Issue 69

Event Profiles: Cyclocross

Event Profiles: Cyclocross

Cyclocross Season Tips and Upcoming Schedule By Haven Livingston Mass of cyclocross riders. Photo courtesy of Brian Staby/Santa Rosa Cup CX It’s already that time of year, when cyclocross (or CX) racers turn their heads to the sky and get ready for the rain to fall. When it does, their wheels will be turning and the mud will be fl ying. Though the tracks were dry for the fi rst few events that kicked off the season, racers know there is still plenty of time to get muddy. If the world of CX racing is foreign to you, it may look like a combination of mud wrestling and bike racing. But for those in the know, it’s a special breed of hardcore competitive fun and a good excuse to play outside, no matter what the weather. “There are times we’ve had courses fl ooded in many inches of water, but...
Sticky Rubber: The Roots and Future of Five Ten

Sticky Rubber: The Roots and Future of Five Ten

A Conversation with Charles Cole By Seth Lightcap Founder of Five Ten, Charles Cole. Photo courtesy of Five Ten. Where would we be as explorers of rock, trail and waterway without Stealth Rubber? Whether paired with a Five Ten shoe design or used as a resole for another brand shoe, the stickiest of all sticky rubbers has been crucial equipment for many of the most groundbreaking adventure achievements of the last 25 years. Stealth Rubber has been championed as the rubber to trust when loss of traction could have serious consequences. Matching Stealth Rubber with a steady stream of innovative shoe designs has led Five Ten to grow from a niche climbing shoe company to one of the premier action sports footwear brands in the world. This evolution has been led every step of the way by Five Ten founder and Stealth Rubber inventor Charles Cole. A pioneering Yosemite...
Ritter, Lyell and the Matterhorn

Ritter, Lyell and the Matterhorn

Three Sierra Peaks in One Week By Leonie Sherman • Photos by Stephen Hoefle View of Conness from Lyell, Photo: Stephen Hoefler My heroes have always loved mountains. Whether putting up bold first ascents or writing poetr, the wise fools, itinerant wanderers and brilliant misanthropes I most admire draw their inspiration from rocky giants. One of these heroes, the Japanese poet Matsuo Basho, entreats aspirants: “Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of the masters. Seek what they sought.” When Steve and I set out to climb Mt Ritter, Mt Lyell and the Matterhorn as part of a weeklong adventure, we were doing both. RITTER Ritter looms dark and jagged above Lake Catherine, a jumbled pinnacle of metamorphic rock, the shattered remnants of a range that preceded the Sierra Nevada by millions of years. Ritter looms in the imaginations of mountaineers as well, due to the lofty summit...
Magical Mystery Tour

Magical Mystery Tour

A zipline adventure near Santa Cruz captures the magic of a redwood ecosystem By Matt Niswonger Photo courtesy of Redwood Canopy Tours Looking for the perfect fall adventure to share with my 11-year-old son, I booked a redwood canopy tour. We arrived for our two-hour tour with a feeling of excitement and maybe a few butterflies.I normally don’t have a problem with heights, but I must admit, that first leap offaith made me a little nervous. Luckily, our two instructors made the whole process easy. After a short “ground school” training session to help us get the feel of our equipment, we were ready to start the tour. Leaping off a platform perched 150 feet up a redwood tree is disconcerting at first, but we werequickly able to trust our equipment and master the technique. Soon the butterfliesdisappeared, and we were totally immersed in a unique experience that emphasizes the...
California Trails

California Trails

Elkhorn Slough Words by Haven Livingston Lupines along trail with view of the slough. Photo: Paul Zaretsky By mileage measures the trails are short, but a hike at Elkhorn Slough is deceptively long. Exploring the second largest tract of tidal salt marsh in California (the first is San Francisco Bay)will take time. Your pace may slow to the rhythm of bat rays feeding in the shallows, or you might even come to a complete stop as you watch statue still egrets hunting for their next meal. Located at the midpoint of the Monterey Bay between Santa Cruz and Monterey, Elkhorn Slough is the estuarine outlet of a 30,292 acre watershed. It’s where freshwater from Carneros Creek and other seasonal flows dance with Pacific seawatein a constant tidal flux. Like all interfacesof disparate habitats, this ecotone is both home and hotel to a huge variety of terrestrial and aquatic wildlife....
Roadtrip Diversions

Roadtrip Diversions

Highway 108, Sonora Pass Words by Haven Livingston Travertine Hot Springs in Bridgeport, CA. Photo: Haven Livingston Sonora Pass on Highway 108 is the northern cousin of Tioga Pass. Climbing 7,500 ft. from the oak studded foothills of Sonora on the west side of the Sierra, the pass tops out at 9,624 feet, just a few hundred feet lower than Tioga Pass. Some may say it’s not as beautiful as Yosemite’s Highway 120, but it has its own suite of special features that even Tuolumne Meadows can’t measure up to. Sonora Pass is a destination, launching point, and scenic passage. The first bonus, which will appeal to thebudget dirtbag in all of us, is that it’s free, unlike Tioga. Secondly, because the grade can reach 25% in certain places, you’re not going to be stuck in a mule train of RVs. Make sure you have good brakes! Horse and OHV...
Full Value: Lessons Learned on a Backcountry MTB Adventure in Canada

Full Value: Lessons Learned on a Backcountry MTB Adventure in Canada

By Matt Niswonger Photo: Brent Martin I was five hours north of Vancouver, in a mountain range known as the Chilcotins. It was dawn. I opened my eyes and stared at the tent ceiling. Suddenly wide-awake, I realized there might be something wrong with my body. Every muscle was on fire.Then I remembered the brutal elevation gain of the previous day. I had to laugh as I crawled out of my sleeping bag like a decrepit old man. An occasional mountain biker from Santa Cruz, the steep climbs of the previous day were beyond anything I had ever done, and now I was paying the price. Multiple cups of coffee were a step in the right direction, but I still felt like I had been in a bar fight. Looking around, I took stock of the dozen or so crazy Canadians with whom I was sharing this backcountry adventure. All...
Going FURTHER with Jeremy Jones

Going FURTHER with Jeremy Jones

New Snowboarding Film Redefines Radical In The Backcountry By Seth Lightcap Photo: Jeff Hawe/Further In 2010, pro snowboarder Jeremy Jones took us “Deeper” into the wilds of Alaska, the heart of the Alps, and the steeps of Antarctica with the release of the fi rst chapter of his backcountry snowboarding movie trilogy, Deeper Further Higher. Now the big mountain snowboarding pioneer is back on the silver screen with the recent debut of Further, his second signature fi lm with Teton Gravity Research. Where Deeper and its “hike every line you ride” message was groundbreaking for the ski and snowboard fi lm industry, Further is all that plus more. “With Deeper I explored mountain ranges that I knew pretty well,” said Jones. “With Further I checked-out ranges that I knew very little about.” Jones and the crew are still earning every turn in Further, but the “gnar knob”...
Brewery Tours

Brewery Tours

Touring Four Innovative California Breweries By Derrick Peterman There’s a revolution going on in this country–born largely in California–that has nothing to do with music, politics, or some insanely great gadget. It’s a revolution in beer, a beverage that’s existed for over 5,000 years and continues to be reinvented to this day. Large breweries run by multinational corporations producing unoriginal, fl at tasting yellow lagers are dramatically losing market share to a growing fl eet of smaller independent companies. These breweries are concocting a wide variety of rich, fl avorful, and unique brews. Increasingly, beer drinkers are enjoying the endless fl avor combinations and possibilities of microbrews, and becoming more aware about where their beer comes from. California breweries are major pioneers of this movement. Unlike most businesses with tightly protected company secrets, many breweries happily throw open their doors to let you experience their sights, sounds, and tastes. Check...
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