6/14/2018

Welch Village Mountain Bike Park Season Opener This Weekend


Welch Village's season opener weekend has been postponed due to rain and wet conditions on the trails. "Opening weekend delayed until next weekend...June 23-24. CLOSED Sunday, 6/17. Unfortunately, trails still soft & wet from yesterday’s storms and they are not drying because of the 70 degree dew points & humidity. Plus, more storms in the forecast for this afternoon. We are bummed too but there is a whole lot of summer ahead."   Visit them on Saturday & Sunday, June 23 & 24 for lift served access to their downhill trails.  They'll be open at 10am on Saturday and 11am on Sunday with chairlifts operating until 5pm both days.


Three trails that opened last year, Air Bear (Advanced Riders ONLY, Trail has high risk features, Mandatory jumps, Steep drops with no ride arounds, Your wheels may leave ground, downhill traffic only), Joy Ride (Gentle to moderate climbs and decent, with obstacles such as rock, gravel, berms, bridges, and pot holes. Previous mountain biking experience highly recommended) and Aquaman (Intermediate riders ONLY, Large berms, Large Rollers, optional jumps on trail, downhill traffic only) will be open this weekend, weather dependant.


New this year is their Green Trail, "Squirrel Catcher" (Gentle to moderate climbs and decent, with obstacles such as rock, gravel, berms, bridges, and pot holes. Previous mountain biking experience highly recommended) including a new re-route for all of their trails and the new Blue trail, "Eagle Eye" (Intermediate riders ONLY, Large berms, Large Rollers, optional jumps on trail, downhill traffic only).  According to Welch Village on the status of  of Eagle Eye, "TBD..stay tuned...depends on rain!"


Purchase an all day lift and trail ticket for $25 (13 and older) or $20 (ages 8-12).  New this year is their Sunset Special (last 2 hours of any MTB operations day)  $20 (13 and older) or $15 (ages 8-12).  Season passes are also available for those age 8 and up for the 2018 season for $149.

Hours of operation for the upcoming Summer Season are Saturdays and Sundays from 11am to 5pm through September 2nd, including Labor Day, September 3rd and ONLY SATURDAYS September 8th - 29th from 11am-5pm.


After a day of riding make sure to visit the chalet for a cold beer or two and maybe a bite to eat.

Note from Welch Village about the season opener weekend, "All, please check our website and Facebook page approaching this weekend for updates in case the weather doesn't cooperate. Weather folks are predicting chances for storms Friday - Sunday. Thanks!"

For more information about the Welch Village MTB Rules, what to wear and what to ride, visit the Welch Village MTB Orienteering Guide page.  More information about opening weekend can be found by visiting the Welch Village website or their Facebook Event Page.  Updates on the trails are posted at their Facebook page and on their Trail Report page.

Penn Cycle & Fitness
Free prizes and electric bikes? 
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test ride an electric bike. Stop in today!

6/11/2018

Penn Cycle Offers Nine Group Rides for the Summer


Penn Cycle has put together nine group rides for the Summer of 2018 and they include road and women/trans/femme mountain biking.  I have listed all of them with a brief description and link to more information.  Rides run Monday through Saturday, so there is sure to be one to fit your schedule and ability.

Monday

Woodbury Monday Night Ride
Penn Cycle Woodbury

Show up early for announcements and bikes roll out at stated ride times. For the 2018 Lakes ride, we are asking everyone to be ready no later than 5:20 as we have lots of things to share this year. MONDAY - 5:30 Penn Cycle in Woodbury - Chris's Ride Mondays - 5:30 pm from the Woodbury Penn Cycle store. The ride will be for anyone who wants to have a good time. Pace will be about 15-17 mph with a focus on keeping all riders together so that new riders can get comfortable on the road, within a group, and also to build those base miles. Route will go towards Afton and be roughly 30 miles. This is a no drop ride. 

Route - https://www.strava.com/routes/8124068
Facebook Page - https://www.facebook.com/groups/1459333934117201/
E-mail - cyclingwithchris@gmail.com



Penn Cycle Minneapolis

Join us Mondays for the Solidarity Cycling WTF* MTB Ride Series. Meet at Penn Cycle Minneapolis for a 6pm roll out to Theodore Wirth Park singletrack.  *women/trans/femme

Tuesday

Penn Cycle Bloomington

Ride distances ranging from 15 to 20 miles. -Skill level: Ideally, I’d like to have routes that cater to both an average rider to advanced. The overall goal being to appeal to new riders who may feel a bit intimidated doing group rides. Ability to maintain an average speed of 12 to 15 miles per hour and ride comfortably in a group. *** Depending on the size of the group, we may break into faster and slower groups; no rider will be left behind. -Rides start at 6:00 PM from the Penn Cycle Bloomington Store. -Rides may be canceled due to bad weather; decisions made no later than 5:00 PM before ride – see contact information below.

Planned Rides:
  • Downtown Shakopee via Bloomington Ferry Bridge 
  • Eden Prairie via Bloomington Ferry Rd/Pioneer Trail
  • TBD, most likely utilizing the Hyland Trail system through West Bloomington 
  • TBD, Edina via Nine Mile Creek trail system 
Rides to occur every other Tuesday starting May 1st thru September 11th. For more information, contact Chris Goldschrafe, Store Manager at Penn Cycle at 952-888-1427 or email at chrisg@penncycle.com or Andrea Wetteland at 952-465-8589; aelgethun@gmail.com.

Penn Cycle Woodbury

All rides leave at time stated. Show up early for announcements and bikes roll out at stated ride times. For the 2018 Lakes ride, we are asking everyone to be ready no later than 5:20 as we have lots of things to share this year. TUESDAY - 5:30 Penn Cycle in Woodbury - Brant's Ride Tuesdays - 5:30 pm from Penn Cycle in Woodbury. For those that have ridden this ride, we will keep a similar route and speed. The speed typically increases as the season goes on. Last year some of the rides reached 19+ mph as a group. The rides usually start out at 16-17 mph so give it a shot! This is typically a no drop ride, within reason. 
Penn Page - https://www.penncycle.com/about/penn-cycle-events-calendar-pg1874.htm
Typical Route - https://www.strava.com/activities/639108163

Wednesday

Image Credit: Penn Cycle
Wednesday Night Tours
Penn Cycle Bloomington

Objectives:
  • Promote cycling fitness 
  • Practice and improve safe group road bike riding skills 
  • Establish and enhance our local cycling community and build relationships 
Parameters:
  1. Ride distances ranging from 30 to 40 miles. 
  2. Skill level: Ability to maintain an average speed of 15 to 18 miles per hour and ride comfortably in a group including pace-line riding. 
  3. Depending on the size of the group, we may break into faster and slower groups; no rider will be left behind. 
  4. We will stop mid-way during our rides to refill water bottles. 
Protocol:
  1. Rides start at 5:30 PM from the Penn Cycle Bloomington Store. 
  2. Helmets are required. 
  3. A release form must be signed before each ride. 
  4. Rides may be canceled due to bad weather; decisions made no later than 5:00 PM before ride – see contact information below. 
Planned Rides:
  • Chaska via Bloomington Ferry Bridge 
  • Harriet Island, St. Paul via I-494 bikeway 
  • Minnehaha Falls via Fort Snelling State Park 
  • Downtown Wayzata thru Edina / Hopkins / Minnetonka 
  • Cleary Lake Regional Park, Prior Lake via Bloomington Ferry Bridge 
Rides to occur every Wednesday night starting from May 2nd thru September 12th – no ride on July 4th. For more information contact Chris Goldschrafe, Store Manager at Penn Cycle at 952-888-1427 or email at chrisg@penncycle.com or Don Duffy at 612-991-1403; donduffy1953@gmail.com.

Image Credit: Justin Williams Photos
Wednesday Night Worlds
Penn Cycle Eagan

Join us for a fast-paced road ride. We will leave at 5:30 sharp. Distance is 40-60 depending on daylight. Pace is 20-22 mph. Please follow this link for a more detailed description of each week's ride! https://wnweagan.wordpress.com/

The Lakes Tavern and Grill

The Lakes Tavern ride will have a new focus on teaching proper group riding techniques as well as breaking into an A and B pace group after leaving Woodbury. Take a look and if you want feel free to share with your cycling friends. All rides leave at time stated. Show up early for announcements and bikes roll out at stated ride times. 

For the 2018 Lakes ride, we are asking everyone to be ready no later than 5:20 as we have lots of things to share this year. WEDNESDAY - 5:30 Lakes Tavern and Grill in Woodbury - Jody/Brant Ride Wednesdays - 5:30 pm from Lakes Tavern and Grill, Woodbury. Please park in the back of the restaurant and you can use the bathroom inside if needed. There were some big groups last year and we hope to see those faces again. Pace last year was about 15-19 mph depending on which group you rode with. This is a no drop ride so pick the A or B pace depending on how you feel. This year's ride will have a strong emphasis on group etiquette, proper riding techniques and continual education as well as keeping things safe and fun. We have not had any major incidents and I want to continue with that streak. You are invited to stay post ride for refreshments and food. Remember the staff work off of tips and they treat us very well, so don't forget to leave a tip even if you grab a glass of water!

Route - https://www.strava.com/activities/712610897

Thursday

Image Credit: Justin Williams Photos
Lebanon Hills/Murphy-Hanrehan

Join us Thursdays for the Solidarity Cycling WTF* MTB Ride Series. Locations include Lebanon Hills and Murphy-Hanrehan. Check poster for ride date/locations. All rides start at 6pm. *women/trans/femme

Saturday

Penn Cycle Blaine

Get out of bed and join us for a fun ride! We will meet at the Blaine Penn Cycle, roll out and then gather afterwards for some social time. All ages and genders are welcome! Pace and distance varies based on riders show up. We try to have a 100% no drop ride. If everyone is a A rider we will do 40 or 50 miles at 20 mph. If we have some B riders we will do 30 to 40 miles at 17 to 14 mph. I always try to be back to the shop by noon. The goal is to get more riders interested in riding groups and to help riders learn how to ride safely on the road. If you have any questions please call Ron Moore at (612)558-3839.  Ron also has a Facebook page People ride with the old roadie

When: Saturdays at 8:00 am
Ride Type: Road
Ride Size: 10 cyclists
Distance: 35 miles
Drop: No
Frequency: Weekly Season: April - September

Image Credit: Mel Cherry
Penn Cycle Minneapolis

Lazy Lake Loops are here! Join your friendly Penn Minneapolis squad for a Saturday morning loop around one of our city lakes. Destinations will rotate between Lake Bde Maka Ska, Lake of the Isles, and Cedar Lake. Meet at the shop by 10:30am to roll out, plan on 45min to an hour of riding 5-9 miles. Bring your friends, kids, and dogs - our focus is on community and FUN. Ice cream stop optional.

6/10/2018

2018 Almanzo Stories


The 2018 Almanzo Gravel Races took place May 18-19 in the small town of Spring Valley, Minnesota just south of Rochester.  What was started by Chris Skogen with a small group of friends back in 2007 has grown over the years into something truly special.  The gravel community has embraced the Almanzo 100 as the "Granddaddy" of all gravel races.  Spring Valley Tourism with the assistance of Penn Cycle made sure that one of the largest free gravel races in the country continued with the traditions that founder Chris Skogen set forth for this yearly event.


The weather for the 2018 Almanzo gravel races was the best it's been in years bringing out a combined total of 1014 riders to the start line for the Royal 162 and Almanzo 100.  Seven brave souls were on the start line at 5am on Friday morning for the start of the Alexander 380. After last year's dismal rain, cold temperatures and wind, this was a welcome change for cyclist that came to Spring Valley from all over the US, Japan and the Netherlands.  I have compiled a list of racer accounts from blogs, local & national press as well as links to photo galleries and videos.


Almanzo 100

Race Report: 2018 Almanzo 100 – Spring Valley, Minnesota
Nicholas Garbis

It’s the Saturday after Mother’s Day in the town of Spring Valley in the southern corner of the state of Minnesota. About 70 miles to the east is the Mississippi river, past Bratsberg, Houston, and Hokan, you will find the big river down below the bluffs and across from there, La Crosse, Wisconsin. The land on either side of the Mississippi in this area, once you are above the bluff line, is wrinkled and rolling where streams and creeks have dug their paths, leaving high grounds, natural quarries, and rolling vistas of green lushness. Read the full story

Couch to 160k | Almanzo 2018
Shimano Gravel Alliance ambassador Ben Popper

I had developed a foolproof training plan for the ALMANZO 100 in Spring Hill, MN and was calling it "Couch to 160k." It mimicked in premise the couch to 5k program that aspiring runners use to overcome the uncertainties of doing their first running race. Start small by, in my case, getting my butt out of my desk chair and pedaling around the block. Then slowly build over the course of weeks, doing longer and longer rides, until I’d be ready for race day and fit enough to ride 100 miles. It is a proven strategy for building fitness. I started the program with a solid base of couch sitting. Then skipped everything in the middle, finishing my training by showing up on the day of the ride with about ten miles in my legs total. I needed to find a supplemental plan. Read the full story

Shimano Goes Graveling - Almanzo 100

An email invite arrived in my inbox. Something to the effect of "Would you like to race the Almanzo 100 and try Shimano's new clutch road derailleur in the process?" Would I?! Well, the Almanzo has been on my gravel bucket list for some time. Checking out a new derailleur was icing on the cake. So I flew to Minnesota where I met up with what seemed like a battalion of Shimano and PRO engineers, product managers, PR peeps, and Shimano's large crew of gravel ambassadors. Also along for the fun were several other journalists, all keen to ride an event that none of us had experienced. Read the full story

“THAT WHICH DOES NOT KILL US…
Stevil Kinevil

The short version for those who perhaps missed it previously, is that roughly ten days ago, I was half conscious in the back of an ambulance not only not able to recall my name, but even how to say it. So what better physical condition to fly to Minnesota for the whateverth annual Almanzo 100? Read the full story

℞: Racing the Almanzo 100 with Shimano’s Gravel Alliance
Parker Bloom

Add another tally to my listing of improbable spots I’ve been to for bike racing. This weekend pastime– of packing up a bag to bursting with spandex, shoes and a helmet and departing for somewhere strange to line up and race my bike– continues to surprise me. I’ve raced in freezing rain, and under Las Vegas lights, had snow build up on my bars, and have been cradled between craggy Rockies. But this trip to Minnesota was a first. Read the full story

Guitar Ted Productions

"Gee, you're here kinda early, aren't ya?", said the salt and pepper haired man. He was a local, and had been loading up a motor scooter on a trailer from what was once likely a thriving business 100 years ago, but was now serving as a storage shed. The village of Cherry Grove, Minnesota is not much on retail business these days. The man with the salt and pepper hair was curious as to what we were up to and I think he figured out we were with the Almanzo 100 in some capacity, so he sauntered over to have a word with my son and I. I replied to the man by saying, "Yeah, I like to be early." I said that because he was right, by the way. We were a bit early. Read the full story


Royal 162

Mike Nichols

For me, endurance cycling, and endurance gravel riding especially, has always been about testing and pushing my boundaries. That includes pushing my athletic ability. But, it is also very often about testing my will. My experience at the 2018 Almanzo Royal 162 was very much about testing my will. It was also an up-close, intimate encounter with suffering. Read the full story



Press

Spring Valley Tribune-David Phillips

Although the weather earlier in the week called for rain last weekend, bicyclists in the endurance gravel road races that make up Wilder Fest enjoyed ideal conditions May 18 and 19. About 700 bicyclists took part in the annual races that start from downtown Spring Valley. The majority of riders were in the Almanzo 100, which had a temperature of 60 degrees at the start, rising to about 70 later in the day. More importantly, winds were calm until the evening when they neared 15 miles per hour, and the riders stayed dry under cloudy skies. Read the full story

Cyclocross Magazine-Zachary Schuster

2018 marked the 12th year of the Almanzo 100 gravel race held on the unpaved roads around Spring Valley in southeastern Minnesota. After a 2017 race that was marred by 35-degree temperatures and rain, this year’s race was drier and dustier, with temperatures reaching the 70s and the sun peeking through the clouds at times. Read the full story

GRAVEL BIKE PROFILE: DEE DEE WINFIELD’S ALMANZO 100 CANTILEVER BLUE NORCROSS SL
Cyclocross Magazine-Zachary Schuster

After seeing Winfield race on Saturday, her quip about being “washed up” is about 100 miles of gravel from the truth. Winfield survived a tough challenge from Kristen Legan and Jenna Rinehart to win the Women’s title at the 2018 Almanzo 100 gravel race in Minnesota. Read the full story

Cyclocross Magazine-Zachary Schuster

“I found it as an abandoned bike with a bunch of broken stuff on it,” he said about the re-built Medici Gran Turismo he rode at the Almanzo 100 gravel race. “I eyed it for a long time sitting outside for a couple months, and then eventually I decided no one’s coming for this bike.” Read the full story

Cyclocross Magazine-Zachary Schuster

Last weekend at the Almanzo 100 gravel race, I rode the Allied Alfa Allroad for the 100-mile gravel event. The bike was equipped with Shimano’s new Ultegra RX805 clutch-based derailleur and a complement of Shimano components and Vittoria Terreno Mix tires. Read the full story


Cyclocross Magazine-Zachary Schuster

Last week, we did a full profile of Dee Dee Winfield’s Blue Norcross SL and Matt Allen’s Medici Gran Turismo and today, I have a quick look at three more bikes and the stories behind them. Stay tuned for a look at Women’s runner-up Kristen Legan’s titanium Firefly after she tackles the Dirty Kanza XL on the platform this weekend. Read all three stories


Cyclocross Magazine-Zachary Schuster

Cyclocross Magazine attended an Ultegra RX event hosted by Shimano at this year’s Almanzo 100 in Minnesota that tackled 100, 162 and 380 miles of gravel roads around Spring Valley, MN. According to Shimano Product Team leader Dave Lawrence, Shimano chose Almanzo for the event because the annual race was among the first to put gravel races on the company’s product team’s radar thanks to event sponsor Penn Cycles of Minneapolis. Read the full story

Photos

2018 Almanzo
Chris Chavie
2018 Almanzo

2018Almanzo
Ed Denbow
Almanzo2018

Stephanie Olson
Image Credit: Stephanie Olson

Video







Lead Group at the Preston Checkpoint
Chris Chavie

5/06/2018

Penn Cycle's 27th Season of Thursday Night at the Races Starts May 10th

Image Credit: Gal Alon

Penn Cycle's long-standing tradition of mountain bike racing at Buck Hill returns on May 10th due to two mid-April snowstorms.  This one week delay allowed for snow melt and trail work so racing can begin for the 27th season making it the longest running weekly mountain bike race series in the country.  What started out with 45 riders the very first night a long time ago has grown and evolved into something truly special.  "Whether you’re a first-timer or local hero, these weeknight races continue to rank as the best bang for your entertainment Buck by every mountain biker in the world."  Thursday Night at the Races brings together beginner, intermediate and advanced mountain bikers for some great racing and good times.  This family friendly event is also a great opportunity to get the little ones into mountain biking with a free kid's race after the adult races.

Image Credit: Gal Alon

"You won’t find a more family friendly, cycling event anywhere and I am really proud of what we have put together and continue to do so on Thursday Nights." - Pat Sorensen, Penn Cycle President.

Image Credit: Gal Alon

If you've never raced before, this is your chance to give it a try.  The Beginner class race only costs $5.  For the intermediate and advanced racers, $10 will gain you entry into the Advanced, Recreational A & B, NICA or Fat Bike class races.  Registration for the races starts at 5:00pm and ends promply at 6:30pm in the Hillside Room below the restaurant.  The new Rec B / NICA start time is aimed at high school riders and adults who wish to not race with Advanced class but want to do more than one lap.

The new schedule for racing this season is as follows:

6:30 Advanced Men 
6:32 Advanced Women 
6:32 Fat Tire 
6:34 Rec A Men and Women 
7:30 NICA 
7:30 Rec B Men and Women 
7:32 Beginners: All ages, all genders
7:45 Free kids' races

2018 Buck Hill Race Schedule

May 10
May 17
May 24
May 31
June 7
June 14
June 21
June 28
July 12
July 19
July 26
August 2
 August 9

After the races, the adults take to the kid's course on kids bikes.  Watch the hilarity ensue as Pat shoots for the win in the longstanding rivalry with Charly Tri.


This is a great opportunity to test yourself in a race setting on a challenging wooded course at Buck Hill.  For Minnesota High School Cycling League racers, here's a chance to get in some early practice for the upcoming season.


After the races there will be loads of door prizes and food and drink is available all evening long. For additional details you can visit the Penn Cycle Events page or call the Bloomington store at 952-888-1427. A little rain may not always cancel the races, so give them a call if weather becomes an issue.



For a history of Thursday Night at the Races and more detailed information, listen to the Mountain Bike Radio interview with Pat Sorensen.

4/13/2018

Product Review: Wren Inverted Fat Bike Suspension Fork with Extreme Winter Damper

I first came across Wren Inverted Suspension Forks before attending Interbike '17.  I contacted Kevin Wren from Wren Sports before heading out to Las Vegas for the convention because I wanted to meet with him and learn more about his product.

I set up an appointment to meet with Kevin and his partner Russ Johnson at their hotel and invited a friend of mine, Charly Tri (owner of My Bike Guy) who was also in town for Interbike.  We sat there with them for about two hours and learned all about their fork design, their Extreme Winter Damper and asked many question that they answered for us.  It was a very informative meeting and I was eager to try out their suspension fork in some very cold Minnesota Winter riding conditions.

Kevin and Russ have had their forks tested all over the world in some extreme climates and were interested in my feedback during a full Minnesota Winter which can see temperatures all over the board.

Not long after our meeting and some follow up technical support questions I had for them regarding tire and wheel size, since I have four different wheelsets and a variety of tire choices, they sent me out the Wren Fatbike Suspension Fork for a 150mm Hub that had 110mm travel.


Out of the package supplied by Wren Sports was the 110mm travel Inverted Suspension fork with 150mm thru-axle, carbon bash guards to protect the stanchions and their Extreme Winter Damper.  To ensure proper installation of the fork and damper I brought them and my bike into Penn Cycle for the work to be done by one of their service professionals, thanks Eric.


During the Fall when the weeds die down is my favorite time to do a little bushwhacking off the beaten path to see where my bike can take me.  This can be a very rough ride on a hardtail fatty with all the varying terrain, tree branches and logs.  I had been used to riding these areas for the past couple of years with a carbon fork, but now I had the opportunity to try it out with the Wren suspension fork.  What a difference it made, it really smoothed out the little bumps and made the big branches and log crossings more comfortable with a lot less jarring on my shoulders, arms and knees.

When bushwhacking I like to ride the biggest tires possible for my bike's clearances (Bontrager Barbegazis-27.5x4.5) to give me maximum flotation over the very bumpy and sometimes soft forest floor.  This is something I could never do with my Rock Shox Bluto fork.  On the 110mm travel Wren suspension fork, I left the 10mm safety clip and added the 10mm travel clip giving me 100mm of travel in order to have the proper tire to crown clearance.  Thanks Wren for engineering a fork that can accommodate these new larger tire/wheel sizes.


The first real test came on December 30th this past Winter when the morning temperature dipped to -17° F.  I loaded up my bike onto my rack and drove to a swampy area with two creeks and some great Winter bushwhacking.  Even though my bike was stored in an unheated garage, the bike and fork became acclimated to the temperature during the drive to the swamp.  This would be the coldest day that I tested the Wren fork.  There would be another day later where the temperature dipped to -11° F where I also did some extreme cold testing.

During both of these subzero rides, the Wren suspension fork with the Extreme Winter Damper was put to the test on both bumpy and smooth terrain.  The fork still worked in these temperatures but was not as quick responding as in temperatures above 0° F.  The ability for any suspension fork to work in these temperatures without seizing up is a real challenge, but Wren has seemed to figure out how to keep it working despite negative temps in the teens.


In late January I got a chance to roll the groomed singletrack of Cuyuna to test out the Wren fork in an environment with much more rolling terrain than here in the Twin Cities.  The temps were in the high 20's° F that day and the Wren fork performed flawlessly smoothing out the ride with all the dips and rollers I rode along.  This was the first Winter in 3 years on this bike that I had front suspension and I really enjoyed the added comfort level.


In conclusion, I really enjoyed riding this last Winter with the Wren Inverted Suspension Fork.  Their TwinAir System made it easy to dial in the feel I wanted for the conditions I would be riding giving me the proper rebound and compression for a smooth ride.  The Keyed Stanchions kept the fork running true preventing twisting and the Extreme Winter Damper that was installed was able to tackle temperatures that other suspension forks would not work properly in.  The ability to accept a large number of wheel/tire combinations with the installation of travel clip(s) to ensure a proper safety (10mm) for muddy or snowy conditions to prevent buildup in the tire/crown gap was also a big selling point for me.  I was always a rigid fork rider in the Winter until I tested this fork and from here on out I'll be using it every Winter to come.

The suspension fork used for testing in this review was installed on a 2016 Trek Farley 9.6.  This fork is available with the standard damper for mountain bikes in 100mm or 110mm hub widths with 110mm or 150mm of travel and for fatbikes with 135mm or 150mm hub widths with 110mm or 150mm of travel for $899.99 direct from Wren Sports.  For more information on the Wren Extreme Winter Damper and pricing, contact Wren Sports via their Contact Page.

3/23/2018

MN 30 Days of Biking Events


30 Days of Biking was started back in April of 2010 as pledge between friends and has grown into a worldwide movement.  To join in on 30 Days of Biking all you have to do is make the pledge to ride your bike every day in April whether it's a short roll around the block or a century ride. The distance or destination doesn't matter as long as you get on your bike and ride.  You can share your 30 Days of Biking adventures by using the hashtag #30DaysofBiking on social media.

Below is a list of 30 Days of biking events starting with a Kickoff Party at Surly Brewing and a bunch of kickoff rides on March 31st.  I will continue to add to this list as 30 DOB events become available.  Follow updates for 30 Days of Biking on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

30 Days of Biking Kickoff!-March 28, 2018
Fargo Brewing Company
Fargo, ND

30 Days of Biking: Kickoff Party-March 31, 2018
Surly Brewing Company
Minneapolis, MN

30 Days of Biking Duluth kick-off Ride-March 31, 2018
Sir Benedicts Tavern on the Lake
Duluth, MN

30 Days of Biking Kickoff Party Pre-Ride-March 31, 2018
Erik's Bike-Board-Ski
Minneapolis, MN

30 Days of Biking Kickoff Party Pre-ride Northeast Mpls-March 31, 2018
Deming Heights Park
Minneapolis, MN

30 Days of Biking: Ride to the Kick-off Party-March 31, 2018
Farmstead Bike Shop
Minneapolis, MN

Kickoff Party Pre-Ride-March 31, 2018
Freewheel Bike
Minneapolis, MN

2018 Kickoff Ride & Afterparty-March 31, 2018
Minnesota State Capitol
St. Paul, MN

SPBC 30 Days of Biking Kickoff Ride!-March 31, 2018
Minnesota State Capitol
St. Paul, MN

SSR's intimidation-free slow roll to the #30DaysofBiking kickoff party!-March 31, 2018
Seven Spokes Bike Shop
St. Paul, MN

30 Days of Biking-April 1-30, 2018
Worldwide
Facebook Page

30 Days of Biking: Ice Cream Ride-April 1, 2018
Farmstead Bike Shop
Minneapolis, MN

30 Years of Biking + 30 Days of Biking-April 1, 2018
Maple Grove Cycling
Maple Grove, MN

Bike and a Pint or 2-April 3, 2018
Lake Monster Brewing
St. Paul, MN

30 Days of Biking: Thursday Ride Series-April 5, 2018
Surly Brewing Company
Minneapolis, MN

In which we ride bikes and eat pastries-April 7, 2018
Perennial Cycle
Minneapolis, MN
4-6 miles

30 Days of Biking: Movie Night-April 8, 2018
Farmstead Bike Shop
Minneapolis, MN

30 Days of Biking: Taco Tuesday-April 10, 2018
Stone Arch Bridge and St. Anthony Falls
Minneapolis, MN

30 Days of Biking: Thursday Ride Series-April 12, 2018
Surly Brewing Company
Minneapolis, MN

Bike and a Pint or 2-April 14, 2018
56 Brewing
Minneapolis, MN

In which we ride bikes and eat pastries-April 14, 2018
Perennial Cycle
Minneapolis, MN
4-6 miles

30 Days of Biking: Family Ride--Three Playground Tour!-April 15, 2018
Farmstead Bike Shop
Minneapolis, MN

Bike and a Pint or 2-April 15, 2018
Pryes Brewing Company
Minneapolis, MN

Bike and a Pint or 2-April 17, 2018
Bent Brewstillery
Roseville, MN

30 Days of Biking: Thursday Ride Series-April 19, 2018
Surly Brewing Company
Minneapolis, MN

Tiny Bike Shop Concert featuring the Decayed Realms-April 20, 2018
Perennial Cycle
Minneapolis, MN
Tickets

30 Days of Biking: Record Store Day Ride-April 21, 2018
Farmstead Bike Shop
Minneapolis, MN

Bike and a Pint or 2-April 21, 2018
Pryes Brewing Company
Minneapolis, MN

In which we ride bikes and eat pastries-April 21, 2018
Perennial Cycle
Minneapolis, MN
4-6 miles

30 Days of Biking: Campout Fake-Out-April 22, 2018
Farmstead Bike Shop
Minneapolis, MN

Bike and a Pint or 2-April 22, 2018
56 Brewing
Minneapolis, MN

Bike and a Pint or 2-April 23, 2018
Pryes Brewing Company
Minneapolis, MN

Bike and a Pint or 2-April 24, 2018
Lake Monster Brewing
St. Paul, MN

30 Days of Biking: Thursday Ride Series-April 26, 2018
Surly Brewing Company
Minneapolis, MN

Bike and a Pint or 2-April 28, 2018
Utepils Brewing Company
Minneapolis, MN

In which we ride bikes and eat pastries-April 28, 2018
Perennial Cycle
Minneapolis, MN
4-6 miles

30 Days of Biking: Bikes & Music-April 29, 2018
Farmstead Bike Shop
Minneapolis, MN

Ben Weaver's: 30 Days of Biking River Ramble IV-April 29, 2018
Perennial Cycle
Minneapolis, MN
Online Registration

Bike and a Pint or 2-April 29, 2018
Bent Brewstillery
Roseville, MN

Bike and a Pint or 2-April 30, 2018
Sisyphus Brewing
Minneapolis, MN

30 Days of Biking Celebration Rides-April 30, 2018
Sir Benedicts Tavern on the Lake
Duluth, MN

Grand Finale Campout with 30 Days of Biking & Surly Brewing-May 5-6, 2018
Surly Brewing Company
Minneapolis, MN
Tickets

3/14/2018

6th Annual Filthy 50 Registration Opens March 20th


The Filthy 50 returns in 2018 for its sixth year and has become a tradition for many gravel enthusiasts.  Cyclists come from all over Minnesota and neighboring states to the small town of Stewartville to race on the rolling gravel roads of Olmstead and Filmore Counties.  The scenery along the route is amazing and at the end of the race you will know why it was named The Filthy 50.


The Filthy 50 has introduced many to the joys of riding gravel and for some it was their first gravel race.  October gravel is amazing with the Fall colors, scenery and weather this area offers to those that take the challenge.  I highly recommend that you register and experience this race that is very special to me and many others that continue to do it year after year.  Below are the details, rules and a special message from race director Trenton Raygor.


The Details
  • The 6th annual Filthy 50 will take place on Sunday, October 14th, 2018.
  • The event will start and end on the north end of Stewartville, MN. The mass neutral rollout will take place at 10am and the riders will have until 4pm to officially finish.
  • Thanks to our incredible sponsors and those from the community who have taken the time to donate or volunteer, registration for The Filthy 50 will continue to be FREE for the 6th year in a row! That’s right, no payment required, though donations are accepted and greatly appreciated.
  • Registration will open on Tuesday, March 20th at 12PM CST and can be completed quickly online. Visit http://the-filthy-50.com/registration to register before the 1000 rider cap is reached. You must register with us to ride. There will be no walk-up registration on the day of the event.
  • In addition to our 50 mile route, we are bringing back The Pretty Filthy (24 Mile) and The Little Filthy (12 Mile) alternate routes for a third year due to popular demand. We hope that these routes inspire more rookies to see what riding gravel is all about.
  • We know that many of you love the results at the end of the day, so we aim to continue that tradition. However, this year we will also be offering a category for those who would prefer to remain unaffiliated with the results. Look for it on the registration form.
  • IMPORTANT: This event is completely unsupported. YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR YOU. Bring EVERYTHING that you need for the distance you are choosing to ride. Expect absolutely NOTHING to be provided to you on the day of the event before or during the ride. Remember, it can get rough out there, so be prepared.
  • GPX and TCX files, as well as cue sheets, will be made available for download to all riders who end up on our official roster. The course is unmarked, so this is critical information. Make sure to have your cycling computer loaded or cue sheets printed prior to checking in.
  • Elevation profiles of the course and other exciting pieces of information will be provided through Filthy 50 social media prior to Sunday, October 14th. Find us and follow us!
  • Between registration and October 14th, those on the official roster will be sent email communications regarding event day logistics as well as some other crucial information on what to expect. Wait for it and don’t forget to check those “SPAM” and “Promotions” folders.


The Rules
It is of utmost importance to us that everyone stays safe and enjoys The Filthy 50. These are the rules.  We think they are reasonable.
  1.  You are 100% on your own. Be prepared. 
  2.  You must REGISTER to ride with us. 
  3.  This ride is unsupported. Bring EVERYTHING with you that you will need. 
  4.  Always wear your helmet. 
  5. Respect the course and those who live there. Please do not litter. Leave no trace.
  6.  Obey all TRAFFIC LAWS
  7.  If nature calls during your ride, please do not please do not answer it in front of others. 
  8.  Ride safely. 
  9.  You are responsible for you.
  10.  Have fun and use good judgement. 
We try to keep it simple, so if you require more detail, please CONTACT US.


Here’s a little throwback video to 2013, which was the first year of The Filthy 50.


"Race it and set a record. Ride it and take in the beauty. Either way, get filthy." - Unknown

Sponsors

In addition to many fine people like yourself, these very generous sponsors help make The Filthy 50 happen. Please support them like they support us!

ADAM TURMAN - A professional illustrator & poster artist from the Twin Cities.

http://banjobrothers.com/
BANJO BROTHERS - Tough. Practical. Affordable. Bike Bags.

https://www.belchgear.com/
BELCH - Comfortably unrefined.

BELL LAP COFFEE - Small batch artisan roasted coffee beans.

http://www.bicyclesportsinc.com/
 BICYCLE SPORTS - A full service bike shop in Rochester, MN.

BUCKNELL CONSTRUCTION, INC. - Meeting your construction needs, located in Stewartville, MN.

http://www.fareway.com/store-viewer.aspx?id=d6fc4212-10b2-4145-bbb8-123a3d5d7c6a
FAREWAY - An economical food store located in Stewartville, MN.

GLATT PHYSICAL THERAPY - Physical therapy. Bike Fitting. Wellness.

https://www.hedcycling.com/
 HED - The best wheels on the planet. Period.

http://www.thehubbikecoop.org/
THE HUB BICYCLE CO-OP - The Twin Cities’ only cooperatively owned bike shop.

http://www.justridemn.com/
JUST RIDE MINNESOTA -  Cycling apparel. Just ride.

KATE'S REAL FOOD - Real Food. Real Energy.

https://kurtkinetic.com/
KURT KINETIC - Making the BEST indoor trainers from Minneapolis, MN.

MARKMAN OUTDOOR PHOTOGRAPHY - Capture the great outdoors.

PANARACER - Between you and the ride.

http://penncycle.com/
 PENN CYCLE - Your Twin Cities bike shop since 1957.

http://ridinggravel.com/
RIDING GRAVEL.COM - The gravel enthusiast’s resource.

http://cycling-fitness.com/
 ROCHESTER CYCLING - A Rochester, MN bike shop for all of your bike needs.

http://sunshinesanitation.us/
SUNSHINE SANITATION - Sanitation professionals from Stewartville, MN.

http://surlybrewing.com
 SURLY BREWING - Give a damn. Do good. Drink beer.

twinsix.com
TWIN SIX -  Classically influenced cycling.


Despite this being a free event, it wouldn’t be able to happen as intended without the support of these amazing sponsors and incredible volunteers.  If you are interested in sponsoring this year, please send an email to thefilthy50@gmail.com.  You can also show your support by donating to The Filthy 50 here.  For those not racing that would like to volunteer you can do so by sending an email to the above address.


From the Director

The late great Mike Hall used to say, “Nothing that’s worth anything is ever easy”. I suppose that’s why all of you keep coming back every year, oh yeah...and for the Surly as well. Is The Filthy 50 easy or is it hard? For many of you, just showing up at the start line for your first gravel ride traversing unfamiliar countryside at a distance that you’ve never attempted before is hard. For you riders who are experienced, I would argue that your Filthy 50 will be as hard as you make it. Even for me as an organizer, I’ve been told by many of you that I’ve chosen the hard way. Maybe.

Here’s one incredible thing about The Filthy 50. I’ve been fortunate enough to have folks riding alongside of me this entire way. Whether I take us into a roaring headwind or up a seemingly endless climb, just when the legs can’t take it anymore, someone steps up and takes a pull. [cycling metaphors you guys] To our amazing sponsors, to those of you who have participated in the "MEAT RAFFLE", to those who have donated anonymously, to my mom, dad, brother, sister, my wonderful family and talented friends who have volunteered time, skills, and ideas, to the first time rider, to the veteran racer, to the surrounding communities; Thank you. I wouldn’t have made it here alone and I couldn’t keep this up without you.

This year, we plan to bring back some of your favorite Filthy traditions, including the perfect weather [just kidding, this year it’s going to be 35 and raining], the “Meat Raffle”, “The Fast 50”, as well as “The Filthy Party” which will be waiting for you at the finish line. Beer lovers rejoice as Minnesota’s finest, Surly Brewing Company, is back and has once again promised to pour you free pints AND our friends at Fareway have assured us that they will be supplying another free crate of ice cold Root Beer for all of you non beer drinkers to enjoy. How amazing are our sponsors? “But I need post ride brats and burgers!” Never fear, the Rochester High School MTB Team will be slingin’ grilled eats for you as well.

This year, we also plan on trying some new things. We intend to celebrate the mid-pack and lantern rouge riders with a special something for “The Last 50”! Our chip timing system will be back in action this year [thanks to my brother Jackson] and will allow us to make the aforementioned possible. We also plan to add a course photographer or two and will be throwing in a few new features at the finish. Lastly, I cannot divulge too much at this point, but for those of you arriving in Stewartville the day before, there will be a VERY SPECIAL something happening here on Saturday, October 13th. Stay tuned for more information on that as the plan unfolds.

When we started this ride, I thought I knew where we were going. Turns out, five years in is when I finally realize that the only thing I truly know is where we’ve been. As our friends over at Twin Six would recommend, keep moving, “Forever Forward”, and we do. However, after reaching a mile marker like this one, we appreciate you all for putting a foot down with me, allowing me to crack this pocket beer and reflect on the roads, rivers, valleys and vistas that we’ve discovered together. You’ve already got me looking forward to what’s next. Thank you for riding with us.

-Trenton
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