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Camp Phillips · · Santa Fe, NM · Joined Sep 2011 · Points: 0

I'm the guy riding in the cargo shorts and vans. How do you keep your front wheel on the ground going up a steep hill?? How do you keep the back tire from spinning? What are those pricy shoes good for? What should I carry with me on a ride? Why? How hard is too hard to ride the brakes going downhill? Real questions! I love this sport! Those shoes though. Thanks!

James Carter · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jul 2014 · Points: 0

Move forward on your saddle, lower your shoulders towards your handlebars, keep your elbows in, dont grip the bars too tight, keep your vision where you want to go, and drive your feet through the pedals in as circular of a motion as possible. This will give you more traction in the front wheels while keeping you weight through the bottom bracket of your bike.

Peter Carse · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Dec 2013 · Points: 1,182

Good uphill riding tips, James. Steeper fork angle helps too!
Shoes: those $130 five ten impact shoes for platform pedals stay securely on the pedals, last for years, and serve multiple functions hiking or just around town!
What to carry? I like to do longer rides in more remote areas, so I carry a small park tool, chain link, spare tube, patch kit, pump, 3 liters of water, small first aid kit, Clif bars, EmergenC, bear spray for bears or cougars if appropriate, clothing layers for rain or cold as needed, camera/phone/gps unit. I throw it all into an Osprey Zealot pack which rocks!
Brakes? I've heard from some folks that it is considered sloppy bike handling to allow your bike to skid, but I will guess that will be an ethic that changes as the sport evolves. Just let off your front brake a bit when your front wheel drops down off that root or rock!

James Camy · · San Diego, CA · Joined Jun 2013 · Points: 1,304

What are you riding? A mountain bike or beach cruiser?

Camp Phillips · · Santa Fe, NM · Joined Sep 2011 · Points: 0

Thanks for the advice guys! Except James Camy. Dude must be a real plug.

Kathy Carriker · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Aug 2014 · Points: 0

Can your .gpx down load file be read by a garmin Oregon 650t ???

I only know .gpx files to be waypoints or tracks. But it seemed to load "Grand Canyon NP.JNX

But it shows nothing when the other maps are turned off.

I'm trying to see the Rainbow Rim trail.

If it is a track down load, What is it's name? I can't see it.

Anyway to make it work on the Garmin?

Thanks so much for your help.

Be Mode · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Apr 2015 · Points: 73

Cameron, when I started out I had a lot of issues with climbing technicals and having my back tire constantly spinning out on top of rocks and loose terrain. Then someone told me to change gears to prevent spin outs, and it worked. Slower rotation is more traction, so instead of 1:1, try 1:3? Good luck with it.

BlakeV Vanier · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Sep 2010 · Points: 284

Hey Cameron, this is definitely a hard and rewarding sport. (I just realized this post is pretty old, oh well i'll post this anyways)

Lots of practice. Nothing in this sport is going to come easy. It'll take time to find the right body position so that you are keeping your front down, while keeping enough weight over the front. The next step is being able to control the front as it leaves the ground while you try to go up technical features.

Good balance is also really helpful. Sometimes it's worth it just going to a park and practice making tight turns or riding your bike at slow speed.

Pretty much every ride i'm adjusting tire pressure. If i know i'm doing a smoother ride with loose gravel, i'll run lower pressure to help with traction. You can also adjust pressure mid ride if you want/need. You just need to be careful to not run low pressure on more rocky/technical rides so you don't get pinch flats and dent your rims. This also takes time to gauge. Also a nice tire in the rear helps. I usually am running tires over 2.2 inches in the rear, a little bigger up front for corner traction.

Full suspension bikes also help to keep the rear down over bumps, but they aren't necessary.

The fancy clip in pedals are nice to help you pull as well as push when climbing. It's a little more forgiving if you make a mistake as you have more torque available when you are going really slow and are desperate. If you are new to clipless pedals, i'd recommend going to a park and practice clipping out. When you are comfortable with the motion, go really slow and start to fall to one side. Your body will panic and you'll try to rip your foot off the pedal, which won't work and you'll probably fall over in the grass. The goal here is to train your body to twist to get out of the pedal when it is panicking to get out. It's better to fall over on grass than rocks and a lot less frustrating.

Finally, fitness. If your struggling to keep your balance on loose/techincal/steep sections the faster you go the easier it gets (in most cases). The more speed you have going into a tough section, the more options you have. I find that certain climbs are much easier to stay on as the season progresses.

Unless you are always riding easy trails, no matter how good you are, it's likely you'll always end up hiking your bike up gnarly sections, that's just part of the sport.

have fun.

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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