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Spain 2017 – Barcelona, Mallorca, Granada, Madrid

7 Sep

Wow ive been bad at updating this blog… Im going to update more later but here is a save point for the Spain 2017 trip

STRAVA:

Mallorca Day 1 – 46mi – 6,600ft elevation – soller – Puig Major – Port De Sa Calobra – Soller:
https://www.strava.com/activities/994164895

Mallorca Day 2 – 32mi – 3,200 ft elevation – Costal Loop : Sóller – Deià – Valldemossa – Coll de Sóller
https://www.strava.com/activities/995372627

Mallorca Day 3 – 98mi – 10,000ft elevation – WOOF – Soller – Puig major – Cap Fermentor – Paige Major – Soller
https://www.strava.com/activities/997314396

Mallorca Day 5 – 45mi – 4,500ft elevation – Sóller – Bunyola – Orient – Alaró – Consell – Bunyola – Sóller
https://www.strava.com/activities/1000263577

Mallorca Day 6 – 24mi – 2,500ft elevation – Coastal Route – Last day in Mallorca
https://www.strava.com/activities/1006658609

Granada – 58mi – 8,600ft elevation – Pico de Veleta -The highest road in Europe
https://www.strava.com/activities/1006659111

Mallorca:

Day #1 – Port De Sa Calobra

Day #2 – Costal Loop : Sóller – Deià – Valldemossa – Coll de Sóller

Day #3 – Soller – Puig major – Cap Fermentor

Day #4 – NO BIKES!

Day #5 – Sóller – Bunyola – Orient – Alaró – Consell – Bunyola – Sóller

Day #6 – Coastal Route – Last day in Mallorca

Granada:

Pico de Veleta -The highest road in Europe

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First Ride: Rockgeist Bikepacking Bags

31 Mar

This week I did a quick shakedown with my new
Rockgeist bikepacking bags. I have been lurking the internet, scoping instagram accounts, and reading through as many product reviews as I could before finally picking someone to make bags for the Lynskey. The process of buying anything always takes quite a while for me but especially with these bags because they are a good amount of money and they are something that should last many many years/miles so I wanted to get it right the first time.

For my decision making process I had a couple things I wanted:
1) Someone who could make a custom half frame bag
2) Matching top tube bags, feed bag, and saddle bag
3) Bags that I didn’t have to wait 2+ months for
4) Made in the USA

After I put together those parameters I got to work seeing what was available. There are so many small companies out there making really legit looking bike packing bags that it was hard to choose. At some point I read a review at http://www.bikepacking.com/gear/bikepacking-stem-bags/ on the Rockgeist Trillium Honey Pot feedbag and started lurking on the Rockgeist page. Their bags looked very thought out and I was really intrigued by the small attentions to detail throughout their bags which set them apart from some of the other bag builders. I then shot an email over to Greg at Rockgeist to talk about options and lead times. After a few emails back and forth I was in! He gave me a production timeline to complete all the bags within a month. I then got to work on making then mailing him an outline for the ½ frame bag.

As for bags I opted for:
Flyrock 1/2 Frame Bag (all are custom & I opted for the interior loops for a frame pump)
Joule Quest Saddlebag (10L and 13oz)
Trillium Honey Pot feedbag
Front Cache Top Tube Bag (shorter and wider)
Rear Cache Top Tube Bag (taller and slimmer as to not rub your thighs)

I don’t have a good sense of fabric/color palette choices so I left that up to Greg to do as he pleased. His thought was to keep in simple with my bike and go mostly black with some small details of camo. The interiors are either hot pink or bright orange which gives contrast when rummaging for items at night. I was also pleasantly surprised to find out the other night that the zipper pull ends utilize glow in the dark plastic so you can see them easily when its dark. The zippers themselves are YKK® water resistant zippers that have a large flap to cover the end of the zipper to protect the intrusion of water.

I will give updates and a review at some point on the bags as I put actually miles on. Very much looking forward to commuting/bike-camping/rando-ing with these bad boys.

Philly to New Hope Ride – Sprig & Vine Brunch

2 Mar

Last weekend I tagged along on a ladies brunch century ride from Philly to New Hope, PA. Its a solid 100mi of rolling hills once you get out to Ambler.

Route via Strava: https://www.strava.com/activities/505324695

With the help of Mikey Green’s ninja route skills we were able to find some off the beaten path gravel roads and stay off any busy roads. We did take a more direct/busier way home.

Sprig & Vine

First Ride: 2015 Lynskey Cooper CX Disc

25 Feb

Today was the 1st commute on the new do-everything-bike. It was only fitting that it was 45F, windy, and raining on the tail end of the wild weather system/hurricane watch around Philly. As usual this build took me a while as I tried to figure out what I wanted…

I was looking for a steel or titanium frame, hydro disc, rack & fender mounts, clearance for at least 35c tires + fenders, and wouldnt kill the bank account. The Lynskey Cooper Cx Disc fit the bill.

The entire build ended up being right under $3k and the bike weights in at 20.0lbs w cages/bell/heeeavy tires 640g/ea 🙂

Build in progress:

version 1 build:

Frame – 2015 Lynskey Cooper CX (disc)
Fork – 2015 Lynskey Endurance Disc Fork (straight 1 1/8 non-tapered)
Shifters – ST-R685 STI, BR-RS785 brake calipers with pads, hoses, and mineral oil (without rotors or adapters)
Crankset – Shimano Dura Ace 9000 – 11 Speed / 172.5mm / 34/50
Bottom Bracket – Shimano Dura Ace 9000 – Black / English (BSA)
Rear Mech – Shimano Ultegra 6800 11 Speed – Grey, Medium Cage
Front Mech- Shimano Dura-Ace 9000 Double – 34.9mm, Band On
Chain – SRAM X1 11 Speed Chain
Cassette – Shimano Ultegra 6800 – 11-32 / 11 Speed
Rotors (2x) – Shimano XT-Saint RT81 Ice-Tech CL Disc Rotor – 160mm
Brake adapter (F) – Shimano Disc Brake Adapters SM-MA-F160, P/S Front
Brake adapter (R) – Shimano Disc Brake Adapters SM-MA-R160, P/S Rear
Headset – Cane Creek 110 IS42/28.6 Short Cover Top Headset, Black & Integrated Bottom 1.5″ 52mm Black IS52/30�
Wheels – Kinesis Crosslight CX Disc Wheelset V4 – 700c – 11Speed / Clincher (135mm rear spacing)
Bar Tape – Zipp Service Course CX Bar Tape – Black
Pedals – Shimano XT M780 XC Race SPD Pedals
Cages – Arundel Stainless
Tires – Continental Travel Contact – 37c Folding Bead (640g per tire)
Stem – Ritchey WCS – wet black)
Bars – Salsa cowbell 3
Seatpost – Thomson Masterpiece – straight 27.2 – black
Saddle – Fizik Arione – black
Bell – Spurcycles

The next version will have:
industry nine wheels to
fenders
and some bikepacking bags once I figure out whos i want to go with…!

West Chester CX 2015 #2 (WCCX)

8 Dec

From what I hear this is the last version of the West Chester Cross Race since the land its ran on is for sale or sold. With that being said and my lack of racing I decided to go out and race a bit.

Mens A 1/2/3 Race Video – 1st lap

The day before I ventured out to the brubs to do some failed Criagslisting, run by Bikesport, and ride with Glenn, Eric Ness, and Jamie. We decided to ‘tackle’ MattB’s firbird ride. Well i think it was a ride. Im pretty sure we rode bikes to/from drinking spot at least. Sections were gnar, people were great, and i got to do a bit of heckling, ie my favorite past time. all in all a solid day but i was exhausted from 76, and the grocery story, and such, not from riding…

Fast forward to sunday morning and im getting ALL the kittens rangeled and getting my bike into race shape. I roll out around 10:30am and pick up GregWhits and we hit the road.

The weather is too nice to be real. SS kits/skinsuits in Dec?! areyoukittenme?! The course is muddier than expected but we were told it was super icey/frosty that morning. The wind was minimal at most with the sun beating down. I watched/heckled the B-men and watched superstar-saxton ride at the front of the race for a while.

I warmed up a little bit and spun around, went down to the start and slotted in 2nd row behind MG. The whistle blows and MG misses a pedal and I skoot around him slotting in behind Jack on the road section and 5th coming into the grass. Ruether takes a low line around me quickly after and I sit in for a while. I realized iM not so good at this part yet… the race isnt super fast, everyone sitting in, BUT you need to keep you position and not get overtaken by everyone. I definitely need to work on this part as im not quite aggressive enough.

I sit in on the large front of the group for the next 1.5laps letting people in front of me if they need. COming around the U-turn before the pit I loose my front wheel and eat it infront of MG. Sorry Mikey!! for what its worth its the first time ive actually fallen all season which i think is probaly a bad thing. anyways this put a gap to the lead group and they have to hustle to try to latch on. I on the other hand jump on and realize my RD is a lil borked so i soft pedal 1/4 of the course, reach up to grab the course tape, and ride over to the car and call it a day.

The good news was I was able to get GregWhits getting his first 1/2/3 win ever?! Afterwards our crew hit Su Tao HARD!!! solid weekend and a not so solid day of racing. I think that may be it for me this season. as usual tons to work for next season. just hoping I have the will power to make it happen.

now bring on the snow! i need a break from bikes.

Brace

NickCal in the lead and NOT on his AWOL?>?>!

GWhits!

Su Tao!

PA State Champs – Pro Bikes Cyclo-cross Festival Day 2

8 Dec

Saturday morning Blake and myself started the day at 7am with a CX ride in belmont with the Major Taylor Neighborhood Bike Works ride afterwards where I got my first go at using the Indego bike share in philly. The ride itself with the kids was great, the weather borderline amazing and we even got to see a few of them win some awards.

Around 2pm or so that day Blake gave me, ‘Yah lets head to Pittsburgh to race tomorrow.’ I had told him and Stevie a month or so back that if they wanted to go and needed a co-pilot I was in. Alright game on. We rode back from west philly and I hurried to pack to hit the road before it was too too late. We had big plans that night to meet up with the Arrow Racing crew for Jack’s birthday in the ‘burgh!

Jack was also pretty siked on this local dive bar

We all pack into a hotel for the night and hang-and-bang into the night.

The next morning we all grab the continental b-fast and get ready to head west a little to the race venue/ Brendie and Keith had raced the day before and it sounded like the course was going to be 99% the same. It was cold out… the first real cold race of the season for sure. The course itself was pretty fun. Lots of flowy whoops, quick drop-offs, off-cambers, punchy climbs, and a pretty touch sand pit. The only downside was that the laps were quick, like reaaaly quick. The good news was youd at least learn the course during the race pretty well.

The start was asphalt into a short punchy grass/gravel climb. since I day-of’d I started last row (ie 3rd) but after the gun went off I was able to punch it off to the right and slot in around 7th or so. The san pit came pretty early in the lap but was wide enough if you took a non-line to not be a big issue. I crushed through the sand and made up a spot, hooked a 90deg left and slotted in line behind everyone else as in a hundred feet there was a tight 180deg turn that had a very narrow line at the top on the side of a very steep hill. Everyone was being pretty nice about it and waiting semi-patiently as falling down the hill would be brutal. Were all hugging the left course tape as the 180deg turn was tight and as im about to hit the apex I have some jabrone rip in on the inside and almost take me out down the hill. Oh yah, its just Arrow Racing’s Brendie… I yell at him for 6 seconds while were still on this off camber about being a jerk and jump on the road section and try to latch back to the group going up the big climb.

I make it back to the main front group and am sitting 8th or so when we come to a random left turn and Jack turn-bars somehow and eats it. Craig is right in front of me and crashes into him and I slow and barely make it around. This forces the gap to the front group and I charge to get back to them. It takes me a half lap or so but I make it up to Festa and the other 4 at the front and ride with them. At points I struggle to keep on their wheels but I eventually calm it down and stay focused. At one point Festa yelled for me to get back on after messing up in the sandpit and getting gapped a bit. Im able to hang with the group for 35-40min until the attacks start going off and I cant hang. By this point I can see Jack getting closer to me as I start to fade.

With 2 or so to go Jack comes around me FAST and almost crashes us both out. He bridges to another guy on ProMountain Outfitters who had fell off the lead group of 5 and they take off. I try to keep pushing with a goal to reel them both back in as theres no chance of catching back to the front. Jack drops the guy from ProMountain Outfitters and II eventually get past him half a lap later. I claw back up to Jack but then he attacks quickly after and I cant move with him. For the last lap hes got 10secs on me and I just cant dig deep enough to latch back on. I rolled through 6th and felt like I actually ‘raced’ for the first time in a while. I definitely miss that feeling of battling it out with people and being in the lead pack. Hopefully ill get my shit together for next season to make racing more enjoyable with off-season AND off bike training. Well see how that goes 

Mens B 3/4 podium

Mens A 1/2/3 podium

We then met up with my buddy for some late night east before making the 5.5hr haul back to philly. I forgot how good Spak Brothers was!!! Hotdamn!

Sly Fox Cross 2015

8 Dec

After its debut last year in 2014. Sly Fox Cross (SFCX) has become the most fun/anticipated local race of the PACX bar none. MattyB, Topher, and Nick put on a great event with great beer, great people, and a course that is actually fun to ride?!

This year we left the city early-early to help setup before the start of the race. I brought my race gear/bike but after the disaster that was me at CRCX I knew I should maybe not try to help all day AND race. This became easy to swallow as I started to drink some AM-beers. I worked the gate right by the run-up most of the day and got to heckle and shoot photos from there while getting a lap or two in when I could. The vibe and enegry was great, there were people there who definitely didn’t ride bikes, and there was even a camera crew who did a live streaming of the A race.

A bit bummed to have not raced but it was a great time from morning to night. I don’t even think I saw all that many casualties from the real race or the wild-SSCX fun ‘race’

The run-up before anyone was around

Joey at the front of the B-race

not sure if kyle was drunk yet here or not…

m.knee

front of the race

jamie!?

#dutchhammer