A wildflower akin to a flame, seen during the lunch ride.

written by Rich Bernoulli

We are often asked what the difference is between our two campuses (Ashland and Portland); and regarding the curriculum, not a lot. We make great efforts to keep the curriculum consistent between the two campuses.The biggest difference between the two campuses to me is the lunch ride. Portland has some tasty eateries within walking distance but if you have plans for a lunch ride, it’ll be of the asphalt and pavement variety with a healthy dose human population and the resultant four-wheeled traffic. Here in Ashland, we have the opportunity to ride dope trails, year-round, on real, decomposed granite, straight from our door; as long as you have the legs and lungs, of course.  

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Sea Otter Classic Logo 2019

by Nathan Riddle

I’ve been going to the massive bike racing festival known as the Sea Otter Classic for at least 20 years now and it’s impossible not to see trends over the years. Some things stay the same (like the downhill and slalom courses) and some things change. Some of the notable changes that I observed this year were an increase in the number of vendors displaying versus years past, as well as what they were displaying. One of the Sea Otter employees said that the booth count had grown by over one hundred new companies displaying and that there had previously been something like one thousand companies displaying. This was actually observable in the newly paved area dedicated to vendors (light green area on right side of the map) as well as companies being tucked into just about every open space possible. The two things that really struck me though were the number of e-bikes on display as well as the number of dedicated kid’s bikes and kid targeted components.

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Contemplated by B Vivit
With the major e-bike increase within the US recently, where does the bike shop responsibility for educating a customer end? And this applies to all customers, but with the e-bike boom, we are seeing an influx of new riders and a particular rider who isn't into the "cycling culture." We can't all pull off the line "With great power, comes great responsibility" talk without being downers. And tagging on that "just one more thing" at the end of the sale as their brains are already 50 miles away on a beautiful road, on a beautiful day, with their beautiful significant other, cruising and looking beautiful. The major conversations have centered around trail etiquette and riding, road etiquette, and also care of said e-bikes. I say, "care of" because I'm not trying to foist the burden of maintenance off onto the customer at all. Hopefully you, as a shop, are still supporting that bike in a major way. However, I am thinking about things like charging the bike, knowing when to bring something in for service, and probably fixing a flat. And how do you have that conversation with a customer? 
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 by B Vivit

Recently I did a small, overnight bikepacking trip with Liv Bikes on Mt. Hood along with the photographer Gritchelle Fallesgon. The event was run through Gladys Bike Shop in Portland, OR; and we had a few of their mechanics along for the ride as well. This is my down and dirty take on the out-and-back to Black Lake on Liv full suspension bikes with two Giant Bicycles bikepacking bags. The event filled within 3 days after posting, and out of 13 riders(total including Casey from Liv, 1 from Northwest Trail Alliance Trail Sisters and 1 from Fernweh Food Co.), 10 had never bikepacked before. Also out of the 13 riders, 2 people had never mountain biked before. With the amount of NEW riders during this event, I think you can safely say that it was an immense success that created a community around an adventure. Here's the summary, and maybe your shop can sponsor something like this. 

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