The state of New York urban trails have been added to the trails inventory.
New York has a shocking amount of mountain biking in places you would least expect, from Highbridge in Fort George Hill (North Harlem) to Shale Pit Loop (Albany). It should be noted that a lot of upstate New York trails are outside of towns and cities, meaning they don't qualify to be included in an urban mountain biking inventory.
In honor of adding of New York state trails, here is a New York themed song for your listening pleasure:
With City MTB off this week, down in Indianapolis, Indiana, here are two great podcasts related to mountain biking that you should add to your feed.
Hosted by Brent Hiller, Frontlines MTB is a podcast for "for the people that truly make mountain biking happen" as Brent says. While there are some guests that represent companies or organizations, the vast majority of guests are people just working on their local trails with a story to tell or an idea to share. As a result, Frontlines MTB has been able to tackle subjects without bluster or overly opinionated dialog. Its a fun and civil discourse. More often than not, his guests offer their help to others that might face the same issues.
The Gravel Lot is a podcast hosted by Doug McClintock and Jon Wolery who both live in Cincinnati, OH. They discuss the intersection of different biking types and how the various tribes can help each other. Their focus tends to be talking about the Southern Ohio/Northern Kentucky scene. While that might seem like a drawback, not a positive, the fact is it gives them a unique perspective. If you from a part of the country where gaining access and trails feels like an endless slog, their perspectives on access in a place that has embraced mountain biking is not only inspiring, it also will give you ideas on how to bring people together in your community.
Side note here: Episode 12 is one you need to bring your "Sophie's Choice" sized Kleenex box to. Amanda Batty is interviewed and she talks about her being a sexual assault survivor. It will break you down to your base molecular structure. If you just listen to one episode, listen to that one.
Nothing is more inspiring than seeing something that is both cool and obtainable. “Cool” and “obtainable” certainly describe Gnomewood, a beginner skills practice area.
The focus of Gnomewood is really an entire family with children, not just adults. Parents can bring little ones and either help them learn skills, set back and watch or join the rug rats on a tour of loops. While it’s easy to focus on the cutesy gnome decoration that gives the skills area its name, don’t lose sight of the fact that all of the typical on-trail features are available and sized for everything from 12” to 29” wheels.
Here is great overview video:
Other than where one falls on the “how much do press fit bottom brackets suck” scale, no subject is probably as controversial in mountain biking right now as e-bikes and specifically e-MTBs.
There are a range of viewpoints on the subject, but most seem to fall into one of two categories:
To provide the greatest amount of content and the highest quality content, going forward City MTB will have the following posting schedule:
This will allow the writers to focus on content and give you, our reader, a greater variety of content related to urban mountain biking. Or lasers and dinosaurs.
On April 6th, 2018 Bicycling Magazine took a break from telling its readers they needed the latest $10,000 super bike to post an article by Ayesha McGowan. The article is about diversity, or more correctly, the lack of diversity within the cycling community.
Before going any further take a few moments to read Ms. McGowan’s article.
Ms. McGowan’s article is so powerful not only because she points to a real problem in the bicycling world, but includes relatively simple fixes to these problems. While the article is aimed at the corporate/industrial side of bicycling, the fact of the matter is that bicycling is more than Specialized’s graphics department. It’s all of us that use bicycles and love bicycles, whether we ride to work or on the trail.
What are other ways that the industry and us, as cyclists, can help ensure cycling appeals to everyone?
While man has always sought to fly, in the post-World War 2 time period, there was a growing interest in the idea of “flying cars”, that is personal flying devices that could pull into a garage and then whisk their inhabitants off to a location. At the time, it seemed like the stars had aligned for just such a reality. Thru the war, 2 inventions were refined that seemed to make this possible: the gas turbine and the helicopter. In fact, German engineers had developed the intermesh helicopter, a type that auto hovers. Many of those engineers and scientists found their way to the United States via Operation Paperclip.
On paper, a flying car sounds great. Faster than ground transportation and able to go point-to-point versus following roads. However, in practice, the idea of a flying car is a nightmare. Besides the complexities of actually flying an aircraft, there is the matter of preventing all these flying cars from running into one another. Then there is the fact that conditions in air are always changing as the atmosphere takes on many properties of a fluid in a vessel, with competing air currents and changes in air flow. From that time till today, history is littered with failed flying car ideas, some famous, some not so famous. In the end, the idea of the flying car remains (and likely will always remain) an idea.
When it comes to user management techniques, there is one that sounds like a great idea on paper, but a nightmare in actual usage: Alternating Use. This leads to the following questions:
Let’s see how the idea is not matched by the reality.
Many things come in boxes, from the small boxes for jewelry to the large heavily built boxes for appliances. In mythology, it was Pandora’s Box (though in the original Greek it was a jar) that contained all the ills of the world that were let loose when Pandora decided to take a peek. In religious connotations, the Jewish Ark of the Covenant was an ornate box to hold the original tablets of the commandments.
There is another type of box we will consider, one containing mountain bike trails. This type of use is known as Boxed Use. To know what comes in that box, we need to answer the following:
Let’s lift the lid and see what Boxed Use all about!
While we think of some cars as being “hybrids”, having both gas and electric powerplants, the greatest use of hybrids has always been in agriculture. Farmers realized certain types of wheat had more yield, but were fragile and other types of wheat were hardy but had low yield. The answer: pollinate one type with the other and cultivate the wheat that had both characteristics; yield and hardiness. From the moment man began farming, creating hybrids, either on purpose or by accident, was just a basic part of the process. Today, large percentages of fruits and grains we consume are hybrids in some way.
But what if, as we are creating urban mountain biking trails, we need a little bit of this and that? Is there a way to do what a farmer would do, mix the attributes of various user management techniques?
There is, and that is called Hybrid Use. To explore this user management technique, we need to know the following:
Let’s do some cross-pollination and see what we get!
When you do laundry, you are well aware of the need to place certain colors and fabrics in separate loads. Cottons, whites, colored. This type of segregation of clothes is important as placing certain clothes together can damage them. Reds and whites are a common example of this, as either the colors will run, turning whites pink or the red will be bleached out.
While we have spent the last 3 parts of this series talking about how to share trails, today we go a much different direction: ensuring these users that previously shared, never share. Much like the laundry, we are going to sort them, segregating them in other words, into their unique experiences. If that is the case, we have some questions we need to answer:
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.