This is it, we have moved to the Pyrénées! We will still be in Morzine during the summer but if you are looking for something different, the Pyrénées are amazing ! Here is the website for our gîte: www.gite-calpai.com.

 

The wet weather this July hasn’t stopped us from riding, but the conditions do take their toll on the bike and the rider. Here are a few tips which should make your muddy rides easier for you and your steed… you might even start to prefer it!

The rider:

  • Adapt your kit, a rain jacket + trousers will keep you reasonably dry (make sure not to over dress underneath to avoid condensation) and most of all will keep your clothes clean… your washing machine will be thankful for it! To clean your rain kit, hose it down before taking it off and Bob’s your uncle!

    What we use: Patagonia Torrentshell jacket + trousers

  • Keep the extremities warm, Merino wool socks are a must and a pair of neoprene gloves (not too thick) will make a big difference when the temperature drops.

    What we use: Seal Skinz socks, Mavic Cyclone gloves

  • Keep your vision clear, it’s the biggest problem and unfortunately, there isn’t a perfect solution, but a dry clean cloth kept in your sleeve will allow you to wipe your glasses/goggles every time you stop.

  • Do not hose your muddy shoes or they will never dry again! Just let them dry (you can stuff them with newspaper) and then brush the dry mud off.

The bike:

  • Use the right lubricant, use a wet conditions lubricant before you go out. A silicon lubricant applied to your frame (kept away from the brakes!) will stop the mud sticking on it… at least for a while! After your ride, lube every nook and cranny of your bike (transmission and suspensions of course but also suspension knobs, shifters, brake levers,…).

    What we use: Muc Off Wet Lub and GT85

  • A small mudguard under the arch of your fork will keep most of the projection away but will also protect your fork’s joints.

    What we use: Marsh guard

  • Mud tyres make a massive difference! If you don’t have the budget or if you need to pedal, change just the front tyre, you will feel a lot more in control.

    What we use: Maxxis Wet scream or Specialized Hillbilly

  • You can make a small “cover” for your rear brake caliper to stop the mud getting in (mud means pads wearing more quickly and pistons getting dirty), I personally use some blister plastic (Hope’s brake pads do a great job!)

    Here is a posh example :

 

photo by: my-new-stuff.com

The skills:

  • Choose different lines from usual to avoid the biggest obstacles (roots, ruts,…), don’t be afraid of staying away from the most obvious line to find “clean” spots to brake and turn.

  • Keep some pressure on your front wheel to get the most grip out of it.

  • Keep your braking smooth.

  • Stay loose on the bike.

  • Speed is (still) your friend! If you ride too slow, your tyres are going to clog and you won’t move at all anymore… remember to keep your braking smooth though!

Well equipped, riding in the mud is fun… and there’s only one way to get better at it – get out and ride!!

 

Burner 2014

For their 20th anniversary, Turner Bikes has created a special edition of the Burner, their first model, here is how I built mine:

*Frame Size & Color: Large Burner, Polished

* Rear Shock: Fox Float CTD Factory

* Fork: Rock Shox Pike Solo air/160mm

* Brakes: Hope E4 Race, 203/183mm

* Shifter: Sram X.9

* Cranks: Shimano SLX with Hope Bash and 24/34 chainrings

* Chainguide: custom

*Front Derailleur: Sram X.9

* Rear Derailleur: Sram X.9 type2

* Pedals: Hope F20

* Stem: Hope 50mm

* Handlebar: Renthal Fat bar Lite

* Seatpost: Yep Uptimizer ST

* Saddle: Fizik Gobi

* Cassette: Sram 11/36* Headset: Hope

* Grips: Renthal Kevlar

* Tires: Michelin Wild Rock R’ 2 reinforced Magic’X&Gum’X

* Rims: Flow EX 27.5″

* Hubs: Hope Pro2 Evo

The bike rides amazingly, DO believe the hype, 27.5″ wheels carry a ton of speed through the rough and the low BB is brilliant in corners. A massive thank you to Turner Bikes, Hope and Yep components for their help.

DHR 2014 2

Here come my new DH beast! Low, slack and with finely tuned suspensions, this thing is FAST!

Here is the detailed build :

*Frame Size & Color: Large DHR, Orange anodised

* Rear Shock: Elka Stage 5, Ti spring

* Fork: Boxxer Race with Fast CO3 cartridge and black stanchion

* Brakes: Hope V4, 203/203mm floating rotors

* Shifter: Sram X.9

* Cranks: Race Face Atlas

* Chainguide: Shimano Saint

* Rear Derailleur: Sram X.9 type2

* Pedals: Hope F20

* Stem: Hope integrated

* Handlebar: Renthal cut to 760mm

* Seatpost: Easton EA70

* Saddle: Reverse

* Bottom Bracket: Hope

* Chainring: Race Face Single 36t

* Cassette: Sram 11/26

* Headset: Hope

* Grips: Renthal

* Tires: Maxxis Minion F, 2.7, ST

* Rims: Mavic EX721

* Hubs: Hope Pro2

The Pleney has just released its official opening dates for the summer 2014… and here are also the new liftpasses prices.

The (brand new) cable will open from the 14th of June to the 7th of September.

2014’s Portes du Soleil lift passes prices: tarifs pds 2014

We have teamed up with one of the very best chalet companies in Morzine (More Mountain), to offer you a great week of guided mountain biking this summer, the MoreAbility week! Treat yourself to top class accommodation and improve your riding skills whilst discovering the best of the Portes du Soleil.

I’ve just got my Boxxer back from Fast Suspension… and it’s had a few nice tweaks!

The standard stanchions have been changed for some custom black ones, stiffer and more importantly with less friction than the original ones. Internally the CO2 open cartridge I used to run has been upgraded to the new CO3. This new version keeps the key features of the former one, open bath and all parts machined in-house in Brittany but with an added external adjuster for high speed compression via a very neat push/pull knob. To finish it off, I had a set of custom moto stickers made by Slik Graphics… bring on the summer!

fast suspension boxxer