We love bicycling as a lifestyle, culture, and sport. We love to ride, build, restore, oggle and sometimes race bicycles. We also love to talk on at great length about our ideas, opinions and exploits involving all of the above. Welcome to our BLOG!

Abandon Your Car is not a slogan or ideology so much as a reminder to all of us to get away from our petro-mobiles as often as we possibly can and embark on life as an adventure by bicycle.

We'll keep you current on the important road and trail beta from our home base in Palisade, Colorado and shower you with our .02 cents about the ongoings of bicycle tribes the world over.

Be sure to tune in for Danny, AKA: the Young Apprenctice, providing the ever important perspectives of a college-bound bike geek and all around brainiac in his NORCAL Updates.

We're glad you're here- look around, drop the Bike Master a line and then get out and ride for awhile- you'll be glad you did!





go to our most recent posting here.





Monday, November 3, 2014

*a local trail building organization*

it is with some regret (but not too much) that we are withdrawing our support from *a local trail building organization* due to their president's public endorsement of a right-wing candidate for Colorado state house of Representatives. the *a local trail building organization* is claiming that the candidate is being endorsed because a few ambiguous "pro-bike" noises he has made during his campaign.

sorry- but blindly supporting a politician for a single issue is nothing but reckless and irresponsible; especially given the candidate's positions on other issues (fracking, public lands, endangered species, etc, etc) that are in direct conflict with any claims of responsible "stewardship".

aside from that, 3 years after our membership has expired, we have yet to receive an invitation to renew. *a local trail building organization* will not be receiving a check from us, either- now or in the future. at least until they get their act together and smell the sagebrush.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Image for Today

Collegiate season started for me with sort of a bang - literally, I kind of blew up.

My first race of the season was at Stanford's John C. Schlesinger Memorial Criterium around Specialized's headquarters in Morgan Hill, CA. 

With 4 laps to go, as I was sitting maybe 6 back from the first man on UC Davis' lead out train, 6 guys went down out of a corner behind me. The subsequent ambulance and fire truck parked on course resulted in a 45minute neutralization, and when they started us again with 7 laps to go, I pretty much blew off the back. 

Still, it was fun.

The real fun came this past Sunday, when the UC Berkeley Cycling Team hosted its very own race weekend, complete with RR, TTT, and a Sunday criterium right through the streets of Berkeley.

The entire team was on the crit course at 5am for set up, and by the time 8am rolled around, I was barely donning the team kit and putting the bike on the trainer for a quick warm up. 

Long story short, the race didn't exactly go my way, but that's okay, because if I hadn't told you that, you'd think I was off the front in this picture:


My collegiate race season will soon be coming to an end - March 30th at the UC Davis criterium. Yeah, three races isn't a super impressive introductory season, but the way I see it, it'll sling shot me into race shape for the summer road season. 

Check back in a couple weeks for my final results - if all goes to plan, I should end up somewhere close to the podium...

Friday, January 24, 2014

retirements and stagaires for 2014



in efforts to maintain a tidy appearance around here, some spring cleaning will be taking place over the next few weeks. starting today, several other blogs linked in the sidebar will be retired as they have gone inactive for a variety of reasons. if your blog was previously linked here and feel that it was removed in error, please contact our admin to have the link reinstated.

here are the retirements for this year, an active link for each will be maintained in this post for future reference.

with the folding of the once mighty Euskatel team, the Iban Mayo blog has gone silent. the world of cycling is diminished by the loss of both.

learning of the passing of P.D. Bird this past autumn has caused us much sorrow. Jennifer and i were honored to have met both P.D. and Johnny last year during our bike tour on the northern California coast- definitely one of the highlights of our adventure. things are just not the same without P.D., and we here at ABANDON YOUR CAR wish Johnny all the best in his future travels.

the visual powerhouse that was once known as Ride the Machine appears to have given over to the dark forces of capitalism and the blog seems to have gone inactive as a result.

announcing Manual for Speed; if you have not checked them out, now would be the time to do so. by far the best race coverage from the Tour of Colorado last year. MFS features beautiful photography and in-depth reporting on many topics not covered in the mainstream cycling media.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

trail report for 23 january 2014- it's all about the freedom




trail reports were discontinued here on ABANDON YOUR CAR more than two years ago, for the very reason demonstrated in the image below: no matter the reality of conditions on the ground, people will ride their bikes and free range their dogs as they see fit. the curious will go out no matter what is said about wet trails, snow, mud... pushing on like brave pioneers in the spirit of manifest destiny because they "know" that conditions will improve just around the next corner.
or they are forced to turn back because the bike now weighs 75 kilos and they have been post-holing a two kilometer legacy of destruction that will last for many months into the future.

and then images of the conquest are posted up on social media (which is where i happened to poach this photo from). "like hells yeah- i tagged that shit, yo!"


it is not my bike, it is not my dog.



of course, it can be argued that nothing we do here and now will make a rat's back end of difference in the future; so why not pillage, plunder and consume like there is no tomorrow? my answer is that the arrogance today is no different than back in the days of manifest destiny, and in reality, probably worse. we as a species know better now. we have the science to back it up- fracking, CO2 emissions, overpopulation, hunger... and the list goes on.
given our knowledge and reality, the choices we make and power we have to determine future realities basically boil down to one thing and whether we choose to act upon it in the right way:

it's all about the freedom. (so please choose wisely)


image courtesy of BBC News


and by the way, it's still road bike season in western Colorado. here's some beats to get ya motivated:




Saturday, January 18, 2014

two images for today




regular viewers of ABANDON YOUR CAR may have noticed some recent posts featuring historic images of cycling culture in the 20th century- lifestyle, competition, the bikes, and the people that made the scene.

being the big-time player "lifer" in the bike industry that i am, there have been plenty of opportunities to curate a vast hoard of ephemera, treasures and other items related to cycling culture in those ancient times; many photographs being among them.

images appearing on this blog are given proper copyright credit whenever possible. most are produced by the other two contributors, as well as myself. other images, the really old ones, are often far more problematic when it comes to identifying the photographers and subjects.

often, what is known is merely where the images have originated from. a good part of my personal collection was acquired from a friend by the name of Otis Taylor.
his interest at that time was primarily in curating images and artifacts pertaining to America's first cycling World Champion; the great Marshall "Major" Taylor (no relation).

he was kind enough to pass along some really fantastic stuff- many of these images have never been seen on the interwebs before, they are exclusive to ABANDON YOUR CAR, and we are honored to share them with the world.

and a big thanks goes out to Otis, who gave me some much needed schooling about how "the game" is played.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Saturday, August 24, 2013

update: USPCC Vail 2013



one of the best things the promoters could do is change the name of this race to THE TOUR OF COLORADO.

at any rate, it has been awesome to see the Colombians racing here. VAMOS TEAM COLOMBIA!



Monday, August 19, 2013

the road to hell is painted with good intentions





images from 2012; Crested Butte and festivities surrounding the much-anticipated arrival of the U.S, Pro Cycling Challenge. sadly, the Escarabajos will not be racing in Gunnison County during this year's event.



welcome to Crested Butte




no trip to Crested Butte would be complete without a visit to the one and only Mountain Bike Hall of Fame. only now, we will be making the pilgrimage to the new home in Marin County when we visit our peeps in NorCal




big time CB style festivities the night before




A-firm that




Jen and Mark riding the CB singletrack




world-class singletrack in Crested Butte/ Gunnison County, Colorado




large alpine cricket (did not get squished)




epic image of our friend and local trail guide, Kay





waiting for the Colombians




Contador where are you?




EPM-/UNE fan club area




Thursday, July 11, 2013

Reflecting

The past few weeks have been full of fun for me, but they've also been full thought. Thoughts about where I've been and what I've accomplished and where I'm supposed to go from here. Pardon the dive into the non-cycling related.

In June, I officially graduated from high school. We all had our doubts, I know, but I came out on top with the 4.28 GPA and the 7th highest rank in my class of 271. And to make life even better, a couple months before that, I started dating the girl of my dreams. She's headed to UCLA in the Fall. Oh, and yeah, college - I'm going to UC Berkeley. Sooooo that's rad.

She's the one on the left, by the way.
But, believe it or not, the "gravity" of all that really never hit me. For four years, all I ever focused on was school. I'd come home from school, go to work, then come home again and start my homework. Riding my bicycle and living the stereotypical teenage experience were things that I largely missed out on due to this inner desire to achieve the best I could academically. Yet, somehow, I still managed to make an incredible (albeit, incredibly small) group of friends and race some bikes here and there, so it really wasn't all that bad. To be honest, I value the experience I had more than I think I'd value the alternative.

This week, one of my teachers from elementary and middle school reached out to me with the picture below, with the description, "When you were in the 4th grade, you drew me an 'S,' and I told you I would keep it forever. You were kind of annoyed at the moment I asked you to draw me one. But, you took your time even though you didn't want to, so it's always been kind of a life example for me." Until recently, in a conversation with my girlfriend (who has, and continues, to enlighten my mind and enrapture my own life), I never realized that I'd impacted anyone's life, or had ever been suitable as an example. I figured that I was a normal high school kid, although I rode bikes and climbed rocks instead of going to football games or rocking it at parties. When my teacher sent me that message, I was blown away - I always looked up to others and never really examined myself and my own accomplishments.

For some weird reason, as a fourth grader, I totally dug calligraphy.
So, I guess you can say that the gravity of my situation and impending entrance into real life came when one of my life-long role models opened up to me about the gravity of his own situation, undoubtedly a little heavier than my own (thanks Mr. Gallick, for teaching me about the gravitational constant, by the way. I hated your class but it challenged me like no class ever has). Enter my brother Andrew, the morning that he's to fly to Boulder, CO to start his new career. Less than a month before, he graduated from RIT with a double engineering degree. You could say he's kind of smart and kind of probably has his life together...a little bit. Since we were kids, I've admired Andrew's ability to appear so nonchalant yet accomplish so much. We are five years apart, so I've always seen him as more of an adult than as the kid that he really is. As I drove him to the airport that morning, though, he looked at me and told me that he was scared - his life had been going to class and playing waterpolo, and, in college, going to class and climbing rocks. Now, he explained, his life would be going to the same job every day for at least a couple of years. He'd no longer have a choice in class, he'd have a career - he'd be an adult. And, by all observations, this alarmed him. 

He seriously does this everywhere we go now. Honestly the most bearded kid on the planet.
When I learned that somebody who had affected me so profoundly was scared to confront his future, it made me stop and think about where I'd been and where I was going. Suddenly, I was alarmed about my own future - how the hell am I supposed to graduate from a UC in 4 years? What am I going to do with all that debt?! ...what do I even want to do with my life? Everything is so impermanent, yet, paradoxically, so long lasting and consequential. 

Then that teacher sent me that message and my worries about the future kind of melted away. I've been chugging along to my own tempo for years, and I think that same tempo will keep me rolling all the way into adulthood. Whether I become the foremost plant biologist this world has ever seen or decide to live out of a van, after long hours of tedious empirical observation, I don't think I'll ever have anything to worry about. I think I have a pretty good handle on who I am and who I want to be, and, it seems to have worked thus far. I guess all that careful reflection just brought me back to myself, and I guess that's how it should be.

Plus, today, I rode my bike. Talk about affirmation of life choices. 

"This is nourishing and redemptive." -David Foster Wallace

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

the new world order



it's not often that i am heard to say that a Pro deserves a win- but this would be one of those rare occasions. especially rare, in this instance, because i am no particular fan of Team Sky (for a lot of reasons).
their dogged adherence to "plan A" has proven to be a failure thus far this year- at least until today when the directeurs saw fit to allow the workers free rein when Wiggins predictably faltered on the final climb. at least we didn't have to endure yet another tempestuous "bike tossing" incident this time around.
i could not have been happier with the outcome... unless of course by some miracle one of the Team Colombia riders had soloed to victory. it also bears mentioning at this time that there are plenty of mountains yet to come in this year's Giro d' Italia, and Carlos Betancur will eventually get his timing right at the finish

congratulations to Rigoberto Uran of Team Sky and to all of Colombia as well.



Rigoberto Uran of Team Sky atop the podium exemplifies good taste in apres velo fashion by wearing a CYCLING cap.


image courtesy of BETTINIPHOTO via cyclingnews