran out of time.
Nighttime at Lebanon Hills

Whistler 2007 – Part 2

{ Tuesday November 6th, 2007 }

One week after an epic week in Whistler with the MN crew, I was back in Whistler 5 days later for another round in the bike park; this time with a couple of the Vultures from Santa Barbara.

Whistler 2007 Video

{ Tuesday October 2nd, 2007 }

My friend Rob put together a little video from our Whistler trip in August. It’s hard to stop riding and set up shots when you are churning out runs in the bike park so most of the footage is from the “River Runs Through It” trail. And there is a little Santa Barbara dirt jump and dancing filler at the end. Enjoy!

Whistler Recap and more Pictures

{ Monday August 13th, 2007 }

Just got finished with a great week in Whistler. We didn’t have the greatest weather for picture taking but the trails were in great condition despite some slickness. This trip, like all trips to Whistler wasn’t without carnage. Buck went through a couple of wheelsets. Thor blew up his rear shock and ended up buying a brand new bike. Pete broke a frame and had to rent a bike the last day. I left a good portion of the skin from my back on the trail as a penalty for brake checking before the wooden booter creek gap on Dirt Merchant. Daryl ejected off the 4X course and landed all the way over on the dual slalom. JJ almost lost a couple of fingers due to the cold and Brandon cracked the lowers on his 888 due to overtightened pinch bolts. But the “Crash of the Week” award goes to Scott who fell about 6 feet to his head off of the rock wall ride on Golden Triangle and concussed himself hard enough to forget the whole thing. He kept asking us the same questions over and over for about 20 minutes. It would have been funny if it hadn’t been so scary. OK, it was pretty funny.
Pete on Side TrackDaryl on Side TrackPete on Golden TrianglePete on Freight TrainScottThor on Freight Train

Whistler 2007

{ Tuesday August 7th, 2007 }

We’ve been in Whistler for two days now, but we’ve been having too much fun to stop and take out the camera. I did manage to get a couple of pictures yesterday.
Kris on Flithy Ape - Photo By Pete KoskiScott on Clown Shoes

The Girls’ Weekend

{ Wednesday July 25th, 2007 }

This past weekend my wife hosted a girls’ weekend at the Colorado house so when the boys flew back to Santa Barbara, CA I tagged along. The trails we rode were steep and loose. They had Manzanita trees that tore at my flesh and stumps that grabbed at my pedals, but they were incredibly fun and at the end of the day cold beers at the Chino Shop helped clear the dust from my throat. It was a great weekend!

Tree on Cold SpringsNik riding Cold SpringsNik riding Cold SpringsKris riding Cold SpringsNik riding Cold SpringsCustom Trail Spiderweb Removal ToolNik riding Cold SpringsChilling at Treehouse RockNik riding Cold SpringsThe unprecedented 4 bike and 4 passengers in the vw caddy shuttle

The Jackalope and the Bull in Colorado – Day 5, Keystone

{ Thursday July 19th, 2007 }

Rob on Jam Rock at Keystone Bike ParkKris on Jam Rock at Keystone Bike ParkNik on Jam Rock at Keystone Bike ParkKris on Jam Rock at Keystone Bike ParkNik at Keystone Bike ParkKris at the Drop Zone at Keystone Bike ParkNik at the Drop Zone at Keystone Bike ParkRob at the Drop Zone at Keystone Bike Park

Kris on Wild Thing

The Jackalop and the Bull in Colorado – Day 4, Keystone

{ Thursday July 19th, 2007 }

Nik on Fuzzy Bunny at Keystone Bike ParkKris on Fuzzy Bunny at Keystone Bike ParkRob on Fuzzy Bunny at Keystone Bike ParkKris on Jam Rock at Keystone Bike ParkKris at Keystone Bike Park
Kris on Wild Thing at Keystone Bike Park

The Jackalope and the Bull in Colorado – Day 3, Keystone

{ Tuesday July 17th, 2007 }

The Bull got laid up with altitude sickness, so while he was at urgent care huffing oxygen, Nik and I were dodging thunderstorms at Keystone Bike Park.

Nik on Voodoo at Keystone Bike ParkNik on Voodoo at Keystone Bike ParkKris on Barracuda at Keystone Bike Park

The Jackalope and the Bull in Colorado – Day 2, Sol Vista

{ Monday July 16th, 2007 }

Yesterday we drove over to Granby CO and rode Sol Vista. They have a great little setup over there. 3 or 4 downhill trails, free lifts from 10am – 3pm on the weekends and the biggest, smoothest and most fun booters I have ever hit.

Rob at Sol VistaRob at Sol VistaKris at Sol VistaKris at Sol VistaRob at Sol Vista

The Jackalope and the Bull in Colorado – Day 1

{ Sunday July 15th, 2007 }

Nik (aka The Jackalope) and Rob (aka The Bull) are visiting from SoCal. I picked them up from the airport yesterday and brought them up to Breckenridge. After the bikes were unpacked and rebuilt, they needed a shakedown so we hit up the Breckenridge Freeride park that is located next to the 4 o’clock run.

Breckenridge Freeride ParkBreckenridge Freeride ParkBreckenridge Freeride ParkBreckenridge Freeride ParkBreckenridge Freeride ParkBreckenridge Freeride ParkBreckenridge Freeride ParkBreckenridge Freeride ParkBreckenridge Freeride ParkBreckenridge Freeride ParkBreckenridge Freeride Park

Murphy Hanrehan

{ Monday May 28th, 2007 }

Got out today and rode the newest collection of singletrack in the Twin Cities area. I’ve been out there a couple of times for trail work this spring but it was my first time seeing the entire trail. I was also testing out my new Small Block 8 tires. I was loving them until I got a flat after the log ride and of course I neglected to bring a tool to remove the bolt-on rear wheel so I had to walk out. Other than that I had a great time.

Murphy Hanrehan

Murphy Hanrehan

Murphy Hanrehan

Murphy Hanrehan

Murphy Hanrehan

Murphy Hanrehan

Murphy Hanrehan

Murphy Hanrehan

Murphy Hanrehan

Downhill Madness

{ Tuesday July 2nd, 2002 }

Nik on Thieves' Forest

It was 4am, Friday morning, June 14th. My hands and the kitchen floor were covered in DOT 4 brake fluid and in 12 hours I was supposed to be in Jackson, Wyoming to pick up Nik. I had been trying to bleed my brakes for what seemed like an eternity. As I pulled the brake lever to the bar I cursed to myself and decided to call it a night.

»Continue Reading "Downhill Madness"

Star-Crossed Lovers

{ Monday June 10th, 2002 }

I think there are some trails a person isn’t meant to ride. I’m not talking about trails that are on sensitive land, or that are too difficult. I am talking about trails that the fates have decided that a particular person should never ride. This does not mean that no one should ride them, just me. I think this is the problem I have been having with the Stone Creek trail in Bozeman MT. Like two star-crossed lovers we want to be together but something always keeps us apart.

»Continue Reading "Star-Crossed Lovers"


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