MORC 20 year blk bg

MORC’s 20th Anniversary Gala: why it’s a big deal to me & why you should be there on Nov. 9

MORC Gala

I have a little story to tell but if you want to get all the info about the MORC 20th Anniversary Gala coming up on Nov. 9, CLICK HERE. More on the Gala’s Facebook event page here.

MORC tent at Cuyuna grand opening 2011

I took up the sport of mountain biking in serious way in June of 2011 after attending the Cuyuna Lakes Mountain Bike Festival Grand Opening. In the photo above, I’ve added an arrow pointing to the MORC and IMBA tents in the back of the parking lot at Cuyuna that weekend. I’d never heard of either organization but I became a member a few days later shortly after purchasing a a 2011 Trek Gary Fisher X- Caliber 29’er from Penn Cycle in Bloomington, courtesy of Ben Witt at Milltown Cycles in Faribault.  (If that makes no sense to you and you’re curious, click here.)

I’ve been hooked on mountain biking ever since, as evidenced by the 250+ posts to this Mountain Bike Geezer blog.  And in those 3 years, I’ve done 90% of my year-round mountain biking on MORC trails in the Twin Cities metro area.  I feel a kinship to the organization like no other because of what it’s given me: the enjoyment of a sport I love and the opportunity to meet and spend time with so many great people.  Being a MORC board member this year has been an honor, especially since it’s MORC 20th anniversary season, topped off with this big fundraiser Gala,

Matt Andrews and Pat Sorenson Gary Sjoquist and Pat Sorenson

I’m also pleased that Penn Cycle, where I bought the bike that I still ride nearly every day, has stepped up to be the Title Sponsor for the Gala. That’s founder/owner Pat Sorenson handing a check to MORC Executive Director Matt Andrews in the left photo. Continue reading

Woolly Bike Club - Erratic Rock Trail group ride

Woolly Bike Club’s new Erratic Rock Trail

Annual Woolly Day 2014 - Woolly Bike ClubI attended the Woolly Bike Club‘s 2nd Annual Woolly Day in Saint Croix Falls, WI last Sunday.

I’d never ridden their trails and they were using the occasion to open their brand new flow trail, Erratic Rock.  They timed it right: blue skies, warm temps at the peak of fall colors.

Woolly Bike Club trailhead Woolly Bike Club trailhead Woolly Bike Club trailhead

WBC club vice president Mark Fisk (@markbfisk) greeted the 2 dozen+ riders and sent us out en masse to ride the nearly 3-mile trail.  (I’d forgotten that I’d met Mark back in June of 2013 at the IMBA Upper Midwest Regional Summit in Cable. Duh.) Among the group were my fellow MORC members Issac Niebeling and Michael Guinee. Continue reading

Video: getting the hang of beginner tabletops at Cottage Grove Bike Park

I visited the Cottage Grove Bike Park today to ride the new beginner (green) jump line. However, since I suck at jumps, I first practiced the very small tabletop that’s in the middle of the larger pump track until I felt like I was getting the hang of it.

I then spent about a half hour on the new beginner tabletops and jumps. Way fun. I can barely get any air but the kids say I have potential. It’s pretty neat that you can ride the beginner jump line and get back up to the top in less than a minute.

Here’s my 84-second video:

Video: cleaning the Browner stockade skinny at Hillside MTB Park

I cleaned The Browner stockade skinny today at Hillside Park Mountain Bike Trail in Elk River. Toughest skinny I’ve ever ridden. Props to designer/dirt boss Rich Omdahl and the rest of the Dirt Wirx crew for building it. Rich wrote in the MORC forum:

The Browner is in its own class of evil. I’ve never even made it half way across it. I designed that thing to have 8 layers of difficulty. The first one you contend with is that I built it at the top of a climb on an uphill slope with an off camber entry. Then it gets harder.

The Browner is named after Ray Brown who was the first one to clean it (YouTube video here). I’m the second.  I’m particularly pleased to accomplish this on my 65th birthday.

Here’s my one-minute video. I only show two of my dozen+ failures:

Miguel Masberg, Griff Wigley cropped

Ego rationalization: mountain biking with the young bucks keeps me younger

In the past month or so, I’ve managed to go riding with guys 25-40 years younger than me. Yeah, that’s a bit of bragging as they’re all very good riders and I’m able to more or less keep up with them, which makes me feel younger.

But putting that ego stuff aside, it’s one of the things I really like about mountain biking as a geezer:  I get to meet and participate in a recreational activity with a younger crowd that I don’t normally have much contact with.

Update October 28: I’ve added several more riders, with photos and videos. The list now includes AJ Peterson, Chris Knight, David Starrs, John Gaddo, Manny Paulino, Marty Larson,  Michael Guinee, and Miguel Masberg.

Continue reading

Failed attempts are the norm when sessioning technical sections on a mountain bike

Twice in the past week I did some sessioning with guys who wanted to depart from their usual ride-the-trails-as-fast-as-possible routine: fellow MORC members Chris Knight and David Starrs.

Griff Wigley, Chris Knight Griff Wigley, David Starrs

When they both made remarks during and after about how it was a completely foreign experience, it occurred to me to create a short video to show that sessioning a technical obstacle (in this case, a rock) typically involves a lot of failed attempts. Continue reading

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Photo album: Cottage Grove Bike Park’s 2nd Annual Party at the Park

Last week’s 2nd Annual Party at the Park fundraiser at the Cottage Grove Bike Park was a hit. I was pleased to be there as a MORC board member and it was a hoot to be riding the two pump tracks with so many others. Props to Dirt Boss/Trail Steward Chance Glasford, Kelly Glasford, and all the other volunteers who worked so hard on the event.

See the large slideshow of 71 photos or SLOW CLICK this small slideshow:

Singletrack, gravity, bicycling issues & more