Wednesday, September 10, 2014
Back in Action - We Ride Again
Even though the ol' blog has been under radio silence for the last few months, there's been a bit of good ol' bicycle activity percolating in the background. My favorite riding pal - that be my 15 year old son Ian - mentioned some interest in riding again. This after a year or so of barely riding at all, following many years of riding and racing. Cool, no pressure - let's get you set up equipment wise once again.
I should mention he's had a crazy growth spurt over the last two years and now stands around 6' 2" tall. That meant new everything - bike, shoes, shorts - the whole enchilada. My previous trick of moving parts over to ever larger frames ain't gonna cut it. Time for something new. To give you some perspective on the recent growth curve, he was racing a 52 cm 'cross bike in 2012. Welcome to Crazy Town, I'll be your Tour Guide.
On top of the garage full of old Bikes 'N' Parts being too small, he wanted to try full suspension after only experiencing hardtails and 'cross bikes. Fair enough. The search began with much bike shop cruising and test riding. Kudos to many Seattle area shops we visited and talked with over the phone, all of 'em super friendly and customer service oriented. I wanted to buy a bike from a few different shops, just because they treated us right. Bike shop folks are cool folks, but you already knew that.
Mixed in with this was the 27.5 verses 29er debate. After numerous test rides, Ian not fully digging the 29er wheels. No problem, 27.5 it will be. 26" wheeled higher end mountain bikes now on the endangered species list. And of course, the Trump family we're not, so budget constraints eliminating carbon frames and XTR dreams.
Long story short, Element Cycles scored us a killer deal on a Santa Cruz Bronson. XL frame to now match his XL frame. Aluminum model, mix of Shimano Deore and SLX to keep the cost down. Nice Fox suspension still included. Six inches of travel front and rear, VPP design for pedaling efficiency. Cool bike and it rides fantastic. Ian is psyched and digging it. He's not the materialistic kid at all, so fun to watch him enjoying this.
Since we picked up the bike a few weeks ago, been hitting our local riding spots. Saint Edward/Big Finn Hill and Paradise Valley a few times. Besides the occasional noodling around on my 'cross bike, also been a good excuse for me to ride more often.
Video above from recent after work ride, Ian demonstrating some new trail features in our local woods. Photo below from the same ride. Some quality Father 'N' Son time via two wheels.
I think we're now officially back in action, will hopefully crank up the blog reports along with it. Thanks for reading...