Dirt Rag Issue #196 is here!

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Cover Photo by Ryan Creary

 

readings

Columns and Readings

This issue sees the debut of a new column by Simon Stewart, titled Dog’s Bollix (named as an ode to his Irish heritage). As he is a former mountain bike guide, it will give a sassy insight to all things travel, life as a guide and mountain biking in general. We also catch up with Dave Wiens to discuss his new role at IMBA, join in on the 40th Anniversary of the legendary Repack Downhill, and in Ask The Expert we find out if it’s OK to alter your local trails on your own.

Features

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Get Off Your Ass and Get On Board: Grinduro Is Here: by Ian Hylands

This issue is all about your guide to 2017! First we explore the rising popularity of events like Grinduro that combine gravel racing and enduro formats. Its appeal is spreading quickly with many similarly styled events popping up across the country.

As an added component we list 13 other great gravel events for you to check out this year.

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Pandemonium In Portland: 2016 Singlespeed Cyclocross World Championships: by Stevil Kinevil

Stevil’s initial plan was simple: pin a number on at the airport and go straight to one of Portland’s many famed peeler bars. Actually making it to the race would be a secondary directive. Then he got an offer from a friend to transport his bike to town. “At least in that case I’d be mobile and could avoid the race and all related functions aboard a properly suited steed,” he thought. Then, just days before leaving he was offered one of the few remaining entries to the race. “Crap. After all of this non-effort to elude most things SSCXWC related, it looks like it caught up with me after all.”

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Tour Of The White Mountains: by Brian Leddy

High in the pines of northeastern Arizona lie 200-plus miles of sweet singletrack. Traversing the rocky, volcanic slopes of the White Mountains, the trails flow through ponderosa pine forests and high mountain meadows. If you’re looking for a place to get away from it all, this is a great place to find yourself. There aren’t many pro [racers] and that relaxes the crowd a bit, gives the event even more of an inclusive, grassroots feel and turns the focus to spending the day on your bike instead of nutrition and finish times.

Plus, we list all of Epic Rides must-attend events along with a list of 13 more awesome races and festivals.

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The Hidden Downieville: by Kurt Gensheimer

There is a corner of California called the Lost Sierra that hasn’t changed much since the 1849 Gold Rush. Plumas and Sierra counties make up the Lost Sierra region, roughly a 40-by- 40-mile area bordered to the south by Downieville, to the north by Quincy, to the east by Graeagle and to the west by La Porte. The Lost Sierra is one of the only places in California where the population today is less than it was in the 1860s. A collection of “drinking towns with mountain biking problems,” the Lost Sierra is one of the most historically rich and least visited regions in the Sierra Nevada, ripe with abandoned mining camps and crisscrossing historic prospecting trails. It also contains some of the best riding in the world.

And, as an added bonus to the story we have a selection of veteran riders sharing their favorite riding locations and post-ride haunts that you may want to check out this year.

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Reviews and Stuff

This month our bike test theme is Free Radicals: Bikes That Play By Their Own Rules. They’re an exception to the sameness usually found on the showroom floor and each one takes its own unique path. Included are:

  • Cannondale Bad Habit Carbon 1
  • Jones Plus
  • Salsa Woodsmoke 29+
  • SE Racing OM-Duro
  • Trek Farley EX 9.8
  • Viral Skeptic

Other Stuff we reviewed for this issue include dropper posts, helmets, and so much more. Subscribe now so that you’re the first to get the next issue!

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