Tahoe helmet cam crash footage confirms – Bears always have the right of way!

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savydouza_instgram-bear-crash-video-still
Instagram grab and video courtesy of Davis Souza

Note to self, try to keep clear of the wildlife. We’ve probably all heard someone recite a disclaimer like, “mountain biking is an inherently dangerous sport…”, but this is a bit of a reminder that it isn’t just washing out in a corner or going over the bars after casing a jump that we should keep in mind. We ride in a lot of natural areas where wildlife was there a long time before our favorite trails and knobby tires showed up. It’s good to remember who is in charge out in the woods.

Mountain biker and videographer Davis Souza was riding north of Lake Tahoe, CA when he had a chance encounter with a local bear. Jumping out of the shadows as he bombed down the trail, bike and bear came to a head and tossed Souza over the bars. Luckily both parties walked away mostly unharmed, the bear more quickly than Souza, who took a few moments to grasp what had just happened. And lucky for us Souza was recording it all with a helmet-mounted GoPro. Now he just has to work up the confidence to descend at full tilt again. Check out his footage after the break…

Continue reading “Tahoe helmet cam crash footage confirms – Bears always have the right of way!”



Note to self, try to keep clear of the wildlife. We’ve probably all heard someone recite a disclaimer like, “mountain biking is an inherently dangerous sport…”, but this is a bit of a reminder that it isn’t just washing out in a corner or going over the bars after casing a jump that we should […]

Posted in Mountain Bike, Uncategorized, Video, Where to Ride5 Comments

EVOC gears up for the long haul with new MacAskill & Multicolor edition travel bags

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EVOC_MacAskill-Signature_travel-bags

For a new season of mountain biking and traveling to prime trail riding locales, EVOC is giving a new look to some of their mainstay travel bags. First, in a partnership with trials master Danny MacAskill who is always on the road, heading from event to event, they’ve developed a special Signature series of bags for him. The MacAskill bags get a simplified look with a Scottish-inspired heather main fabric and vibrant orange detailing. Then in an ongoing Multicolor series, this season EVOC goes with a more subtle blue, light blue, and yellow look that is available across their lineup. Check out the full range of special edition travel bags available now after the break, plus pricing and some specs on each…

Continue reading “EVOC gears up for the long haul with new MacAskill & Multicolor edition travel bags”



For a new season of mountain biking and traveling to prime trail riding locales, EVOC is giving a new look to some of their mainstay travel bags. First, in a partnership with trials master Danny MacAskill who is always on the road, heading from event to event, they’ve developed a special Signature series of bags for […]

Posted in Clothing-Gear-Tools, Mountain Bike, Where to RideLeave a comment

New SQlab Ergowave 611/612 saddles swell at the back for comfort

Magura short brake lever MT Series brakes two finger-4

When you listen to the company’s history, it’s apparent that SQlab has always been ab out finding ergonomic solutions through science and experience. When it came time to create their latest saddle, SQlab teamed up with the University Hospital of Frankfurt and the Frankfort University of Applied Sciences and even had government funding from  the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy – not your typical saddle development program.

Together, the team ended up with the new Ergowave series. Between the 611 and the 612, the saddles dive deep into the SQlab bag of ergo tricks and promise comfort on both the road and mountain…

Continue reading “New SQlab Ergowave 611/612 saddles swell at the back for comfort”



When you listen to the company’s history, it’s apparent that SQlab has always been ab out finding ergonomic solutions through science and experience. When it came time to create their latest saddle, SQlab teamed up with the University Hospital of Frankfurt and the Frankfort University of Applied Sciences and even had government funding from  the Federal […]

Posted in Clothing-Gear-Tools, Mountain Bike16 Comments

Review: First Impressions of the Mavic XA Wheelset in Basque Country

Mavic Wheels in the Basque Country
Mavic Wheels in the Basque Country
Riding Big Ridgelines with basqueMTB – Photos by Jérémie Reuiller

For a company that has long relied on aluminum for their mountain bike wheels, Mavic’s new XA Carbon wheels were pretty big news. As part of their Wheel Tire System, the XAs are a UST tubeless, hookless carbon wheelset that supposedly allowed Mavic to justify the move to carbon fiber. We first got a chance to test them out during the press launch in the Basque Country – which is fortunate considering I run guided tours here with my company basqueMTB. While I was the guide for the press launch, I also had a chance to ride the wheels so I had more time on the them than most, and also had an advantage since I know the trails and have ridden them on many different wheels and bikes over the years. I tested the wheels on my Orbea Rallon, which I have previously ridden with the Mavic Crossmax XL wheels and also with DT Swiss E-1700 wheels.

I have to state up front that I’ve tried several other wheels and am not a massive fan of carbon wheels currently. Sure, I love the weight and snappy acceleration they provide, and I love the way they hold a line and lend a bike a degree of precision. What I don’t like about carbon wheels in general is the harsh feel they have when pressing on in rough terrain. Someone once told me that the best way to improve a bike’s small bump compliance is to take 5psi out of your tyres, well, I often think that carbon wheels add 10psi back on!

I listened to Mavic´s press launch carefully and was impressed that they had really focused on increasing lateral stiffness but the engineers obviously understood that decreasing vertical stiffness was the way forward. You can find all of the technical information in our tech break down on the Mavic XA wheels, however the figures suggest I should have a wheel which is as stiff or stiffer than most leading carbon wheels but more vertically compliant than my Crossmax XLs . Would I be able to feel it? Would these wheels be any different from the other carbon wheels I’ve tested? Read on to find out…  Continue reading “Review: First Impressions of the Mavic XA Wheelset in Basque Country”



For a company that has long relied on aluminum for their mountain bike wheels, Mavic’s new XA Carbon wheels were pretty big news. As part of their Wheel Tire System, the XAs are a UST tubeless, hookless carbon wheelset that supposedly allowed Mavic to justify the move to carbon fiber. We first got a chance […]

Posted in Components, Feature, Mountain Bike, ReviewsTagged , , , , 20 Comments

WTB Ranger 27.5+ mountain bike tire gets official & rolls in their first 29+ size

WTB ranger 275plus and 29plus mountain bike tires
Photo Credit: Abner Kingman

Spotted at Sea Otter as an undefined 27.5 prototype and a 26×3.0 tire on several bikes from Jamis and Salsa, the new WTB Ranger is now official.

Meant as a fast rolling but tough tire for bike packing and hardpack trail riding, the Ranger will be sold aftermarket in 27.5×2.8/3.0 and 29×3.0 tires. The 29+ size is their first for that category and gives long haul bike packers looking for the fastest rolling tire an option that’s also reasonably light. Both are TCS tubeless ready and both are offered in their TCS Light casing. The 27.5 sizes also get TCS Tough casing options as well as various rubber compounds to prioritize high grip or high speed…

Continue reading “WTB Ranger 27.5+ mountain bike tire gets official & rolls in their first 29+ size”



Spotted at Sea Otter as an undefined 27.5 prototype and a 26×3.0 tire on several bikes from Jamis and Salsa, the new WTB Ranger is now official. Meant as a fast rolling but tough tire for bike packing and hardpack trail riding, the Ranger will be sold aftermarket in 27.5×2.8/3.0 and 29×3.0 tires. The 29+ […]

Posted in Mountain Bike6 Comments

World Cup DH, Pro Bike Check: Aaron Gwin’s Leogang winning YT Tues CF Pro

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YT-Industries_Tues-CF-Pro_Aaron-Gwin_carbon-pro-DH-downhill-mountain-bike_complete-b-bike

Like Rachel Atherton whose Trek Session we featured earlier in the week, Aaron Gwin also took a repeat DH World Cup win over the weekend in Leogang. While Gwin had also raced for Trek as well as Specialized in recent years, this season he is aboard the consumer-direct carbon Tues CF Pro downhill bike of German company YT industries. Being on a new bike doesn’t look to have slowed down Gwin, who rode to his 2nd win of the 4 races so far this season, and has built himself a good lead on the series so far. Like the Women’s DH World Cup leader, Gwin’s bike is fairly straightforward, but having not focused too much on YT yet, we take a closer look and get a bit into the details of his special setup…

Continue reading “World Cup DH, Pro Bike Check: Aaron Gwin’s Leogang winning YT Tues CF Pro”



Like Rachel Atherton whose Trek Session we featured earlier in the week, Aaron Gwin also took a repeat DH World Cup win over the weekend in Leogang. While Gwin had also raced for Trek as well as Specialized in recent years, this season he is aboard the consumer-direct carbon Tues CF Pro downhill bike of German […]

Posted in Mountain Bike, Prototype, Reader's Rides4 Comments

Praxis Works abandons narrow wide, partners with MRP for new Wave Tooth 1x rings

Praxis Works Wave ring

In February, it was discovered that SRAM was moving to protect their X-Sync narrow wide patents. Court cases against three companies could be found online with one of those focusing on Praxis Works. While we’re not sure of the outcome of the case, one thing is clear – Praxis Works is no longer going to be offering narrow wide chainrings. Instead, they have partnered with MRP to help further the later brand’s Wave Tooth technology.

Instead of the typical narrow-wide tooth pattern, the Wave rings use the same shaped teeth that alternately push against the inner plates of the chain to obtain the same retention. MRP’s claim is that the design results in increased mud and debris removal since there is more room inside each plate. Praxis Works will be offering them in both Direct Mount and 104 BCD in addition to the rings MRP is currently offering… Continue reading “Praxis Works abandons narrow wide, partners with MRP for new Wave Tooth 1x rings”



In February, it was discovered that SRAM was moving to protect their X-Sync narrow wide patents. Court cases against three companies could be found online with one of those focusing on Praxis Works. While we’re not sure of the outcome of the case, one thing is clear – Praxis Works is no longer going to […]

Posted in Mountain Bike29 Comments

DH Sneak Peek: Next gen Quadiem prototype 4-piston downhill brakes from TRP

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Over the weekend at the DH World Cup we spotted a set of next generation 4-piston brakes from TRP on the race-winning bike of Aaron Gwin. The new brakes  look to borrow heavily from the layout of the existing Quadiem SL, but with a caliper body that is even more trimmed down and opened up for what looks likely to offer a lighter setup with improved cooling. Although the brakeset looked very refined, it was clearly a prototype and devoid of any branding on the caliper itself. Gwin had only one set of the brakes set up to ride, with his B bike built with current Quadiem SL’s and his custom lever blades. Take a closer look below the fold…

Continue reading “DH Sneak Peek: Next gen Quadiem prototype 4-piston downhill brakes from TRP”



Over the weekend at the DH World Cup we spotted a set of next generation 4-piston brakes from TRP on the race-winning bike of Aaron Gwin. The new brakes  look to borrow heavily from the layout of the existing Quadiem SL, but with a caliper body that is even more trimmed down and opened up […]

Posted in Mountain Bike, Prototype3 Comments

World Cup DH, Pro Bike Check: Rachel Atherton’s Leogang winning Trek Session RSL

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Trek-Session-RSL_Rachel-Atherton-pro-DH-bike_course-recon

It wasn’t a big shock to see Rachel Atherton win another World Cup Downhill this past weekend on her Trek Factory Racing Session Team Issue RSL. In fact it was her 10th consecutive World Cup DH win setting a new record. We were in Leogang checking up on what is new in the behind the scenes pits at the top level of the sport and got a little insight into Rachel’s personal setup. It was a pretty muddy course in the days leading up to the final, and still on the morning of the race the pros were trying to find the best way to slide down the technical course…

Continue reading “World Cup DH, Pro Bike Check: Rachel Atherton’s Leogang winning Trek Session RSL”



It wasn’t a big shock to see Rachel Atherton win another World Cup Downhill this past weekend on her Trek Factory Racing Session Team Issue RSL. In fact it was her 10th consecutive World Cup DH win setting a new record. We were in Leogang checking up on what is new in the behind the scenes pits […]

Posted in Mountain Bike, Reader's Rides, Women's18 Comments