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  • in reply to: Lets talk…TIRES! #270861

    Tire preferences vary!  I think everyone has an opinion on what’s “Best”!  To be honest, I think it depends on how (aggressive or casual) you ride, where you ride, when (seasons) you ride, and what you ride (both the type of trails and the type of bike).

    Personally I LOVE my Panaracers.

    I originally had a set of Continentals on my 26” Hardtail.  They did fine.  When it came to replace them, I (by sure dumb luck) wound up putting on a set of Panaracer Fire Pro tires (front and back).  I loved the way my bike handled (no matter how hard I pushed it) and consistency (regardless of whether it was rocky, dry, or muddy out).

    When I upgraded my ride to a 29” Full Suspension, it came with a set of bontraeger tires.  It was late winter/early spring in NorCal (which means rain/mud).  These tires were TERRIBLE on my local trails.  They just didn’t throw off the mud enough (packed mud in a tire made them more like “slicks” – not good).  Even without the “mud pack”, they didn’t have the same “grip” as the Panaracers. I replaced them with a set of Panaracer Pros a week later.  Rode the same trail in similar conditions – night & day with those panaracers.

    Recently, I was riding in South Lake Tahoe and got a puncture.  I survived the ride and visited Over the Edge Bike shop in SLT for a replacement tire.  They replaced/fitted my rear tire with a Maxxis DHR II.  While riding in Tahoe area (trails and the Northstar Bike park), I can’t say I noticed any difference in my overall ride.

    When I returned back to the Bay Area and headed out to my local stomping grounds, the difference was noticeable – and not in a good way.  For the dry/dusty/rocky conditions in NorCal right now, I find that the Maxxis DHR doesn’t have the same “grip” as my Panaracer did.  As such, I have another set of Panaracers on order…..

    in reply to: MTB in Oregon #266922

    I lived in Portland for about 5 years.

    I’d suggest checking out Bend and Mt. Hood areas.  I would also suggest checking out  They have a great library of trails, ratings, topography, etc.



    in reply to: e-bikes #266921

    The e-bike topic always stirs up alot of opinions – of which, all are “part” of the conversation.  I live/ride mostly in NorCal.  I have run across a number of e-bikes on various rides/trails (even on National Forest protected lands).

    Here is my perspective/opinion….

    1.  Our Parks and National Forests are there for public use.

    2.  Our Tax dollars pay for the support and upkeep of those parks.  Tax dollars don’t discriminate.  Everyone pays their fair share.

    3.  The ruling for many parks and National Forest for “no motorized vehicles” was passed MANY years ago….  I believe in the 1970’s…?  At the time, I presume the intent of that ruling was to limit/prevent motorcycles on the trails.  I also presume that – at the time – there was the age-old argument that “motorcycles” may have been viewed as an “environmental hazard” and are too hard on the fragile trail system (a similar argument exists today on many trail systems where mountain bikes are not allowed).

    4.  If a trail system allows mountain bikes, they have (at least) agreed to the “wear and tear” from Mountain Bike tires.  For the e-bikes that I’ve seen, they appear to be running the same tires that I run on my mountain bike.  So, that **MAY** diminish point #3.  (there is always the future possibility with e-motorcycles are coming – even for trail riding).  Does an e-bike do any different “damage” to a trail versus a mountain bike?

    I think everyone has the right to get out and enjoy the public lands that their tax dollars pay for.  Protection of those public lands must be considered – whether that be hiking, horseback riding, mountain biking, ATVs, motorcycles, etc.  If a specific trail system is concerned about environmental impact, I think the “rules” will start to shift.  It won’t be hiker/biker/e-biker.  It may very well turn to how “wide” your footprint is….?  (a factual measurement of the environmental impact).  Tire sizes may matter.  Fat bikes (or ebikes with Fat tires) may be pivot point…?  (and also be a way to differentiate between an “ebike” versus a “e-motorcycle”…?)


    Just my 2 cents….

    in reply to: Best time to buy a new bike? #245661

    It’s a great time of year (in the northern hemisphere) to find bike deals!

    Many/most bike shops that have demos can set you up.  Over the course of a day (or a weekend), you can likely cycle through several different makes, models, sizes to find one that “fits you best”.  And…. most shops offer a HUGE end of season sale as they look to unload this seasons demo bikes.

    Since you get to “try before you buy”, it helps to minimize the buyer’s remorse!

    Happy Pedaling….

    in reply to: Advice please #245311

    Kickstand on a mountain bike….?    Um….   I can’t remember the last time I even *SAW* a kickstand on *ANY* bike (not a mountain bike, not a BMX bike, not a roadbike).  Take that thing off. You should also consider removing all the reflectors (front, rear, and the ones clipped to your spokes) in my opinion.

    Sell them all!  LOL

    Put on a pump.  Get either a pack (hyropak) or frame/seat mounted pack for trail-side repairs.

    Can’t we all just get along!  ; >

    This is a crazy situation – almost comical (she’s a veteran, she’s cooperative, and definitely didn’t threaten him).  Sadly these days, its more the norm than the exception.

    Leave the world a better place than you found it.  When you can have extra, share.  When you can help, help.  Pick-up after yourself.  Do no harm.

    in reply to: Share mountain bike deals here #244624

    It’s that time of year for all the bike parks and demo outfits.

    Here is a North Lake Tahoe bike shop that is selling off its demo fleet.





    in reply to: Got a "home" trail? #231865

    I live in Northern California – in the Bay Area.  My “home” trail is Annadel State Park (near Santa Rosa).  Its a 45min drive me, but Annadel offers so much to ride year around that I never get bored!

    I lived in SR for many years and Annadel was a 10min drive away.  Since then, I relocated down to the Bay Area.  Notable mentions include Tamarancho and Nisene, but Annadel is my favorite!  (And if you ride there, stop by the Trail House for a beverage, and a bite.  They have an in-house mechanic and anything you need!

    in reply to: Best MTB retirement community? #231864

    I would add Northern Cal (like Eureka/Chico) and Sparks (Reno) to the list.

    Once you’re north of Sonoma County in Northern Cal, the cost of living is reasonable, you have good weather, access to health services, and plenty of mountain biking.

    Sparks/Reno would be another consideration.  Low cost of living, good weather, local airport, mountain biking, boating, skiing all nearby.

    in reply to: Is there a downside to MTB tourism / destinations? #231863

    It’s a good question, but also a catch 22.

    When you consider Derby – based on your description – its a bit of a “dying” town (significant population decrease, presumably property value reductions, and more).  As a “MTB Destination”, there’s a surge into the local economy – which bolsters local income, employment, and property values.  But if that “surge” is not anticipated/managed, it can quickly out-pace what the residents can afford.

    This is true in many locations that rely on “tourism” for the economy.  For example, South Lake Tahoe (or most any other ski-town) – where most jobs pay near minimum wage and those jobs are “seasonal’ (fortunately Lake Tahoe has both a summer and winter season).  However, rent and mortgages have far exceeded what the “locals” can afford.  When you add in the VRBO/AirBnB owners, most of the “locals” can no longer afford to live there.  The sense of “community” becomes reflective a “short-term/transient” community.

    Not an easy equation to balance.

    in reply to: Climbing struggles! #220258

    The downside of Mountain Biking is the Climb.  However, if you climbed it, then there is a downhill to be had!

    2x on many of the comments and suggestions here.

    I’ll also echo (and share) that climbing is mental.  The mind give up LONG before the body does.  Here is what I do… when I face a climb that I know is going to be a grind…

    1.  Pick the right gear

    2.  Look up the trail and try to spot a landmark or landing

    3.  10 Turns – head down and grind for 10 full revolutions (similar to interval training).  At the end of the 10 revolutions, do a quick “systems check”.  If you’re more “winded”, then try a higher gear; if you’re legs are “spent”, try a lower gear.  Make note of the adjustments/changes (this will help with #1 above as you continue to progress).  My experience (90% of the time), if you can walk it, you’re usually able to grind it (this assumes no major technical obstacles).

    4.  Repeat step #3 until you get to your landmark.  For where I ride, most of the climbs are 30-40 revolutions.  I have a couple spots that have 100+ revolution climbs.

    5.  Check the trail again and repeat from step #1.


    Happy Grinding….

    in reply to: Oldest Mountain bikers #220257

    First – hats off to all those “mature” riders!  Keep grinding!

    I raced BMX when I was a kid – and was nationally ranked.  I don’t get as much “air” as I used to, but I think I qualify as a true Mountain Biker.  I am 53 and ride here in NorCal any where from 1-3 days a week.  Each ride is somewhere between 8-20 miles depending on location, weather, and time available.  My rides typically include anywhere from 700 – 1800 ft of vertical climbing.  I prefer singletrack.  I have ridden a few of the bike parks – Northstar (North Lake Tahoe) and Keystone and do enjoy the jump lines (within reason).   I enjoy the fast and flowy trails, but also enjoy some of the technical stuff.

    I hope to keep riding for a long, long, long time.  Its been in my blood since I was a kid and can’t imagine “not” riding!

    in reply to: Looking for a new tire #220256

    My bike came with bontraeger tires.  Those lasted about 5 runs before I swapped them out.  I run Panaracer FirePro’s on both my hardtail and my full suspension.  I love ’em.  I ride in NorCal, so a mix of rock, roots, sandstone, and a bit of mud.  These tires have great sidewall grip and they throw the mud.

    in reply to: Biking Trail in California #220255

    Welcome to NorCal – the birth place of mountain biking!  ; >

    If you’re in Milpitas, there are a few paved trails  1.  Coyote Creek Trail and 2. Los Gatos Creek trail.

    If you’re up for fireroads (generally dirt/rocky road that is used for service/fire access), the list gets longer…   including 1.  Chabot Regional Park, 2.  Almaden Park, 3. Alum Rock,  and (I think) there is a park in Fremont with paved trails.

    If you are interested in Singletrack – the list gets much longer.

    I hope that helps!



    in reply to: Biking Trail in California #220237

    Cristo – that’s a very broad question for a very big state!

    California (as a state) has probably close to 1000 trails.  Depending upon where you are (NorCal, SoCal, Central Valley, etc.) you will have many choices.  Then (of course) it depends on your skill and equipment – you mention a road bike and the link you shared is an electric unicycle…?  I don’t know many (any…?) mountain bike trails that would be suitable for an electric unicycle.  You might just look at local parks near where you are visiting and stick to the paved bike paths.

    Having said that, if you are thinking some CA singletrack is still of interest, then you’ll have choices nearby I’m sure.

    Safe travels and enjoy sunny CA.  ; >

    in reply to: If I knew then… #220235

    Depends on the timing ; >

    If I was standing on the trailhead and ready to go – its all about body position, braking, and knowing that’s its okay to “hike a bike” when in doubt.

    If it was “in advance” of the ride (a day, a week) – then it would be about getting VERY comfortable with the equipment (brakes, gears, when to shift-up, when to shift-down, etc.).

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