Rigs of the 2023 Pinyons and Pines
Pinyons and Pines is an annual 300 to 500-mile bikepacking race that starts and ends in Flagstaff, Arizona. The route is a magnificent tour of Northern Arizona, utilizing a mixture of singletrack, dirt roads, and some pavement. With help from the participants, we’ve gathered rig and gear details on over 30 bike setups that will be lining up for tomorrow’s grand depart. Find them all here…
Pinyons and Pines is a self-supported bikepacking race that explores some of the best riding Arizona has to offer. The event starts and finishes at Flagstaff Bicycle Revolution, following a mix of singletrack, dirt roads, and pavement and showcasing the beauty of Northern Arizona. The last two years have seen around 50 riders show up for the grand depart, challenging them with near-freezing temperatures in the evenings and the looming threat of rain during the day. It’s a demanding route, and there are always a number of folks who bail early. This year, there are more than 60 riders registered on Trackleaders, and the organizers have added a 500-mile option in addition to the standard 300-mile route for those looking for even more of a challenge.
Last year’s fastest rider, Andrew Strempke, isn’t participating this year, but there are a number of familiar names whose dots we’re excited to follow, including Elizabeth Sampey, Meg Knobel, and Wyatt Spalding. The local weather forecast is looking particularly wet, so keeping warm and dry is going to be crucial for anyone looking to make it to the end of either route. Again this year, with help from the riders and event organizers Dana Ernst and Dylan Turner, we’ve gathered rider and rig details on over 30 folks planning to participate in this year’s event. Dig into them below, and then head over to the event page to follow the riders live. The grand depart takes off from Flagstaff tomorrow morning at 6:00 a.m. local time. Good luck to all the riders!
Age 34 / Santa Fe, New Mexico (USA)
BIKE: I’ll be riding a 2019 Scott Spark. Vittoria Mezcal 2.35″ tires. SRAM XX1 drivetrain. SQ labs 30X 12 degree bars. Ergon GA3 grips. Specialized Power Mirror Saddle.
BAGS: I’m running a Revelate Designs saddle bag, Rockgeist custom frame/Honeybox feed bag, JPaks top tube bag.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: Cygolite for lights. Garmin to get around. Tailfin suspension fork mounts for the bottles. Pupper not included.
Age 48 / Carbondale, Colorado (USA)
BIKE: I’ll be riding the long course on a 2017 Wayward V1 created by the artists formerly known as Why Cycles. Its name is “Badger”, and we are rigged to flip. Running a SON dynamo laced Hunt front wheel and an I9 Hydra in back with Maxxis Rekon 29×2.6″ rubber all around. This will be my first ultra on a single speed (pucker). Geared 32x20T with an Absolute Oval up front and a Problem Solvers SRAM adaptor in back.
BAGS: Custom frame bag by Rogue Panda. Feed bags and gas tank by Revelate Designs. Lunch box by Oveja Negra. Aeropack rear rack by Tailfin. I’ve also got two Tailfin suspension fork mounted cargo cages to strap on extra water for the hot bits of the course. I’ll wear a very light and voluminous REI Flash 18L pack to carry my tarp-tent, 3+ liters of water, BeFree water filter, and anything else I need to quickly cram somewhere. In total, I’ll have capacity for 9L of water. I hope to never carry more than half of that, buuuut desert.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: The dynamo will run a K-lite at night and hopefully keep my Garmin 1040 and phone charged for the duration. I’ve got a Fenix PD35 snake spotter mounted to my helmet. My shelter and sleep gear consist of a Zpacks Altaplex tarp-tent, a cut down Klymit Inertia Ozone sleeping pad, and a Sea to Summit Spark 40 degree bag.
Age 33 / Flagstaff, Arizona (USA)
BIKE: 2022 Juliana Wilder stock XT build named “Fleabane” after the little purple flowers seen blooming around Northern Arizona.
BAGS: Bags include a Revelate Designs Salty Roll strapped to the bars using an Oveja Negra front loader and lunchbox. My favorite feeder bag is from Kasybag and will hold 50oz of water and my SPOT Tracker. Frame bag and top tube bag are made by Rogue Panda will be hauling water and snacks. The seat bag will be up for review pending last minute rain gear.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: I’m bringing a sleep kit with a 30-degree bag, liner, inflatable pad, and an OR Helium emergency bivy. I always try to leave one bar bag empty at the start of a ride for road treasures, beverages, spontaneous snacks, or whatever else I may find while riding.
Age 14,975 lunar years / Flagstaff, Arizona (USA)
BIKE: Why Cycles S7 set up as a mullet single speed with a Rock Shox Pike, I9 hubs laced to We Are One rims with fresh tires, and SQ labs inner bar ends.
BAGS: Rogue Panda Ripsey saddle bag and Oveja Negra Super Wedgie and front end loader packs, Revelate feed bag.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: Sleep system includes a Big Agnes tarp, cut down Therm-a-Rest, and SOL bivy. I’ll also be packing Lasinoh and Haaka hand pumps to express breast milk while I’m out there. Go new moms!
Age 26 / Fountain Valley, California (USA)
BIKE: 2022 Santa Cruz Chameleon. Vittoria Mezcal 2.1″ tires (thanks, Jon).
BAGS: Frame bag by Rogue Panda. Fanny pack by Fratelli Pizza. Front snack bag by SMR in Flagstaff. Side/front bags by me.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: Bringing a pillow this year to enhance my sleep game. Two flashlights taped to my helmet so I don’t have to rely on a full moon to travel at night. Tums will quell my inevitable heartburn. SPOT device for tracking.
Age 23 / Tucson, Arizona (USA)
BIKE: 2021 Bombtrack Hook EXT 1x SRAM Rival Mechanical. Modifications include a PNW Coast Suspension Dropper Post, Ratio Technology 12-speed conversion with SRAM NX Eagle 11-50T cassette, 42T Wolf Tooth Elliptical chainring, 650B x 55mm Rene Herse Umtanum Ridge tires, 46cm Salsa Cowchipper Handlebars, second-hand Vision Design Clip-on Aerobars.
BAGS: Rogue Panda custom double decker frame bag, Rogue Panda AZ flag Alamogordo top tube bag, Revelate Designs Mountain Feedbags, South City Stitchworks saddlebag.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: South City Stitchworks hip pack for extra clothes and wallet/phone, Tailfin cargo cages for two 48oz Nalgenes, one bottle mounted under the down tube, Katadyn BeFree 1L for extra water capacity and filtering. Emergency bivy, sleeping bag liner, down jacket, and tarp as lightweight sleep kit. Fenix PD36R and Bontrager Pro RT lights, Anker Soundcore Life U2 headphones for music and podcasts, Wahoo Elemnt Roam for navigation, Anker battery for charging.
Age 28 / La Verkin, Utah (USA)
BIKE: I’ll be riding a Surly Karate Monkey, set up single speed with a 30:19T ratio. Rolling on 27.5+ WTB Rangers and a 120mm Bomber Z2. Wheels and cranks are stock, everything else has been changed over 4 years of ownership. Nothing fancy, but I have aluminum SQLabs 30×16 bars, Ergon GS2 grips, PNW Dropper, and capacity for 5 liters of water.
BAGS: DIY frame bag for water and repair kit, Revelate Terrapin seat bag for clothes and snacks, Porcelain Rocket Mr Horton front harness + pocket for my sleep kit and electronics, Oveja Negra Top Tube Bag and an OuterShell Stem Caddy for snacks. Off the bike, I’ll have a DIY fannypack for more snacks and easy access layers.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: After riding the bike rigid with the stock Dirt Wizards for the last four years, I finally got a suspension fork and some faster tires and it really rips now! I’m very excited for the single track. This is my third iteration of a DIY frame bag and it’s my best yet. This is my first race and I’ll be riding as a duo with my buddy Joe who is also riding single speed.
Age 26 / Flagstaff, Arizona (USA)
BIKE: 2020 Pivot Mach 4, 1×12 Shimano XT drivetrain with a 30T oval chainring, 2.4″ Maxxis Rekon/Ardent Race combo on Nobl TR33 wheels. Recently I added a 9point8 Slack-R headset that’s turned this into my favorite all-around bike that I’ve ever ridden. Running flat pedals for the race since I haven’t ridden clips yet this year and I’m not about to make P&P the first ride of the year on clips.
BAGS: Combination of Rogue Panda and Revelate bags that I’ve cobbled together over the years, and I’ll be wearing a Salomon running vest as well for some extra capacity.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: Nothing too fancy, raingear, REI sleeping bag and emergency bivy, hydration bladders for water, lights, and plenty of space for calories.
Age 54 / Tijeras, New Mexico (USA)
BIKE: Meet Barney, a custom one-off steel drop bar mountain bike fabricated by my friend Dave Salinas who sourced the finest Italian steel for this rig. Running a 120mm Rock Shox SID Ultimate fork, Whisky No. 9 24F bars, Salsa tape, and a Thomson stem. Wheels are also custom, built by Danny Swinton of Bike Works Albuquerque using DT Swiss 350 and SON 28 hubs mated to We Are One Composites Faction rims and purple spoke nipples, with reflective stickers from Rogue Panda. Drive train is a mullet Eagle using Force AXS shifters and XX1 rear derailleur, Force rear brake caliper with some other SRAM 4-piston front caliper, 10-52 x 34t drivetrain, with an extra set of blip wireless shifters on the aero bars. Running an Ergon SM Pro saddle bolted to a PNW Coast 100mm dropper post with full-time suspension.
BAGS: Running a Broadforks frame bag sewen by the wonderful Jacquelyn Van Jura containing a 2.5L Apidura bladder, a Revelate Pronghorn handlebar roll up front containing my entire sleep system (Sea to Summit Spark II bag and pillow, Mountain Laurel Designs eVent bivy, and NeoAir XLite pad), and a Revelate Shrew seat bag containing my puffy jacket and pants. A 30L pack to hold additional food, water, rain gear, toiletries, etc. Steri Pen to purify water and an extra long Ti Spork to scrape the bottom of the peanut butter jar.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: Running a Klite dynamo light mounted off a stem face plate computer mount, and a Petzel Actik Core headlamp strapped to my helmet for slower speeds. Navigation handled by my trusty Garmin Edge 1030 Plus continuously charged from the dynamo so is always on. Spare 10k mAhr cache battery for all other electronics.
Age 37 / Redlands, California (USA)
BIKE: 29”+ Ti hardtail made by Scott Quiring.
BAGS: Rockgiest frame bag, Rogue Panda top tube bag, 2 Atwater Atelier feed bags, Revelate panniers atop an OMM Elkhorn rack, and a Salsa dry bag strapped to the Jack Rack.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: Power from a Dynamo hub wired to a Cinq5 top cap charger and switched to a kLite mounted to the Jack Rack. It’s a toss up between 32×21 or 30×20 gearing. Room for 5L of water. With the singlespeed, I’ve opted to put more weight on the rear for traction out of the saddle, hence the rack and panniers and just my sleeping bag and extra layers up front. With the long distances between resupply on the 500-mile route, the extra space for food and stove is convenient.
Age 34 / Durango, Colorado (USA)
BIKE: Rocky Mountain Thunderbolt Carbon 90 BC Edition (aka Rainbow Bright) with the sweet Badgal Brooky Groundkeeper Custom frame protector. Maxxis Minion DHF and Dissector tires. Fox 36 Performance Elite fork and Fox Float DPS rear suspension. SRAM GX Eagle drivetrain.
BAGS: I’m rocking Ortlieb handlebar and seat packs on my bike. I’ll also have an Osprey Raven 14 backpack for carrying water, snacks, an extra layer and bike repair kit.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: My Big Agnes Star Fire sleeping bag and Copper Spur tent. I wasn’t planning on packing a tent, but the forecast is looking like it could get soggy. Hoping the added weight pays off in the form of dry naptime. Also, my Fox Ranger rain jacket.
Age 42 / Solon, Ohio (USA)
BIKE: Alliance Bicycles custom titanium 29 inch hardtail handmade in Hailey, Idaho by Erik Rolf. I’m running 2.35″ Maxxis Rekon Race mounted on a Enve 525 in the rear and a Reserve 25 with a SON Dynamo hub in the front for kLite illumination. Aerobars hacked together with Zipp/Profile Design for better balance of weight and comfort. SRAM Eagle with 32T chainring.
BAGS: A suite of Rockgeist bags: frame bag, Gondola seat bag and top tube bag. Because I may require more space to pack my fears I might add a small Revelate handlebar bag for e-bivy, sleeping bag and pad. This will free up my frame bag for candy. Full transparency, I’m carrying a 3 liter hydration bladder, USWE Outlander 9L. This backpack leaves the jersey pockets open.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: A collection of Montbell items including a sleeping bag, anorak puffy, wool long sleeve hoody, and Versalite rain jacket/pants. Navigation via Garmin 1040.
Jeff “El Freako” Hemperley
Age 56 / Prescott, Arizona (USA)
BIKE: Kokopelli Bike custom titanium 29er single speed. Rock Shox Reba front suspension. Stans Crest wheelset with an Ikon 2.35″ in the rear and a Rekon 2.4″ in the front. 32x22T single speed gearing. Climbing gear!
BAGS: Broadfork frame bag that will carry my 3L bladder and repair items. Broadfork top tube Stem Cell bag paired with two bar bucket bags attached to the ti stem with a Broadfork bag and pocket attached to a Ti Cycles titanium handlebar. The rear seat pod is a Revelate attached to a ti seatpost. This setup rocked the 2017 AZTR where I set the record that year on the SS. Proven brands.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: Bringing a Sol Escape bivy, lightweight quilt, a pretend-a-pad (very minimal Klymit Inertia x frame skeleton air pad) and a Sol tarp. Fenix lights for the helmet and bar. Etrex 20 for navigation. Spot X tracker. No stove.
Age 24 / Salt Lake City, Utah (USA)
BIKE: I’ll be riding my Specialized Epic Evo. All SRAM components, 2.35″ ground control tires, Ergon grips.
BAGS: Bags are a mix of Rogue Panda and Revelate. Tailfin fork mounts for bottle cages.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: Fenix PD-35 will light the way, Wahoo ELEMNT BOLT will guide me, and a Camelbak chase vest will keep me hydrated. Sleep kit consists of a 20 deg quilt and SOL bivy. Gummy bears in the top-tube bag, as usual.
Age 33 / Longmont, Colorado (USA)
BIKE: Pivot Trail 429.
BAGS: Custom frame bag from Jpaks, Restrap race top tube bag, and a Revelate Designs Shrew bag out back.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: A Spacer cradle rack from Goodday Curiosity out of Gunnison, CO. to keep all the cables from rubbing.
Age 34 / Chico, California (USA)
BIKE: I’ll be rolling on a 2017 Norco Optic C9.2 29er with a Maxxis Forekaster 2.35” in the front and an Ikon 2.35” in the rear. I had a wheelset built up with We are One Faction rims, a White Industries XMR Boost rear hub and a SON dynamo hub up front. The drivetrain is a Shimano XT 2×11 and the saddle is a Brooks C17.
BAGS: Rockgeist Gondola 4L seat pack and Swami handlebar harness with an 8L Sea to Summit dry bag, Revelate Designs Mag Tank and Jerry Can on the top-tube, Carsick Designs Goodie Bags, and a Rad Works custom framebag.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: I’ll be using a kLite Dynamo system for keeping the path in front of me lit while on the move. My shelter and sleep kit includes a Western Mountaineering Highlite sleeping bag, a Nemo Tensor sleeping pad and, a Nemo Spike Storm tent. For navigation, I’ll be using a Garmin Oregon 450.
Age 28 / Boise, Idaho (USA)
BIKE: Scott Spark 910 with 2.4″ Rekon Race tires, Ergon grips, Crank Brothers double shot pedals.
BAGS: Rogue Panda custom frame bag and matching top tube bag with Ripsey seat pack. Sea to Summit dry bag, Salsa front pouch, and a couple of Revelate feed bags on the handlebar. Water bottles are mounted with electrical tape and Voile straps. I will also wear a 1.5L hydration vest.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: Sleep system is Enlightened Equipment quilt, Therm-a-Rest pad, and Sol bivvy. Electronics include Garmin Edge 830 and phone as backup for navigation, 2 cache batteries, 2 pairs of headphones, and helmet light. Seat pack is primarily filled with clothing for warm and rain protection!
Age 38 / San Diego, California (USA)
BIKE: I’ll be riding my Santa Cruz Blur. It has Maxxis Ardent 2.35″ tires, on Light Bicycle Wheels carbon rims with I9 hubs. It has a 30t Wolf tooth chainring in the front, Ergon grips, and Salsa Bend bars. I’ve been riding on flat One Up composite pedals, and I haven’t fallen in love with the flats yet, but my body has been WAY less taxed on the HAB I end up doing in flat shoes (Specialized Rime flat shoes btw.. so good, much better than their clip version IMO). Also changed all my bikes over to the Brooks C19 all-weather saddle and couldn’t be happier with it.
BAGS: My favorite bags are the Rockgeist custom frame bag, and the Speedgoat front roll. Revelate cupholders and feed bag, and a Wolf Tooth 1L bag under the seat for my tools gives me almost full dropper use on the small squish frame. King Cage bottle mounts for a liter on each fork. I’ll also be carrying my Osprey Salida backpack.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: Last year I didn’t have warm enough of a sleep kit on hand, but was motivated, and it worked out to skimp on sleep. This year I’ve got a great Enlightened Equipment 30 degree quilt, Borah tarp, and less fitness :) so I’m ready to get better rest as needed. I’m excited to ride that region again, and keeping fingers crossed for good weather!
Age 27 / Tucson, Arizona (USA)
BIKE: I’ll be riding my first P&P on my Salsa Cutthroat, named Oat. This frankenstein set up will be rocking Redshift’s ShockStop suspension system, giving some light cushion to the stem and seatpost of this otherwise rigid setup, as well as greater control and comfort from their 50mm Kitchen Sink drop-bars with Cruise Control grips. Maxxis Rekon 29×2.4″s for rubber and aero bars for allowing some blood to return to my fingers. Drivetrain is a SRAM Apex/Eagle hybrid using a Ratio kit, resulting in 1×12 shifting with 36 teeth in the front and an 11-52 in the back.
BAGS: Given a possible 140 mile food carry in this ride, I’ll be bringing a brand new custom Rogue Panda full frame bolt on bag, to be complemented by two feed bags, a top tube bag from Dispersed, and some random saddle bag from BICAS for my repair kit. Surrounding my torso will be a Salomon ultra running vest with a 1.5L bladder.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: My Garmin Edge 530 will guide me to success and remind me when my heart rate is too high, pills and a HydraPak Flux filter will stave off dysentery, my safety green windbreaker will keep my visible and warm during the cold descents of the night, and a finely curated suite of tunes and podcasts will occasionally keep me excited through my Shockz OpenRun Pro headphones. To top it all off, a cycling cap from Campfire Cycling in Tucson, complete with holes cut out to combat the heat in the Verde Valley.
Age 65 / Phoenix, Arizona (USA)
BIKE: I’ll be riding my sweet Chumba Stella Ti with a Fox Step-Cast 120m fork, rolling on 29” wheels with Nox rims, Vittoria Mezcal 2.35″ tires and SON 28 Dynamo/DT Swiss 350 hubs. Drivetrain is a combo of Shimano XT/XTR, 1×12 with 10×51T gearing and a 32T chainring. For old man comfort, an Egron SMC Sport Gel saddle attached to a Cane Creek Thudbuster ST. For lighting, I will be using the kLite Ultra v2 lamp.
BAGS: Rouge Panda framebag, Revelate seat/handlebar bags, Rockgeist top tube and Honeypot feedbags attached to a Spacelink.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: The Apidura 3L Frame Pack Hydration Bladder, which fits into the Rouge Panda framebag perfectly, will help keep weight off the saddle. Sleep kit includes a Fly Creek HV1 tent, Therm-a-Rest Neoair Xlite pad, Enlightened Equipment 20° quilt, and a piece of Tyvek for ground cover. Navigating with a Garmin Edge 530 and eTrex 30x for back up.
Age 52 / Carlsbad, California (USA)
BIKE: I’ll be riding the Pinyons and Pines long course on a Salsa Fargo. The bike is set up with 2.6″ Maxxis Icons.
BAGS: Revelate Designs handlebar harness, frame bag, mag tank and Jerry can. I also mounted one Porcelain Rocket microwave pannier for overflow.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: For sleeping, I’m bringing an Enlightened Equipment 40 degree quilt, OR bivy and pad. I’ve modified the build for off road comfort with a Rockshox Reba fork, dropper post, and Curve Walmer 55 bars. My Salsa runs more like a drop bar hardtail!
Age 35 / Flagstaff, Arizona (USA)
BIKE: I’ll be riding my Why Cycles Wayward V2. It goes with SRAM GX and stops with XT. For squish there’s a Fox 34 up front and my legs out back. I am on my second set of OneUp carbon bars because they’re so comfy. And it sits on a set of Mercury wheels with Maxxis Rekon tanwalls.
BAGS: Pretty much revelate all around aside from the Rogue Panda top tube bag.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: I have a Selle Anatomica leather saddle that I really love. Also, the bike is an XL so the frame bag is huge which means I can carry way too much food which is nice.
Age 34 / Phoenix, Arizona (USA)
BIKE: I am riding a very sturdy Surly Karate Monkey, singlespeed 32x22T (I’m always in the wrong gear so I might as well make it an “easy” one), 27.5 x 2.6″ Maxxis Rekons.
BAGS: Several Oveja Negra bags and a custom Rogue Panda frame bag add some pops of color on the High-Vis Black frame. Some Sea To Summit dry bags and a Tumbleweed Mini Pannier rack round out my storage.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: Fenix BC26R lights and Taylor Swift are going to keep me company through the nights. My weight in Sour Patch Kids and Nerds Gummy Clusters (also some Skratch liquid carbs and burritos!) for fuel. I will be using a Garmin Edge to help me stay on track, and trying out a new HydraPak Filter for water, since it will be everywhere.
Age 37 / Tucson, Arizona (USA)
BIKE: I’m riding a custom Why Cycles El Jefe I built last year. It rolls on Vittoria Mezcal tires and handbuilt wheels from Campfire Cycling (SON 28 dynamo hub, DT Swiss481 rim, 2.35” tire front / Onyx hub, DT Swiss421 rim, 2.1” tire rear), powered through an AXS GX/X01 Eagle drivetrain with White Industries crank, BB, and 32T chainring. The cockpit features a BikeYoke dropper, Selle Anatomica seat, Paul stem and lever, Ti Oddity Razorbar, Ergon grips, and MONē brass bits.
BAGS: Mostly Rogue Panda with Collette Marie prints, custom BXB handlebar on a Tim Tas Steerer Rack, Tailfin rear, Revelate feeders and downtube bag.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: I love this bag setup, especially how the locally made BXB handlebar bag integrates with the steerer rack. The Selle Anatomica seat is the ultimate hammock.
Age 35 / Boulder, Colorado (USA)
BIKE: I’ll be riding an Otso Voytek trimmed with Wolf Tooth Components stuff (headset, chainring, dropper, grips, bottle cages, tools, etc). Maxxis Ikon 29×2.35″ tires. Widefoot cargo cages. Fenix BCR21Rv3 and HM50R headlight and helmet lights, cygolite rear tail light, and 16,000ma/h of battery. Ride Farr mini aero bar, BikeTog thumb hooks, spurbell, and Garmin Inreach. Shimano XT stuff. Brooks C13 for my butt.
BAGS: Porcelain Rocket seat pack. JPaks top tube bag and front bag. OruCase feed bags. Wolf Tooth downtube tool roll. Oveja Negra seatpost bag. And I’ll be wearing a PedalEd hydration vest.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: HydraPak and Nalgene water stuff for ~6L flex. Enlightened Equipment puffy jacket, pants, and booties with a Therm-a-Rest Uberlite 3/4 length pad and Mountain Laurel Designs FKT Event bivy makes up my sleep kit. PedalEd bibs and riding stuff. Garmin for navigation and tracking stuff.
Age 29 / Flagstaff, Arizona (USA)
BIKE: Giant XTC Advanced 29 with a Works Components -1° headset and a RockShox SID 120mm fork. Wheels: DT Swiss XM421 rims on Industry Nine Hydra hubs (built by me). Tires: Maxxis Forekaster 2.35” front; Rekon Race 2.25” (with Tubolight SL insert) rear. Drivetrain is a 1×11 mash-up: Shimano shifter & derailleur, SRAM cranks, chain, and 10-42T cassette. Other bits: SRAM Guide RSC brakes, OneUp dropper, WTB Rocket saddle, 11-year-old Shimano XT pedals, and ESI Extra Chunky grips plus some Togs and bar tape to let me shift my hands around.
BAGS: Framebag sewn by me, with patch by my good friend Tommy Breeze. The rest is a hodgepodge: Topeak handlebar harness, Blackburn top tube bag, feed bags from Topeak and Goodwill, Rockgeist Gondola saddlebag, SKS Anywhere mounts for bottle cages on the fork. I’ll wear a Camelbak Chase vest.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: I’ll be navigating with a Garmin eTrex 20x and carrying an InReach Mini for tracking and SOS purposes. I have a Lezyne light and Petzl headlamp for pedaling in the dark, and a Sea to Summit sleeping bag, Nemo sleeping pad, and my homemade tarp for when I can’t keep pedaling.
Age 32 / Paradox, Colorado (USA)
BIKE: 2021 Salsa Cutthroat by the name of Yarrow.
BAGS: Salsa frame bag, Oveja Negra Bootlegger Fork Bags, Revelate Mag Tank, feed bags, and a handlebar roll.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: Exclusively fueled by Trader Joes Scandanavian Swimmers.
Age 26 / Tucson, Arizona (USA)
BIKE: I’ll be riding Pinyons and Pines on a Why Cycles El Jeff. It’s set up singlespeed (32×20) and rolling on DHF/Dissector tires with lots of mud clearance—we’ll see if it’s enough. Chunkie’s, Cane Creek bar ends and the lovely Hunter Smooth Move bar.
BAGS: Homemade frame, top tube, and stem bags, Oveja Negra harness and Lunchbox, and Revelate seatpack. Also an Evoc hip pack.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: Shoutout to SeanT for letting me borrow his Wahoo and to all the gas stations that stock Oreos.
Age 46 / Albuquerque, New Mexico (USA)
BIKE: I will be riding my old Niner Air 9 RDO with Fox 32 fork. The drivetrain has been partially refreshed with AXS GX in the rear for 32×10-50T gearing. Maxxis Ikon 2.35s on Light Bicycle rims, with a SON up front and Chris King in the rear. Ergon saddle, Niner cockpit bits, and a Farr Aero Bolt-on.
BAGS: Revelate Pika seat bag, Ranger frame bag, Harness with Sea to Summit dry bag, and feed bags. Bike Bag Dude Garage on the top tube.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: kLite Ultra v1, Dual USB with Voltaic cache, and rear Qube. Outbound Lighting Hangover on my helmet. Garmin 1040 Solar.
Age 45 / Driggs, Idaho (USA)
BIKE: 2018 Pivot LES with a Fox 32 100mm fork. Stans Crest wheels with Maxxis Ardent 2.4″ tires front and rear. An 11-speed XT/XTR (11-46 x 28T) drivetrain. Crankbrothers Highline 7 dropper. Ergon grips and a Specialized saddle.
BAGS: Rogue Panda frame bag sporting the Wyoming flag buffalo. Revelate’s Salty Roll in an Oveja Negra front harness. Two Rockgeist Honey Pots. A Dispersed Bikepacking large top tube bag. And lastly, I’m excited to finally try out Rogue Panda’s new Ripsey seatpost bag so I can finally use the dropper post again on my small sized bike.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: Western Mountaineering Caribou 35 degree bag with either an OR Helium bivy or a Nemo 2P Hornet tent (watching the crazy monsoon forecast still). Therm-a-Rest NeoAir sleeping pad. The Fenix PD36R light on my helmet and the Fenix BC26R light on my bars. A USWE Shred 16L hydration pack for carrying everything else.
Age 34 / USA
BIKE: I’ll be riding my SOULCRAFT Holy Roller built around 29-inch wheels. The frame was hand made in May 2014 (yay 9 years) with steel tubing by Sean Walling of Soulcraft in Petaluma California. I have the bike set up with single speed rocker style dropouts to make use of a Rohloff hub which has been incredibly reliable. The Rohloff hub is modified with a GEBLA Rohbox to allow use of mechanical brake levels to shift the hub instead of the classic twist shifter. The front wheel has a SON28 dynamo hub and both wheels are laced with 32 spoke Velocity Blunt 35 rims. I plan on using Vittoria Mezcal tires (2.6″ front, 2.35″ rear), but currently have Maxxis Ardents on the bike. I attached a Tumbleweed rack for extra carrying capacity and better organization of gear. For the cockpit I have knock-off titanium jones bars and have bent the ends to have a little less flare. For breaking I use Shimano SLX 4 piston brakes. A Rockshox SID suspension fork smooths out Arizona “gravel” roads. Shimano XT cranks attached with XT 8020 SPD pedals.
BAGS: A smorgasbord of bags complete this bike. On my Tumbleweed rack are Roadrunner Buoy bags as “panniers”, Bedrock “coffee bag” for holding tools, Salsa dry bag on top of the rack. OG Rogue Panda Arizona state frame bag, Oracle down tube bag and jerry can. Revelate Designs Mag Tank 2000. Lastly, a Swift Industries Zeitgest handlebar bag. I also like to use an ultralight Salomon vest to hold snacks, extra water if necessary, and small important items.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: GOPRO Hero 9 for recording memories. Shimano XM9 trekking boots to keep my feet warm and dry which are also extremely comfortable to hike-a-bike in. KLITE bikepacker ULTRA v2 dynamo light, handlebar switch, and usb charger for powering two lipstick sized batteries. Black Diamond headlamp during camp or too see while snail crawling up steep trail when the dynamo cant output enough. Garmin Edge 1040 solar for three to five ~10 hour days of navigation and an InReach for my satellite beacon, Forerunner 955 solar watch for backup navigation and heart rate tracking. MSR 4L dromedary bag in the frame bag for hydration. Katadyn Befree for water filtration. Big Agness Tiger Wall 3 person “mansion” for being cozy and stretching out at night as the weather for P&P is always unpredictable. To keep warm, I use down pants and jacket with Marmot Hydrogen 30 degree sleeping bag and Therm-a-Rest Neo Air sleeping pad. A small titanium pot and ultra-light gas stove for warming up dehydrated meals and morning coffee. My Lezyne mini floor drive pump keeps tires inflated. Some of my clothes include Outdoor Research rain jacket and gaiters, GORE rain pants, IBEX arm warmers, Heavy pedal wind vest, Pearl Izumi pro bib shorts and leg warmers, REI long sleeve sun hoodie, Halo sweatband and Smartwool socks.
Age 42 / Blue River, Colorado (USA)
BIKE: My Chameleon, “Charlie” has no original components at this point other than the frame and the Reverb dropper. After breaking an alloy rim last year on the CTR I’m riding Santa Cruz Reserve 30 SL wheels with DT Swiss 350 hubs and Maxxis Rekon Exo+ 2.4″ tires. Drivetrain is mostly SRAM XX1 with an XO1 crankset. Other components include G2 brakes and H2S rotors, Race Face Next R bars and Atlas pedals, and a sexy ANVL stem that adds a little bling and makes me smile on long days.
BAGS: My bags are a mix of Oveja Negra, Rockgeist (thank you Greg for the custom sizes), and Jpaks. For Pinyons and Pines I’m bringing the Old Man Mountain Elkhorn rack that worked super well for me in the 2022 Utah Mixed Epic. This has become a great piece of equipment for me having such a short inseam. The rack lets me use my dropper while still having weight on the back of my bike.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: I spent a ton of miles on my bike last season and have come to realize that my Selle Italia saddle might be my most important piece of gear. Ride Concepts Flume Boa shoes (for flats) have been comfy and indestructible and also count on my list of most important items. I really think a happy butt and comfy feet are the most important thing once the ride is linger than 400 or 500 miles, at least for me. Bringing the Big Agnes Fly Creek UL 1 between the weather forecast and the rattlesnakes. I think I’ll appreciate being able to sleep without worrying about critters over the lower elevation zones of the 500 mile route.
Age 39 / Reno, Nevada (USA)
BIKE: This bike just does it all. I stuck with the titanium high post, and a 100mm Reba up front. Really wide BTLOS rims laced to DT350’s with Rekon 2.4″ tires. 32t chainring on eeWings cranks, with Eagle AXS shifting and a 10-50T cassette. Carbon Enve bars and SQLabs inner bar ends, Syntace Flatforce Stem. Shimano handles the braking with XT brakes and rotors, as well as XTR pedals. S-Works Mirror saddle, cause I’m hooked.
BAGS: All homebrewed bags and mounts here aside from the Drj0n Strap Deck. Liteskin fabric all around. Mini rear stabilizer rack and platform with a waterproof 5L bag containing only clothing. Kydex stabilized frame bag and top tube bag. The framebag is where the food lives, along with spares and repair kit. The top tube bag is easy access stuff, and electronics. Small waterproof handlebar roll houses extra layers for the bottom half. Two small stem bags (not shown) strictly for 500ml bottles.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: A few notable mentions go out to my DIY 40g Apex Puffy Shorts and Ornot Kit head to toe. Fenix lighting keeps me moving through the night.
Age 40 / Tucson, Arizona (USA)
BIKE: I’m riding the 330-mile version of this year’s Pinyons and Pines on a Revel Bikes El Jefe 29″ SS. Gear ratio TBD as this is my first time racing on a SS and the internal debate will continue until the final hour when I’ll probably flip a coin. My longest ride in one go on a SS up to this point is 40 miles, so this should be interesting. I’m running Maxxis Rekon 2.4″ front and rear on a pair of Revel Wheels RW27, a OneUp dropper post, Etrex 32 for navigation, and my trusty old Fenix PD35 flashlight set for lighting.
BAGS: Rogue Panda all around: custom framebag, Canelo handlebar harness/drybag, Ripsey seatpost harness/drybag, a couple of old modified Bismarck feedbags, and a custom top tube bag I like to call the “AlamoGordoLongo.” It’s sort of ridiculous, but also awesome.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: Katabatic Gear Bristlecone Bivy, I love this thing, haven’t had an ant incident since getting it last year, best decision I’ve ever made. Thermarest Hyperion 20 bag, going warm on the sleeping bag and super light on my layers. We’ll see if this ends up being a terrible idea. Still debating about my Slingfin Splitwing tarp, was planning to leave it behind but as a veteran of this race (and this race’s weather trends) I should know better. Only time will tell if I end up being smart or dumb.
Age 50 / Santa Barbara, California (USA)
BIKE: Trek Marlin 8 hardtail brand new last week! My first 29er.
BAGS: Homemade frame bag, top tube bag, and snack bag, and Revelate Designs Sweetroll & seatpost bag. Hose clamped-on water bottle holders. Small backpack with a high vis triangle.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: Rain jacket and pants after seeing the forecast! Just got a magnet-type bike computer for Mothers Day so I’ll know my slow slow speed. OR Helium bivy, although I’m planning more of a “tent” than “bivy” sleep schedule. Still hanging on to my etrex 22x.
Age 38 / Flagstaff, Arizona (USA)
BIKE: My trusty bulletproof steed is a 2018 Motobecane Fantom titanium hardtail paired with a Fox Step Cast 34 120mm Fork. Drivetrain is a mix of Shimano XT and SLX 1×12 with a Wolf Tooth 30T front chainring. The rolling bits are Light Bicycle AM930 carbon wheels laced to DT Swiss 240 hubs with a Maxis Rekon 2.4″ front and Rekon Race 2.35″ on the rear. Cockpit includes a PNW Components Cascade 125mm dropper with an Ergon SM Pro saddle, 800mm Renthal Fatbars, Ergon GS1 grips and aero bars.
BAGS: My aero bars and harness take up the same position on the handlebars so I’m going with my make shift budget harness which is a couple of 1” utility gear straps and a Sea to Summit Drybag. Also rolling with Revelate feed bags, Dispersed Bikepacking Gear Mega top tube bag, and a Dispersed frame bag. As always, no seat bag or rear rack – only a tool wrap.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: Ultralight Sleep system is a Big Agnes Fly Creek UL1 Fast Fly + Footprint, Klymit Inertia X-Frame pad, Mountain Hardware Phantom Spark 28 degree bag, Klymit Pillow, and Goose Feet down booties – all compressed in the front roll. Bonus items for this race and its forecasted cold, heat and early monsoon conditions are proper rain gear, the tent, Pearl Izumi Sun Legs/Arms, a Salomon Adv Skin 12 hydration vest and 10,000 calories of Tailwind Endurance fuel – woop!
Age 35 / Phoenix, Arizona (USA)
BIKE: I’ll be riding a 2013 Salsa El Mariachi titanium single speed with a repaired seat stay weld. The Hope pro wheelset wrapped in 2.4” Maxxis Rekon tires and 100mm of front travel will hopefully keep me rubber side down.
BAGS: I purchased a Revelate seat bag before I found Oveja Negra who made the rest of my bike bags and hip pack. The Revelate bag has a recall repair and all the Oveja Negra bags are from the “stupendously sexy seconds” pile. Reduce, reuse, recycle!
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: I’ll be navigating with a Garmin Fenix 6 pro solar and night riding with a Fenix BC26R light and 3 spare batteries. I’m taking a “sleep kit” consisting of a partial foam pad, tarp, and warm clothes. Nutrition will be mostly Skratch and Filiburto’s burritos. Thanks to Burnsey at Oddity for the super comfortable steel Oddmone bars and Endless bikes for the 21T cog.
Age 44 / Hot Springs, Arkansas (USA)
BIKE: Moots RigormootiSS. Black Sheep fork.
BAGS: Bags by Alpine Luddites.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: Maxxis Ardent 2.4” tires, 27.5” up front x 26” rear. 32 x 20T gearing.
Age 60 / Truckee, California (USA)
BIKE: Otso Voytek. Shimano XT drivetrain, Magura MT7 brakes, Light Bicycle wheelset, with Hope Pro 2 hubs. Fox 34 Stepcast w/ 120mm of travel, Raceface stem, bars and cranks, Fox Transfer 200mm dropper, Wilderness Trails Volt Ti saddle, Crank Brothers pedals. Wolf Tooth products include the seatpost clamp, Drop Stop chainring, Valais 25 dropper stopper. I just added a Wolftooth ReMote BarCentric dropper post lever. Now I can run my Fox remote lock lever and the dropper lever together on the left side of my bars.
BAGS: I’m running a full frame bag from Chubby Bag Co. I like to use it for gear and my 100 oz. hydration bladder. The other bags include a Carousel Design Works bar bag, Oveja Negra Chuckbucket bar bag, Bedrock Tapeats handlebar bag, and a Rogue Panda Monumental Loop top tube bag.
GEAR HIGHLIGHTS: My sleep kit includes a SOL Escape Lite Bivy Western Mountaineering HighLight sleeping bag, Therm-a-Rest NeoAir UberLite sleeping pad and my CooCoon pillow. My lighting is one Exposure Diablo light and a basic headlamp. For navigation I’ll use a Garmin Edge 1030 and I’ll have the route on Gaia and Ride with GPS up on my iPhone.
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