We were on our way to Winter Park, CO. Our trip started with a birthday funday for Ronen at Northstar Bike Park and a Tahoe trail ride. The boy I once knew is now 33. Jesus was 33 at the end. Prophetic.
The day of riding at Northstar was excellent. It had been a while since I rode proper downhill and doing it on the Warbird was a thrill. How does a truly modern (5 years old for me) ‘aggressive’ hardtail work in one of the USA’s gnarliest bike parks. It wasn’t easy. I took a while to get up to speed, I have no interest in getting hurt on the first stop of the trip. I quickly found that an XC Cushcore in the rear was simply not enough with trail grade tires. I had a roll of shame to the parking lot, swapped to a heavier core and tire and got back on the trail.
I’m old. I was playing it safe. I’m out of practice. Aside from that, the bike was so fun and I was able to cruise well on Boondocks, Karpiel, Sticks & Stones, and Dog Bone. Not at a record speed but enough to run point with the bros. I’m feeling satisfied on my 5 year old design. Ha.
At one point, I was chasing Ronen down Dog Bone in one run. We had that chase pace that many would recognize. The hunt. The hurt. We get down and were discussing moments on the trail. I was critical and not really willing to give us a pass on what I knew we could do better with. Ronen was bummed. I told him, “Ronen, no matter how we rode that trail, we were probably the only hardtails in the last few weeks that even dared ride it.”
On Sunday, we do a nice trail ride in the morning. We roll out of Tahoe around 2pm and hit Reno as we begin our long drive through Nevada. I hate Nevada. I want to get through Nevada as fast as I can. We drive until after midnight when we got to Big Cottonwood Canyon just east of Salt Lake. Waking up the next morning, we start across Utah.
At some point that morning, while driving through Utah, I realize that we’re going to be driving through Steamboat Springs, Colorado. Home of Moots and BinghamBuilt Bikes. I’ve never been there. I also thought that it would be fantastic to stop by and see Brad’s shop.
Brad and I know each other. Certainly, from handmade bike shows. I’ve stood in his booth many times over the years and discussed matters of state. What I like about talking with Brad is that he is very smart, experienced, and he’s designed many things. He’s designed parts. He’s managed production. Brad knows his shit.
We sent Brad an email while in motion. Within the hour he sent a text back and said that it would be fine to stop by and chat and take some photos. We made the plan and drove on.
I walk into Brad’s shop and we start right in. A few minutes of the conversation at the beginning is missing as I needed to check about recording. Brad was hosting an open shop and discussion for me. He was very gracious and spent an hour and half with me. That’s a huge amount of a busy man’s time. Thanks!
Brad was also very open. No photo was off limits and nothing needed cut from the recording. That’s confidence!
Here’s how it went….
As you can hear, we’re just talking shop. You get to be the parrot on the pirates shoulders. You might even be able to follow us along in the photos.