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Photo Essay: A to Z of an Arizona Road Trip

An A to Z Guide on Adventure

Words by Paul Stevens
April 21st, 2014

After a few months of riding through the dark, wet, spongy, BC winter, my washing machine was pumped to hear I was leaving on a trip to the desert. Finally it had a chance to take a break from chugging gallons upon gallons of muddy water, and rest in the knowledge that it could take a week off, and the worst it would have to deal with on its return to service would be a pinch of sand.

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Arizona was the destination, and an RV was to double as the accommodation and transport. I met with the Pantling brothers Toby and Sam, and Roo Fowler, who had all flown in from the UK, and the road trip began. What follows is an A to Z guide of our adventures through AZ…

A

A: Arizona, where Americans love America.

B

B: Bikes. There are plenty of B’s that can make a road trip better, but the humble bicycle trumps all of them.

C

C: Cowboys. A trip to the Southern US of A wouldn’t be complete without some of these guys rockin’ through your camp in the morning.

D

D: The Dells, Prescott. If you like technical trialsy riding on rock that grips your tires like proverbial shit to a blanket, this is a must do.

E

E: Endos. A critical tool for technical riding, extremely useful at D.

F

F: Friends. You are going to need these guys for a number of things on a road trip.

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G: Garmin. Great for any ride, but useful for finding new trails in unfamiliar zones, and tracking each ride.

H

H: The 3 H’s in Sedona: Hog’s, High line and Hang over, all three are amazing trails, definitely worth hitting. Made better with B and F.

I

I: Instagram, you have to make your friends at home jealous right?

J

J: Jokers. if you can’t take the piss out of each other and yourself, it’s going to be a long trip!

K

K: Knee pads, there are not many soft places to fall in the desert! Knee pads are a good idea.

L

L: Lensman. With such amazing scenery, bring at least one person who knows how to use a camera. Roo Fowler definitely knows.

M

M: Maps. Essential for a new area, especially if G fails. Also a cool memento of the trip.

N

N: Noodles, lots of them. The road tripper’s best friend.

o

O: Oreos. The perfect accompaniment to T.

P

P: Prescott. More buff singletrack than you can shake a stick at. Definitely worth a look.

Q

Q: Questions. Ask lots of them. Local bike shops and riders on the trail are a wealth of knowledge for local trails.

R

R: RV. Redneck Vacation!

S

S: Sedona. If you are in Arizona with a bike, Sedona is a must-do.

T

T: Tea. No road trip is quite the same without a good brew each day.

U

U: Underwear and spare chamois. Personal hygiene is key when you are living in a confined space! Drop the ball on this one and you’re sleeping outside.

V

V: Vaseline or chamois butter. Not being able to sit down sucks.

W

W: Walmart. Free camping in the parking lot, and a great place to buy a gun, apparently.

X

X: X-ray machines. Don’t pack your new gun in your hand luggage, or you will lose it at airport security.

Y

Y: Yes, you should do it. Really, what’s your excuse?

Z

Z: Your bedroom walls are a curtain in an RV. If you want to maximize your Z’s, bring some earplugs!


Hope you sat down with a T and an O for that one…

Mark Matthews on underEXPOSED Thursday

NSMB Team on the Telly

March 12th, 2014

The first season of NSMB Team rider Mason Mashon’s TV show, underEXPOSED,is well underway on APTN. Things get back to bikes in episode 10 as Mason and Tannis head over to Vancouver Island to ride with fellow NSMB rider Mark Matthews, then visit Sam Whittingham at Naked Bicycles. This should be pretty good!

Catch the episode on Thursday, March 13th on APTN HD at 5:00 pm PST and on APTN West at 7:00 pm PST.


Another look at Mark’s zones on the Island won’t hurt…

underEXPOSED Ep. 2 with Coastal Crew

On Air Thursday, January 16

January 15th, 2014

Mason heads to the Sunshine Coast to visit with the Coastal Crew in Episode 2 of underEXPOSED.

Catch the full episode on APTN HD at 5:00 pm, Thursday, January 16th – and check out the online archives for past episodes.


Clever editing… they got Norbs to talk on camera without breaking out into laughter!

underEXPOSED Premiere Airs Today

Thursday, January 9th at 7pm

January 8th, 2014

NSMB Team rider Mason Mashon’s TV career blasts off today! A year in the making, Episode 1 of underEXPOSED airs tonight on APTN. The half hour show will run Thursday, January 9th on APTN HD at 5:00 pm PST and on APTN West at 7:00 pm PST. Here’s the series trailer:

And the description for the Episode 1 trailer, below:

“We meet adventure sports photographer, Mason Mashon and writer, Tannis Baradziej. Both of them have plenty of experience, but Tannis is new to action adventure sports writing. In the premiere episode they meet four-time world surfing champion, Lisa Anderson during the Roxy Champ Camp in Tofino, BC.”

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We’ve had a hard time chasing Mason down this past year – now we get to catch up with his antics on the telly…

Looking Back and Moving Forward

Mark Matthews Reflects and Projects

Words by Mark Matthews Photos by Mark Matthews and Ian Tetzner
December 11th, 2013

2013 has been wild. I finished my degree and had one of the best summers ever, followed by the scariest crash in my life – blacking out from fear is a pretty insane experience.

Breaking my femur in multiple places is hardest thing I’ve had to go through in my life so far. Broken bones are something lots of people deal with, but the ramifications are really high with this injury.

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Frame-by-frame of my crash. I knew right away I was off line and prepared for hitting the cliff. Photo sequence courtesy Ian Tetzner.

Maintaining enough self-motivation to work out almost everyday, stay on top of my physio, and have the healthiest diet possible has been a struggle. Especially knowing I’m still months away from walking.

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Road rides followed by a physio routine have been keeping me sane.

The constant pain is physically draining, particularly at night. Many days are lonely, spent alone at my parents house (I’ve got netflix dialed). The inability to work and having to deal with things like medical bills and insurance is stressful. At the 6-week mark, x-rays showed signs of delayed healing – that was a very overwhelming moment.

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I purchased a bone stimulator to help assist healing in my “high-risk” fracture. My dog thinks it’s neat.

It’s been a tough battle this past couple months but I’ve grown stronger from it. It also puts into perspective how lucky I am to have biking and an awesome group of family and friends in my life for support. Which I appreciate now more than ever. I’m stoked to switch things up come January. 2014 is going to be rad, can’t wait for a fresh start.


It’s never good when one of our Team riders goes down but it’s good to see Mark’s doing the best he can to get back on the bike. You can follow Mark’s recovery and send him some healing vibes through Instagram or Twitter.