A New Life for an Old Bike: My Trek 7000

In early 2000 I was preparing to graduate from college and decided it was time for a new mountain bike. After browsing the local shops I fell in love with an electric green and yellow Trek 7000 hardtail. At one of the shops I visited the sales clerk said the geometry was all wrong for me–that a Specialized model would work much better. But I was determined to own a green Trek and wound up purchasing mine at Higgins Bicycle and Lawnmower shop in Greensboro.

It was around this time that mudhunny and I got serious about building Singletracks.com and I chose trek7k as my handle for the website. I thought the name had a certain “hacker” feel to it and the recent hype about Y2K made using Roman numerals in place of thousands de rigueur. Plus, I figured it would be a pretty unique name I could use as my online identity on other sites as well.

Several months later I started my job in Colorado Springs with the Trek 7000 in tow and I rode the hell out of that bike! Slickrock in Moab, Trail 401 and Monarch Crest in Colorado, not to mention my near daily rides at Palmer Park and Ute Valley. And when I left Colorado four years later I continued to ride the Trek 7000 everywhere up and down the east coast from Florida to Vermont.

From top left: Keystone Bike Park (CO), Palmer Park (CO), Slickrock (UT), Dark Mountain (NC), Buffalo Creek (CO), Kenosha Pass (CO), Little River (NC), Broad Mountain (PA), and Santos (FL).

In 2009 I finally got a new bike–a 29er–and my Trek 7000 promptly wound up in the basement. About a year later I was getting ready for a group ride and realized my tire was flat and I didn’t have any 29er tubes so I ran to the basement to take the Trek 7000 out instead. As soon as I pulled it down I saw the brown, sticky oil coating the fork and my heart broke. Rest in peace Trek 7000.

The bike sat in the basement for another two or three years and I kept telling myself I’d fix it up. Dustin’s article about converting an old bike to a single speed got me motivated to do something with the Trek 7000 so I dusted it off and took stock of what I had. But without the ability to run 29er wheels or disc brakes I quickly lost interest.

Soon after I got a PM from a guy named Derek on the Singletracks forums asking about the bike and I immediately knew I wanted to give the bike a new home. The best part is that Derek has similar stories and fond memories of his first Trek 7000:

I have had my green TREK 7000 since my freshman year of college, and I was pretty certain it was bomb-proof based on the things I put it through it always seemed to come out of wrecks more intact than I did.

I started upgrading as I started wearing through/breaking the stock components. I tinkered with the different technologies as mountain biking evolved. I spent most of my time riding in Colorado, and started to slack off when I moved to the Midwest. As life went on, mountain biking played second fiddle to family and lacrosse. When I finally moved back to the west (SLC), I am ashamed to say that I only rode a few times, and never truly got back into it.

I have since moved to Cincinnati and lo and behold, I start riding here and really feel like I am getting back into the sport, albeit riding hills instead of mountains… I was riding enough that I took the bike in for an overhaul (it needed it) and received a call from the tech that my frame was cracked. I headed to the bike shop to check for myself and he was not kidding. We reminisced for an hour about reverse spring deraileurs, and other components from the old days. Goofy as it is, I told stories about the scratches and dents like it was the passing of a friend.

Derek’s cracked Trek 7000.

Nostalgia aside, Derek intends to keep shredding on the Trek 7000:

I love this frame’s geometry, it fits me perfectly I do not know what makes some bikes fit one person and not another, but somehow this bike has come together with all its parts and pieces to be the absolute best fit for me. I have hopped on many other bikes, rentals/demos/friends’ bikes, etc, and I have never felt comfortable. I was worried I was going to be on an endless search for something that fits me. I also was reluctant to drop a large chunk of change on a new bike when I was just getting reacquainted with my old reliable Trek.

The Trek 7000 re-built and ready for action!

After sitting neglected in the basement directly underneath my home office, the Trek 7000 has a new lease on life and I couldn’t be happier to see the bike back on the trail!

So, now that the bike has moved on I figured it’s a good time for me to move on too… to a new Singletracks screen name that is. Like Lance Armstrong once said, “It’s not about the bike,” so instead of trek7k I’ll just be jeff on Singletracks. Long live the Trek 7000!