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Recreational Cyclocross and Gravelbiking This has to be the most physically intense sport ever invented. It's high speed bicycle racing on a short off road course or riding the off pavement rides on gravel like :The Dirty Kanza". We also have a dedicated Racing forum for the Cyclocross Hard Core Racers.

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Old 10-20-04, 05:57 AM   #1
paddlerx
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Showing up full sussers on yer cross!

We have a local area that is conisiderd to be one of the most technical mtb riding areas around, roots, loamy trails, steep drops with roots, long doubletrack climbs and some weird gypsum sections (they used to mine gypsum (as in gyprock boards) from the area. Now with all the leaves down, and lots of recent rain its pretty greasy overall. My Klein palomino is in the shop for some tuning and i'm left with only my brand new Soul Cycles "Monk" cross bike, so i decided to ride that. My friends were looking at me like i wasn't right in the head when i pulled into the parking lot.."your going to ride a 10 speed?!". "Nope i'm riding my cross" i said. We even met some other guys from town riding big duallies with full body armour. They said..."oh are you guys going for a road ride?", "nope" i said. "oh your going to ride the fireroads?", "well i'll ride some fireroads yep", "and this years race course too"..they just looked at me...for the next 2 hours we rode on an off with them.
On one particular climb there is a new tree that's fallen down at the bottom, all 4 of the other guys were stopped and dragging their bikes over it, i rode up, they were kinda making fun saying "just bunnyhop it!"...on the right of it it was a bit smaller but off in the weeds and grass...so i kept riding, wheelied over it, hit my big ring on it, hit my rear wheel and kept on going. they freaked.

i rode everything there was to be ridden, and aside from 1) my new front tire is a bontrager and almost a slick which made it sketchy over roots and greasy downhills and 2) my brakes aren't dialed yet so i had to really hank on them; it was overall a lot more fun than my xc mtn bike. The Soul is wickedly stiff in the bottom bracket area and has a very neutral feeling, when i had traction it climbed like my road bike and when traction was at a premium the combination of a big meaty kenda rear tire and very easy fore/aft weight control for traction made for inspired efforts on the ups and downs.

I'm convinced that for most people a cross bike should do 90% of everything you'd ever need. I would have been overall faster probably on my full suspended klein, certainly less beat up at full race pace. But for ****s and giggles...the cross was hard to beat.

Anyone else have similar stories where you've shocked/impressed people by riding where they'd not expect you to be?
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Old 10-20-04, 07:29 AM   #2
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I found myself out on a trail once and wondering what the hell am I doing here? I have a hard time on steep rocky rooted descents on my cross bike. Plus running a single 42 chain ring is not contusive to the steep climbs. I was talking to a shop owner/mtb racer last week about cross and he was telling me that in a lot of mtb races where he is climbing technical rock gardens people will run right by him classic cross style. So it seems like cross infiltrates mtb and vice versa
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Old 10-20-04, 12:49 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by paddlerx
Anyone else have similar stories where you've shocked/impressed people by riding where they'd not expect you to be?
With an attitude like that, next thing you know you'll be riding SS or Fixed!

But to answer you question, yes, I've taken out my fixed gear Surly Crosscheck on the trails and get strange looks. People are surprised what you can pull off on "limited" equipment.
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Old 10-20-04, 01:43 PM   #4
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Limited my ass. Haha, let's see a full susser pace me once we hit tarmac.
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Old 10-20-04, 02:35 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by riderx
With an attitude like that, next thing you know you'll be riding SS or Fixed!

But to answer you question, yes, I've taken out my fixed gear Surly Crosscheck on the trails and get strange looks. People are surprised what you can pull off on "limited" equipment.
As I mentioned in a thread a few weeks ago I had a great comment when passing some stopped mtb'ers on a single track "holy sht, a roadies on the trail"

Last weekend it was "your riding a road bike here?"

I can't keep up with the experienced mtbers, but find I catch up to many others, especially on up hills.

It really isn't that big a deal, it just looks odd. My other bike is a no-suspension mtb, the only difference is fatter tires and different handlebars. I actually have never ridden a bike with any type of suspension, so maybe I just am used to being by own suspension (letting the bike float under me) planning my wheel path very well and hopping over or up the ugly stuff. The hardest for me is staying in control on the deeper sand.

Al
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Old 10-20-04, 02:47 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by noisebeam
As I mentioned in a thread a few weeks ago I had a great comment when passing some stopped mtb'ers on a single track "holy sht, a roadies on the trail"

Last weekend it was "your riding a road bike here?"

I can't keep up with the experienced mtbers, but find I catch up to many others, especially on up hills.

It really isn't that big a deal, it just looks odd. My other bike is a no-suspension mtb, the only difference is fatter tires and different handlebars. I actually have never ridden a bike with any type of suspension, so maybe I just am used to being by own suspension (letting the bike float under me) planning my wheel path very well and hopping over or up the ugly stuff. The hardest for me is staying in control on the deeper sand.

Al
This confirms to me even more that we are a breed of our own.
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Old 10-20-04, 03:06 PM   #7
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This confirms to me even more that we are a breed of our own.
Well I think it also goes to show the equipment centric nature of mtb (and all biking). I'd say the majority (the majority being relatively new to the sport) of mtbers I see in the places I go just don't need those high end full suspension bikes for the semi-technical trails that they stick to. This is not in any way to say that there is not a need or benefit for these full sus bikes, especially for those who push 'em to do what they can do.

Al
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Old 10-20-04, 04:38 PM   #8
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I didn't really mean to say 'a breed of our own' about the skill. I mean that we are not roadies. We are neither mountain bikers. We are cyclocrossers.
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Old 10-22-04, 10:19 AM   #9
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riderx...you said next i'll be riding "single speed or fixed"?! thats funny...i was just last night trying to solve some spongy rear brake issues with my new used Country Road Bob. i built up a surly flip flop hub to a cxp33 hoop. running 46x16 (and possibly 46x18) on the fixed and free side. drop bars/cross tires/One F**king Speed...now to try to convince myself that i can ride some nasties on a fixe....yikes.

:-)
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Old 10-22-04, 03:02 PM   #10
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Buddy of mine gave a kid a fit when he blew by him in a rooted uphill section on his converted fixie road bike with slicks, the kid was on a full susser...I then fell off my single speed roadie laughing
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