Epic Tours:

From weekend trips to round-the-world adventures, epic is in the mind of the beholder.

Bike touring is a wonderful and enriching way to explore the world. It yields such interesting photos and stories.

We're not afraid to say it: bike touring makes you a better person.

And this is where we say it.

Read about those adventures and the gear that makes it possible -- the gear we have on, BikeTrailerShop.com and BikeBagShop.com.

Submit your Bike Touring Photos

When we send a bike rack or pannier off to a customer it's always with the hope that it is going somewhere amazing -- epic.

But the accessories we sell can't take their own photos (yet). So we need you to send us photos from your bike tours to exotic locations. Send us anything from that shot of you and your bike at the top of the summit to that shot of your perfect rack and bag setup. Submit your bike touring photos here and we'll let you know when we publish them.

Monthly Archives: January 2010

Bike touring the Gila Mountians Part III, Bike Set Up

Gila mtn tour 12Welcome back to the amazing journey two friends had in Western New Mexico and how that journey provides a great platform for discussing the important points of preparing for and enjoying a bike tour. Last time in part II John and I climbed up the Mogollon, a gnarly 5000 ft climb up Bursum Road to the second highest point of our trip and we discussed how to properly plan a route and the things to consider when looking at a map to pick out where you want to go. Today we are going to continue the journey and discuss choosing the right bike gear for your trip, specifically bikes and bike setup. I know this might sound like a fairly obvious task, but I have learned from experience, that when you are relying on pedal power and you are at the mercy of the elements having the right amount, of the correct gear, makes a big difference.

Gila mtn tour 13 For John and I, we knew that our trip was going to consist of mostly dirt forest roads, some ATV track and some pavement, so fat tires were going to be a must. Whether you are into 29 or 26 mountain bikes, having fat tires when your touring off road makes a world of difference. The geometry of a mountain bike is slacker then that of a road bike providing more stability off road while carrying a load. This might be subjective, but I feel like the beefier design of an MTB also lends it self to carrying bike panniers or pulling a bike trailer. It would be like putting a bunch of weight on a race horse when a donkey would do much better in the long run, but that’s just my personal opinion.

Best Ride of Janurary

Jan rideThis January has been a tough one to get out on good rides, I mean it is January after all. Yes those of us that are lucky enough to live in Flagstaff Arizona are spoiled, in the summer we get to ride some of the best alpine single track in the world and in the winter we have to drive to Sedona to ride red slick rock and twisty trails lined with juniper, rough I know.

It had been a while since I had been turned onto something new in Sedona, almost a year since I road some less then known stuff on the North West side of town. This year the whispers were already spreading about a new section of trail to the South West of town, which is as much location detail as I’m going to go into, not that I think its cool to be all secret and covert about trails, but more to respect those that do feel that way and played a hand in making said trail.

It was a typical beautiful winter day in Sedona, sunny and 60, my best mate and I, John the “Leg” Benson headed down for a needed bro ride. We parked at New Front-tires aka New Racketeers, aka New Frontiers as we always do and started our shred. We road up and over Airport Mesa and headed down to Broken Arrow around to Chicken Point. We took a moment to stare at the pink jeeps and tourists and then headed down under the hwy. For the sake of respect I’m going to end the directional portion.

As we climbed up this new trail the views were amazing, there was certainly some exposure but nothing life threatening unless you really wanted it. We hugged the bottom of a cliff and made our way across a ridge with a great slick rock descent. I’m being vague on purpose.

Ultimately we popped out at Red Rock Crossing, and headed back up to the car via Carroll Canyon. The Conditions were perfect, slightly tacky and moist, a little tricky on slick rock but the pay off on the single track was worth it. It was a great day, about 3 hrs of riding finished with a visit to the Wild Flower Bread Company. If you have never ridden in Sedona, you should slap your-self, it offers some trails and views that will take your breath away.

Peter’s Familiy Bike Touring Train

We’ve all heard it from our friends who have children, now that they have a family things aren’t the same and they just don’t have the time anymore to ride bikes or go camping. There’s soccer practice to go to, ballet lessons, etc. Well we received a few pictures from Peter, and from the looks of things he has been unable to use his family as an excuse why he can’t go for a bike trip.

Why BikeShopHub.com Thrives in the Small City of Flagstaff, AZ

Most people do not think of Flagstaff, Arizona as being a cycling mecca, but Bike Shop Hub’s hometown is full of cycling enthusiasm! Flagstaff has a tendency to “fly under the radar” when it comes to it’s cycling scene, but there is a lot going on in and around this city of around 60,000 people. This unique alpine city of 7000 ft elevation is at the base of the highest mountain range in Arizona (Humphrey’s Peak = 12,633 feet!) and it is surrounded by national forest. It’s cycling “scene” includes commuting by bike, mountain biking, road riding, a large selection of bike shops, bike frame builders, and in general a great group of avid cyclists.Melanie 3

The City of Flagstaff has made a lot of improvements over the last 10 years to make the city much more bike friendly. They have added new urban trails, bike lanes, and even a bike bridge over a busy 4 lane street. The urban trail system is a network of paved and gravel paths that are generally removed from streets and run through local neighborhoods. They provide a safe and quiet way to commute around town. In addition, most of the new streets being constructed have large bike lanes for safer riding on the streets. The annual bike to work week organized by Flagstaff Biking, is a large event that the City has rallied behind to encourage more bike commuting.

The mountain biking around Flagstaff is not too shabby! With national forest surrounding the town and an ever expanding network of trails to ride with very comfortable summer time temperatures, the mountain biking experience is a lot of fun. During the winter months many mountain bikers from Flagstaff head to the warmer desert climate of Sedona. Sedona is a 45 minute drive from Flagstaff and offers a nice network of trails that surround the town. Take a look at my photos of trail riding around Flagstaff and Sedona.

flagstaff-mountain-line-bike-on-busThe road riding around Flagstaff is pretty good but there are a limited number of places to ride. There is usually a Saturday morning group ride that consists of racers and recreational riders who ride the Lake Mary and Mormon Lake circuit for training/fun. The road riding is generally through the large scenic Ponderosa Pine forest that surrounds Flagstaff. For a small city Flagstaff has a fairly large bicycle industry. The notable bike shops are AZ Bikes, Absolute Bikes, Single Track Bikes, Cosmic Cycles and the soon to open Revolution Bicycles. In addition there are two custom frame builders in town by the names of Coconino Cycles and Sendero Cycles. Steve Garro is a local mountain bike legend who specializes in custom fillet brazed steel frames (they are a work of art!) at Coconino Cycles. Joe Murray is a national mountain bike hall of famer and long time bicycle designer and he is the head honcho designer/fabricator at Sendero Cycles. And of course there is the Bike Shop Hub home of Bike Trailer Shop and Bike Bag Shop! Last but not least is the cool community of cyclists in Flagstaff. There are so many friendly riders of all types of riding.

flagstaff-mountain-bikingWhether commuting through town, throwing down the hammer on a great piece of singletrack or enjoying a nice summer road ride, most fellow riders take the time to say “Hi!”, if not stop and chat about how great it is to be out riding. There are a lot of loose nit social groups that get together for a ride and then there is the highly organized Flagstaff Biking group that is involved in promoting bicycle advocacy in Northern Arizona as well as trail building and maintenance. When all that is put together it is no wonder that BikeShopHub thrives in this cycling focused high altitude environment. Flagstaff may not be large in population but it is huge when it comes to cycling enthusiasm!

What do you think? Have you been to Flagstaff before or would you like to visit? Do you live in a place that has similar cycling enthusiasm? We would like to hear from you. Let us know in the comment box below. Happy trails!

About the author:
Pete Prebus has lived in Flagstaff since 1997 and is the mountain biker at MountainBikeRiding.com. See the website for more about him and mountain bike riding and maintenance tips.

Alan’s Grocery Getter

Here at the Bike Trailer Blog we like to encourage our readers and customers, like Alan here, to send us emails and pictures about their own bike trailer stories. Whether they are custom bike trailer projects, how they use their gear that they have purchased from us or just fun stories about trips, cool ideas and other interesting things related to bike utility. So if anyone out there has a great story about how they use their bike trailer, we would love to hear about it.

A New twist on an Old Idea, Home Made Bike Cargo Trailer

We received a email from Sean in regards to a custom trailer that he was designing and building. Sean has taken some products that one could find around the house or office and turned them into a home made custom bike trailer. Including his own crafty hitch design.

New Faces For a Great Start to 2010

We have some new faces here at the Bike Shop Hub, maybe they’re not new in a time on the earth sense, well except one, but there new to us. The great thing about a growing business is the amazing new people that we get to bring on board that continue to enhancing our little shop.

Frank the Tank

Being that most of what we do is conducted within the inter-webz we needed to bring in a programing power house to keep all of our ducks in a row. Lucky such a power house does exist in Flagstaff and his name is Frank. If a computer was a a small Germanic village then Frank is an earth shaking Roman army come to conquer and enslave. Get the point, he gets things done, and he’s a really likable nice guy, so that helps.

We have continued to develop our own in house brand of bike trailers and bike trailer accessories. I had to move over to shipping to pick up some slack which opened a Super Caseyposition to bring in a new manufacturing specialist. Its hard to find someone who is versed in bicycle mechanics, manufacturing techniques and who is cool. Many fill two out of the three but here at the bike shop hub we settle for nothing but the best, and we found it in Casey. Casey is like a reincarnated Sheldon Brown, and Bob Villa combined into one super being. If it can be thought up Casey can make it.

We would also like to welcome back Megan, there was getting to be a little too much man around the Bike Shop Hub lately, so her return has brought balance to the force.Neva and mommy This time Megan has brought a little something extra with her, Neva, some baby she found on the street. No that’s not true, it really is her baby, and a super cute baby at that. We were all a little nervous about a baby at work especially Robin, because he has babyphobia, but Neva has warmed our harts over and probably gets more done around here then Robin does.

All of us and by us I mean Josh, Robin and I, are glad to have the new faces in the shop and the return of Megan. This much awesome can hardly be contained in one building. I think it is going to be a great year for the Bike Shop Hub aka. Bike Trailer Shop, Bike Bag Shop and Bike Kid Shop.

Pulling a Bike Trailer with a Carbon Bike

Over the summer we received a couple of emails asking us what we though of pulling a bicycle trailer like a BOB or Burley Nomad with a carbon framed bicycle. We all now the stigma that surround Carbon fiber frames, many people cringe at the thought of using a carbon fiber frame for anything else then road riding on pristine pavement.

Even though these days mountain bike frames, forks, wheels, seat posts, handlebars and even seats are all made of carbon fiber. From an engineering standpoint carbon fiber is, ounce for ounce, significantly stronger then steel or aluminum. A steel or aluminum frame that is not designed specifically for touring is subjected to the same unusual load a carbon fiber bike is.

Bike Touring the Gila Mountians Part II, Where Ya Gonna Go?, Route Planning

Gila mtn tour 3In part one of Bike Touring the Gila Mountains, John and I had arrived in Western New Mexico and we were preparing to start an epic weekend of bicycle touring in the Gila Mountains. I wanted to take the time, to not only talk about how awesome our trip was, but to discuss the details and finer points that need to be taken into consideration when preparing and executing a bike touring trip. This time we are going to talk about route planning.