Well its that time of the season again, where the holidays are fast approaching. The days are getting shorter, the trees are changing color, and its getting colder outside. Well maybe not so much in Southern California where we have cool 68 to 75 degree days during fall and winter most of the time.
Who am I kidding, anything under 68 can be down right COLD!! I’m talking the tundra here.

So what can one do to spice up that ride around your local area trails. How about dressing up for the occasion and have a little fun on your ride with a group of friends.
I’m not talking about your riding gear your wearing here and I’m not saying go out and buy some all new gear ( well that is always fun to do, right).
No what I’m talking about is getting together with your buddies and dress for the holidays on your group ride. Its always fun to see a group of people dressed in costume for Halloween, fall Thanksgiving, or Christmas.

Being creative with your costume is great to see when your on the trail, its always a pleasure to see a group of riders dressed up on a ride having fun, I just don’t suggest the crazy clown suits this year if you know what I mean. Man those things freak me out.

So get out there and have a great time dong the Halloween ride this weekend, Christmas get out that Santa hat, or elf cap, maybe some antlers for your helmet perhaps. Have fun and be safe, unless you decide to go with the crazy clown thing, I say good luck on that one.

Halloween Fun
Halloween Fun
Skulls OK, Crazy Clowns maybe not
Skulls OK, Crazy Clowns maybe not
Christmas Ride
Christmas Ride

Have fun and dress up that ride this weekend or during the next couple of months. Staff wishes you a safe fun Halloween.



Commitment is a big word for some people, some will run from it, some will half commit and not fallow through, and some will go head long into it all the way knowing they have done their homework believing in what they are doing.
Now a lot of you may know already that GIANT BICYCLES has done just that, they have went head long into the 27.5 tire size for just about all their 2014 mountain bike line and have all but sent the 26″ mountain bike way of the Dodo (for our younger readers this is a saying referring to an extincted bird) except for their DH Glory and Reing X which I would bet will fallow next into the 27.5 line, after all their are others that are doing DH and Freeride bikes in 27.5 with some success.
For those who know GIANT this wouldn’t be the first time they have done this. In 2006 GIANT was the first manufacturer to bring the tapered headtube to market, known as OverDrive2. So you can bet that when Giant decides to do something big it won’t be on a whim.
Here is a look at why GIANT feels the 27.5 is superior performance without compromise and cool pics of the 2014 27.5 line.

Overall Bike Weight
Compare the weights of identically equipped bikes with different wheel sizes and you’ll see substantial weight differences. As expected, the 26-inch-wheel bike is somewhat lighter than the 27.5, and substantially lighter than the 29 (up to two pounds of overall bike weight savings from 29 to 27.5). Every gram saved helps you ride faster.

Wheel/Tire Weight
The overall weight of a 27.5 wheel set (wheel, tire and inner tube) is only 5% greater than that of an identically built 26-inch wheel set. Compare this to the 12% increase of a 29-inch wheel set and you can see how a seemingly small increase in diameter results in substantial weight gain—and poorer performance when climbing or accelerating.

Weight Comparison
Static wheel weight
Lighter wheels/tires result in a quicker acceleration and lighter overall bike weight – a win-win combination.



Snappier acceleration and a reduced angle of attack for a smoother, more agile ride.
Increased wheel diameter decreases the angle of attack (the angle in which a round object intersects a square object). This is a good thing. A 29-inch wheel rolls over a 6-centimeter square-edge obstacle 14% more efficiently than a 26-inch wheel does. In comparison, a 27.5-inch wheel rolls over the same obstacle 9.8% more efficiently than a 26-inch wheel does.
Another way to analyze angle of attack is the degree of impact—where 26-inch equals X degree, 27.5 equals X-4 degrees and 29 equals X-6 degrees. Again, a shallower angle is better—so 29-inch takes the win, with 27.5 exhibiting nearly the same performance but without the weight penalty.


Arguably the most important benefit of 27.5 over 29 is quicker acceleration. This is the “snap” that a rider feels when they push hard on the pedals. It is affected not just by overall static weight but also where the weight is distributed throughout the wheel. The farther the weight is from the center of the hub, the slower the acceleration. So a similarly constructed 1000-gram 29-inch wheel is slower to accelerate than a 1000-gram 26-inch wheel—because the larger diameter rim and longer spokes place weight farther from the hub. The key to snappy acceleration is minimizing the weight of the outermost components (rim, nipples, spokes, tire, tube). As you can see, a 27.5-inch wheel is only 1.5% slower to accelerate than a similarly constructed 26-inch wheel, but a 29-inch wheel is 3.6% slower than a similarly constructed 26-inch wheel.

A larger tire contact patch, increased stiffness, and optimized frame geometry improve traction, braking and handling.

The larger the diameter of a wheel, the greater the contact patch of the tire. A larger contact patch results in better traction, which leads to improved acceleration, deceleration and cornering. As you can see, a 27.5-inch wheel has a similar contact patch to the 29.


Frame Stiffness
Lateral (side-to-side) frame stiffness can be affected by wheel size. To accommodate larger wheels, frame dimensions must be elongated. Therefore, a size medium 29-inch wheel frame has more lateral flex (bottom bracket and headtube) than a size medium 27.5 or 26-inch wheel frameset. Additional flex compromises handling under heavy pedaling or sharp cornering
Frame Geometry
The larger the wheel, the more difficult it is to optimize geometry, especially on smaller frames. As the frame size decreases, headtube heights become higher (in relation to saddle height). On 26 or 27.5-inch frames, it’s less of a problem, but geometry limitations can affect smaller 29-inch-wheel frames.


Their was quite the buzz around the GIANT both and it was great to see them back at Interbike. The Advance line was beautiful to look at and people were very interested in the bikes, with the reps super busy and questions being ask I have to say GIANT may have a very good year in 2014.

So you got a glimpse of the 27.5 tech and a look at GIANT’S Advanced Composite line, but if you don’t want the Advance bike GIANT also has their ALUXX SL aluminum framed 27.5 Bikes, and Frame sets for the ANTHEM XC and TRANCE in Advance composite, as well as ALUXX aluminum, so they have your taste cover one way or the other.

Commitment, a big word for most brands out there. Most will want to wait and see what and where the current trend will go before they commit major resources and time to something as big as this. GIANT has the resources, takes the time, and has always brought their brand one step further then most I have seen with a lot of bang for the buck.
You could go to GIANT’s website at or see your local GIANT dealer today.

We want to say thanks to GIANT for the 27.5 Tech provided on their website and Mark Helms for the time at DirtDemo going over the 27.5 bikes.

Kim Finch: SRC #4 XC and DH

From the Champ herself, Kim Finch talks about her race experience from the Shimano Winter Series #4

There was not much time for training for this race with all the rain, but I did manage to get a couple rides in. I mostly focused on injury recovery from a prior race. We got in early Saturday for the XC race. I chatted with everyone while setting up. As always Tony checked over my bike and tires before he headed for his practice DH run! Couple quick spins around the parking lot and it is up to starting line. While we were waiting to start, I chatted with Priscilla and the rest of the women in our category. The mass start is off with all the Beginner riders; I pull ahead of a few men to stay in eye contact with my competition. We are all off to the climbs and then the asphalt road and I seem to be ahead. I pass a couple of ladies in the 34 & under group and am feeling pretty proud of myself. The newly cut section is part of a prior Super D course and I was at first disappointed thinking they took out my favorite single track section but they added a climb back up to my beloved single track section.

I was surprised to see the amount of riders, mostly guys that were hiking up this section. I pedaled my way up and hit the single track! The race had some stiff competition with Natalie, which was the other lady in my group. We were neck in neck the whole course. The rain had made a lot of changes on the trail with many ruts. I & my competitor had a small crash at the end of the final single track, which by the way I have never crashed there before. This gave her a slight push ahead of me and I could see her increasing the gap as another two riders crashed where we had just cleared. I jump on my bike and realize my brakes are in the wrong place, quick spin of the bars and I am off again.

I stand up and pump out every pedal stroke with all the energy I have left in hopes to catch her! She is in my sight, along the fence line and then she rounds the corner, one hill left and it is the rocky climb I see her jump off her bike to run up the hill. I was stoked because I can make this climb and pass her. I yell “Rider Up” but she is still on the line I would like to take, so I go around her. I make 3/4 of the climb and stopped dead by a rock, I jump off and run up the hill! Remount the bike and it is a sprint to the finish line! We are rounding the final corners, down the double arrows, which by the way I had no time to pick a clean line and should have crashed flying down it. We hit the final turns to the finish and there is our Team, RL yelling at me, “She’s right behind you” I was not aware..Then THE FINISH!! I WON!! Times posted and it was 2 seconds!! What a GREAT RACE!! I was spent.

Quick change of clothes and bikes and I head up the hill for DH practice! I was very glad to see the DH course was mostly off camber turns and no real technical spots! Was designed for me! One run was all I had left in me! Race day Sunday get in one practice run and feel pretty good! Relaxed with the team and up to the top of the hill to “WAIT.” We had a great time cheering for all of the riders as they started their races.

Finally our turn, I told myself that it was MY course and it was just like the San Juan Trail. Getting over the countdown jitters and off I go! I can hear RL cheering, “Go Kimmie! Go get em’!” I rode through the course and I was having a blast! I reminded myself, during the “G” outs, maintain speed so not to over shoot the corners. It went great! Got to the lower rock garden, found MY line and cleaned it just as I planed!

Got the famous wall and legs were spent. I could hear the cheers of teammates in the lower rock garden and the famous words “PEDAL” “GET UP & PEDAL” so I gave it the last that I had! I never checked the times but was so excited and exhausted I just knew it was good!!

Thanks as always to the entire A-TEAM for their support! Thanks to Tony for always making sure my bikes are ready for BATTLE! Special thanks to all of our sponsors! Evomo, Ergon, Hoss MTB and