Gone Riding

July 2018

posted Aug 3, 2018, 5:43 AM by Scott Bixby

It's been a nice dry summer and the mountain biking has been really good! The top picture is in McCarty Hill state forest and shows the new kiosk being built by some WNYMBA volunteers.

Below is my friend (and owner of Crankskins) Ej at the Hardcore 24 last weekend. He and I rode down together to do a couple laps for the Crankskins/Singletrack Academy corporate team. It was fun to get together with some people I hadn't seen in awhile. The Crankskins "old guy" team might get back together in 2019 for a 24 hour race or two.

May 2018

posted Jun 3, 2018, 4:45 AM by Scott Bixby

Six years on night shift made me lose all interest in XC racing. Thankfully, that period of my life is over and I feel like a human again! I built a Kona Big Unit over the winter that I'll use for a few events this year.

The bike is single speed and if you've ridden single speed before, you don't need me to interpret the body language on display below! This was at the first Wednesday night Sprague Brook race. I managed to get on the SS podium, but at this point in the race, I was ready for it to be over!

April 2018

posted Apr 11, 2018, 2:51 PM by Scott Bixby   [ updated Apr 11, 2018, 2:55 PM ]

My daughter and son-in-law live on the US Naval Base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. I was there to visit and decided to rent this Fuji and check out the trails around the base. The trails are old tank paths so most are rideable but there is some bike pushing on the really steep hills as shown below.

I rode twice while I was there. The trail surface is rocky and loose and of course I managed to crash! I tried riding down one of the really steep sections and only made it halfway. I'm confident that with a familiar bike and riding equipment, I would have made it down easily. 

March 29, 2018

posted Mar 29, 2018, 1:45 PM by Scott Bixby

This wheel customer happens to be somebody I work with. The wheel was ready for delivery but it was such a nice day, I didn't want to drive to work. I strapped it on the rack and amazingly, it didn't fall off during my 12.5 mile commute.

I'll probably be doing more road riding than I'd like this spring. Some late winter snow storms left lots of snow on the trails and the weather forecast is for below average temperatures deep into April. It's hard being patient but I'm not a fun of mud or damaged trails!

February 2018

posted Feb 14, 2018, 2:47 PM by Scott Bixby

If you don't recognize the valley shown above, that's looking north from Ontario County Park. Unfortunately, the day I decided to drive over there, the snow was deep enough that many of the trails were barely rideable. And the bottom picture was taken in Hunters Creek Park. Of all the rides I've had this winter, this one was the most enjoyable

This will be the last time you'll see my Norco Sasquatch on this page as I've decided to sell it piece by piece. If you're wondering why, I've found myself losing interest in fat biking. I don't care for the handling of the fat tires but more importantly, I really don't care for pedaling around in the snow at max power to achieve 4-5 mph. I've got some other irons in the fire and with the season rapidly drawing to a close, I decided I need to sell sooner than later. So will I own another fat bike? Never say never..... 

January 2018

posted Jan 30, 2018, 4:09 PM by Scott Bixby

January has been a bit of a weather roller coaster. I've done some fat biking in snow and some on frozen dirt as shown above.

And with a nice thaw late in the month, I even got out on a couple road rides. Actually, I stuck to bike paths mostly. You might recognize the bridge below from the intersection of New Road and Tonawanda Creek Road.

December 2017 part 2

posted Dec 31, 2017, 5:42 AM by Scott Bixby

I do occasionally enjoy outdoor activities that don't involve bicycles and here's proof. My XC skies haven't been used in at least two winters so I decided to pull them out of the basement and take a quick tour of the Niagara County Golf Course.

While southern Erie County was getting buried in snow, Bay Park West in Irondequoit was frozen but snow free. Be careful not to over estimate the traction available from frozen dirt covered by dry leaves!

Genesee County Park gets lots of foot/snowshoe/ski traffic so the snow was mostly packed down. It was 12f when I started riding but the dry, cold snow requires lots of pedaling so I warmed up quickly.

December 2017

posted Dec 8, 2017, 12:55 PM by Scott Bixby

I can't complain about the weather so far this fall. From the banks of the Irondequoit Bay above to Blackman Farms in Cambria, the riding has been very good. I discovered that my commuter bike wouldn't do well with for loaded touring. Hauling ten pounds of apples and a gallon of cider up the Niagara Escarpment caused enough frame deflection that my rear brake rotor was rubbing on the brake pads when I dialed up the power. I stopped to verify that the QR's were tight and they were.

Not that I need an excuse to go for a ride but Global Fatbike Day makes for a good excuse! My southern tier friends organized a ride at Long Point State Park and over sixty riders showed up. I got there early and did a recon tour and found the trails in such so good shape that I decided to ride the full suspension bike.  I only got shamed a little by the other fatbikers :) Truth be told, I'll ride the FS bike every time. I'm not a fan of fatbike handling and keep it just to ride in the snow.

24 Hours of Summer Solstice 2016

posted Jul 10, 2016, 7:11 PM by Scott Bixby

The self proclaimed "greatest old man team ever" headed up to Canada for the 2016 version of the Summer Solstice 24 hour race. So it turns out on this day we were only the third greatest old man team as we ended up third in the 250+ age category.

The weather was hot and the course was really dusty. Only a couple crashes and no mechanical issues made for a relatively uneventful race. We had lots of laughs in the pits and the camaraderie is really the most enjoyable part of this race, at least to me.
This is solo 24 hour racer Brian Phillips. He had been riding his bike since 1200 Saturday and this is what he looked like when I woke up at 0500 on Sunday morning. I half joked that we should check him for a pulse! He survived and soldiered on to complete fourteen ten mile laps over twenty-four hours. That's hard core and something I really have no desire to attempt!

April 16-18, 2015

posted May 3, 2015, 11:45 PM by Scott Bixby   [ updated May 3, 2015, 11:46 PM ]

I had the opportunity to attend the IPMBA 25th Annual Conference in Chandler, Arizona last month. I rented this Specialized Stumpjumper FSR Evo from Global Bikes. The picture below is from the South Mountain Park. One of the local guys said it's the largest city park in the US, in this case, Phoenix, Arizona. There's some trails up on the mountain but the conference seminars stuck to the fast, flowy trails on the desert floor.

After the conference concluded, I had a chance to sample some of the trails close by Chandler. The top picture is from the McDowell Mountain Competition Loops. There were a few technical features but mostly the trails were wide open and fast.

After McDowell, I headed to the south east and the Hawes Trail System. Twisted Sister was challenging and fun but I didn't make it all the way to the end. Desert riding is fun but I prefer trees and forest. Temps were in the high 80's, summertime must be brutally hot! You can never carry too much water in the desert.

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