Sunday, April 9, 2017

For the Love of Gravel

I'm admittedly naturally drawn to mountain biking over road cycling, but road riding became a lot more interesting once I realized that "road" needn't mean "asphalt".

For a place like Socorro, most modern road bikes suck. 20-25mm wide tires, 90 psi, and aggressive geometries all add up to a harsh ride on less maintained roads, and forget about hitting that gravel or two-track path. Fortunately, parts of the bike industry have caught on, providing 'randonneur' or touring bikes, and more recently gravel bikes.

I've entered this world of 'alternative' road bikes and I'm never looking back. Upright geometries, wider 21-25mm hoops and 700x40c tires at 30-35 psi are awesome for exploring! Faster than you're 29er XC bike, but still rugged enough for the odd bit of single track.

Suddenly there's a whole other world out there to explore. This last weekend's ride is shown below, along with a number of other connecting two-tracks I've explored recently or intend to soon.

Break free of the asphalt chains and go explore!

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