Friday, January 30, 2009


I stopped by Blue Sky Cycles to pick up my pair of appetizer wheels from the Mavic R-Sys recall. And I saw this. A box of $700 wheels chopped in 1/2, awaiting the trash compactor. Such a sad sight for such sweet wheels.

We'll be taking a surprise trip to Wisconsin this weekend, so I probably won't be posting for awhile. In the meantime, enjoy this:

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

New Belgium UAR Heroes #1

This is the 1st installment of New Belgium Urban Assault Ride Heroes. It's our way for giving props to the folks doing things cool in our bike and beer community. To thank them for their efforts, we're showering them with UAR gifts, free entries, and our unconditional love.

And the winner is.....Dero Bike Racks! What makes Dero a Hero, you ask? Well I'll tell ya....the good folks at Dero not only make it easier and safer to park and lock your bicycle, they also do it in a sustainable and creative way - using materials like recycled rebar, and environmentally safe paint and thermoplastic coatings. With Dero's creations in the world, bike parking has been taken to a new level of artistic expression. Their digs are also wind-powered, dog friendly, and all about bike commuting.
Mark from Dero answered some questions for us about makes Dero so darn special...

1. Complete this sentence: “There are few problems the bike can’t solve, for example....”
The Ginzburg Landau Equation, [u(t,x+Ä x)-2u(t,x)+u(t,x-Ä x)]/Ä x2 describing the oscillations in isotropic media, my bike has tried and failed miserably.

2. What are you personally doing to make the world a better place?
Bending pipe at Dero Bike Racks to make the planet a safer place to lock your bike to.

3. Roth or Hagar?
The Roth, while not being tax free initially, has fewer withdrawal restrictions and earnings are tax free when you or your beneficiary withdraw them. Not familiar with the Hagar account? Wait a minute……………The Red Rocker, Rock n Roll Hall of Famer, Sammy Hagar!

4. What’s the best bike ride you’ve ever been on and why?
Going to the Sun Highway ride in Glacier National Park thru Logan Pass, the end of a long 6 week tour with Cycle America and heading home!!! Oh yeah, and last year’s Minneapolis Urban Assault Race.

5. What other bike/beer related info do you have to throw down?
Frank Zappas advice to third world countries: “You can't be a real country unless you have a beer and an airline. It helps if you have some kind of a football team, or some nuclear weapons, but at the very least you need a beer. “

Thanks for the wisdom Mark - now for some of Dero's work:
How'd you like to lock your steed to one of this fish's ribs?
Here's their Fixit station. It has tools, a pump, and suspends your bike while you work on it. Very nice.
This Green Tree is made of 96% recycled materials. Gotta love that.
Here's the DeroSaurus. This is a cool one and every school needs it.

So thanks for your work Dero! We'll see you all in Minneapolis - the beers are on us!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

A round of sodas on me....

I'm happy to announce a new partnership with Blue Sky Soda and Blue Sky Energy. Our staff and volunteers will be revving up with Blue Energy and our riders will be refreshed with Blue Sky natural sodas. Personally, I've been a fan for a long time. I especially like orange soda and the root beer. Which is great b/c now we have root beer for the kiddos at the UAR and NBB beer for the over 21ers. The drink provisions are now complete. Welcome Blue Sky Soda!

It seems like it's been forever since I've ridden - even though it was just Saturday. The thing is, it's been so cold (-8) this morning, that I've had a hard time talking myself into it. There have been some locals hitting the trails though
Here's Hall Ranch today
Here is was on Saturday. Crazy, huh? Kinda makes me wish I was in Tucson again.

2009 schedule....

Well here are the 2009 New Belgium Brewing Urban Assault Ride confirmed dates.

We're waiting on one more city in order to release the final schedule. But mark you's where we'll be this year.

Tucson, AZ 4/19
Nashville, TN 4/26
Seattle, WA 5/17
Portland, OR 5/31
Austin, TX 6/28
Fort Collins, CO 7/19
Denver, CO 7/26
St. Louis, MO 8/16
Chicago, IL 9/20
Minneapolis, MN 9/27

I'm already looking forward to the series finale in MPLS. That's going to be one big after party!

Monday, January 26, 2009


The troops were rallyed for a long Saturday ride on BOCO's best trails. They were in great shape and the sub 40 degree temps seem to keep a lot of folks away. We got in a good 4+ hour ride.
One of the main topics of converstation was the movie Zeitgeist and its ramifications in today's world. It appearre: s that all things are not quite what they seem - not like that's a big surprise. If you've seen this movie - I'd like to hear your take. (it's online and is 2 hours long. So perhaps watch it on your laptop while riding the trainer)
We stopped for a warm up for the ride home and I saw this brilliant idea. Pasta for a stirrer -what a great idea. After stirring two different cups of coffee - it didn't even start to go limp. It's compostable of course. I always feel so guilty using a plastic stirrer, you know?

Yesterday it snowed, so despite having company for another MTB ride, Kurtie and I chose to rock out on Guitar Hero instead. I think I feel carpel tunnel coming on. Hot for Teacher is still my favorite song to play.

Music - I've been getting a bit burned out on my stuff lately - so please send some recommendations. I've decided to dive into older bands that I've heard of, but never listened to - like The Band. I've also started listening to The Kills a bit. Maybe I'll start a trend this week and only listen to music by bands that start with "The".

Well, Jack and I are about to head up to FtC to scope our new venue for the Rio Grande Urban Assault Ride (despite recent rumors of ending this event - it's coming back!) then we hook up with the good folks at the mothership.


Friday, January 23, 2009

Thursday, January 22, 2009

A new level in big wheel performance

Another couple of good finds from Mr. Swift. Check this big wheel back flip! Apparently Johnny Knoxville and Travis Pastrana have teamed up for a new show and big wheels are on tap. Check out some more photos and stunts here. The thing I don't understand is how they land without cracking their tailbones. You can't cushion your fall on a big wheel - you take all of the impact on your ass. I've jumped my fair share of curbs - and it's not pleasant. But then again - these are the superstar daredevils of the world so I suppose they have developed some Coccyx resilience.
and how do they get up to speed you ask? On this ramp. wow.
There's a cool new DIESEL V6 VW Toureg on the way. Here's a rally version - but it'll get 25mpg on highway - and it could run on bio!

Our friends at Clifbar are in the middle of the Peanut Butter scare. It's a damn shame - peanut butter is one of my top 5 favorite foods. Clif has recalled 14 of their products (that's a lot of bars) since they could have the bad nuts. They've even temporarily changed their website so the recall info is clear. Wow - so now there's been a beef recall, spinach recall, peanut recall. Just imagine what would happen if there was a bad corn strand. EVERYTHING would have to be destroyed. But I'm sure the corn producers have engineered their cobs so well that it'll never happen, right?

The folks at Rapha have a unique sponsorship/VIP club offering. They're smart to capitalize on the exclusiveness of their brand. So the ideas is that individuals and companies can become a limited member of the 'rapha club' pay paying $1300 (or $13,000 for corparate) membership to be in the club. As a member you get to ride with the team, watch races from the team car, and even wear the same clothes. Hmmn. that's an interesting spin on the traditional sponsorship model. Should be interesting to see how it works out. An old friend from Austin, Kristian House, rides on the real Rapha team and I've been trying to convince him to send me a jersey. Looks like I'd have to pony up $13K first. Sure is a cool jersey though! to the gym. Best of rides yo!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

...and it begins.

Like many of you out there, I watched a very historic moment today when President Obama became the most powerful person in the world. One day, I'd like to go on a bike ride with this fellow.

Mr Swift sent this my way. It's the story of the ubiquitous 'Hope' Obama street art poster.

The artist that created this poster (Shepard Fairey) was also the dude responsible for 'Andre the Giant has a posse'. As a matter of fact, on a recent ski lift ride I had a conversation with my SnoBro Jody about Shepard. They went to high school together and Jody told me the story behind the Andre stickers. It's pretty cool where you can go with some creative street art. And according to the whole 6 degrees of separation theory, I know Jody who knows Shepard who knows Obama (I think). So many my presidential bike ride won't be too far off after all.
In bike riding news, the weather here in Colorado is not that far off from the temps we experienced last week in Tucson. You can wear shorts and sleeveless jerseys here too - except there's snow on the ground in some shady places. Kinda strange to feel comfortable in sleeveless with the white stuff still on the ground. I'm not complaining. This is the best place to live in the world.
I had to take a shot of this cool freight train art that stopped in front of the house the other day. It says 'Bring us some brews' - this must have been a special message sent to me. And I hear your call. We'll be bringing brews to 10 (maybe 11) cities next year. That's a lot of brews.

And how about a little story on why the UAR is better than your typical marathon...Jackie and I woke up early on Sunday to drive 2 hours to Phoenix and hike Camelback Mountain before our flight out of town. We woke up at 4:30am on a Sunday to make this happen. Then we get into town and we realize that the 'Rock n Roll' marathon is happening. With 30,000 runners, this pretty much made it impossible to get around town. Soooo many streets were closed.
You see these mountains in the background of this photo? That's camelback. We were less than 2 miles from there - but we could not get there due to the race route. So why is the UAR better than the typical marathon? A few reasons: 1. bikes are cooler than hoofing it. Walking is for suckers. Don't you people know how much more efficient bikes are than running? 2. We don't close roads! we don't need no stinkin road closures to have fun. 3. Our riders go this way and that. Honestly, I don't get it. Why would you travel to a place like Phoenix to follow a herd of people down a street for 26.2 miles? I guess I could see running a marathon on the Great Wall of China, or maybe Hawaii, or through 5 boroughs in NYC. But Phoenix? Really? Well - to each their own. But I'll have you know - you thwarted our plans to hit up Jackie's favorite hike!

And...that's all I've got for you. Go Obama!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Beer, bikes, and cactus.

One very big (5 foot tall barrel cactus on the Sweetwater trail)

We've wrapped up our trip in AZ and everything went really smooth. After 7 years of this, we're getting the system down. From now on, I'll judge the success of our recon trips by how many rides and hikes we go on.
Today started out with another spin with Todd. Todd's the man behind Epic Rides. He's the producer of the 24 in the Old Pueblo and the Whiskey OffRoad (among others). It was great to talk shop while we hit the MTBs. Todd's a good guy - we both actually grew up in Cow Town - the one and only FtW, Tejas. These days, we're both purveyors of fine cycling events - he sticks to the MTB and I keep in on the alleys and among the skyscrapers. Thanks for the bike hook up and tour of the trails, Todd!!!!
we hit a cool network of trails called Sweetwater - and although we didn't see much water, the trails were sweet. Tucson's got some great local singletrack - really close to the city. I can only imagine the road rides - there are mountains in pretty much every direction.
After the ride, Jackie and I rendezvous'd for a hike. The weather was so fine, I was able to sun my white, colorado-wintery body. It felt great. And no cactus needles got stuck in my ass today - Yay!
We saw plenty of cactus and learned all about the Sonoran desert. Crazy that this is the heart of winter in Tucson!

And even though winter isn't exactly winter in AZ, they still get New Belgium's winter seasonals - which I'm quite happy to enjoy.

Tomorrow - I'll be riding the hills in Colorado! Thanks for the fun Tucson!

Oh...and one more thing. Here's a video of Ryan Seacreast getting a bit overzealous with his high 5's. Uh, Ryan....the dude's blind, yo! Doh!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Living the life in Tucson

Jackie and I hit the streets today securing checkpoints and making new friends. The UAR is unique b/c since we don't close off roads we typically don't need a city permit. We met with the Tuscon Police city permit official for a drink - he happened to be a famous national champion football player, greco-roman wrestler, kitten rescuer, police lieutenant, side arm carrier, and fan of Star Wars. Jackie and I wish all of our city meetings would go like this. I'm kicking myself for not taking a photo of his ring. While we were in our meeting, two people asked to see his ring. It was huge, covered in diamonds, and he wore it proudly. The next time we come to town, I will surly take a photo - of him holding his pistol in the hand with the ring.
I met up with TSadow for a spin around some of Tucson's urban single track. Not too shabby - to say the least. It took me a little while to learn how the rocks rolled, but after about 30 minutes, my borrowed Fisher 29er was doing just fine.
A short climb up the road (where we happened to see a Garmin Chipotle rider doing repeats) and here's your view before you drop into the trail.
Our afternoon ride turned into a sunset ride which was a sight to see. The desert sunsets seem to last a lot longer than most and the light is fantastic.
Shortly before this shot was taken, I brushed some cacti with my ass. Lucky Jackie got to pull out needles when I got back. She wondered how I got them in my crack. I attributed it to the wonders of lycra.
Thank goodness the days are getting longer. The sun was down at 6pm. I can't wait until summer nights with 9pm sunsets.
Mi Nidito was recommended to us TWICE so we braved the hour line and tried some Mexican tastiness - like this Mango Cheese Tostada. There was a ton of food, so I'll have some breakfast before tomorrow's ride.

We decided to stay an extra day and take in a fun day in Tucson. A tour of Sabino Canyon, another tour of local single track, and some more local mexican fare is on tap for tomorrow's adventures.

In other news, our man Hans is showing off some ice bike action. Sorry for all you folks taking in the cold weather. (especially those in -50 degree Maine!) We'll be thinking of you while we're riding trails in shorts and a shortsleeve jersey with sweat trickling down our faces.

For those of you wondering what that "G" commercial is all about, G stands for Gatorade.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Tuscon Recon - Hey it rhymes!

We're learning the ropes of the fine city of Tucson. It's interesting when you've been to so many downtown areas that you see similiarities. Parts of Tucson remind me of San Antonio, Austin, and a little bit of El Cajon CA. We've seen a good amount of riders braving the harsh 70 degree winter temps. Like this guy:
His turban/sauce pan hat was the 1st thing that caught my attention. Then he accellerated with out pedaling. Tucson must be testing out some new electric bike creations.
Tucson is also sporting some cool recycled bike part trash cans. This tickles my fancy.
This sign warns of railroad tracks - right next to our start/finish venue. This could make for an interesting sight as 100's of riders bump elbows at the start. Looks like we'll have to roll out some carpet on the tracks.

We had such a favorable response to our previous Flight of the Conchords video, that we're throwing down the Rhymenocerous vs. Hiphopapotamous .

Tonight we'll sample some more local beers and report back soon.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Business Time.

Alright...we're off to Tucson. It's Business Time.

We'll be reporting from the land of cactus and 75 degree winters...stay tuned.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Beer and bikes and graffiti.

Another reason why Amsterdam is in the top 5 coolest cities in the world: The Beer Bike.

You got your pedaling, beer drinking (with keg on board), you've got your friends with you, you've got the Jackson 5 rocking...what else do you need? Well - that's probably covered too. You're in Amsterdam!

In other news...did you hear about Chad Gerlach? He was a previous pro roadie - riding for the USPS team no less. The has a bit of a 'tude, but was a killer rider (so I've heard). He called Lance "doughboy"- I guess that's a no-no. Then he was kicked of USPS, then his friend was murdered, then tried crack, then he was living on the street, then he was addicted to crack, then he was on a TBS show called Intervention, then he went to rehab, then he was signed to a pro European team. Seems like he'd be a fun guy to ride with, huh? Here's PEZ's coverage.
That's a shot of Chad smoking a bit of crack. Don't fret - the bike is propped up in the background. It's all good - I guess he just needed a little break. Just think how fast he's going to be with all that residual crack in his system.

We're working the 2009 shirt design and i've been really into graffiti lately. I know it get's a bad wrap, but it's truly art. Also - in case you didn't know, there's a freight line outside of my front door, so I get to see some of the countries best freight 'writings' every day. Jackie got me this book for the holidays. It's cool b/c I see where the trains have been over time: NYC, Philly, LA, you name it - the art speaks for itself.
Mr Swift is a big fan of street art too. He showed me the Krink brand of pens which are super runny. I like.
You see - there's tie-in with street art and bikes. And it does not have to be fixies either (as displayed on Lance's NYC Madone).

So that's what I've got for you today. So there.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Things bike related....

Rasta's smarter than this dog. I'm going to see if we get get her rolling without training wheels.

Whistler: Damn this looks like fun. I REALLY need to get out there. I think the Maverick ML7.5 would be PERFECT here!

Mavic recalled the hollow carbon-spoked R-Sys (front only). I wonder why?

Apparently, it's the French company's 1st US recall. They're offering a FREE Askium wheelset (to keep!) so they can buy some time until they figure out what they're going to do to replace the R-Sys. I actually have a set of these wheels and they've been great - as are all Mavic wheels from my experience. I do say I was a bit hesitant to ride this wheel after seeing such photos, but then I saw Georgia Gould racing them on her cross bike, so I figured it must be an isolated incident. When I got my wheels, I actually had a broken spoke (carbon on the rear) right out of the box. When we got the replacement spoke, we had an extra that we decided to test. I figured it would break like uncooked spaghetti. But no....a strapping young buck like myself could not break the spoke at all! They're SUPER strong, but everything can break in the wrong situation. I guess when one goes, they all go. Thank you Mavic for taking care of this!

The coolest Trek paint job ever?
Yes - indeed. This is LA's custom NYC Madone. Lance get's all the cool shit, huh? We're in touch with the designer (Trek's head graphic designer) to see if he can help us with the 2009 UAR shirt. That'll be SWEET!

This is called the "Ultimate Wheel". It's 36" and it's like a unicycle with no seat or fork. Damn! Just think how strong your core must be to ride this and not scrape your butt or legs as the wheel moves. Impressive.
There's a caption contest on MTBR that has a photo from the UAR in Portland. Good ol Team Beer representing. I will admit - it's a rather disturbing photo, but there have been worse for sure. You should see the photos from the 'No-handed banana eating' obstacle we did in San Antonio. Sorry about that Jamba Juice and San Antonioans. Speaking of other scandalous scenes from past UARs...check the scene in the following video at :23 seconds. Wow. In the MTBR contest, my favorite entry is "Tell me again how you ripped your colon on your bike ride?"

This video will soon reside on the UAR home page. Hope you like it. I think it summarizes our tireless efforts promoting Beer Bikes and Big Wheel pleasures in about 30 seconds.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Burrito talk.

Behold...the Cilantro Mary's Cowboy Burrito.

Like I mentioned earlier this week, 1/5/09 was the real start to the year for us. Let's just say it's been a tad bit of a shock to the system. Next week we'll be on recon in Tucson. And I'm all about riding some local trails. TSadow is hooking me up for a ride or two - but if you're a Tucson local and want to hit the trails...I'm all in.

JackityJack and I are about to head out for the world's best burrito. Yeah, you may think you have a good burrito joint - but you're wrong. Unless you've had a Cowboy Burrito from Cilantro Mary's, I don't even want to have the discussion. And the owner's right-wing civilities keeps the place entertaining. So - if you've been to Lyons, CO and eaten one of these badboys, then - and only then will I have the discussion of world's best burrito. Keep in mind - I grew up in TX and have eaten at: Chuy's, Guero's, Polvo's, Chango's, Arandas, Freebirds(yuck) and of course the old stand by Chipotle. I know what I'm talking about. And let's be clear - I'm not putting down Chipotle. I'm their #1 fan - for many reasons (natural meat, international cycling team sponsorship, UAR supporters, etc) - but I'm pretty sure that when Chipotle staffers are in Lyons, they eat at Cilantro Marys.

And a modern day blog post wouldn't suffice without a multi-media presentation. so here's a photo I came across when hunting for new UAR partners.

I got this one from Knog

For the of rides. Tear it up and live to tell.
Oh..and here's one video to keep things interesting..

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Where to begin...

The new year is always a chance to start fresh. As is a new birthday. As is any moment, when you really think about it. As they say "Today is the 1st day of the rest of your life", right?

January 5th was the REAL start of the season. When the UAR crew hit the ground running. Planning 3 new cities, working on new design, coming up with fresh obstacles, planning ways to avoid beer lines, bringing in new sponsors, and generally envisioning the best possible day on your bike in your city.

Looking down the barrel of a gun this big is no easy task. You have to take it one day at a time. One event at a time. One recyclable beer cup at a time. Luckily there are some ways to cope with this. Here are my tips for getting through one of those days when you wake up and your mind is going in a 100 different directions. My mind this morning reminded me of the the crowd in between shows at ACL - everybody is on a mission to get to one of 12 different stages - which are all over the venue. Kinda hard to explain, but a spectacle to behold. are my tips.
  1. Coffee - I feel sorry for those that don't share the love for filtered water poured over ground up coffee beans. It moves the mind into a higher gear. One that has become a standard gear for my productivity. Caffeine also increases fat metabolism - which is a good thing for most. And for those that don't believe in caffiene..well, you have no idea how productive you could be. So like I said - I feel sorry for you.
  2. Music - it's food for the soul. I almost always have music playing. I'll start out with something mellow. And then the coffee sets in and the tempo picks up. For those at work without speakers, headphones are a must - in my opinion. Here's my recommended music menu for the work day: 7:30-9am (Mason Jennings), then you need to get into your rhythm - how about some Hippity Hop 9am-1 (maybe some Common or Tribe). After lunch, it's time to rock. There are many options here. CCR, Red Fang, Kings of Leon, and Black Keys always do it for me. That should get you through the work day. Then, there's the drive home and NPR should do the trick.
  3. RIDE. If you're really cool - you'll ride to work and back. If for one excuse or another, you don't commute by bicycle, then you GOTSTA step away and ride to keep the world in harmony. Let's say something is bugging you, a problem you are having a hard time solving perhaps. A nice ride will clear the head so that when you come back to it, a good solution is imminent. Trust me - do it. You'll feel better.
Those are my top 3. In fact, this makes me want to drink some coffee, and listen to the black keys while riding the trainer. So there. Take my pearls of wisdom for what they're worth.

In other UAR news, we have a couple late, but new entries into the mustache contest. These are the last two.

Here's a photo of Tim with a clean upper lip. I belive he was taking a pee when this photo was taken, which explains the bewildered look.
Then we have Colin's long upper lip. We'll see what ginger stubble he will unleash.

I'm also happy to announce that we have a new UAR poster child. No longer will a happy smiling blond chick grace the website header, posters, and ads. Not in 2009. Instead it will be this guy.
There's nothing like a gentleman with a glorious bearded mane power-sliding on a big wheel.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Let the growing begin!

The 5 Fully-Shaven Gentlemen Contestants

Well...the birthday party was quite eventful. We tried a new punch recipe seasoned with Southern Comfort. I called for 1 1/2 cups and we put in 6 cups. It was tasty and it resulted in a couple of things:
  • The 2009 Mustache Grow-a-Thon is AWWWWN. We will see who can grow the most impressive stache in a period of 2 months. We'll be updating the blog with progress photos, training/growing adventures, grooming tips, and categories for the final judging. And of course - we're bringing in a celebrity panel of judges for the March 3rd pose-down. We tried to get Lawyer Kurtie and Lawyer Eric to join the fun, but apparently mustaches are not as appreciated in the law community as they are in the bikes/beer industry. I even told them about Alan Dershowitz's glorious mustache ...but they would not be swayed.
  • I mentioned the punch we had at the party. Well, after perhaps one too many cups I decided to take my bike for a spin around the block at 1:30am. As a result, my face is now on the 'tales of carnage' blog posting for Team Bike (and if you want to check out the photos, be warned that some are quite meaty). Here it is.
I hope everybody's 2009 is off to a good start. I've kept my resolutions so far. Today's ride was a cold one. Lawyer Eric and I saw no other riders on the road or trail.

It wasn't a long ride, but it made our toes cold and I was able to hold true to my 'ride everyday' resolution.