Cyclocross and Gravelbiking (Recreational) 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.

Where are the "older" gravel riders?

Old 05-06-19, 04:52 PM
  #26  
srode1
Gravel Rocks
 
Join Date: Dec 2018
Location: Ohio
Posts: 172

Bikes: Trek Domane and Crockett, Niner RLT9

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 71 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
62 here and enjoy gravel as well as road riding. The last few years Dirty Kanza 200 has had around 50 in the 60+ age class, and around 50% finish.
srode1 is offline  
Old 05-06-19, 10:37 PM
  #27  
jan nikolajsen 
Mostly Mischief
 
jan nikolajsen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Moab, Utah
Posts: 1,460
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 15 Post(s)
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
56 here. When I do road races/rides in my region it’s always been full geezer dominance; well fed boomers firmly rooted on the saddle of impeccable S-Works bikes with the bars too high. Top ten is tough but not unattainable when the fitness is there.

Then I went to my first gravel race near SLC a few weeks ago. No age groups and super affordable. Starting line was 150 young, skinny, fit riders in pro kits and bikes that looked business. Maybe a handful of older folks on mountain bikes. I cramped after 5 miles trying to hang with the main bunch, with 3 breakaways already established and 70 miles remaining.
jan nikolajsen is offline  
Old 05-08-19, 03:21 PM
  #28  
chas58
Senior Member
 
chas58's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Michigan
Posts: 3,496

Bikes: too many of all kinds

Mentioned: 23 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 676 Post(s)
Liked 29 Times in 23 Posts
Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post

For what its worth, Chas didnt call older roadies stupid or immature. Chas said what the industry was selling consumers 15 years ago was stupid and said that people have realized this(gotten smarter). By saying mature people understand that a wider tire is more comfortable and still fast also isnt an insult to those who are older and dont ride a wider tire, unless you work to make it an insult.
Wow, you said it better than I could have. I do think the industry can be faddish, and that irritates me sometimes (especially planned obsolescence, and the latest shiny new thing). But then again, it gives us choice and variety.
chas58 is offline  
Old 05-09-19, 03:14 PM
  #29  
Zaskar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 326
Mentioned: 12 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 175 Post(s)
Liked 2 Times in 2 Posts
You may not realize how many of us older guys are out there... 'cause you young guys usually see us from the back. Don't sweat it. We've had years to train. You'll get there. ;-)
Zaskar is offline  
Old 05-09-19, 04:35 PM
  #30  
chas58
Senior Member
 
chas58's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Michigan
Posts: 3,496

Bikes: too many of all kinds

Mentioned: 23 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 676 Post(s)
Liked 29 Times in 23 Posts
Love it Zaskar!

My initial post was meant to say that older riders seemed to be the first to get it, that in many ways they were "smarter" I see lots of gravel rides around here with mature riders who have relegated their old road bike to the trainer. Its a good way to get out in nature without worrying too much about cars.

It seems that "mature" road bikers (40-60+) tend to gravitate to gravel because they realize that moderately large tires (30-40mm) don't have to be slower, compliance is a good thing - and why deal with traffic?
I see 20 somethings (and older) gravitate to gravel because they love mountain biking too much to get a pure road bike and the gravel genre gives them the versatility they need. Besides, the group rides and races are fun and less uptight compared to a crit.
I see 30-40 somethings gravitate to gravel genre because they want an all terrain bike they can ride from their front door - they just don't have as much time to drive to/from the trailhead when they have a new family
chas58 is offline  
Old 05-10-19, 04:30 AM
  #31  
David Scott
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Location: North York, Ontario
Posts: 20

Bikes: Giant Anyroad

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
50 here. Took up cycling after quitting smoking back in August 2016. My brother races 'cross and he gave me an older Giant Escape as I wanted to get back into shape. Rode that for the rest of the summer and then dove in both feet the next year with first a Revolt and then an Anyroad. Riding on the road feels like 'exercise' whereas riding gravel is fun.
David Scott is offline  
Old 05-10-19, 06:31 AM
  #32  
Garfield Cat
Senior Member
 
Garfield Cat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Huntington Beach, CA
Posts: 6,823

Bikes: Cervelo Prodigy

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 334 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 2 Times in 2 Posts
And the older rider may have more money to spend on bikes.
Garfield Cat is offline  
Old 05-10-19, 06:36 AM
  #33  
sputniky
Banned.
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 82
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 46 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 7 Times in 5 Posts
Originally Posted by chas58 View Post
My initial post was meant to say that older riders seemed to be the first to get it, that in many ways they were "smarter"
I think your premise is flawed simply due to the fact that many folks "got it" (riding fat tired drop bar bikes in the dirt) decades ago. These "older riders" were 20, or 30 somethings back then...
sputniky is offline  
Old 05-10-19, 07:36 AM
  #34  
chas58
Senior Member
 
chas58's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Michigan
Posts: 3,496

Bikes: too many of all kinds

Mentioned: 23 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 676 Post(s)
Liked 29 Times in 23 Posts
Originally Posted by sputniky View Post
I think your premise is flawed simply due to the fact that many folks "got it" (riding fat tired drop bar bikes in the dirt) decades ago. These "older riders" were 20, or 30 somethings back then...
Exactly. You understand.

It does kind of shock me how many people can be in agreement, and still argue. We are all basically saying the same thing.

Either way, there are plenty of gravel riders in their 50's around here.

Last edited by chas58; 05-10-19 at 07:49 AM.
chas58 is offline  
Old 05-10-19, 08:26 AM
  #35  
Zaskar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 326
Mentioned: 12 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 175 Post(s)
Liked 2 Times in 2 Posts
The funny thing is that lots of older riders have been riding gravel on road bikes for years. I've done a handful of rides in North Georgia connecting the "gaps" (well-known mountains/climbs) using FS roads on 23mm tires at 105 psi and LOVING it... because the gravel bike segment wasn't a trend yet.

But I'm not so old and untrainable that I don't prefer doing those rides on 40s at 50 psi ;-)
Zaskar is offline  
Old 05-10-19, 08:46 AM
  #36  
Happy Feet
Senior Member
 
Happy Feet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Posts: 3,132
Mentioned: 19 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1171 Post(s)
Liked 63 Times in 41 Posts
Originally Posted by Garfield Cat View Post
And the older rider may have more money to spend on bikes.
Yep.

I suspect there is a sub set of cyclist who has always been riding mixed surfaces but now the "identity" surrounding gravel biking seems to be closely associated with owneship and talk about new and expensive bikes designated for the genre. Many young people can't afford to plop a couple of K on that bike or see the value of being identified as a member of the genre where as older folk tend to have more disposable income along with increased risk aversion.

You also see a lot of older folk talking up the benefits of nordic walking sticks.

Yes you can ride gravel without the expensive bike but to fit in and enjoy the group experience there is that social pressure to buy up just like road cycling. FWIW most of the cyclists I see are older except for roadies which tend to have the addition of somewhat younger professional types.
Happy Feet is offline  
Old 05-16-19, 01:32 PM
  #37  
Garfield Cat
Senior Member
 
Garfield Cat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Huntington Beach, CA
Posts: 6,823

Bikes: Cervelo Prodigy

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 334 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 2 Times in 2 Posts
Originally Posted by Happy Feet View Post
Yep.

I suspect there is a sub set of cyclist who has always been riding mixed surfaces but now the "identity" surrounding gravel biking seems to be closely associated with owneship and talk about new and expensive bikes designated for the genre. Many young people can't afford to plop a couple of K on that bike or see the value of being identified as a member of the genre where as older folk tend to have more disposable income along with increased risk aversion.

You also see a lot of older folk talking up the benefits of nordic walking sticks.

Yes you can ride gravel without the expensive bike but to fit in and enjoy the group experience there is that social pressure to buy up just like road cycling. FWIW most of the cyclists I see are older except for roadies which tend to have the addition of somewhat younger professional types.
The older riders have gone through the drill of buying their first road bike, just to see if they like riding, then later, buying the one they really like to ride, the fit, the everything.

It stands to reason that the older gravel rider will skip the drill and go for the frameset and components, right to the top. No sense buying twice.
Garfield Cat is offline  
Likes For Garfield Cat:
Old 05-16-19, 08:46 PM
  #38  
Hondo Gravel
Voted For Pedro
 
Join Date: Jan 2018
Location: Hondo,Texas
Posts: 960

Bikes: Motobecane Boris Fatbike, Motobecane Omni Strada Pro,Fantom Pro CX, Fantom X7 MTB, Gravity SS MTB.

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 469 Post(s)
Liked 47 Times in 40 Posts
I started cycling in 1995 after playing years of beer league softball which was fun but as we aged keeping a team together was hard. Started with MTB and would try to ride the most radical trails I could handle but wrecking didnít hurt that bad then. Then I gave road riding a try and enjoyed that style as well. Gravel riding is the perfect mix for me. I get the feel of MTB and RDB and far less traffic and you can find gravel roads almost anywhere. I like the sturdier bike and the ability to go from road to gravel and back. I see cycling as a sport that can be done at every stage of life and usually the first form of transportation and freedom was learning to ride a bike as a kid.
Hondo Gravel is offline  
Old 05-17-19, 05:53 PM
  #39  
bitingduck
Senior Member
 
bitingduck's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 3,165
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 40 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by pbass View Post
Interesting, thanks for the replies. Must just be the area I ride in then here and LA, Pasadena, etc. I do of course understand that "riding gravel" has been around as long as there have been bikes, and cross has been around for ages. But as I say, I'm one of the very few guys I see on a rigid drop bar bike on the dirt when I go out who has an AARP card Most appear to be in their 30's, maybe 40's.
Could also have more to do with my region. I was out the other day, coming back down to a trailhead and chatted with a geezer my age on a full sus MTB coming up, and he was poking fun at me for being one of those "tough guys" riding a bike like that off-road (we don't have gravel roads here, but gnarly rocky steep loose dirt). So there is a perception that it is harder on the body(all relative of course). I assured him that I would never even try to keep up with him on his rig on the trail!
I'm early 50s and have been riding a gravel bike lately as my main bike. My ancient hardtail MTB is in PDX, and I like the ride on my gravel bike better, anyway. The fire roads out of Pasadena are fine as gravel/dirt roads with the occasional portage over rockfalls. I've even gone down the Mt Wilson toll road a few times on carbon road bikes with 23 mm tires, and up Mt Lowe on the same bikes. I've ridden some worse-surfaced gravel roads up in Oregon recently. The trend the last few years for a lot of MTBers though seems to be to get a ride up with a heavy downhill bike and bomb the downhill, rather than riding up. A nice gravel bike will go up the fire roads a lot faster than most heavy mtbs, though the ride down will be a bit harder.
__________________
Track - the other off-road
http://www.lavelodrome.org
bitingduck is offline  
Old 05-17-19, 06:04 PM
  #40  
K R
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2018
Location: Pacific Northwest
Posts: 13

Bikes: 2006 Lemond Reno, 2018 Specialized Diverge Comp

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Liked 2 Times in 2 Posts
OK, I'll be 72 in Sept. DW and I both ride Diverge Comp's. Occasionally ride a paved path, often on a rails to trails path in WA, Idaho and OR. Haven't ridden the road bikes in over a year... gravel is way more fun! OK, we just added 27.5 MTB's to the stable, gotta keep movin' so we can keep movin'.
K R is offline  
Likes For K R:
Old 05-18-19, 08:44 PM
  #41  
TimothyH
- Soli Deo Gloria -
 
TimothyH's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Northwest Georgia
Posts: 13,789

Bikes: 2018 Rodriguez Custom Fixed Gear, 2017 Niner RLT 9 RDO, 2015 Bianchi Pista, 2002 Fuji Robaix

Mentioned: 213 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 6212 Post(s)
Liked 211 Times in 145 Posts
I'm 55 and rode 60 miles gravel today.
TimothyH is offline  
Old 05-23-19, 01:53 PM
  #42  
zjrog
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 878

Bikes: 1986 KHS Fiero, 1989 Trek 950, 1990 Trek 7000, 1992 Trek 1400, 1998 Cannondale R200, 2010 Performance Access XCL9R

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 51 Post(s)
Liked 12 Times in 9 Posts
I'm not planning any serious MTB riding, but my 29er seems perfect for gravel. What little I have ridden remind sof when I didn't know any better. Growing up in the Flint Hills region of Kansas, near Topeka, all I knew was gravel and trails, on my old Sears Free Spirit ten speed...

56 now, and somehow that simpler time seems like it was pretty easy.

Last edited by zjrog; 05-23-19 at 01:54 PM. Reason: Finishing a thought...
zjrog is offline  
Old 05-23-19, 02:21 PM
  #43  
79pmooney
A Roadie Forever
 
79pmooney's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 6,802

Bikes: (2) ti TiCycles, 2007 w/ triple and 2011 fixed, 1979 Peter Mooney, ~1983 Trek 420 now fixed and ~1973 Raleigh Carlton Competition gravel grinder

Mentioned: 89 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1589 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 32 Times in 27 Posts
I'm 68, have signed up for a fairly crazy gravel ride in a month and just did the pretty civilized Cycle Oregon Gravel last weekend. I wasn't the oldest but in the minority.

I never sought out gravel in my earlier days, but my folks' house, from which I raced and trained my first year had 1/4 mile of dirt road that I rode on sewups. Several races had extended unpaved stretches. (I wasn't a gravel "whiz" but I always liked the race gravel because the pace slowed down and moving up was easy and a "freebie".)

I'll probably never get fully into gravel - too much time spent doing bike cleanup! And Oregon dust is such a bike parts killer. (All volcanic. Incredibly abrasive. My rim-braked road rims go 1 1/2 winters.) But it is fun and there is a lot of it around here. So it is another aspect of riding to add to my commute like rides (I'm retired but ride into town regularly) and road rides, both geared and fix gear.

A poster above mentioned not understanding drop bar gravel bikes. I've never mountain biked so my gravel is all on drop bars. I've been getting serious this past month and studying what works for me and what doesn't. And I have found I love riding the drops. The bike feels like it is on rails but is completely free to move sideways as needed. Like I am on railroad tracks but sometimes a switch has been thrown and the wheels change tracks. Not an issue at all. I love it. I went into last weekend tinking I would be convinced I slould put the interrupter brake levers on for hairy descents. Now, no way. The drops are just too good.

Ben
79pmooney is offline  
Old 05-23-19, 04:36 PM
  #44  
Seattle Forrest
Senior Member
 
Seattle Forrest's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Seattle, WA
Posts: 18,897
Mentioned: 43 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7666 Post(s)
Liked 115 Times in 67 Posts
What does older mean? I'm 41. Feel half my age most of the time. I never let the number be a reason to limit what I do in life.
Seattle Forrest is offline  
Old 05-23-19, 04:42 PM
  #45  
79pmooney
A Roadie Forever
 
79pmooney's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 6,802

Bikes: (2) ti TiCycles, 2007 w/ triple and 2011 fixed, 1979 Peter Mooney, ~1983 Trek 420 now fixed and ~1973 Raleigh Carlton Competition gravel grinder

Mentioned: 89 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1589 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 32 Times in 27 Posts
Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
What does older mean? I'm 41. Feel half my age most of the time. I never let the number be a reason to limit what I do in life.
The difference between 41 and half that age is much smaller than the different between 41 and the same number of years older. 41 yo's are youngsters.
79pmooney is offline  
Old 05-23-19, 05:40 PM
  #46  
pbass
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 519

Bikes: 2014 Kona Unit, 2016 Surly Cross Check, 2019 Kona Rove ST

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 64 Post(s)
Liked 3 Times in 3 Posts
Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
What does older mean? I'm 41. Feel half my age most of the time. I never let the number be a reason to limit what I do in life.
My post had nothing to do with slowing down with age or anything like that. I was simply observing that where I live and ride, the majority of people I see embracing gravel riding and gravel/adventure bikes are younger riders. Folks my age around here (50's and up) are usually on road bikes or mountain bikes. Obviously from the replies, that phenomenon is not the case in other regions.
Lots of factors of course, but I've come to conclusion that a big part of it is our terrain--we don't have gravel roads so to speak. We have pavement and then steep rocky dirt, which most people see as mountain bike territory (and rightfully so in many cases).
pbass is offline  
Old 05-23-19, 07:53 PM
  #47  
fraba
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
Posts: 102

Bikes: 1973 Raleigh Super Course - c.1988 Colnago Master Piu - 2004 Devinci MoonRacer - 2014 Cervelo P3 - 2018 Open New Up

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 30 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 2 Times in 1 Post
Originally Posted by TimothyH View Post
I don't believe this for a second.

I still love to road bike at 55 and I'm not the oldest guy in my regular group by far.

Calling older roadies stupid and immature is very insulting.


-Tim-
+1
At 53, I can recognize plusses and minuses of both my gravel bike with its 47mm tires and my road bike with its 25mm tires. Both are FUN for different reasons.

I also recognize that even if science supports wider tires compared to what was pushed by the industry in the past, the gravel/wide tires thing is also becoming a big marketing push by the industry...

Last edited by fraba; 05-23-19 at 08:09 PM.
fraba is offline  
Old 05-24-19, 07:30 AM
  #48  
chas58
Senior Member
 
chas58's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Michigan
Posts: 3,496

Bikes: too many of all kinds

Mentioned: 23 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 676 Post(s)
Liked 29 Times in 23 Posts
I don't believe this for a second.

I still love to road bike at 55 and I'm not the oldest guy in my regular group by far.

Calling older roadies stupid and immature is very insulting.


-Tim-
I think all of us can agree on that!!!

The "super stiff" fad the industry was pushing has come and gone. The industry now realizes that a bike that does not beat up the rider is going to make the rider faster in the long run, regardless of discipline. Is this too a fad? We'll see. ;-)


(ok, one exception, our velodrome bikes are still super stiff).

Last edited by chas58; 05-24-19 at 07:39 AM.
chas58 is offline  
Old 06-01-19, 04:15 PM
  #49  
bitingduck
Senior Member
 
bitingduck's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 3,165
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 40 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by pbass View Post
Lots of factors of course, but I've come to conclusion that a big part of it is our terrain--we don't have gravel roads so to speak. We have pavement and then steep rocky dirt, which most people see as mountain bike territory (and rightfully so in many cases).
Most fire roads in the San Gabriels are very much roads and gravel bikes do well on them.

I just came back from a 5 day gravel tour in Norcal that had about 30 people on it, and there were plenty of over-50 riders, though most were from the SF Bay area because that's where the organizer is from and that's where the shuttle returned to.
__________________
Track - the other off-road
http://www.lavelodrome.org
bitingduck is offline  
Old 06-01-19, 04:35 PM
  #50  
pbass
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 519

Bikes: 2014 Kona Unit, 2016 Surly Cross Check, 2019 Kona Rove ST

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 64 Post(s)
Liked 3 Times in 3 Posts
Originally Posted by bitingduck View Post
Most fire roads in the San Gabriels are very much roads and gravel bikes do well on them.
I hear ya. That's why once I got a gravel bike my mountain bike started collecting dust. Even though as I say the majority of riders I see out there on our fire roads are on mtb's, often full suspension at that, I think a gravel rig is perfect for this riding.
pbass is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.