Archive for the ‘Mtn. Bikes’ Category

List of car-free places

August 7, 2009

Thanks to Carlton Reid @carltonreid for the following link.



July 10, 2009

Enjoying my morning cup of Joe and a driver with his priorities straight pulls in. An average economy Saturn with a Merlin Ti road bike on top. Who else has a bike that costs more than their car? Good for you.

Riding your favorite trail w/ a newbie

July 10, 2009

There is something magical about riding at Tsali..maybe the speeds, the riding companions, or the many memories (snow covered epic rides or nearly loosing my best riding bud Woody to heat exhaustion). Whatever it is, the riding is always special.
This past weekend, my bro-in-law (Sean) would be joining me. Sean likes to skydive, however has the biking skills of a wounded chicken.
I wanted Sean to experience Tsali, so we headed for the Thompson loop. We took it easy so he could get his legs under him. He kept falling over on the straight, easy sections and mastering the semi-technical challenges.
Part of me was frustrated with the crawling speed, however I thought about it, and realized it was about Sean’s ride, not mine. I slowed my pace and tried to make Tsali the best it could be.
At the end of the ride, several of us were waiting to take Sean’s photo of his fast descent. Instead, we saw him fly over his handlebars and distrube a sleeping tree. Poor newbie.
Aftetword, Sean concluded the descents he loved, the climbing he hated.
Sean maybe you should stick to skydiving.

World champion of bicycle thieves

August 22, 2008



As a former victim of bike theft, it is nice to hear that this scum-bag is detained.  


From the NY Times. 


In a Cyclist-Friendly City, a Black Hole for Bikes

TORONTO — What exactly was he planning to do with 2,865 bicycles?

Toronto Police, via National Post

The police are baffled by what Igor Kenk planned to do with such a surplus of bikes.

That is just one of many questions the police and others have been puzzling over since the arrest last month of Igor Kenk, the owner of a used-bike shop here.

Mr. Kenk’s legacy now fills a former police garage with a leaky roof. Organized by brand name and mostly resting on their handlebars, wheels pointed upward, are 2,396 of the bicycles that police say Mr. Kenk either stole or arranged to have stolen.

The jumbled collection of bicycles suggests that Mr. Kenk is the unofficial world champion of bicycle thieves. But as he awaits trial next month on 58 charges related to theft and drug possession, the biggest mysteries of all are Mr. Kenk’s motives and his ultimate plan for the armada of steel, rubber and aluminum he amassed.

“He’s easily the most hated man in Toronto,” said Alex Jansen, a filmmaker who has been working on a documentary about Mr. Kenk for more than a year as part of a study of his rundown neighborhood’s transition to hipsterdom. “But I just found that it’s not as black and white as I originally thought.”


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Vanilla Bicycles: A Story About Sacha White

December 30, 2007
Below is a link to a 10 minute movie about the Portland frame-builder Sacha White and his story with Vanilla bicycles.  


The Cliffs of Moher in Ireland

August 1, 2007


Favorite Riding Bud !

April 27, 2007


Sometimes it is difficult to coordinate work, family, in general free time with fellow buds to ride with. Everyone has a lot of responsibilities. Everyone except for your Favorite Riding Bud…… “The Mountain Biking Dog”.

On the trails, I have seen all breeds from mutts, to AKC registered Champions, to shop dogs. They come in more sizes than your Wendy’s Drive-Thru menu: Extra-large 175-lb (Great Pyrenees) to Beagles with large bellies and small heads (Molly Heskin). However, all these dogs have something in common….that is only a commitment to riding with you on your terms and your schedule.

My favorite riding bud is Woody, my 95-lb Golden Retriever. He would fetch my helmet, add some impressive teeth marks in the process and wag that tail with more excitement than a 5-year-old on Christmas morning.

I used to drive a ’68 Ford Galaxy (Two bikes could fit in the trunk without removing any wheels…impressive) that had a black vinyl interior. Anyway on any given mtn. bike adventure, Woody would find every mud pit and take a little dip. Woody rode in the back seat and I usually spent more time cleaning car interiors than riding. To clean Woody, I would stop off at the local car wash along Main Street. Needless to say, I had a few on-lookers.

Woody could smoke me on the climbs (4 wheel drive), and I returned the smoking on the downhills. Although Woody was never the fastest or most graceful, he loved our adventures.

A few years ago was Woody’s last real mtn. biking ride. It was in Tsali, NC and he had heat exhaustion only after two miles. He ran too hard, trying to be with me instead of slowing to run with my wife. This was singletrack and we tried to carry the 95-lb fellow. We then made a stretcher with logs and a backpack straddled between two bike toptubes. After a emergency visit to the vet, Woody was fine, however his mountain biking days were over.

Woody is now 13 years old. He loves to camp and still gets excited about biking adventures even though he can only watch and not participate. Somedays will I am wrenching in the garage, I’ll take a quick bike spin and Woody tries to run to catch me.

His heart and mind still ride with me, even though his body can’t.

Perfect Cartwheel on a Bike

April 24, 2007

Merlin Roots and Newsboy

December 24, 2006

Early Newsboy

In 1994, Merlin introduced their Newsboy bicycle with incredible reviews at Interbike. Photo album. The frame design had beautiful curves that mimic a 1950’s beach cruiser and hidden cable routing. The design was nearly perfect, except for the rear brake mounted on the chainstays. Production was limited to 100. Brushed titanium frame, curved tubes, intelligent cable routing and very limited production make this bike highly desirable. However, the lacking mud clearance and maintanence nightmare of the rear brake limits the bikes rating to 8 coffee beans.

In 2002, the Newsboy was reintroduced with front and rear disc brakes, front suspension and two sets of wheels. Merlin Newsboy is Back. With the improvement with the previous Newsboy brake design, this bike receives a rating of 9 coffee beans.

Merlin Roots

For 2005, Merlin produced the “Roots”. Similar to 1930’s bicycle frame designs, it was the desire to reproduce the early mountain bikes. Roots Website. Only 50 were produced and one can be found on Ebay for $4,500. I would be afraid to leave this bike locked anywhere. With the limited # stamped right on the frame, even a blind thief could calculate the black-market value. I love Merlin for adding a 14 speed internal Rohloff hub and a Brooks saddle. Rating 9.5 coffee beans.