Sunday, July 3, 2016

Henry Meets John Bryan

Henry has been showing a lot more interest in mountain biking this summer, warming my fatherly heart. He's had a bit of experience riding off road in the past, but he's getting old enough and big enough that he's capable of more trail riding.

Of course, me being me, the first order of business was getting his bike in order. I had dreamed of building him up a rigid 26+ bike made around an XS Surly 1x1 frame or something similar, but in the end we just pulled the fenders off his/Jodi's Trek and mounted up some knobbies in place of the slicks:

We started practicing in the front yard, starting with just trying to lift the front over a board:

Henry quickly progressed to trying to jump off a ramp, then a higher ramp:

Of course, Kate wanted to try this when she saw what was going on:

I think one of my twins may also turn into a mountain biker.

Saturday morning, we loaded up and headed south to John Bryan state park. I've only ridden JB once before, many years ago, and found the trails flat, easy, and boring... but that makes them just right for a beginner. Henry was looking sharp in his new riding glasses:

With no hesitation, Henry took the lead and motored down the trail. Even better, he kept up a steady pace, rarely stopping or hesitating on the trail:

Though we did stop for a snack break:

His new Trek was working just fine for him:

Yes, Henry wanted to keep his kickstand on when we took off the fenders. It didn't slow him down!

Fat tires helped, just $25 at Performance:

A brief mention of my Jones here: I was impressed that I was also so comfortable going slow on this bike. Most bikes are good for going fast, or slow, but rarely can a bike be comfortable doing both. The multi hand positions of the Loop bar really help here.

I remembered JB as only being around six miles around, but as our ride rolled into hour two, I stopped to check that. Turns out the trail is actually more like 13 miles. We ended up doing about nine of those miles, more than I had planned, but Henry was still doing fine at the end. He had enough energy at the end that he still wanted to visit the playground at the park:

Then it was on to the traditional Chipotle stop. He already knew that part of mountain biking!


  1. I can not view the photos on this blog. I do see the short video clips. What do I need to do to see the photos?

    1. Hi Don,

      Thanks for the heads up. Google's photo management is a disaster. Picasaweb worked fine, then they took that away and said to use Google Photos. But, apparently I was uploading photos from a non-shared album, so only I could see them. Now I need to relink every photo in my last several posts. What a PITA.
      Anyway, if this post doesn't work for anyone, please let me know.

  2. Thanks Eric, all's well now!!!


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