Home has meant so much more than ever before in 2020. It’s been our offices, our kids’ schools and the starting and ending point of rides we would have otherwise eschewed for gnarlier or farther-flung or more picturesque trails. And it’s the underlying theme that runs throughout our Summer issue, which is on newsstands today.
On the cover, Marin County’s rolling green hills give way to a line methodically hand-sculpted by Bike’s own Satchel Cronk, who also captured the image of his home trail bathed in golden light. And inside, we highlight the rise of backyard trails well beyond Marin, as suddenly time, space and a desire to dig align to create opportunity in places like Squamish and northern B.C. We also go to Asheville, North Carolina, where writer Graham Averill discovers the homegrown goodness of his local trails, now fully out of the shadow of the world-class singletrack in nearby Pisgah due to pandemic-related shutdowns. And we address two of the biggest issues plaguing our home country today—climate change and racial inequality—as they relate to mountain biking.
But, first, as always we start with BUZZ, a 10-page photographic escape from reality, led off by this classic Mattias Fredriksson snap in the Italian Alps. Ridgeline envy is real.
In “Digging Toward Detachment,” trailbuilder Ben Haggar wrestles with the complicated emotions associated with letting go of one of his most-cherished dirt babies: Whistler’s famous Dark Crystal trail. In his piece, Haggar relives the experience he and his building partner, Scott Veach, navigated as they plotted Dark Crystal from concept to creation to premature discovery to shutdown to legitimacy, a rollercoaster that lasted several years.
From our Scorched Earth series on the intersection of climate change and mountain biking, writer Matt Coté examines the true impact of overseas manufacturing, and finds that domestic production might not be the blanket solution to decreasing out sport’s carbon footprint.
In Name Drop, we speak to Rachel Olzer, the founder of the Pedal 2 the People Instagram community, which creates space for BIPOC riders in a traditionally white sport. As protests erupted in her hometown of Minneapolis following the murder of George Floyd, Rachel’s steady, strong voice urging important anti-racism work, helping to wake up folks in the cycling and outdoor industries. We talk to Rachel about her story, and how she’s pressing mountain biking to become more inclusive.
Overlooked is an understatement wen it comes to the riding in Asheville, North Carolina. Why bother when Pisgah’s riding paradise is 20 minutes away? But everything changes during lockdown. In “Near Sighted,” Graham Averill explores his hometown with a new lens.
Check out the full issue on newsstands or download a digital copy HERE.
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