December 8, 2010
December 4, 2010
Leave a Comment
Our STAY MOVING Clinic was a good time.
We had a great turn out. It was a good mix of people looking to extend their riding season, get into snowshoes, or just happy to be in a room full of like-minded lunatics.
We’ve got our photos up on Flickr here.
Thanks to James from Louis Garneau and many thanks to all the nice folks who came and hung out with us.
October 21, 2010
Every Fall, as the post-Interbike bliss begins to fade, there is a rush of people looking for the “old” stuff that will soon be superseded by the “new” stuff. Sometimes it’s the color, sometimes it’s the spec, sometimes a little bit of column ‘A’ and a little bit of column ‘B’. This has become a time of year we especially enjoy because, as proud purveyors of “wierdo” bikes, we tend to have some of those bikes ready and waiting. We often joke that we should raise the prices as they get more and more rare, but we’re bike retailers, not bike collectors. We want to sell them… to you.
Exhibit A: The Fargo XT in Fun Guy Green. We have those.
This is an incredible bike that has been spec’d, re-spec’d and re-respec’d. Some people thought Salsa was off their rocker for releasing this build, but we thought it was brilliant. We have some demo’s left – Large and XL. Selling for a song, too.
Next up is the beautiful Salsa Casseroll – geared in Gold and single in Mustard (one of the most delicious colors to date).
September 18, 2010
Leave a Comment
We did some rearranging ’round here. I thought it’d be a good time to remind everyone of some of the cool stuff we got. Some of it isn’t even new stuff, in fact, some of it here has been here a bewilderingly long time. Some of you who’ve never been here might see for the first time that having a full size run of Surly LHTs, CCs, and Salsa Casserolls, Vayas, and Fargos is an everyday kinda deal here.
August 21, 2010
Despite having 8 days to plan and promote the event, I think the Salsa Cycles Preview Night was a success. Dave G had come a long way in a short time and rolled into town around 3pm. We rearranged the floor to exhibit the new goods and once again celebrated the luxury we have in a good space.
We had a good turnout of local and regional attendees. We’ve learned that good brands attract good people and this event was just another example. The environment was amiable, welcoming, and relaxed. At sunset, Fire Chief Tyler Grey McK. got the campfire going outside. Eventually the party simmered down around the coals for s’mores.
The new goods were very well received. The Mukluk was the centerpiece of the night, but the Ti models and new Casseroll were also garnering attention.
Russ and I took Dave out for a cross ride the next morning. We showed him the Hopkins course and took him down to Afton for a few loops. I’ll expand on this later, but Afton Forest Preserve is fantastic. This is a recent discovery for us. I rode there on Monday and we found even more trails riding with Dave. It is perfect training ground for cyclocross. There are probably 4 miles of mowed paths intertwined in the preserve.
Thanks to Dave and Salsa Cycles for bringing the goods. It was a blast.
Check out our Flickr gallery for all the photos from the night, courtesy of THE John Campen, Dave G, Eric S, and moi.
August 13, 2010
We’re sitting on a bus. In a parking lot. At a Road Ranger. On the South Side of Rockford. Drinking Miller High Life.Posted by Tobie under Bike Touring, Bikes & Beer, Community, Dig it., FreeRoading, Illinois Cycling, In the Shop, New Glarus, Salsa
When Aaron had said these words, I realized I had never been so emotionally torn in my life – do I break down and weep or do I wet myself laughing? We had just tried and failed the 2010 New Glarus Eleventy ride and, due to certain legalities, were now recovering from the angriest 30 mile finish to 100 miles of good riding south of the Wisconsin border. As the title states, the inglorious end to our day could be seen as “found wanting”, but in the end, it was fantastic.
This is Arik Gum. He’s a faithful Slender Fungus rider and perhaps the most loyal Saturday morning rider in DeKalb. He’s always happy to be riding and when he was drafted in get into the police car 40mi into the ride, he said “aw man, it was just starting to rain. This is my kind of weather…”
As you’ll remember, the New Glarus Eleventy is a 110 mile ride up to New Glarus, Wisconsin. To get everyone back, we have a wonderful bike bus courtesy of Corey and Team Blonde. (Author’s note: NCC does not condone the painting of women on school buses).
Corey’s team has had the bus for 10 years or so and for the last two NG110′s, when asked if you need a special license for it, replies “We’ve had this bus for 10 years and never been pulled over or had any problems at all.” So this year, I thought it would be cool to recruit my father to come along and drive the bus for us. All of the NCC Crew was stoked to hear he would be on board, as he is a great character to have around. Perfect guy for the job.
So when he first saw the bus, he looked at me and said, “Don’t I need a special license to drive that bus?” I confidently replied, “They’ve had this bus for 10 years and never been pulled over or had any problems at all. Plus, there are so many other potentially illegal things inside the bus that the license would be the last of your worries.”
I’ve said many, many times and I feel it is a statement of my worldview when I say “God’s middle name is Murphy.” Of course my dad got pulled over. The officer even said it was a random inspection and my dad was driving perfectly. The officer said the bus wouldn’t move an inch unless we found someone with a CDL to drive it.
Enter the aforementioned Arik Gum. Arik is a full-time Trucker. He hauls loads of pigs for a living (and would do the same today). He had decided to ride the NG110 the day before and we’re very glad he did. When my dad gave the officer the cue sheet for our ride, another officer drove out to find us. He was actually a really good guy and quite accommodating to let Arik throw his bike in the back of the squad car. We particularly enjoyed the little “piggy” on his antennae:
They drove back to the bus and after Corey was issued a fistful of warnings and my dad summoned to court in Rockford next month, they were on their way to meet us in Durand. The rest of us had ridden the 30 miles up and were enjoying our lunch half-naked while our clothing dried out from the rain.
The officers had told Arik his license would be enough to get us and get us home, but because it wasn’t a “passenger” CDL, he’d best not cross the state line and risk getting pulled over again. He could lose his license, which is his livelihood. So when we had all the details, we unanimously decided not to ride on to New Glarus. The majority of the riders opted to ride 3o miles back south to Rockford to knock out a century.
A few of us entertained the thought of riding all the way back to DeKalb, (140mi total) but that idea quickly dissipated when the pace ramped up on the way back. It had already been a hard ride. There were a few kicks in the first 30 miles and our legs were aching as we got back on our bikes. I’m not one to place blame, but, since he doesn’t live here anymore and came back just to tear our legs off, I will tell you that we were hammering because of this man:
Jay is ex-NCC, now WF. He’s down in Springfield riding uber-mileage and the kid’s just plain blessed with the giddyup. He posted a write-up for this ride on his blog, The Chrome Fork Chrown, but failed to admit that he was bringing the pain. I’m glad he did. It was fun. The 30mi back to Rockford was fought well. We had a stiff headwind and I think it is hillier going south. (joke). There were 15, then there were 8, and then there were 4 riders that toiled to keep the pace up. The Nevdal brothers and myself kept up with Jay, but it took everything I had.
We started to feel quite special when no other riders came in for 5 minutes. Then 10. Then 15. We thought we had just smeared them and then found out the next groups had made some wrong turns. Everyone made it back eventually and everyone was happy it was over. It was a balmy 88 degrees by the end of the ride.
So that’s what put us in the parking lot of the Road Ranger on the south side of Rockford drinking Miller High Life. A team of 20 thirsty riders can make quick work of 2 30packs, let me tell you. We pointed the bus towards Fatty’s and headed back to DeKalb.
Thanks to all the riders, drivers, officers, and Road Rangers that made the Non Glarus 100 possible. It was an all-star cast of players and I was glad for every person there.
Thanks to Joel and Ryan for a handful of pics. See all the photos here.
August 11, 2010
It’s our pleasure and honor to announce a special event taking place next Wednesday here at North Central Cyclery. Salsa Cycles will be here to show off a handful of their new and never-before-seen bikes and components for the upcoming 2011 model year. The event will feature product giveaways from Salsa and NCC, Test Rides (after a precursory background check and DNA sampling), Campfire, Weenie Roast, S’mores, and, of course, beervezas.
The showstopping addition to the Salsa lineup is the new Mukluk.
The Mukluk is Salsa’s new snowbike and you’ll be able to see it live and in person. (Well, you’ll be in person. It will be in bicycle). We’ve already been told the Mukluk is going to be a tough bike to get a hold of, so we’ll be taking pre-orders at the event.
Another pair of beauties that are hard to obtain that will be present at the event are the Ti Mariachi and Ti La Cruz models – complete and ready for test rides.
The Ti Mariachi made a cameo here last winter. Our first Ti Salsa, the Ti La Cruz, finally arrived last week after being on order for months! The Ti family from Salsa will be growing this year, but you’ll have to stay tuned for more info on those new arrivals as they come.
Also making an appearance will be the new steel Mariachi.
Other new and never-before-seen stuff will be present at NCC. You’ll have to come and see it yourself. I truly am not at liberty to say what it will be.
Salsa will also have some prototypes of their new line of racks and “gear cages” to show off, too. These are impressive.
The festivities begin at 7pm on Wednesday night. Please feel free to send an rsvp to email@example.com so we can buy enough weenies, vege-weenies, and s’morestuffs.
April 23, 2010
Trans-Iowa 6 begins at 4am tomorrow morning. Ari and Russ left today – that’s literally 1/2 of our normal staff. Our hope and prayer is that they make it to the finish line with all limbs and mental faculties intact. There is always hope.
They’ll ride 3 centuries back to back in the gravel wilderness of Iowa in less than 36 hours.
Most people don’t even know what the Trans-Iowa is. Around here, it’s been the only thing we’ve talked about for the last 3 months (and the only thing Russ and Ari have thought about for much longer). Their level of commitment has been impressive, inspiring, and routinely mind-blowing since late fall. They maintained a consistent Wednesday night ride all winter, sometimes riding into the wee hours. Their overnight centuries were the most impressive of all. Not just the fact that they did it, but the fact that they could recover and be productive and useful the next day. I remember recently hearing Russ remark, “well, it was just a hundred miles…”
The weather report was bleak at the start of the week, but it’s grown brighter as the day grew closer. Ari made his final bike choice only a day or two ago. The choice was whether to ride the juggernaut Fargo for wider tires on wet gravel, or the feathery La Cruz since he’d probably be carrying the bike anyway. He settled on the La Cruz. Russ rode his Gunnar Crosshairs. His tax return went almost completely to making the bike race-ready. The man has priorities.
They’ll return bodily – Russ to class and Ari to work – by 10am on Monday. I expect mental return to take place sometime on Wednesday.
Ride well, mes frères.
March 25, 2010
Leave a Comment
Salsa bikes have a unique sizing structure which can be pretty confusing, even to the people that talk about it all day every day. You can often overhear one of us on the phone saying “you’re looking for a 56? you mean a 55? no? oh, you want the equivalent of a 56, so you need a 53. yes. trust me”.
Good thing Salsa’s new website is amazing…
Pick your bike, tab through the geometry and fit charts. They are very well done. We’re trying to keep a few sizes of the our popular models in stock so you can actually ride them before you buy them (novel, eh?). We’re expecting the new Casseroll doubles in today, and we’re building up the rest of our Vayas and Chilis soon. A test ride trumps a fit chart anyday, but the fit chart is a great start.
Sometimes they expound on the more unique bikes, as they did yesterday with the Fargo: http://salsacycles.com/culture/how_to_pick_the_proper_size_fargo/
February 25, 2010