It’s All a Blur at Shoot The Trails

October 20, 2014 at 3:50 am

Riding Shots

I was unable to attend the WMBC’s Shoot the Trail’s, but I was able to be there in some small way. Burke Hovde was nice enough to come up to Galbraith Mountain and take some pictures for the event. In about 3 hours of shooting, he put together some really sweet motion blur shots of myself, Alex Lewis and Fred Phillips. If you went to Shoot the Trails, then you probably saw me there. Well, not me in person, but you know what I mean. Thanks for coming out Burke!

Bellingham Bike Park Work Days 2014

August 29, 2014 at 9:01 am

Dirt jumping season is in full swing. The hot dry weather has left the park in need of work. Come out rain or shine.  Bring a snack and gloves. All are welcome to come help. If it’s sunny we’ll ride too! So, bring your bike.

Start time is 9am for all days. Bike Park is on Puget Street in Bellingham, WA right across the street from the Stadium and next too the skate park.


Saturday       May 31, 2014 – Done
Saturday       July 19, 2014 - Done                        
Sunday          August 31, 2014
Saturday       September 27, 2014
Saturday       October 25, 2014
PLEASE NOTE: Saturday, August 30th was changed to Sunday, August 31st. 


August 26, 2014 at 4:03 pm

Anyone that has put in any significant amount of time in building bike trails or dirt jumps can probably tell you that there are a variety of reasons to come out to help. There are the social reasons – Volunteering to do trail building is a great way to meet people who like to ride mountain bikes. There’s the guilt – Using a free resource that someone else has made and you do nothing to help build or maintain sometimes feels like eating from someone else’s cookie jar. But in my experience, there are two main reasons that people come out to work – personal satisfaction or they just want to help. Self-satisfaction is a powerful motivator, of course, but the purest of reasons is – in my opinion – just wanting to help. Over the past year, I’ve been lucky enough to see plenty of the latter and I thought these amazing people could use some credit for going above and beyond in their efforts to do just that.


The Early Morning Crew

Shaping dirt requires getting up pretty early in the morning sometimes. Freshly built berms and jumps require lots of tamping to get everything hard-packed. So, after each weekend build day I would go up before work to put in two hours to shape and tamp. I have to do this before I go to work because of my schedule at the bike shop, so I start riding up the mountain to work at, or before 6am. You would think that I would spend a lot time doing this sort of thing alone. I mean, who wants to wake up at 5am and climb out of bed on a rainy, dark winter morning to ride up a mountain with shovels on backpacks to do strenuous manual labor by headlamps? Fortunately for me, Dan Froula, Chad Anderson and Finn Hopper all do. On the wettest of days, in the worst kind of weather, these guys came out to help.

Dan Froula and Chad


A Date with Schwalbe’s Magic Mary

July 22, 2014 at 5:55 am

This week begins a new feature on the website – gear reviews!  The first of the series is brought to you by local multi-discipline cyclist and bike-nerd, Dan Benowitz. Dan loves nothing more than turning knobs – or tearing them off  for that matter –  to get to the bottom of what works and what doesn’t in bike technology. Here he reviews the Magic Mary Tire from Schwalbe.


Dan Benowitz Picture Dan Benowitz

- Rider Weight:170 lbs
- Experience level: Expert
- Test Bike: Specialized Demo 8
- Tire Pressure (tubeless):Wet F/R: 20/23,  Dry F/R: 25/28




Tire Overview
(Tires used for review were 26×3.35 Vert Start compound with super gravity casing)

Schwalbe Tire Company has been making bicycle tires for over 40 years. In the last few years, they have stepped up their game by introducing the new super gravity line of mountain tires. The much-awaited Hans Dampf, Magic Mary, Dirty Dan and Rock Razor tires for 2014 were at the top of my list to ride and put to the test. In this review, I will be focusing on specifically the Magic Mary. As a rider I primarily enjoy riding trail and downhill terrain with an emphasis on the descending aspect. I am an expert level rider with a knack for speed on descents. I ride everything from steep tech to super-fast flow trails.

(For more on this click READ MORE below.)

Grasshopper: Version 2.0 with Matt Durand

May 25, 2014 at 6:50 pm

I’m not the first guy with a vision for Grasshopper. I’m actually the third. Here is video of Matt Durand shredding it 3 years ago after tippled it’s length and then added wood and dirt work. Back then he called it Sloppy Seconds, but it was still Grasshopper. It’s fun to see how it’s changed.

Sloppy Seconds from Brad Walton on Vimeo.

Lake Whatcom Park Planning Meeting

April 29, 2014 at 4:05 pm

Tonight is the night. If you like riding bikes in the Bellingham, Washington area or you think that you might some day, BE THERE to show show your support! Be there if you don’t. I don’t care. Just show up and say you ride bikes here and you want another park with more mountain bike trails! No seriously, this is a great opportunity for expansion of trails in our area and the WMBC could total use our support in making it happen. Thanks!

When: 630pm Tuesday, April 29th
Where: Bellingham Senior Activity Center
315 Halleck Street
Bellingham, WA

One Month in 3.5 Minutes

April 21, 2014 at 9:23 pm

We spent four days building it in February and March. Here it is condensed down to 3 and a half minutes of video.

Building the Alexis Step-Up from manualmike on Vimeo.

First Tracks on the Alexis Step-Up

March 25, 2014 at 3:35 pm

The day is finally here. Alex Lewis and I spent 6 hours working on the final tuning of the run-in and the step-up jump on Grasshopper. After all that hard work, it was time to make this thing official. It was time to ride it! I had the helmet cam running for this, so you get to be a part of the moment too! Here’s the video..

Alexis Step-Up is DONE!

March 24, 2014 at 5:09 am

I’ve been a little quiet for awhile now and that usually means that I’m up to something. This is no different. As of today, Sunday March 23, 2014, we completed the new Grasshopper Step-Up! To say that I’m happy about it is like saying the Titanic was heavy. I’m over the freakin’ moon, man! With a total of 6 days spent working on it and countless volunteer hours invested. it’s finally done! Run-in is dialed, including the chicane after the Berm-to-Berm jump, the right-handed berm that points you at the step-up, as well as a set-up jump just before the step-up to help gauge speed needed. The whole thing works amazingly well. (I did test it out to make sure.) It’s still really, really damp and will need some time to set up so that it doesn’t need to be repaired after every run,  but it’s there and it works! Until further notice, DO NOT RIDE IT! In two weeks or so, it should be good to go.

Thanks to Terry Lewis, Alex Lewis, Holly Alcorn, Ethan Fernandez, Chad Anderson and Joe MacEachern for all your help! Hard work pays off and there was plenty of hard work going down on this project. Thanks all!

From left to right: Ethan, Alex, Joe, Terry, Holly, Me, Chad (Rocking the poncho) and Olive the dog

From left to right: Ethan, Alex, Joe, Terry, Holly, Me, Chad (Rocking the poncho) and Olive the dog




New Chapel Pics

March 8, 2014 at 7:03 pm

Brian Chapel has been busy. He moved from Gunnison, Colorado and immediately got to riding some of the biggest, steepest, scariest Freeride mountain bike trails in the area. His time has been split between riding his bike as much as humanly possible, working at the local bike shop (Fairhaven Bike) to pay the bills and shooting pics. Here is a sampling of what he’s been shooting.