23 August 2006 - 21:11Riding with the Scandium Twins
An Orange Bike report
I had a chance today to get out for a good ride. Despite the heavy rains this weekend, trail conditions were nothing short of fantastic. Ponte and I cranked up Perry Hill, he on his One 9, me on my Air 9. We pretty much put the pedal down and gor to the top, pretty beat. Fortunately, the weather up here has been really nice and cool, almost late September like, and we had a good rest, before heading down Joe’s Trail.
As I’ve said before, it doesn’t get much more intense than Joe’s.
The trail features lots of big slabby step downs, giant granite whales and ridgelines, all linked with tight and twisty singletrack. Did I mention off camber?
Here is Ponte in total control, riding down an off camber whale.
One of the main reasons we rode Perry Hill today was to check out all the work that Ponte and the rest of the volumteers have done, and to see if it’s holding up well. The two biggest issues we have are errosion, and running water. There are just some spots that are always wet, and there are others where bridges need to be made.
After inspecting the work, we headed out to a trail called Disneyland, one that I generally don’t ride that often, but is a ton of fun. It’s one of the lesser ridden trails, partly because of the huge climb out, but also because the entrance is so easliy flown past.
This trail meanders through the woods, in and out of big drainages, and most of the upper part has some fairly large exposure. The top third runs along a cliff band, where a screw up would have you wind up about 30 feet lower in elevation in a hurry. You would have to really screw up, but the edge is there, and it does mess with your head.
There are a couple of the standard Perry Hill boulder rollers, and a couple of lines that require you to really pay attention, and it is all big fun.
The climb out is tough.
So now I will reveal my opinion of the Orange Bike.
I love it.
The smaller size (large from XL) took a bit of time to get used to, but it has really improved my ability to hit the tough stuff with confidence. I built this bike up with my standard build. King/WTB wheelset, SRAM X0 shifter and derailleur (1×9), FSA Carbon crank with Ti BB, with Spot 34t rampless chainring and bash guard, the usual Thomson bits, Easton carbon Monkey Lites, Avid Juicy Carbon brakes (185mm rotor front, 160mm rear), an Exiwolf up front, and an Ignitor in the back. It weighs 25lbs on the nose with my Time pedals.
I will get a good shot of it tomorrow, as I left it at the shop after my ride.
It corners like a scared cat, probably due to the shorter wheelbase compared to the XL bike I was riding. Overall the handling is top notch. Very easy to please, and has a penchant for catching air. I have grown much more comfortable putting this bike anywhere I want on the trail, and every time, it makes me smile. Having the big rotor up front really helps bring the speed down when I run out of room.
Tomorrow, another ride is planned, and there will be more pictures!