The Best Mountain Bike Reads in January

January is not a month strongly associated with great riding, at least in the northern hemisphere. Often, it’s when we strap on skis or a board, get some much-needed bike maintenance done, practice skills like bunnyhops or wheelies, or just stay away from mountains and gear altogether and catch up on books and Netflix.

It’s the beginning of a new yearly cycle and though these winter months may seem long, they are good at one thing: refilling our pot of motivation for bikes, because soon enough, we’ll be back on the trails sweating and grunting together, wondering where the next intersection is so we can stop for a break and regroup.

Here are January’s features if you missed them. We talked to innovators pushing the limits of frame design and wheel sizes, and of course, we spoke with mountain bike advocates and trail builders who are out there trying new things.

The Digit Datum’s Unique Frame Opens Space, Enhances Rigidity

Digit’s founder Tim Lane has been around the bike industry for a long time and has a laundry list of ideas. This one reduces and simplifies the linkage to a unique, three-bar design that lightens and stiffens the frame, and opens more space for cargo in the front triangle.

East Bluff Bike Park in Copper Harbor Plans to Offer 40 Miles of Bike-Optimized Trail

Rock Solid Trail Contracting, the largest trail building company in the country, has built 7.5 miles of singletrack outside Copper Harbor at the East Bluff trail system, with plans for up to 40 miles of trails.

The California Mountain Bike Coalition: A Squeaky Wheel for Trail Advocacy

The California Mountain Biking Coalition is a statewide and IMBA-independent platform that’s helping local clubs and groups across the state advocate for bikers and bike trails.

As Dropper Posts get Longer, do Mountain Bike Standards Need to Adapt Again?

As geometry went lower, dropper posts got longer, but most haven’t grown wider. Dropper post brands are concerned about making their posts strong enough while frame brands are asking for longer and longer dropper posts.

The Founder of 36Pollici Talks Challenges, Advantages of 36-inch MTB Wheels and Bikes

Luca is exploring the advantages of 36-inch mountain bike wheels through his bike brand, 36Pollici, while solving problems along the way.

Naturita and Nucla Strive to be Next Colorado Bike Destination with Aggressive Trail Plan

An effort to build a large network of singletrack mountain bike trails in Western Colorado, where extractive resources are diminishing, is gaining steam. It may still be a while before folks can put shovels in the dirt.

How Bike Index Used Facebook to Track Stolen Bikes to Mexico, and Why Facebook is Still a Big Part of the Problem

National bike registry and database Bike Index tracked stolen bikes from Colorado to Juarez, Mexico and found 1,100 ads for stolen bikes. Their findings came out around the same time as Operation Vicious Cycle, a Colorado Attorney General’s investigation into an organized crime ring targeting high-end bikes.

‘My Whole Year Revolves Around Rampage’: Talking Freeride with Reed Boggs [Interview]

At only 25 years old, Reed Boggs is still quite young, but he’s clawing his way up the freeride ladder as sure-footedly as he makes it down the steep and dusty ridges in Southwest Utah.

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