Wednesday, October 31, 2012

2012 Fall Gravel Tour, Henderson Holler.

This Sunday, November 4th, we'll have our last Fall Gravel Tour group ride.  This one starts in Le Sueur MN.  We'll meet in the parking lot of the Pizza Ranch, 124 North 2nd Street, Le Sueur, MN 56058.  We plan to leave at 12 noon, so plan accordingly for time to get ready.

Cues are as follows.

0 mi                 Bridge St        
1.1 mi              Right on 336th St      
2.2 mi              Right on 324th St      
2.5 mi              Right to stay on 324th St       
3.5 mi              Left on 316th St        
5.8 mi              Right on Rush River Park Rd
8.3 mi              Right on 300th St      
9.7 mi              Right on Maple St      
9.9 mi              Right on Minnesota St           
10.0 mi            Left on 6th St
10.2 mi            Left on Main St         
10.4 mi            Right on Fort Rd       
11.3 mi            Right on 331st Ave    
13.0 mi            Left on 270th St        
15.6 mi            Left on 351st Ave      
16.4 mi            Right on Co Rd 65    
18.4 mi            Right on 371st Ave
20.1 mi            Right on 361st Ave    
24.3 mi            Right on 238th St      
26.5 mi            Right on 341st Ave    
29.0 mi            Left to stay on 238th St         
29.4 mi            Left on Scenic Byway Rd     
31.8 mi            Right on Faxon Rd    
32.6 mi            Right on Union Trail
34.3 mi            Right on 250th St
38.4 mi            Left on Salisbury Hill Rd      
39.2 mi            Turn around go back down Salisbury Hill Rd
40.0 mi            Left on Co Rd 51      
42.2 mi            Left on Henderson Station Rd          
42.7 mi            Right on Henderson Station Rd
43.5 mi            Turn around go back down Henderson Station Rd   
44.3 mi            Left on Co Rd 34/Henderson Station Rd     
44.4 mi            Left on Pumpkin Hill Rd       
47.0 mi            Left on US-169
47.4 mi            Right on Forest Prairie Rd     
50.0 mi            Left on Commerce St

Map My Ride course and GPX file can be found HERE.

This is a self supported group ride.  Participants do so at their own risk.  We will have cues day of, and the course will be physically marked.

We'll see you there!

Sunday, October 21, 2012

2012 Fall Gravel Tour: The Rawland Ride

Sunday the 28th of October will be our Rawland Ride.  This is the original route of our Fall Gravel Tour.  The ride will start in Dennison MN at 12 noon, and will be in the same style of our other rides.  Course cues are listed below, and the course will be physically marked with signs on the corners.

Last year's ride was stellar.  I hope this year will be equally is good!  Here are the cues.

Start at Dennison MN, at the corner of Goodhue Ave and Dennison Blvd, (County 9.)

0 mi                 Goodhue Ave

1.5 mi              Right on 110th
2.7 mi              Right onto 350th St
4.9 mi              Right onto MN-56 S
5.1 mi              Left onto 345th St
5.4 mi              Right onto High Prairie Trail
7.2 mi              Left onto 30th Ave    
8.2 mi              Right onto 345th St
10.2 mi            Right onto 330th St
12.8 mi            Right onto Oxford Mill Rd
14.1 mi            Right onto County 24 Blvd   
14.7 mi            Left onto Warsaw Trail
15.8 mi            Left to stay on Warsaw Trail
17.2 mi            Left onto 63rd Ave Way        
17.5 mi            Right onto County 14 Blvd   
18.6 mi            Left onto Shady Lane Trail    
21.2 mi            Right onto County 9 Blvd
21.6 mi            Left onto 70th Ave    
22.3 mi            Right onto 387th St
23.4 mi            Left onto 63rd Ave
24.3 mi            Right onto 63rd Ave
24.8 mi            Right onto 400th St
25.4 mi            Right onto County 49 Blvd
28.5 mi            Left onto Bow Trail
30.3 mi            Right onto County 44 Blvd
30.9 mi            Left onto Bow Trail
32.0 mi            Right onto County 14 Blvd
32.7 mi            Right onto 430th St
34.7 mi            Right onto 20th Ave
36.7 mi            Left onto 410th St
39.7 mi            Right onto Lamb Ave
43.3 mi            Right onto Dennison Blvd S
44.2 mi            Left onto Goodhue Ave

Full map, GPX files, and other details can be found here.

This is an unsupported group ride.  Riders who participate do so at their own risk.  

We hope you can join us!

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Signing off for the week.

Tomorrow marks the start of my biggest biking adventure ever.  I am heading to California to tour the route of the Stagecoach 400 endurance race.

This route features some of southern California's best scenery, and spans mountains, deserts, and coastal areas.  It's round about 385 miles, and features about 30,000 vertical feet of climbing.  I can't wait.

Photo credit to Jill Homer.

I'm both beyond excited, and rather nervous.  This is by far the largest bike packing trip I've ever taken.  It differs by  huge margins in both distance, and difficulty.  At this point my gear is set.  I'll be riding a beautiful Salsa Titanium Fargo set up with a suspension fork and my favorite Cowbell bars.  The bag set I'll be using is a full compliment of Relevate kit, with the exception of a Outdoor Research handlebar bag.  I'll run down a full gear list and my thoughts on how it all worked when I return.

I'm stoked.  This is going to be an amazing trip.  I'll tell you all about it when I get back!

Friday, October 19, 2012

Whole lot of fatbikes.

Mukluks, Pugsleys, and Moonlanders are all in and ready to ride.  Come and get 'em!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Shop water bottle are in stock!

New water bottle have finally made it to the shop!  These feature our new logos front and back, and have "perfect bikes for real people," across the top of the larger bottle.  I like them!

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Demo Surly Moonlander Now Available.

To compliment our demo Mukluks, we now have a Surly Moonlander available for demo at the shop.  It is an 18".  Decked out Gaddo style with white rim strips and white cable housing it's quite the looker.

Chainrings differ slightly from the stock Moonlander ones.  This bike sports the lower gearing 33t/20t MWOD chainring offerings.

This build uses slightly different thumb shifters than the stock bike as well.  These XT seven speed shifters have been waiting around for a project just like this on.  They work wonderfully for this application.  

The front shifter required a little work.  The bolt had been stripped out who knows how long ago.  By drilling straight through the body, tapping the remaining portion, and flush filing a longer bolt the shifter was saved from the junk bin.  This new set up offers many more threads engaged at the clamp.  The small silver dot next to the shifter is the flush fit bolt.  Slick

These are great bikes.  With the current set up, and with the new super huge Bud and Lou tires coming, the Moonlander offers super float and crawling ability above and beyond that of a standard fatbike.  Come check out if this bike's for you today!

Friday, October 05, 2012

Another affordable gravel/touring bike.

Folks who have read this blog for any length of time know that we build nice bikes.  Nice as an adjective is pretty vague.  It can mean anything from gorgeous custom builds, to well thought out, sensible, practical bicycles.  This bike is falls in the latter category of nice.

The Trek 7.1 is a great bike.  They ride well, they are affordable, and the parts are quite serviceable.  Decked out with the compliment of Revelate bags shown below, this set up would cost a guy just over $800.  That's a heck of a way to start out in this fast growing segment of biking.  This cost is comparable to looking at a nicer traditional rack and pannier set up.  

Cost of equipment is one of the biggest reasons for people not getting involved with a new sport.  For those looking to get into the bike packing or longer gravel rides the cost of entry can be simply staggering.  The bike pictured is a possible solution to that high cost.  Parts on this bike can be upgraded as needed or wanted, and everything would be suitable to start.  This set up costs less than many bare bikes labeled as starter bikes alone!

Whether you're interested in trying out gravel riding, or if you're considering adding bike packing to your list of hobbies, we can help you out no matter what your budget!

Thursday, October 04, 2012

2012 Fall Gravel Tour: The Haymaker

The Haymaker is our first group ride of our Fall Gravel Tour.  We're meeting in Red Wing, MN this Sunday October 7th, at 12pm noon.  We'll meet at the corner of Lehrbach Trail and Golf Links Drive/Bush Street.  Parking will be along Lehrbach road, NOT in the golf course parking lot.  The address for the start is  524 Lehrbach Rd, Redwing MN.  

This will be about a 42 mile ride total.  The ride route will be the same as last year.  Information can be found here on Map My Ride.  The cue sheet for the ride is as follows.  

0 mi                 Start on Lehrbach Rd.
3.8 mi              Left on County 21
4.7 mi              Right on Circle S Rd
8.3 mi              Right on County 2
8.6 mi              Right on 306th/Hunke
11 mi               Left on Flueger
11.9 mi            Right on County 5
12.4 mi            Left on County 45
15.6 mi            Left on County 2
15.8 mi            Right on County 45
18.1 mi            Right on 350th (minimum maintenance)
19.6 mi            Right on Betcher Trail
20.3 mi            Betcher Trail becomes County 3
21.0 mi            Left on Wells Creek Trail
24.4 mi            Right on 240th
27.2 mi            Left on County 3
27.7 mi            Right on Hill Valley Road
31.1 mi            Hill Valley becomes 315th
33.9 mi            Left on MN-58
34.2 mi            Right onto Hay Creek Trail
38.7 mi            Hay Creek Trail becomes Twin Bluff
40.1 mi            Continue on 7th
40.4 mi            Right on MN-58 (Plum)
41.4 mi            Left on 21st st.
41.5 mi            Right on Bush
42.0 mi            Right on Lehrbach

Cue sheets will be provided at the start of the ride, and the course will be physically marked at all corners. This is an informal group ride.  There is a no support ride, you are responsible for your own food and water throughout the route.  

This has been a wonderful ride in year's past, and should be this year as well.  We hope you can join us, and we'll see you Sunday!

Wednesday, October 03, 2012

2013 El Mariachi/Whisky Frameset Package

This year we're offering a El Mariachi frameset package again.  Paired with the Whisky No.7 tapered carbon 29er fork and a Cane Creek 40 headset this is a gorgeous, proven set up.

This is a great upgrade set up for a parts kit, or an awesome place to start a bike build from.  We've built these up geared and singlespeed for folks in the past.  They have turned out beautifully.

The headtubes on this year's El Mariachi's have been streamlined a bit from last year's.  The formed headtube flows even better visually with the big carbon fork.

This year's package sells for $1075 with everything save the stem pictured.  That includes the frame, Cane Creek 40 tapered headset, headset installation and headtube facing, and a Whisky No 7 tapered fork.  Give us a call or email with questions about this set up, or any questions you'd have about a possible build!

Tuesday, October 02, 2012

2013 Salsa Mukluk 2

The 2013 Mukluk 2 from Salsa have arrived in all sizes at the shop.

This year's Mukluk has been changed in quite a few ways from previous generations. Starting at the front, the head tube has been changed to a 44mm unit from a standard 1 1/8" set up.  This will allow the use of the soon to be released ultralight Salsa aluminum fork.  That fork is standard equipment on Salsa's Beargrease.

It is a stunning bike.  The white and green color scheme is really striking, and the green highlights carried out throughout the build really tie everything together.  This year's bikes come stock with Surly Nate tires, as opposed to the Larry's of previous years.  These lend themselves to year round riding a bit more than the Larry's, and are killer for mountain biking or exploring.  These are the nicer 120tpi Nate's, so weight is pretty comparable to the nicer Larry's.

Drive train set up this year is a Sram 2x10 operated by triggers, with Avid BB7 brakes.  Cable routing for both systems have been improved, providing crisper shifting and especially better brake feel to the rear.

An updated double eThirteen crank comes with a better BB system.  Offset double rings akin to Surly's MWOD cranks solve any potential tire/chain interference issues.  Also, they look nice.

On a similar note, bottom bracket height is slightly higher on this year's bikes, eliminating a lot of potential pedal strikes.

A huge change to the Mukluks this year is the addition of Salsa's great Alternator adjustable dropouts.  This not only allows for a proper SS set up, but allows the rider to dial in chainstay length to their handling preference.  Specific racks for these bikes are coming in stock very soon, making rear bag or stuff carrying a lot easier as well.  Sram's excellent X9 rear derailleur and wide range cassette keep things out back working well.

Unlike the naked photos above, this set up shows you what any good Mukluk, (or other fatbike,) should look like properly set up!  Bag set from Revelate, pogies to keep you hands and food stuffs warm, and an OR handlebar drybag for shelter or whatnot have this bike set up for adventuring.  I love how these look all done up.

These OR Lateral dry bags are a new item in the shop.  They work exceedingly well as handlebar bags, and are quite affordable.  We have them in stock in the 10L and 15L: sizes.

So there you go, another sweet bike from Salsa for 2013.  As I said, these are all in stock now, come check them out or take one home today!

Monday, October 01, 2012

2013 Purple Salsa Mukluk Frameset

2013 Mukluk framesets are available in two colors this year.  The first is the stock white and green of the Mukluk 2.  The second is only available as a frameset.  It's a deep gloss black bike with bright purple accents and frame decals.

It's pretty much a bad ass.

Pair one of these with Surly's limited edition purple Rolling Darryls and you'd be in business!

I love the lines on the extra small Mukluks.  The proportions are great, and they fit shorter stature folks really well.

Again, these are only available as framesets.  They are $699 this year.  These would make a great starting point for a new build, or to swap out an older parts kit onto.  Personally I really want to build one of these up as a singlespeed with dirt in mind, but that's just me!

We have these in stock in XS, medium and large.  We also have a few framesets in the white color in stock.  Give us a shout if you have any questions about a build, or if you'd like to get one coming!