Paul Andrews

Posts Tagged ‘Galbraith Mountain’

“Women of Dirt” showings shaping up

In Mountain Biking, Videos on January 17, 2010 at 3:31 am

The show schedule for “Women of Dirt,” the much-anticipated feature movie on downhill/freeride grrllzz, is starting to round out. The worldwide premiere will be Feb. 5th in Seattle, and broke news that the film’s California premiere will be in Santa Cruz Feb. 28 at the Rio Theater on Soquel (Yokota promises more details, including the time, soon). Mountain Bikers of Santa Cruz, a great advocacy and ride club, will host. Mark Brent, the film’s producer, promises other showings “around the world,” including Vancouver B.C., Florida, Bend and Edmonton. OK that’s North America. But we can see World Cup showings all over, especially in UK, Australia, France, Italy and elsewhere. Japan seems another likely market.

The trailer is tantalizing indeed, with clips from the Aptos Post Office jump park, Whistler mountain bike park, Tahoe, Vancouver Island’s Mount Washington and elsewhere. It’s cool to see pony-tailed riders in full armor skying launches and doubles. Will we be seeing a She Slopestyle event at Crankworx sometime soon? The way these women are amping the skillz, we wouldn’t be surprised.

The fem freerider is definitely here to stay. We noticed it most dramatically at Galbraith Mountain last summer. Any day of the week you could find fully geared women ripping the trails. Where were they all coming from? The presence of Western Washington U undoubtedly is a contributor, but the mtb culture is so generically ingrained in Bellingham that my sense is no single factor is at work. Women have been a mainstay on the Web site for years. All it takes is a few to spread mtb love and you’ve got a revolution on your hands.

Here’s the showtimes for “Women of Dirt” as it stands now.

Related: MTBChick’s Mountain Biking Tips for Girls

News Cycle: Seattle mayor bikes to presscon, Galby ramps up, Bike safety stickers, Toll workaround & more

In Bicycle advocacy, Mountain Biking, News Cycle, Obama Bikes, Trail Access on January 15, 2010 at 9:02 am

Mike Bikes! to press conference

You have to love this: Newly elected Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn riding his bike to a press conference. Thanks to BikeHugger for the pix. When we wondered last August whether Seattle could get a mayor “who actually rides,” we were expressing more hope than expectation. Now it’s breakthrough reality. Images like this do wonders to advance the cause. Our full mayoral-bike thread here.

Toll avoidance maneuver: “Bicycle enthusiasts and certain tourists who use the Ohio Turnpike are paying up to 75 percent more in tolls thanks to a change in vehicle classification that took effect toward the end of last year.” As I tweeted to BikingBis, here’s the drill: “Arrive toll booth, get out of car, get bike down, ride past toll booth, back to car, drive thru, put bike back on rack, drive on.”

Pedal Pusher Club's Bicycle Safe Vehicle

The Freeride Revolution continues apace. Up on Galbraith Mountain, not content with the region’s bestination (south of the border), they’re taking Galby to new heights with work on Luge, Upper Mullet and other hot spots. Thanks to WHIMPS, EB, Fanatik Bikes and everyone for giving us a 2010 season to top them all!

Kudos to Cascade Bicycle Club in Seattle for birddogging the bikes-on-bus at any stop in downtown free ride area.

Downieville Classic will be July 9 through 11. Note the reference to “mental hardship”…there was talk of abandoning Downieville because of hassles from locals and the Forest Service. Sounds like nerves are still a bit frayed but at least The Big Dawg is on!!

Momentum: New Bicycle Safe Stickers from Pedal Pushers Club now available!

For a Merry Cycling Christmas: Helmet cams explored

In Equipment reviews, Mountain Biking, Videos on December 7, 2009 at 2:52 am

Our first installment on gift ideas for that supremely deserving cyclist on your list involves helmet cams. Everyone on two wheels wants one of these things. On a recent ride at Soquel Demo Forest I counted no fewer than a dozen helmet cams. They’re the hottest thing going for Gen X-treme. YouTube has had to build a new server farm in Sri Lanka to accommodate the explosion in helmet-cam videos. OK I made that last bit up.

I cannot claim hands-on familiarity with the breadth of today’s cammery. Back when I got my first helmet cam, circa 2002, there were two models. It was easy to master the landscape, although both were bulky, incredibly complex to set up and difficult to operate. All that, plus grainy resolution too! But we pioneers were glad to have ’em, because the alternatives were duct tape with a standard, brickian camcorder, or one-handing your way to certain biffdom.

Today the market is exploding. The good ones come with High Density, which is pretty cool as long as you have plenty of storage and a frame rate (60 fps) to support it. Expect to spend anywhere from two bills to the $700 range.

GoPro makes several popular models, including the HERO HD. I tried an earlier (non-HD) iteration a couple of years ago and found it to be flimsy and less-than-advertised in performance. But the new models look more robust and are getting decent reviews.

Seattle-based Twenty20 has produced the new ContourHD, billed somewhat hyperbolically as the first “wearable HD camcorder”, whose specs look fantastic. I may spring for one and review it, but for now you can check it out in the links below. I do like the idea of wireless, and reviews say the control panel is easy to use even with the camera atop the helmet.

Wireless is a big deal: My original kit had (and today’s models still have) a wired camera. The lens unit was light, bulletproof (you can ride over it with a truck if you’re prone to that sort of thing) and versatile (could mount just about anywhere) but the dang wires were a real downer. VioSport also offers a popular wired camera.

I also prefer rechargeable batteries, but others argue that you’re dead in the water on road trips without an outlet. I carry an inverter in my rig (which uses a cigarette lighter port to provide AC) for just that reason, but it’s a personal preference. Oregon Scientific offers models using conventional batteries.

REI carries a pretty good line in helmetcams. I’d start with the Contour and HERO and work from there. Shopping around is definitely recommended.

A site dedicated to helmet cams.’s take on helmet cams.

A good mountain biking video making wise use of helmet cam footage from Galbraith Mountain, Bellingham WA

Bicycling Classes Added in MTB Hotbed of Bellingham

In Bicycling on March 1, 2009 at 9:01 am

This is great: The Bellingham Herald reports on cycling repair classes at Bellingham High School. Pretty handy, given the proximity of Galbraith Mountain and other trick haunts for groms and disciples of the knob. Wish I’d had something like this when I went to high school. I might’ve skipped calculus, which somehow has not figured into my life near as much as velocipedery!