Showing posts with label 29"er Big Wheeled Ballyhoo. Show all posts
Showing posts with label 29"er Big Wheeled Ballyhoo. Show all posts

Friday, September 25, 2009

Home Again

Well, I bugged outta the Lost Wages morass Thursday in the AM. I had my associate, Grannygear, dump me off at McCarran, as I posted yesterday, and since then, I was up for 38.5 hours. Yep! Pretty much awake the whole time with a couple of plane ride cat naps.

Call it T.I.V6 training. I usually am up about that long on those events too. Speaking of T.I.V6, I got some awesome news at Interbike. I am not at liberty to discuss details right now, but somebody has stepped forward in a huge way to offer sponsorship and logistical help that, if it all works out, will be a huge step up for T.I. in terms of just about everything.

Yeah, it is that good! I am really stoked, and d.p. and I are going to have a meeting with this mysterious person and get some details nailed down. Once we have something solid, look for an announcement. This won't be for about a month, so don't get too excited just yet, but feel free to speculate!

In the interim my attention is going to be full on the Bigwheeled Ballyhoo. That's coming up October 10th-11th, so it isn't far away! (Wasn't it like just August yesterday? Weird!)

Also, I got a kick arse t-shirt in the mail that was supposed to show up before Interbike so I could sport it around the show floor. Dang it! Now that I have seen it, I am super bummed I didn't get it before hand. Awwww.........I'll just have to get it in as many blog posts as I can in the next few months. In fact, I have an idea about this shirt, so Jason, if you are reading this, expect an e-mail when my brain starts functioning correctly again.

In the meantime, go read all my Interbike scribin' at Twenty Nine Inches. Then go ride yer bicycles!

Monday, September 07, 2009

Big Wheeled Ballyhoo 2009: Update



More News On The Bigwheeled Ballyhoo October 10th-11th:

The Big Wheeled Ballyhoo has a couple of newsy bits so here goes- Sponsorship of the breakfast on Saturday morning is coming from Giant Bikes and Cycle Works, Lincoln Nebraska. Thanks to these fine cycling companies for puttin' up the moolah for some killer grub that we will all need for riding the challenging Potter's Pasture trails.

Secondly, we have learned that a local winery, 5 Trails Winery, to be exact, is going to provide some wine sales and some pizza sales on site during Saturday evening.

This will be in addition to the potluck/BBQ opportunity that evening. (Bring yer own grub for this)

Also, Cycle Sport Bicycle Shop in North Platte is sponsoring the Porta Potties this time around, so thanks!

A Note About Potter's Pasture Camping: This is going to be a "back country" experience folks. No showers, no convenience stores, not much water. (There will be some available) We pack it in, we pack it out. If you can swing hanging out without every modern convenience, then this is for you.


And don't forget! RSVP now and be automatically entered to win this pair of killer, retro, very limited production Oakley Frogskins.

You'll have to be there to win, and you'll have to RSVP through the link above before October 8th, 2009. (No purchase necessary)

Okay, we're still working on some stuff, and the guys at Potter's are still grooming trails and getting it ready for us. Stay tuned for more updates soon.....

Monday, August 31, 2009

Weekend Report: The Short Version


The Big Weekend is over. Here's a breif report of what went down with much more detail coming after Touring Tuesdays.
Friday: Left the house about 5:30pm with the family in tow. Drove to Bellevue, Nebraska and dropped them off to a friends house where they spent the weekend. I continued on to Lincoln, Nebraska, arriving at MG's pad to pick up a little "thermonuclear protection". After chit-chatting up Kansans Joel Dyke, Joe Fox, and MG, it was off to the "D Street Hotel", where I met up with Cornbread, who thought I was a solicitor. (If you know the neighborhood, you'd understand a bit better) It was about 11:30pm, and I stayed up to talk a bit with some of the folks and then found my spot on a hardwood floor for the very, very short night's sleep.
Saturday: Woke up at 4:30am and had some grub for breakfast. MW and Troy Krause came by to ride with us over to the MOPAC Trail to start the event. The Good Life Gravel Adventure had 42 starters, and great, coolish weather to start out in. The sunrise was beautiful, but I'll save the rest for later. Short story: Body shut down, I pulled out at the last checkpoint in Courtland with 106 miles of 140 scheduled. Afterwards, I headed back to D Street, did a bit of relaxing, and went with MG that night to Potter's Pasture. (Link takes you to some good photos!)
Sunday: Woke up, ride Potter's Pasture. AWESOME!! Scoped out for the Bigwheeled Ballyhoo.(More on that later) Then had to head back from over 600 miles away from home. (Yeah........lotso windshield time yesterday!) Got home just about 10:30pm.
Whacked!!
I"ll post some pics and give out way more details here and elsewhere soon. Stay Tuned!!

Friday, August 28, 2009

Friday News And Views

It's Friday, and you know what that means? It's "Friday News And Views" time!



Big Wheeled Ballyhoo News! Okay, I am finally going to the site of the Ballyhoo to check it out as part of my whirlwind tour of Nebraska this weekend. After I get done with the Good Life Gravel Adventure, it is off to a place near Brady, Nebraska to check out Potter's Pasture on Sunday. Then after a brief tour, I'll be coming back to Iowa on Sunday evening. Can you say "windshield time"? Yes......yes you can!



Eurobike: The biggest, baddest cycling show of 'em all starts next week in Germany. Eurobike is all the rage in the industry and even new 29"er stuff gets debuted there before Interbike, and Euros don't even like 29"ers. (Well, at least the Germans don't!) Anyway, things didn't start out so well for Santa Cruz who had there only ride able production Tall Boy example heisted (along with a bunch of other companies stuff) from a U.K. warehouse that was pinpointed by thieves for this robbery opportunity. Little do they know that this is one of one bikes, and if it ever shows up, it will be like sounding a gong in the industry. Hopefully the dirty pinchers get caught out. Read more about it here. Ironically, Euros don't buy 29"ers much, but apparently they will steal them. Good to know if you are travelling in the Old World with your wagon wheeler!


<===Sorry, but I don't get the step backwards here!

You know what? Technology is supposed to make my life easier! Not more complicated. Case in point is this Blackburn Nuero 6.0 computer. It costs msrp at $250.00, and it tells you all kinds of information. Okay, that's cool. I don't have a problem with information. What I have a problem with is that I have to "sync up" the sensors when I set the unit up, which includes me having to put on the heart rate monitor. Then after the fussy set up procedure, I have to "link" all available sensors every time I wake up the computer from sleep mode. Not only that, but if you stop for longer than 12-15 seconds on a ride, the computer returns to sleep mode and will not start again unless manually prompted to do so. Sorry Blackburn, (and all the other digital computer models like this), but I have a msrp $25.00 Cateye that can start itself after going into sleep mode, and I do not lose any precious data when it does. It doesn't have a fussy set up procedure, and I don't have to "link" it to anything when I go for a ride. It just works. I do not have to remember to do anything.

Okay, so when your digital computer can do that, come back and see me. Otherwise all you have here is a big, stinking pile of fail!




<====Made in the U.S.A., but at what cost???

I posted this frame from Foes Racing on Twenty Nine Inches the other day. While having more choices is good and all, and being a U.S.A. made product is cool, this frame is set to MSRP at $3,000.00!! Yup, all those zeros are correct there. 3 grand for what I am sure is a finely crafted rig, but that is a lot of coin for a single pivot, aluminum frame with 3-4 inches of travel. I don't know about this one folks, but I don't see many of these getting sold. Just my opinion.

I'd love to be wrong about that, and I'd love to see this homegrown wagon wheeler take off, but this is a bit steeply priced to get on board with.



Speaking of home grown......

Chris DeStefano of Chris King Precision Components sent me this image of his new single speed big wheeler. (He is way too kind to me, by the way) Anyway, this is kind of a special rig. Not only does it feature a new Chris King Inset head set, but it was made by Chris King's own frame building crew! You see, Mr. King was somewhat of a frame builder way back, but that part of his business didn't take off, because he got distracted by this head set thing along the way. well, now he has revived that part of his talents with Cielo Bikes. So this is an S&S travel connectored, steel 29"er that Chris D had made for himself by his boss. Weird, but cool! (Wish my boss was a frame builder!) At any rate, it is one sweet rig.

Okay, that's it for today. I'm off to the Good Life Gravel Adventure tonight and tomorrow, then Big Wheeled Ballyhoo territory Saturday night and early Sunday, and a long trip eastwards come Sunday afternoon! Reports to follow!

Go ride yer bikes already!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Big Wheeled Ballyhoo 2009


It is happening October 10-11th out in Nebraska. You can hook up with other 29"er freaks and camp out, ride, and hang around for the weekend. We'll be having a home brew beer taste contest, and some other tom foolery, I am sure.
A Word About Potter's Pasture: While it is a cool place to ride, it is a very primitive and out of the way place. We'll have some porta potties lined up, but do not expect any electricity, or much for showers, etc. You'll be roughing it for sure!
The closest hotel/motel is like 30 miles away, so be prepared with whatever you think you will need.
Friday will see folks arriving, setting up, and checking in. There will be a winery serving wine and possibly a keg tapped of some micro-brew. Saturday will be the riding, with a campfire in the evening, a band, and the brew tasting. Sunday we'll do some more riding, and then in the afternoon we'll clean it up and head for the shed! Hope ya can be there! For more details, check out www.bigwheeledballyhoo.com

Monday, June 08, 2009

Monday News And Views

Lots of stuff has been going down since I have been gone vacationing. Here's a recap of some of that and some commentary to boot.

Chris King Does Another Food Gig: From the lovely state of Oregon comes news of Chris King’s plans to host another event involving food. (For those of you that don’t know, Chris King is a food aficionado of the highest order, and a pretty dang good cook to boot!) For the rest of that story hit this link.

Nomination Papers: A while back, I was tabbed by some "wily coyotes" to help craft the skeleton of a nomination submission to induct Mike Curiak into the Mountain Bike Hall Of Fame. You can find the text of the article here. Keep in mind, I basically drew up a template and the other fellows added and subtracted stuff at will, so this should be seen as a collaborative effort, even though my name is attached to it. Only MBHOF members can vote, so if you wanna vote, ya gotta join up. There.....that's all I gotta say about that!

Top 50 Cycling Blog: Some nutter in the U.K. decided to compile a "Top 50 Cycling Blogs" post and in a stroke of pure luck, "Guitar Ted Productions" came in 26th amongst some truly worthy blogs/sites that deserved it more than I do for my work. At any rate, it seems that some obvious omissions were made, which I thought was kind of funny in a way.

Discussions About Fun, Beer, and Bicycles: During the ride in Platte River State Park, on more than one occasion we stopped to discuss the Big Wheeled Ballyhoo and what we were going to do to make it a memorable, fun event. We concluded that just getting bikes, folks, and beer together ought to pretty much take care of that. But to that end we are planning demo rides from potentially six different 29"er purveyors, music, games, a hand made brew down/tasting contest, and some killer rides including a Fargo Gravel Adventure Ride which will give a few lucky folks a taste of what it is like to ride a Fargo in the environment it was designed for. The Big Wheeled Ballyhoo should be a great time and will kick off on October 10th near Brady, Nebraska.

One More Time.... I wanted to underscore the experience in Nebraska I had on the great trails that I got to sample out there. Really, these are killer single track trails not to be missed. It seems from their own descriptions of the parks, especially Swanson and Jewel Parks, that the trails are somewhat "lame". Nothing could be further from the truth. These trails, if they were in Iowa, would be lauded as some of the best in the state. Heck, they have races at Swanson, so you know it isn't a pansy course. It is just that Platte River is so much more. When you gauge these Bellvue parks against that backdrop, well.....maybe you can see why the descriptions are what they are. I just do not agree at all with the way they are presented, and I wanted to put the word out- Go to Nebraska and ride these trails! They are waaay worth your time and effort.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Wednesday News And Views

Wow! A post not about T.I.V5? Yes, really...........

What's Coming Up: There are lots of things on the radar here at Guitar Ted Productions. Here's a small sampling of what I'm up to now that the "big event" is over.

--Big Wheeled Ballyhoo: Yes, it is going to happen and yes- it will be very different. Here's the deal: I wanted to go to Lincoln, Nebraska with it. Lincoln Nebraska folks said, "Hold on there a minute! We gotta better idea!" So they pointed me in the Westward direction- all the way to Potter's Pasture. (Scroll through the site, you won't believe the terrain) So we all decided to do up a righteous event in the fall. Check out the details here.

Dirty Kanza 200: I booked my room and the family is coming out. I got the time off work, and I'm all in. The Fargo will be the weapon of choice, and I will throw myself at the Flint Hills, ready or not. So look for more DK 200 related banter here in the coming weeks.

Titanium 29"er: I just recieved a Lynskey Performance Ridgeline 29"er SS to test for Twenty Nine Inches and also appearing on The Cyclist. I will be posting some glamour shots here soon, so stay tuned. (Yes! It is light!)

Guitar Ted Death Ride Invitational: Yes, this will happen again too. I have a course, (actually two) in mind, so recon will be happening soon. Probably a good excuse to get some DK 200 training in. Anway, if my idea works out, it will be an epic hilly, B Road fantastic, Amish/Mennonite, culture crossin' fun time. Stay tuned as this unravels for all to see. Look for updates too on the site.

Okay, that's all for now, but I am sure I forgot something!

Monday, March 09, 2009

Monday News And Views

Mud Bogging: Okay, so last year I came up with this nutty idea to do an experiment with different forks on the same 29"er frame. This year I am doing something goofy like that again, only the idea will be about tires. Tires that are good in the mud, or not!

I've got a fair mount of tires to try out, so what the heck? I figured our sticky black river bottom mud will be perfect as a testing ground and I certainly won't be hurting anything down there in the Green Belt where the trail is scoured, deposited on, and changed about every six months or less.

You see, this is what happens when I can't ride and I have time to sit and think. Not good! Oh well.....it'll be fun playing in the dirt again.

Meet The Framebuilders: No, it isn't a cheesy Hollywood movie, it is a series of reports being created by "Grannygear" on The Bike Lab and on Twenty Nine Inches that is dealing with two specialists in each of three materials. The steel builders article is up, and an article on the aluminum builders is on deck with the titanium builders article to follow. Check it out. I am having a great time reading the results of Grannygear's work because the responses of the frame builders has been excellent.

The Big Wheeled Ballyhoo: I will be announcing an update to the old website soon that will include a schedule of events for the October 10th - 11th running of The Big Wheeled Ballyhoo at Potter's Pasture in Nebraska. Potter's Pasture is nearest to Brady, Nebraska whic is approximately 200 miles west of Lincoln, Nebraska and about 285 miles east of Denver, both by interstate highway. Folks may think of that as being another flat place on the earth, but I'm telling you- click the link to the Potter's Pasture site. You will see that it isn't at all what you might have thought it was like.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Trans Iowa Business and More...

Just a quick note or two this morning...

Bikepacking: There is this guy in Arizona that is a huge back country cycling nutcase and happens to know more about computers and software than maybe is good for a soul, but anyway..... His name is Scott Morris and he's been known to track the GDR once in a while with Topofusion mapping and what not, so you may have run across this before. Anyway, he started this site about all of us adventure freaks called Bikepacking.net You have access to routes and there even is a forum there with information being traded about set ups, hardware, software, and the like. There is even a special page about Trans Iowa there to check out. If you have any GPS data from a past Trans Iowa, Scott wants to hear from you, by the way, so go to the link, 'splore around a bit, and let him know you've got something of interest for him.

Trans Iowa Recon: I will be doing a bit more recon today. Just some fine tuning really, and meeting with some folks in Williamsburg. It's not all business though, as I get to ride my bicycle too! I'll be taking the Edge Composites XC rimmed wheel set on its maiden voyage today. So that ought to be some fun. I'll have some photos to share, hopefully, tomorrow.

The Drop Bar Thing: I haven't forgotten about the drop bar pieces and I will try to get that all tied up yet this week in a final post. Stay tuned!

The Big Wheeled Ballyhoo Thing: This is something else I want to get going on. The date should be set any day now. Stay tuned for that big announcement.

Okay, I think this should have been entitled "Loose Ends Wednesday" or something! My mom used to serve left-overs on Wednesday.......Hmmmm............ I wonder if I am falling into that tradition!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Wednesday Woke Up Late....

So today I woke up late......

I usually am up pretty early, like really early, to do my morning ritual. However; last night was a late one due to a meeting. So, today you are getting a late post.

Today I would normally be testing product for Twenty Nine Inches too. But.....it's going to rain for the third Wednesday in a row! Well, I can't complain. I'll still find plenty to do with Crooked Cog stuff, and ya know, I had a run of awesome weather on Wednesdays for the whole summer. I am bound to get a few stinkers in there at some point for weather on a Wednesday. So it goes.....

Here's what I do have for you, some news about The Big Wheeled Ballyhoo. As I posted a few days back, it is going to happen. Here is what I can say now that is definite. First of all, the event is moving, as I said, and it will be in an unlikely but really cool place. That place is in Nebraska and is called Potter's Pasture. Hit the link and check out the latest post on the Potter's Pasture MTB blog to get a glimpse of what to expect. Then check out the other posts so far to get a glimpse of what the trails are all about there. Potter's is out in Western Nebraska and is only a short jaunt off I-80. Easy to get to.

You might say, "Western Nebraska? But who will show up?" Well, that is a great question. Here's the buzz so far on Potter's. Lincoln/Omaha folks are pretty aware of this place and many of the 29"er freaks from there have been to Potter's. They promise me that a fair contingent of that areas 29"er freaks will make the trip over. Plus, Potter's is only 5-6 hours from the Front Range area of the Rockies. I hear that a fair number of Front Range 29"er freaks will also make the trip.

I think it's a great idea, the place is awesome from a riding standpoint, tons of trails in a very unusual setting. The people will show, we have almost a whole year to get the word out. Finally, it will be a perfect joint for laid back camping, hanging out, and just having a simple good time.

And speaking about the timing of the event, it will come at the time when a lot of riders will be looking for a good time. That being the end of the season. We are working out a specific date, but it looks like the second weekend in October 2009 for now. More details will be coming, but for now, that is what we have to put out there now.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Friday News And Views

I am taking a break from the Drop Bars For Mountain Bikes series here until Monday. Look for a continuation of the Karate Monkey drop bar installation then.

Let's Get This Out Of The Way Up Front!: I was interviewed by Rich Kelly of the Interbike Times blog while I attended the Interbike Outdoor Demo. You can check out the frightening results here. (Does anybody like the way they look on camera? And your own voice......we won't even go there!) Oh yeah....and there is a link to another video/interview with Rich from Sea Otter too. Loverly! Just great..............

Okay, now that I have that outta the way..........

Trans Iowa Update: I posted a bit of an update on the T.I.V5 site recently. Nothing earth shattering, just that mainly we are getting set to do the big recon drive on the 25th-26th of this month, weather permitting. The next big date to get concerned about will come in late November when registration will open. Obviously there will be an announcement previous to that. Plus, we may have some pics to frighten and discourage you from the recon if all goes well. (Kidding, only kidding!)

Big Wheeled Ballyhoo? Yep! It is on the move and probably will happen again. This time it will make an appearance in a different local "by request". Plans are being laid and this will be a totally different deal than before. It will be more low key, no big deal, laid back, and fun. I expect that it will be much more like the original idea that the Big Wheeled Ballyhoo was inspired by, Bike 29's "Meat-Up" Cookin' and ridin' being the main attractions for this gig. Where and when? I will only say this: In a more unlikely but possibly even cooler place than before and at the "other end of summer". Stay Tuned!

Wear Orange- It's That Time Of Year Again: Deer hunting season is in full swing once again and wearing orange on your woodsie rides is no joke! Also for the locals: The Camp's South Side trails are now closed until January 10th due to bow hunting season being in session. The Camp's North Unit trails are open on weekends. There will be a few expertly skilled bow hunters in that area too, but they dig the fact that we ride through and basically "run" the deer for them, most often right by their stands. I was out there one Saturday last year when three were taken and I would not have even known it but for the Camp Ranger telling me so and then running into a small pool of blood on one of the trails on my way out that day. Think what you may about killing deer, I will only say that there are waaay too many deer per square mile in Iowa and that isn't a good thing for deer.

Okay, it may be nippy out here, but the riding in fall is primo now and it won't last. Get some while you can folks!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

What To Do?



<===The Upper Iowa River at Decorah in the area where the Big Wheeled Ballyhoo is supposed to be set at.

If you have not heard yet, we are currently experiencing the worst flooding in history....ever....here in Iowa and all over the Mid-West. It is affecting my town too, but for the purposes of this blog, the impact falls squarely on The Big Wheeled Ballyhoo.

The event is to happen ten days from now, so whether or not the Ballyhoo will even happen is the question that needs to be answered and answered really soon. This is a decision that has fallen squarely onto my shoulders. It seems to be the way things have gone for me this year. Big decisions that affect a lot of people. Let me tell you, it ain't easy folks!

On one hand, I can see that the clean up of the area in question, (assuming the flood recedes soon enough), will be a monumental task. And then you have to wonder if that saturated ground will recover enough in ten days to support vehicles that would have to be driven in there to set up demo rides and campers.

I'm thinking that is a tall order. Add to that the fact that we are facing another round of slow moving thunderstorms, (already in western Iowa) and you can see that this problem isn't going to go away quietly or even soon.

On the other hand I have a lot of people looking forward to seeing me and other folks. I have companies that want to debut new product here at the ballyhoo, and I have folks that want to ride some of the new 29"ers coming out. A lot of fun will be snuffed out if this doesn't happen.

See, I told you it wasn't easy being me! Ha ha!

Well, later today the axe will either fall or be held up for the Ballyhoo. I'm not too hopeful that it won't fall and cut this event off before it even happens. Stay tuned................

Update: 11:00 am The "decision" has been postponed until tomorrow morning in deference to the Decoarah folks. Once I have their input, an official announcement will be forthcoming on the Big Wheeled Ballyhoo site by noon tomorrow and later here and elsewhere.

Commenter's suggesting a fall date for the Ballyhoo must keep in mind that "trade show" season would prevent most companies from showing up, and Twenty Nine Inches staff (me included) would also be affected by this. Fall might be nice, but essentially it is already booked up and a Ballyhoo for that time period wouldn't be possible as it is formatted right now.

If the Ballyhoo is cancelled (likely at this point) there will not be one in 2008. Stay tuned.......

Friday, June 06, 2008

Friday News And Views

Big Wheeled Ballyhoo Update: Just found out that Turner Bikes is sending up a few Sultans in three sizes for demo purposes at the Big Wheeled Ballyhoo. This should be pretty cool. A bike designed by one of the sports longest running FS companies at the tough Decorah Trails. Should prove to be veeery interesting!

In other Ballyhoo news, the trails are being prepped as we speak to get them ready, but the weather keeps blowing down branches, whole trees, and generally making a mess every other day. The guys are frantically trying to keep pace with the wreckage and we hope that everything clears up in time. Last Wednesday I didn't run into any hang ups, but apparently there is some on other trails.

And Speaking of Weather! Two nights in a row now we've had soaking downpours and severe weather in the area. It's getting long in the tooth, but what's worse is that our local trails are suffering from flooding and water saturation. It sucks. Not to mention, it guarantees mosquitoe populations will be high throughout the summer. Great! I hope you all don't get a flat out in the woods!

So, It's Too The Gravel I Go! Yep, long ride on gravel is on tap again this weekend. Don't have a clue when I'll go other than to say Saturday mornings are really not workable right now. Look for a report later in the weekend though. I'm planning on the next dirt session at Decorah next Wednesday. At least the trails up there deal with all this wetness well and the mosquitoe population is very small. Not much standing water around those parts! Even during high water times. In fact, I'll probably be going back that way for quite a while judging from the recent weather events!

I hope everyone has a great weekend of riding where ever you are!

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Decorah Ride Report



Well, I decided not to listen to the weatherman. Good thing, or I'd have missed out on a fun little ride up in Decorah, IA yesterday. This is where The Big Wheeled Ballyhoo will be held in a couple weeks. I wanted to see if the recent storms had caused any concerns and how the trails were shaping up. I hit up the Palisades Trail, as that was a big part of last years Ballyhoo goings on.









I sported the new Salsa Cycles jersey. It has a great slimming effect, wouldn't you agree?















One of the cooler things that has happened on a ride to me was this. A deer and it's fawn ran across the trail in front of me. The fawn couldn't have been over a day old. It was tiny and stumbled along. Heck, it may have been born just hours prior to me seeing it. Anyway, as soon as the fawn hit cover, it dropped and played possum while the mother deer tried to lure me into a chase. Look closely at the center of the pic. As always, you can click to make it bigger.







Recent rains and a bad tire selection made these steep ups unrideable. Expect several of these if you come to ride in Decorah! It'll work you over good. Keep in mind that the downhills are just as steep, and slippery when wet!










Lots of wildflowers out now. Here is a fine example.

Check out my report on mtbr for more pics and verbiage.






Friday, May 30, 2008

Friday News And Views

I got up late today since I had the day off. So sue me if this is late! ha ha! Here's some bits to think about rolling into the weekend.....

Good Luck Dirty Kanza 200 Racers!: I wish you all the very best ride and great times. Wish I was there, but I have something else lined up now, so it's not like I will be just sitting around. Looking forward to the race reports afterward.

Tornado Clean Up: Today I'll be in Parkersburg, Iowa. That's where about half the town got leveled last Sunday and they need help cleaning up. I'm going to pitch in with my local church which has been called up by the local Red Cross.

Big Wheeled Ballyhoo Update: We got confirmation that Titus Cycles will be at the Ballyhoo with their demo trailer. Also, The Prairie Peddler, operated by Marty Larson will have a few Jamis models for demo too. On camping: I am pretty sure we have the same set up as last year with the big grassy area near the river being available for free camping.

Rain Rain- Just stop it! Too much wet weather recently will be putting a damper on my off road riding. I'll probably have to stick to a diet of gravel for this weekend. I've got a Spinner "2 Nine" fork to try out, but I'm afraid most of the dirt patches will be mostly mud around here. Or under water! It's okay, because next Wednesday, the 4th, I'm going to Decorah to ride and check on some Ballyhoo stuff. I'm sure the trails will be okay up there.

Get out and ride a bike this weekend!

Friday, May 23, 2008

Friday News And Views



<=== Here's to the fantastic weather we've been having of late. Can it last?

I have to say that this last week of commuting has been some of the nicest weather and most relaxing fun I have had in a long time. A long, long time!

Somebody was telling us just the other day that the temperatures at night never got above 32 degrees for six months. Something about the daytime highs that I can't remember, but suffice it to say that weather has been an issue for far too long now. I am just relieved to be able to ride in pleasant weather!

Big Wheeled Ballyhoo Update: This is a regularly scheduled feature for awhile now. First of all, it will be a pretty cool deal again this year as we have some quality vendors showing up that will be offering demo rides. Companies like Niner Bikes, Salsa Cycles, Origin 8, and Gary Fisher Bikes. But the really cool things will be all the folks riding and all the stellar trails to ride on. The Decorah Human Powered Trails group is currently grooming trails for this event and I will personally be overseeing some of the preparations in the next couple of weeks. Make sure you attend if you are in the area because there will be some surprises. You will be the first in the nation to see some pretty cool stuff, guaranteed!

Dirty Kanza 200 Prep: Setting up a tubeless wheelset special for the event right now. I'm about a third of the way into it now. (Things take longer when you have two jobs and a family!) I also have a long training ride and some regular mountain biking fun mixed in to cap off my major preparations. (Meager at best!) Then it is a few days of commuting and off to Kansas! We'll see how it all shakes out in about a week or so. Oh yeah, audio-blogging will be happening, so stay tuned for that.

Regular Test Rides Schedule: Starting in June my "other job" will be requiring me to take Wednesdays off throughout the summer for testing of product. Look for ride updates from some of my favorite riding spots throughout the summer months. (Well, that is if gas prices don't put the clamp down on that)

Okay, it's the first big summer holiday, (seems weird to say that with the weather we've had!) get out and ride!

Friday, May 16, 2008

The Big Wheeled Ballyhoo 2008



<===Get Your Big Wheeled Freak On June 21st and 22nd!

Well, it's going to be here soon. The 2008 version of the Big Wheeled Ballyhoo.
Plans are starting to come into fruition for this little celebration of 29"ers on Decorah, Iowa's great trails. There will be demo rides again and we'll be seeing some really cool things from Salsa, Niner, Fisher, and more.

There will be activities throughout the day on Saturday, a get together at a local watering hole on Saturday night, more stuff on Sunday including a raffle, and other hijinx.

Camping will be available onsite right within walking distance of downtown Decorah and the trails.


Look for this poster to start popping up here and there too to remind you.





<===Tri state distributed, the "inspire(d)" will be featuring a back cover ad for the Ballyhoo. Look for this free edition in the upper Mid-West soon!

Okay, so the really big deal about The Big Wheeled Ballyhoo is just getting together to ride trails on the excellent system up in Decorah and to have a bunch-o-fun. Bring your own mountain bike, little or big wheeled, and check out some shiny new steeds along with all the other trail rats and fun hogs around the Mid West and beyond.

You can camp right by the Upper Iowa River, hob-nob with your buddies in a cool little Iowa town and generally spend a weekend having a ball with your bicycle. Decorah also has some most excellent gravel road riding and road riding too. Even a municipal bike path that runs right through the Ballyhoo's exhibit area and campground.

I hope you'll come and have fun. I know I will!


Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Big Wheeled Ballyhoo 2008: DHPT Report



Last evening I made the trek up to Decorah Iowa to talk to the DHPT Decorah Human Powered Trails) at their monthly meeting. I was pretty much the only thing on their agenda for the evening. (Most likely why there was such a low turn out! ) Anyway.....the ideas for this years Ballyhoo were discussed and lots of cool ideas were pitched. We will be having a pretty good time this year, that's for sure!

I won't give away any details right now as there are things that need to be worked out, but here is an overview of what we are envisioning the weekend to look like this year.

Friday Night: We are looking into having a get together at a local establishment with musical entertainment. There also is talk of having a night ride up in the trail network.

Saturday: Along with some changes we are making, like having onsite registration, there will be the vendors and demo rides. Guided trail rides, the demo loop, and self guided trail rides will all be options. There will also be skill riding challenges available onsite for entertainment and fun throughout the day Saturday and Sunday as well.

Saturday Night: The Ballyhoo Blowout. (Hmmm.........that just rolled outta my head, not bad!) Anyway, yeah............much like last year we are going to have a big party with a band and dancing on Saturday Night. It should be pretty fun.

Sunday: The demo rides, guided trail rides, skill games, and such will all continue. We will also be having a drawing for prizes from all the names we had registered for the event on Sunday. (Must be present to win) and that will pretty much wrap things up for the weekends festivities.

Sound like fun? Go to the Big Wheeled Ballyhoo site for future updates and pre-registration with a chance to win a prize, which should be coming soon.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Weekend News And Views

Gonna Get Cold!: I was entertaining thoughts of doing a New Years Day ride, but with the forcast temps to be less than 10 degrees here and winds of up to 30mph.......I say no. I went for a New Years Day gravel grinder last January and promptly got sick for a month and a half. I'm not interested in that again. Probably take a ride to nowhere instead. I'm hoping the long range forecast is correct, because it says we'll be in the upper 30's again by next week and that we may possibly break 40 degrees. That would be fantastic, especially if we could sustain some above freezing temps to thaw out the gravel and get the Trans Iowa recon done.

About That T.I.V4.... I got my first notice of a drop............from the waiting list. Ha ha! Sorry if you were expecting a drop from the roster, well it is a bit early yet, but I bet I'll see some here and there soon enough. I'll keep ya'all informed of what is going on with that. I have gotten about an add a week to the waiting list since registration has closed back in late November. Volunteers are also being lined up now. I have at least three solid commitments and a possible fourth. I am thinking that we need at least a minimum of six bodies and eight would be even better. If you are interested, you can click the e-mail link in the right sidebar here or on the T.I.V4 website. We'll be needing these volunteers to run the checkpoints of which there will be at least three of along the course. I'll be posting details of how that will work and where they will be after the recon.

The Numbers Are Down: With all of this hi-tech stuff you can get these web trackers and keep track of your stats on things like this blog. It seems that the cyclists must be in hibernation or eating tons of Christmas candy and feeling guilty about it, because the stat numbers are down lately. Even mtbr.com seems to have fallen asleep lately. Gotta love it when the most exciting thread on the 29"er board is about punctuation! Well, I'm doing my best with it and I have been posting a Top Ten 29"er Products List of 2007 over at Twenty Nine Inches. I don't mean to brag, but it's gotta be better reading than at least 80% of the threads on that 29"er forum right about now!

So, What's Next? Well, besides T.I.V4 recon, and some planning for the Big Wheeled Ballyhoo in June, the next big deal 'round these parts is Frost Bike, the annual dealer only show put on by QBP. It used to be called an "open house" event, but that doesn't begin to touch on what it has become. It is definitely a mini-trade show and dealer meet-up. Lots of stuff to see and folks to talk to. It takes place in about a month and a half and I'll be there once again as a reporter for Twenty Nine Inches. (Why we haven't shortened that to T.N.I. yet I have no idea.) I have been informed that I will be busy, so that is definitely something to look forward to. I have got to be there on Friday night this time, so a two night stay will be happening. Woot woot! Maybe I'll pitch a four season tent on the QBP grounds and invite Dave Gray to sleep over with me. I know he'd be down for that, except he would want to use his tee pee!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Top Ten Weird Things of 2007

Here's some things I found weird during my travels and writing during 2007. Enjoy! (By the way, if you are caught up in this crazy ice storm please be careful!)

Oh! These are in no particular order, by the way.

1. Las Vegas. If you haven't been there, it is hard to explain this. If you have- 'nuff said!

2. Driving around Iowa for 30 plus hours with a car full of alcohol during Trans Iowa V3.

4. The feelings experienced around hour 40 of no sleep just after T.I.V3

5. Watching a Luther College athlete "breathe fire" at a campground in Decorah during the Big Wheeled Ballyhoo, then ride trail all the next day while drinking said fire.

6. Mike Curiaks personal Lenz Lunchbox 29"er. By the numbers, and for the amount of travel this machine has, it should handle like a pig. The crazy thing is, it rides and handles better than some hard tail 29"ers out there.

7. How a certain individual was allowed to sell directly on mtbr.com (650B stuff) and another individual was blamed for doing this, (and wasn't) and got banned not once, but twice.

8. Somebody posted a thread on mtbr.com on the 29"er forum regarding his loss of feelings for his wife/marriage. While sad, (if not a hoax) it is very weird.

9. That we are getting the third ice storm in 2007 and we still have 20 days left to go in the year.

10. That I have the gig writing that I do and that people still enjoy reading my scribin' Now that's weird!