The west

Posted: August 2, 2011 by Mark in Uncategorized

I just got back from a week in the western states of Colorado, Utah, and Oregon. My good friends and I road at Crested Butte, Park City, Bend, and the Medford/Ashland area.

My friends were riding high end full suspension bikes. Initially I was concerned that I would not be able to keep up on the descents but frankly you throw caution to the wind a good rider on a hardtail can go plenty fast. The light hardtail also proved to be an advantage on the climbs.

We did lots of epic rides in harsh terrain. On the climbs, I was thankful that my bike at just under 25 pounds was the lightest in the group. We pounded the descents at high speed with lots of big hits. In the hairy stuff I had to hold back a bit more then the other guys since they had full squish and were very aggressive on descents. For the week, I would say about 2% of the time I was in conditions that were a bit beyond what a hardtail can tackle; About 90% of the time the hardtail was perfect; the remainder of the time was borderline. One thing that was priceless was the feeling of riding a bike that I made with my own two hands in some of the most challenging conditions that I have ever tackled.

On the third day of the trip, I had a major crash on a rocky decent where I bent my rim but the bike was 100% solid with only minor paint damage. In Bend I had another major crash at high speed with big air I was hurt for a few days after that crash but once again the bike proved to be up to the challenge.

It was a great week, the photos are only a small taste of the beauty of trails in the west.

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