Sunday, February 28, 2010

Riding up

Joe and I ride every Sunday morning. We have been since he got his new job at The Shop about a year ago or so. In the last few months, more people have been coming along. Today, Joe invited Jake, who showed up with Ben. Jake and Ben ride singlespeed 29'ers. They're strong and fast. They gave us a good work out.

We left Sandifur Bridge stayed on the west side of the river until TJ Meenach, then crossed the river and popped out at Bowl and Picture. Nearly all of the ride was single track along the river. Lots of technical, swoopy, rocky, sandy stuff. I couldn't keep up with Ben and Jake technically or fitness-ly, but they waited. It was a fun, hard ride. I just woke up from a nap. I never nap.

Maddie couldn't do this last spring. Now it's not even worth a second run.

This ride was good timing, as I've been thinking about getting a hardtail mountain bike. Something with traditional trail geometry and suspension forks. I'd like to try riding a few different bikes before I purchase. I like the Rawland, but I'm ready to try something a bit more mountain-bikey and less roady.

Jake and Ben both ride a Voodoo Dambala. One thing they like about this frameset (aside from the < $400 price) is that the top tube is a bit longer, which allows a shorter stem, which sort of seems right to me. But I don't know why. I need to think that through for a while.

I watched them climb and because they're on single speeds, they had to do a lot of standing and climbing, which is how I prefer to climb. I'm not going to run a single speed, but I want to find a set up that encourages standing on climbs, not just sitting and spinning.

1 comment:

zoovegroover said...

I do not own one, but I built a small Karate for a friend and rode it one time to make final adjustments. It was a real revelation. I have a custom Waltworks 29er that I run single and rigid. I went custom b/c I was worried that my stature (5'6") would limit my choices in off the shelf bikes. Not only did the small Surly fit well, it rode REALLY well! It was set up rigid SS also and felt light and snappy once rolling. The front end was stable when standing and climbing (some bikes steering feels 'floppy' when standing over the bars on a slope). I would not trade my Walt for anything....but if I had to, I would take the Surly! And the 700c format with 2.35's?? I wish i had that 20yrs ago when I first started riding a mtb...I will never go back to 26" for offroad...unless it's my LHT!! If you're asking, I say keep it simple and get a Monkey!