crackle
Beggars Would Ride

The Luxury Of Hypocrisy

Words Mike Ferrentino
Date Aug 25, 2022
Reading time

I do not want a mountain bike with any sort of electric assist. There. I said it. After about seven different attempts at gilding the lily of an opening sentence with metaphor and allusion, only to end up with an unwieldy string of words that felt more like an apology than a statement, I figured may as well just cut to the chase. I want a mountain biking experience devoid of electricity. No motors, no batteries, no battery powered shifting, no battery assisted suspension. Yes, I know that this paints me a hypocrite given my earlier lust for an AXS dropper post, but I’ve been doing some thinking.

I got my first mountain bike in 1985 or thereabouts. I went straight from a Husqvarna XC250 to a Diamond Back Apex, and basically gave up on dirt bikes for 15 years. Mountain biking was a great way for my former dirt bike riding friends and I to get silly in the dirt on wheels, without the consumptive expense and without the sometimes dire consequence of all that weight and horsepower. Maybe because I was stepping out of a motorized world into a much less powerful, much quieter, more immersive one, I never really thought – back then or at any time since – that what I needed to make my mountain biking more complete was a motor.

emig

Forgive me, for I have sinned... (in this case, it's Jeff Emig doing the sinning, but the sin is essentially the same)

Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love dirt bikes, and they weaseled their way back into my life a while back. I have a whole barn full of the things, spend stupid amounts of time and money keeping them running, don’t get to ride any of them nearly enough to justify all that time or money, but dear lord I love the way the current big Husqvarna can step sideways throwing a chest-high roost with the front wheel a foot or so off the deck. That is in no way an environmentally sensitive or culturally appropriate thing to say amongst mountain bikers, since so many of us share a deep and abiding love for this planet, but I can sit with that hypocrisy. I try to balance this out in a bigger picture sense by eating hardly any meat and not driving anywhere for weeks at a time. But yeah, I love those big, consumptive, stinky, dirty, bad for the planet dirt bikes. And I totally acknowledge that they are big, consumptive, stinky, dirty and bad for the planet.

I also really love electric motors. The environmental consequence of mining lithium is horrific to contemplate, but so are the consequences of extracting, refining, delivering and then burning fossil fuels. Since I just outed myself as an eco-villain, you’d think I wouldn’t care about big picture environmental survival questions. But I do. I also recognize the paradox that we are all living in; where we carry around pocket size supercomputers reliant upon the massive energy consumption of server farms, where we shop for our groceries in huge corporate owned food stores who cooperate with an agricultural killing machine that is both environmentally catastrophic AND incredibly cruel. We are consumers, and we are consuming the planet. Some of us more than others, but every single one of us reading this article is part of this macabre circus.

batteryjunk

Photo options at this juncture: Image of burning rainforest. Image of polar bear swimming in open ocean. Image of oil spill. Image of lithium mine in the Atacama desert. Image of ag-industrial feedlot... Anyway, how about a nice picture of someone working in a battery recycling plant?

Got a bit sideways there, sorry. Anyway, my love of dirt bikes and my love of electric motors is on the cusp of convergence, and the dawn of the electric dirt bike is approaching. The idea of a dirt bike that doesn’t need oil changes every dozen hours, valve checks every fifty hours, new pistons and rings every couple hundred hours, that doesn’t leak gas and where I never, ever have to clean an air filter again? Swoon. And it’s quiet, so the neighbors can’t complain about the noise? And there’s no clutch to wear out, or gearbox to break? I say again, swooooon.

None of this, however, makes me want to motorize my mountain bike. In fact, if anything, our current trajectory of increasing reliance upon dense little nuggets of portable energy is only making me want to keep my mountain bike as free from electro-technological enhancement as possible.

I own my hypocrisy, my part in the consumption of the planet. I am not trying to justify it, and I’m not going to get preachy about anything here since I obviously am not a saint. When I pull back and contemplate the bigger picture environmental footprint ramifications of riding around on a Chinese made carbon fiber toy, probably loading up and driving to ride that toy seven times out of ten, I can’t really see that act as any more virtuous than riding around on a Chinese made carbon fiber toy that is festooned with batteries and has a little motor to help me pedal. Motor or not, my mountain biking is still an indulgence that comes from a fortunate place of privilege. So it’s not about the ethics for me.

I don’t want to motorize my mountain biking because I don’t want to make it easier.

This too reeks of hypocrisy. Half my bikes are fully suspended, one has a very nice suspension fork, and the sole rigid bike is a sorta road bike with a fancy elastomer thing in the seat-tube. All of my bikes have hydraulic disc brakes. All of them have carbon fiber rims. Three out of four have carbon fiber frames made in China, one has a steel frame made in California. They are all pretty damn fancy and expensive, and they all make riding a whole lot easier and more pleasant than anything I was riding around on thirty years ago. So to state that I don’t want to make my riding any easier, well, that’s almost as fallacious as saying that I don’t want to contribute to further planet-eroding consumption.

I don’t want to contribute to further planet-eroding consumption. But I’m part of the problem regardless. I don’t want to make my riding any easier by opting for an electric assist, but I am fully on board with the wide-ratio 12-speed index shifting magic carpet ride that modern trail bikes can deliver. Hypocrite.

paincave

Just look at this. Sorta looks like Wout Van Aert is smiling. But he's not. Both he and Vingegaard are going so hard here that their eyes are rolling back in their heads and they've just cracked the odds-on favorite to win the Tour. They are radiating a beautiful, transcendent pain. Fausto Coppi once famously opined; "cycling is suffering." I don't in any way want to revert to full hair-shirt rigid one speed suffering, but I also do not want to dilute the exquisite pain of pushing myself forward under my own power...

Part of the reason for not wanting to jump on the e-bandwagon is masochism. Riding bikes has always involved a measure of pain (for me, anyway). And that pain has been a very good teacher over the years. I don’t think I’m finished with that education yet. I want to feel those days when every pedal stroke makes me wonder if I have a flat tire or a dragging brake, and I want to feel those days when there’s a tailwind pushing me and I can pretend to be fast for a minute. I do not want those feelings tampered with, because they are foundational bedrock to me. They are how I define myself as a cyclist, for better or worse.

Another part of my reluctance to accept ebiking into my life as my personal savior stems from the fact that I am already awash in batteries. I have so many cordless tools, flashlights, phones, GPS units, speakers and “things” in my life as it is, I want there to be ONE place where none of that intrudes. I choose that place to be my mountain bike. This isn’t so much about caring for the planet as it is wanting a small slice of life that is immune to the coming Singularity. Or something. And finally, I guess I’m just a Luddite when it comes to ebikes. They are heavy, complicated, kinda noisy, and there’s more stuff to go wrong. Aesthetically, I am at odds with what they represent.

That makes me a hypocrite Luddite for sure, given the whole dirt bike thing, and my desire for an electric dirt bike, but in this day and age even Luddites have got to make a few compromises.

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Comments

Vikb
Vik Banerjee
1 month, 1 week ago
+27 bishopsmike Niels van Kampenhout 4Runner1 mrraulduke Mammal Mike Ferrentino Andrew Major Pete Roggeman Jman IslandLife yardrec Todd Hellinga Nologo Muesliman mrbrett Metacomet DCLee Gage Wright Lynx . trumpstinyhands Neil Carnegie Tremeer023 Timer Michael @canopyclosure Mike McArthur fartymarty

Humans are addicted to motors and convenience. If there is a way to make something easier and less effort we go nuts. The end result is an unhealthy population with less and less capability to do anything physically demanding. So we add more motors and more convenience. It's a vicious cycle.

I grew up riding motos. They are fun no doubt, but I got rid of mine a while back and stuck with human powered bicycles because it was pretty clear to me that spending time recreating with a motor wasn't doing anything good for my health or for the planet. It also saved me a bunch of $$. 

I've reduced my driving a lot as well I'm at ~1,200kms for 2022. I walk, bike and skateboard around town as much as I can. 

Last thing I want to do is add any motors to my mountain bike. It works great as is. I could ride faster, easier, higher and farther with motors, but that's not important to me I want to ride a mountain bike not a motorcycle. Me being the motor is part of what makes that such a great sport. I can grab it any time. It doesn't need to be charged. My 10 year old bike still takes parts that are easy to find and it will be rolling along in another 10 years if I want it to be.

North Americans need more motorized recreation in their lives like they need more sugar, fast food, sedentary jobs, TV or social media.

Reply

chacou
chacou
1 month, 1 week ago
+12 IslandLife Vik Banerjee Tim Coleman Andy Eunson Andrew Major BarryW Metacomet DCLee Derek Baker Lynx . Tremeer023 Timer

"If there is a way to make something easier and less effort we go nuts. The end result is an unhealthy population with less and less capability to do anything physically demanding." 

Where we're headed <= Wall-E scene

Reply

Vikb
Vik Banerjee
1 month, 1 week ago
0

It's sad, but true.

Reply

fartymarty
fartymarty
1 month, 1 week ago
+14 Cr4w Niels van Kampenhout 4Runner1 Mammal Justin White Mike Ferrentino Blofeld Nologo Muesliman Derek Baker Lynx . Tremeer023 Michael @canopyclosure

Mike - I'm with you.  No batteries for me either.  It's bad enough having to charge lights but that as far as I want to go with batteries.

I get the appeal of ebike but if I want to get "more" out of a ride I either need to get fitter or have more time.

For me there is a yin / yang balance to mountain biking.  There must be some suffering to balance the enjoyment.  It's about learning to enjoy the suffering.

Reply

just6979
Justin White
1 month, 1 week ago
+22 4Runner1 Mammal Mike Ferrentino taprider Cr4w Andy Eunson Hbar Jerry Willows IslandLife ZigaK Todd Hellinga Andrew Major Nologo Dogl0rd Spencer Nelson BarryW Metacomet Derek Baker trumpstinyhands Tremeer023 Michael Lynx .

Agree, lights are the only batteries I'm willing attach to my bike. And the lights are really just in the name of making more time: it's already needed here to bring at least one light to stretch the after-work rides to a solid couple hours.

Which brings me to why I don't get the appeal of e-bikes. They don't give me more time to ride. That's all that matters to me. I have limited hours to spend on riding, and I DGAF how many miles happen in those hours, as long as I'm doing bikes, and hopefully hanging out with friends who just want to spend the same time doing bikes. An e-bike might make more miles happen, but they don't make more time happen, and likely eat some time with charging, more frequent maintenance, etc. Net negative in my book.

I'm not even sure it's about the suffering, since so many people will tell you that e-bikes still make you work, they just give you more miles for the work (again with the miles...), which actually costs time since with more miles you're going to wear out more stuff and then have to spend more time working to be able to replace all the stuff you wear out, despite spending the same time riding... I truly don't get it.

Reply

mikeferrentino
Mike Ferrentino
1 month, 1 week ago
+7 Mammal Dogl0rd mrbrett BarryW Metacomet Tremeer023 Justin White

So much of the marketing for them is based around the "do more" idea. as well as the not so subtle jab at "do more, like you could when you were younger and stronger" fountain of youth thinking.

As for the suffering, please understand that I was speaking solely for myself there.

Reply

xy9ine
Perry Schebel
1 month, 1 week ago
+18 Mike Ferrentino Mammal Cr4w IslandLife Niels van Kampenhout Andy Eunson Todd Hellinga kcy4130 Nologo dirtnapped Adrian Bostock Dogl0rd BarryW Derek Baker Lynx . Karl Fitzpatrick Tremeer023 Justin White

as an endorphin addict, suffering is an essential part of the appeal of bicycles.

and yeah - time, not distance. i like that. quality over quantity.

Reply

Hawkinsdad
Hawkinsdad
1 month, 1 week ago
+2 Mike Ferrentino BarryW

Hi Mike. Thanks. As usual, I thoroughly enjoyed your compelling musings. I learned to suffer as a young guy riding road bike with a motley group of Cat 4 to Cat 1 riders and a former member of the Czech national team. The lessons imparted from them have buoyed me through many obstacles in life, whether personally, riding mountain bikes, or in the work I do as a therapist. Suffering provides valuable perspective; at nearly 62, I am grateful, and sometimes surprised, to still be able to suffer on my bike. I know people whose knees are shot who ride e-bikes. If e-bikes allow people to continue to enjoy riding and maintaining trails, I'm all for it. However, as you alluded, I am not ready yet. I, too, am a hypocrite considering my love of dirt bikes. A Husky is on my wish list. I also love my Tacoma. An e-lawnmower and an e-chainsaw are also on my list. Just not an e-bike. Maybe I will reconsider when I'm 70 or 80.

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craw
Cr4w
1 month, 1 week ago
+7 Mammal kcy4130 Andrew Major BarryW Tremeer023 Justin White hairymountainbeast

If I had limited time to ride and while getting ready I couldn't resolve a battery/charging/software issue that prevented me from riding I would absolutely lose my shit. This goes for AXS/electronic shifting as well. No thank you.

Reply

xy9ine
Perry Schebel
1 month, 1 week ago
+7 Cr4w IslandLife Mammal Niels van Kampenhout Nologo BarryW Justin White

i once left the axs derailleur battery (review bike) at home on the charger. didn't prevent me from SS'ing fromme in the 18t cog, but helped solidify the lack of appeal of such devices for me. i like my bikes (relatively) minimalist, dumb & robust.

Reply

chacou
chacou
1 month, 1 week ago
+4 Mike Ferrentino Andy Eunson Cr4w Justin White

I've had GX AXS for about a year now. It shifts great and I do love the clean look of one less cable.

However, I've decided that my next build, or next drivetrain if/when this one goes, will not be AXS. I just don't like the added mental load and stress of this much more expensive electronic thing hanging down there. I stress too much about "gotta check my batteries", "crap, it's dead. do I have CR2032 battery for the shifter?", "where's the spare?", etc.

I was much more carefree with my 11 speed SLX. AXS is very nice, but the shifting isn't that much of an improvement. I'm a sucker for good marketing.

Reply

craw
Cr4w
1 month, 1 week ago
0

That sounds like an unnecessary problem for an unnecessary solution.

Reply

Timmigrant
Tim Coleman
1 month, 1 week ago
+1 Mike Ferrentino

I love everything mechanical and analog. I love mechanical watches (because they don't run out of battery), and I love older less electronic cars. I also ride mountain bikes alot and my experience is that AXS makes for a more seamless and enjoyable experience. Much less fiddling with barrel adjusters and replacing cables / housing. I agree 100% with Mike's sentiment in this article, but I'll be keeping the AXS drivetrain and seat post.

Reply

fartymarty
fartymarty
1 month, 1 week ago
+3 Justin White Duncan Wright Dogl0rd

Justin - any you actually get less time with your mates on an ebike and you are cutting down the uphill / transferrey bits between downhill sections.

I agree it's about time, not distance.

Reply

DogVet
Hugo Williamson
1 month, 1 week ago
+1 Pete Roggeman DancingWithMyself Lynx .

The converse is true, a group of mixed ability riders up hill can ride at same pace and chat, usually the unfit are miles behind, gasping not chatting.

DH, it also concertinas the riders, as the unfit or older don’t won’t pedal in the flatter bits, to conserve energy for the next uphill, two pedal strokes on an e bike,on those section get you up to speed.

The e bike offers to mixed abilities more chance to ride as a cohesive group.

I have both, a light powered e bike and a single pivot mullet as a complete antithesis, both are great fun, opens up more cycling groups.

The quantity v quality is also incorrect as one can gain more quantity of quality, if ridden how I ride.

Likewise the “oh I will get one when I’m 70”, nonsense, at 70 plus you won’t have the upper body strength to manage a full fat e bike, the light weight ones are much more fun IMHO, and more manageable.

I’m 66, retired,  ride either bike up to 5 times a week, solo or with mates depending on which group is going out, time is sometimes short as have a 10 month old son to deal with as well.

Bottom line is, if you like riding bikes (presumably as you subscribe to this site)  , then  the lightweight E bikes are great fun, and certainly in our little independent shop, if we didnt get involved with the e bike community, then we would be missing out on about 65% of sales inquiries!!

Reply

mammal
Mammal
1 month, 1 week ago
+3 Justin White Dogl0rd mrbrett

Well put.

Reply

pete@nsmb.com
Pete Roggeman
1 month, 1 week ago
0 Cr4w DancingWithMyself Justin White BarryW Lynx . bikedrd

The more time to ride case I've experienced first hand applies to scenarios where you wouldn't normally be able to squeeze in a loop at all. Let's say you have 45 minutes between the end of work and some other commitment, and on a regular bike the shortest loop you can manage on your home trails is an hour but an e-bike will let you get up and down inside the window. 

That doesn't apply to everyone, and I don't have as many time constraints as others, but I've still taken advantage on occasion of an e-bike's ability to grant a ride where one didn't otherwise exist. Is 45 minutes a great workout or as satisfying as an hour and a half or more on a regular bike? Nope, but sometimes that hit of time in the forest with the wind rushing over my ears is exactly what I need. Too many of those 45-minute loops, though, and all of a sudden you're not reallllly mountain biking anymore, so it's something I try not to rely on too much.

It'd be easy to dismissively say 'if you only have 45 minutes, you should sort out your life or make time somehow' but I think that's a pretty flippant attitude.

Reply

craw
Cr4w
1 month, 1 week ago
+10 Mike Ferrentino Vik Banerjee Todd Hellinga Andrew Major mrbrett BarryW Derek Baker Lynx . Geof Harries Justin White

That's when I pull out the gravel bike. No driving. Less stuff to organize. Put on barely appropriate clothes and head out the door.

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cooperquinn
Cooper Quinn
1 month, 1 week ago
+3 Todd Hellinga BarryW Justin White

Yup

Reply

Timer
Timer
1 month ago
+3 Lynx . Justin White Skooks

Good point. I use a XC hardtail for that purpose. Hardly any maintenance, always ready to go, fast on the way to the trail, fast uphill, great fun on mellow trails, so no need to go hunting for the gnarliest stuff.

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LoamtoHome
Jerry Willows
1 month, 1 week ago
+9 Mammal Vik Banerjee Adrian Bostock Nologo Dogl0rd Metacomet Andy Eunson Timer Lynx .

I don't think spending 10k plus on a ebike for a quick ride after work once awhile is a good roi....

Reply

pete@nsmb.com
Pete Roggeman
1 month, 1 week ago
+2 Cooper Quinn Scott Smith Geof Harries DancingWithMyself BarryW Lynx .

But I know of several families that own one and share it among themselves. They also use it as a shuttle retriever, and for errands. Your comment just proves my point - it's easy to look down your nose at someone who does it differently, especially if you don't have all the facts. Everyone's ROI is going to be calculated differently.

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LoamtoHome
Jerry Willows
1 month, 1 week ago
+4 Pete Roggeman BarryW Lynx . Timer

@pete not sure why the hate but just commented on the scenario you gave...  I know all the justifications for an e-bike and that's fine.  Not my cup of tea for mtb'ing and know lots of people who used to ebike and don't anymore so I'll save myself the $ and maintenance issues.  I'm planning on an e-commuter though.

fartymarty
fartymarty
1 month, 1 week ago
+6 Velocipedestrian Niels van Kampenhout Jerry Willows Lynx . Andy Eunson Timer

Pete - If I have 45 mins i'm not even thinking about going for a ride - it takes me about 10 mins to get ready and 15 mins to have a shower after (at best). 

45 mins is however enough time to roll out the yoga mat for a quick stretch.

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pete@nsmb.com
Pete Roggeman
1 month, 1 week ago
0

I should definitely do more stretching and it would do more for me - at least sometimes - than a 45-min ride.

Reply

Joe_Dick
Adrian Bostock
1 month, 1 week ago
+12 Andrew Major Mike Ferrentino 4Runner1 Mammal Todd Hellinga Niels van Kampenhout Velocipedestrian mrbrett Metacomet Andy Eunson Timer Lynx .

one of the many things which I love about mountain biking is the simplicity of it. Humans love to complicate things and we hate to fail or accept physical limits.

how we let the mountain bike industry bamboozle us into accepting ebikes as non motorized still baffles me.

Reply

craw
Cr4w
1 month, 1 week ago
+11 Mammal taprider Mike Ferrentino Andy Eunson Todd Hellinga Dogl0rd mrbrett Metacomet Lynx . trumpstinyhands Karl Fitzpatrick

My ride satisfaction is 100% contingent on seeing if I can do it, the satisfaction of the climb. And most of my internal goal-setting over the year is wondering if I can do it? Can I do those two climbs back to back? Or link these two sections without stopping? Or when I realize I'm going to accomplish some lofty climbing goal when I only set out for a chill ride but then I'm feeling good and nail some feature or combination I couldn't previously do.

When all that is taken away my rides never feel as good. Shuttling, the bike park, e-bikes all feel a bit lacklustre. But not even. The first two don't promise to climb, they promise dessert without dinner and that's a different kind of dissatisfaction. Pretending to climb makes me really sad. Now I've gone through the motions, telling myself it's somehow the same thing and maybe even better because look how fast I'm going. But I get to the top without breaking a sweat or digging deep in any way. I've managed to fully avoid doing, feeling or maybe even participating at all in the experience. There was no quiet suffering where all the reflection happens because the thing is noisy. And there's no proper hard charging downhill where the other side of the experience lives because the thing is so heavy. But I get to the top and then again to the bottom without really feeling anything.

I feel like I spend a lot of my day disconnected from things because of technology, screens and batteries and on an ebike I'm disconnected from riding too.

But maybe if they're light enough, quiet enough I might come around to the big perceived advantage for me: massive self-shuttles from East Van. I have ridden from East Van and up multiple mountains but it takes all day. In theory an ebike could rip across the bridge, do multiple huge climbs and descents then home again all without a car. But so far they don't have the burn time for that in a package that's light enough to be nice to ride. The Transition Relay looks promising. Thing is, once they get light enough, quiet enough, low power enough, maybe just suck it up and get that epic multiple mountain ride done more often and get fit enough to do it quicker.

Reply

GiveitsomeWelly
Karl Fitzpatrick
1 month, 1 week ago
+10 Andrew Major bishopsmike Cr4w fartymarty 4Runner1 Mammal Mike Ferrentino Nologo Andy Eunson Lynx .

I like this. 

I agree that I would never trade my modern Rigid single speed for the rigid 8 speed that got me into sport 25 years ago.

That pretty much means I'll never want a bike that isn't purely mechanical. I love bikes for riding them just as much as for being able to fix them in some vain, pride-filled way. 

Now when I'm 70 and I still wanna 'Get Rad' but my knees aren't in agreement, well call me a hypocrite.

But really, if we all dig deep we could find something we're hypocritical about haha.

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just6979
Justin White
1 month, 1 week ago
-1 IslandLife Adrian Bostock BarryW

If you subscribe to the "time on bike is number one" philosophy, it's not so hypocritical, since without assistance those 70 year old knees just won't be able to keep up for very long time-wise. So the e-assist becomes just about getting more ride time in instead of more miles.

Reply

taprider
taprider
1 month, 1 week ago
+5 Andy Eunson Muesliman mrbrett BarryW Lynx .

If your knees can't handle pedaling at 70 (easy cycling is the best physio for knees anyway), then your knees won't handle getting rad on an eee-bike.

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pete@nsmb.com
Pete Roggeman
1 month, 1 week ago
+3 Mike Ferrentino IslandLife Andy Eunson DancingWithMyself bikedrd BarryW Lynx .

Agreed. For some people, it's not about getting rad, it's about time spent on the bike, and for some of those people, that includes riding with others. If an e-bike enables that for a 70-year-old, you'd have to be a special kind of sanctimonious to pass judgment.

Recognizing one's own hypocrisies is one part of recognizing that no one's perfect, including ourselves. And understanding why you love something like riding bikes under your own power should also - in my dream world - come with an understanding that your own appreciation of that fact should be enough for you. If your enjoyment of that fact relies heavily on external acknowledgement, you're letting vanity creep into something that's supposed to be about personal fulfillment.

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mikeferrentino
Mike Ferrentino
1 month, 1 week ago
+5 IslandLife Mammal Andrew Major Kos mrbrett

So here's where I get to double down on my hypocrisy in a decade or so, and start riding an ebike because I have disintegrated from "getting old" to "definitely old, and rickety." Then someone can dig up this column, wave it in my face, and call me a sellout.

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BarryW
BarryW
1 month, 1 week ago
+4 Mike Ferrentino Andrew Major Niels van Kampenhout Lynx .

What about the idea that aging is okay? That it isn't actually the reasonable opinion that any 70 year old should be able to keep up with the young guns?

This is insane thinking. If your knees don't let you pedal up the steepest, toughest climbs then maybe that's your body saying to do something a little less vertically minded. And that's not a bad thing.

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mikeferrentino
Mike Ferrentino
1 month, 1 week ago
+2 BarryW Timer

Such heresy could get you strung up in California. We Do Not Speak Of Aging. 

(because that way we can still act indignant and surprised when the reaper comes knocking)

Reply

BarryW
BarryW
1 month, 1 week ago
+2 Mike Ferrentino Andy Eunson

Ah, this Washington boy didn't realize it was a Cali thing ;-)

Up here we get old and mold.

DancingWithMyself
DancingWithMyself
1 month ago
+1 Kos bikedrd BarryW

"understanding why you love something like riding bikes under your own power should also - in my dream world - come with an understanding that your own appreciation of that fact should be enough for you. If your enjoyment of that fact relies heavily on external acknowledgement, you're letting vanity creep into something that's supposed to be about personal fulfillment"

This is extraordinarily well put.  I've got an EXe showing up in a few weeks.  I'm excited but also conflicted.  Going to go in with an open mind see how it supplements and effects my riding.  

For better or worse, in 5-10 years I think the black-and-white, e-bikes are 100% awful crowd will become the triathletes and cross fitters of mountain biking - you'll know they only ride bikes (and not ebikes) within the first five minutes of meeting them.

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skooks
Skooks
1 month ago
0

Well put Mr Roggeman. I'm far too old to care what anyone thinks of me, and very aware that I have a limited time to keep doing the things that bring me joy. Doing these things under my own power is immensely satisfying.

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mammal
Mammal
1 month, 1 week ago
+10 Adrian Bostock Mike Ferrentino Cr4w Todd Hellinga Dogl0rd Andrew Major Andy Eunson Lynx . trumpstinyhands Tremeer023

This, and some of the comments really touch on why I don't want a motor on my mountain bike. 

A really good friend of mine, who actually first got me into mountain bikes 23 years ago - been a close riding companion since, told me he was considering buying an ebike in the next few years. His reasoning made me a bit sad, but only because it didn't fall into my personal mtb ethos, which itself was a surprise. "I don't love climbing", which he actually meant as "I don't like climbing". It took me a while to digest why came across so off-key for me, and it came down to my relationship with climbing a mountain bike. So many years of it being the "necessary evil" has created a complex bond. It provides time for deep self reflection and digesting the aspects of life that tend to pop up during that climb, often things that don't get digested otherwise. It provides a real sense of accomplishment and satisfaction that's completely different from nailing that difficult shoot or finding the courage to clear a gap you haven't hit before. The suffering - even at it's worse - creates context for the next time out, and provides a gauge to measure how you're progressing/digressing through the seasons and years (and decades). All these things are cherished parts of the sport that I don't want to dilute, but it made me sad that he didn't feel the same way at all. 

The flip-side of my personal feelings on e-mtb only really applies to areas where traffic was traditionally limited by effort (mostly rouge stuff), and depending where you ride, this may not apply. But without that limiter, some of these types of trails get far more bagged out than they normally would, and builders in those zones either need to put in a lot more time, or give up, move on. Most of the people in my periphery who have switched to e-mtb have done so because they are chasing MORE. More laps, more zone access, MORE. From my perspective that motivation is greed, and that rubs me the wrong way.

Reply

craw
Cr4w
1 month, 1 week ago
+4 Mike Ferrentino Mammal Dogl0rd Lynx .

I have an old riding buddy that said the same thing. He said testing an ebike was the first time 'climbing was fun', to which I responded 'it's never exactly fun but it's important'. I realized that I make a personal challenge out of not dismounting at the first sign of hardship, which is what he has typically done. I see that hardship as the boundary between where I am and a better me. The deeper/longer you spend there the more you gain.

Challenging yourself to not dismount/rest has cumulative gains over the years and as a result I'm pretty fit all the time and he is not. He's about as fit as he's ever been, which isn't very. If you embrace the challenge of trying not to stop (and the accompanying satisfaction) you end up in a positive feedback loop. That's a great place to be. Ebikes bypass this entire conversation.

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mammal
Mammal
1 month, 1 week ago
+1 Lynx .

Extremely similar sentiments. However, my buddy used to be more like me, he was actually the bench mark for around 15 years or more. We even shared multiple Chilcotins suffer fests between 2010 and 2016, maintaining the best of attitudes. Only in the last 5 years or so did he start slipping towards the attitude/state of your friend. Not that it's wrong or bad, but it somehow hurt me a little bit.

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Lynx
Lynx .
1 month ago
+1 Geof Harries

OK, great piece by Mike, again. Here reading through the comments and had to stop and give a PROPS and reply to you Cr4w, because this is exactly how I feel and exactly why I get fitter/stronger and others I ride with don't - at the first sign of "suffering" they give up and get off. It's why, despite my fvcked up knee and serious lack of riding, I still can go ride with most and keep up and even get to the top of the climb first.

> Challenging yourself to not dismount/rest has cumulative gains over the years and as a result I'm pretty fit all the time and he is not. He's about as fit as he's ever been, which isn't very. If you embrace the challenge of trying not to stop (and the accompanying satisfaction) you end up in a positive feedback loop. That's a great place to be. Ebikes bypass this entire conversation.

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tehllama42
Tehllama42
1 month, 1 week ago
+9 Mike Ferrentino Adrian Bostock Velocipedestrian sverdrup Andrew Major eriksg Geof Harries Lynx . Timer

The real thing Mike is afraid of is the innate fraternity that comes with Type-II Pain-Earned sports and activities.

Losing the cost of entry being inherently exacted in pain and effort basically cheapens the resulting bonds of friendship that come out of being a part of these recreational activities.  I don't think enough people fully grasp this, but you'll quickly realize that the best instant yet lasting friendships for most of us come exclusively through doing an activity that takes so much out of you just to make it to the participation ribbon phase, and that from the human desire to belong to a tribe aspect, making entry trivial just explodes that entirely.

As a hypocritical luddite (despite being a software developer for ultra-high performance flying robots, etc.) in all of my hobby areas, I've realized this is what I find most distasteful about this at the emotional level.
eBikes are actually pretty rad units, but this is precisely why I won't buy one (yet).

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just6979
Justin White
1 month, 1 week ago
+7 Mike Ferrentino Mammal Cr4w IslandLife BarryW Lynx . Timer

Not a Luddite, just someone who understands boundaries. E-bikes are motor-bikes. It's fine if you want a motor-bike for some activities, but not for others.

Sometimes you drive places, sometimes you might even fly places. Doesn't make you a luddite for sometimes walking to a local farm stand for fresh free-range eggs. Does make you a bit of a hypocrite if you fire up a 6x6 full custom overland rig with an 8-liter diesel and enough torque to pull a house off it's foundation, just to go a half mile to get the same eggs, though. Boundaries.

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OLDF150
Kerry Williams
1 month, 1 week ago
+7 Mammal Mike Ferrentino Niels van Kampenhout Dogl0rd eriksg trumpstinyhands Lynx .

I'm finally at an age, but not a maturity, where I am out there for the simplicity of being on a bike that I like, not one that has to be the fastest, lightest, best anything.  Thanks for giving us an article that resonates the reality of why we choose what we choose.  Love bikes, without without whirring motors.

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4Runner1
4Runner1
1 month, 1 week ago
+6 Deniz Merdano Pete Roggeman Niels van Kampenhout Dogl0rd Kerry Williams Cam McRae

Great piece. I appreciate that nsmb allows for all opinions.

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LoamtoHome
Jerry Willows
1 month, 1 week ago
+6 Mammal Deniz Merdano Andy Eunson Dogl0rd BarryW Lynx .

e-bikes....  a great way to get bored of the trails quick.  For me personally, the only way I would get one would be for trail building/maintaining if I lived in a place with access issues.  Riding a 60lb hog downhill isn't high on my list and dealing with battery/motor maintenance and warranty issues.... no sale.

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alexdi
Alex D
1 month, 1 week ago
+7 Mike Ferrentino Kerry Williams LWK Velocipedestrian mrbrett Lynx . Timer

Future maintenance is a major factor against for me. I generally trust the motor won't crap out (or if it does, it'll be replaceable with something that doesn't degrade on the shelf), but I know the battery will, and I need to know my $5K+ ride won't be a paperweight when it does. 

Paperweight is, unfortunately, the status quo. I've got a 2016 Giant carbon full-suspension bike with some worn pivot hardware. Giant, which might well be the largest carbon frame manufacturer, doesn't stock this hardware anymore. It's been sitting in a shop for two weeks in limbo. If they can't handle something as simple as a bolt, what probability they'll have a battery for me in five years?

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Tbone
Trevor Hansen
1 month, 1 week ago
+4 Kos Deniz Merdano Dogl0rd DancingWithMyself Ryan Walters Lynx .

shuttling...a great way to get bored of the trails quick. And please get an ebike so you can make more trails for me and all my friends with two racks on their shuttle cars.

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LoamtoHome
Jerry Willows
1 month, 1 week ago
+2 Deniz Merdano Ryan Walters

shuttle/pedal bro... no need for ebike with a paved road. Nice try trolling Bones but true about shuttle vehicles with 2 racks... #lamesauce #moocherlife

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denomerdano
Deniz Merdano
1 month, 1 week ago
+1 Dogl0rd

What about those friends with 1 bike racks????

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LoamtoHome
Jerry Willows
1 month, 1 week ago
0

They shouldn’t be shutting then

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mammal
Mammal
1 month, 1 week ago
+2 Jerry Willows Lynx .

Agreed. The most active builder I know bought one early this year. He also has basically 1 lung to work with. He nails two use cases that are completely justified in my weird hypocritical brain.

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LoamtoHome
Jerry Willows
1 month, 1 week ago
+2 Mammal Lynx .

an active builder shouldn't have to buy their own...  probably buys his own tools.

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DaveSmith
Dave Smith
1 month, 1 week ago
+5 Jerry Willows Mike Ferrentino Mammal Niels van Kampenhout Deniz Merdano

I don't like them. I've ridden a lot of e-bikes by a lot of different manufacturers and I've never had a ride on one that made me think - I need one. But I must say, they are the bees knees for chasing fit people when I'm carrying 30+lb- of camera gear.

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denomerdano
Deniz Merdano
1 month, 1 week ago
+2 Dave Smith Niels van Kampenhout

Ahh the photographer's excuse...

I agree 100% about chasing fit people point. 

But riding down the mountain with 30lbs bag and 50lbs of bike is not really fun...

I rather get the fit people to shuttle with me so we can all ride light bikes down dark stuff...

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DaveSmith
Dave Smith
1 month, 1 week ago
0

It's a thing...

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andy-eunson
Andy Eunson
1 month, 1 week ago
+4 Mike Ferrentino Mammal Dogl0rd Lynx .

I’m totally on board with what Justin White said. If I have two hours to tide I have two hours to ride. Riding uphill is riding. But I get it. Most of us define our rides by the decent trails. I’m reading stuff online about access to Sproat trails and it’s always referred to as Lord of the Squirrels because that is the descent. And the moaning and crying about how hard the climb up the Into The Mystic is, well epic. Don’t people feel any pride at riding an uphill well? But most of us define our rides by the descent trails we take. 

To me the ebike thing is a continuation of rampant consumerism. Need that new bike with assist. Need that new bike with a half degree change here and there. Need that different wheel size. Oh my god nobody rides a bike that colour any more!  If you look at road bikes, geometry is pretty much set in stone. Partly because of UCI rules and partly because over all that time it’s been figured out. Even frame materials are pretty sorted. So we see tube shapes and aero this nd that and integrated cockpit parts as so called ‘upgrades" but all a lot of it is, is a way to differentiate one product from another. Like a Buick with holes in the side of the fenders. 

I’m trying to be the rider that replaces parts or bikes when they are done due to age and not because I want a purple one. I try and repair stuff first although some things just aren’t serviceable. 

I try and look at trends and figure out if they might be a thing I like. Like gravel bikes. Where I live no. Not a lot of gravel bike appropriate roads and trails. At least my hardtail is probably a better tool here. Or bike packing. Jesus no. I went bike touring a bit when I was kid in the 70s. And once when I was in my 20s. Load up a bike and it’s no longer the spritely fun thing it was and it’s a chore. Like towing an airstream behind a Corvette. Ugh. 

The not so subtle it’s more funner with a motor is insulting. Telling me that climbing is awful. To be avoided. Funner isn’t a word but pussy is. 

Part of my dislike of the ebike thing is that I’m old and crotchety and resist change. Needing an assist admits I’m getting older and weaker. I see my 13 year old Labrador getting slower by the day. It’s a reflection of me as I’m 64 now and I can see the changes in my own abilities. Scary in a way. Perhaps my age has given me wisdom to see the folly of we gotta grow the sport, we gotta have more bike, we gotta have more fun, we wanna just eat desert. Maybe I’m just a grumpy asshole that being left behind by changes in my sport.

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FlipFantasia
Todd Hellinga
1 month, 1 week ago
+4 Mike Ferrentino Deniz Merdano Andy Eunson Cam McRae

Thanks for this Mike, and others who've added to the conversation, definitely resonates.

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Bikes
Bikes
1 month, 1 week ago
+4 Mike Ferrentino Velocipedestrian Timer Lynx .

A few years ago I bought a used longtail cargo e-bike.  Its a 2016 model with a Bosch mid-drive.  That drive is now obsolete, maybe by a couple years as they changed the motor mount design.  It's still useable, but a new battery is like $800 which I find ludicrous.

E-bikes seem like throw aways and in the worst possible way, environmentally.  Maybe someone will offer retrofits but it doesn't seem too likely.  I know you can technical repair the motor.  But, its strange people are spending so much money on them and not pushing against what seems like planned obsolescence.

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Timer
Timer
1 month ago
0

The motor itself should be pretty long lived. Batteries are expensive, but can also be replaced. If necessary, individual cells can be replaced without too much issue.

The problem are all the auxiliary electronics, which die easily, are impossible to repair and generally not compatible with anything made before, after or by anyone else.

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Bikes
Bikes
1 month ago
0

The battery cost is what it is I guess.

The motor obsolescence is the bigger issue.  If I like my bike and my drive unit goes, I can’t just go buy a new one as it won’t even fit.  We can talk repairability all we want, but the lack of backward compatibility or product support is an issue that will result in more waste (both financially and environmentally).

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alexdi
Alex D
1 month, 1 week ago
+3 Mammal Mike Ferrentino Lynx .

I've found myself wanting an ebike in only two scenarios: riding with people more fit or wanting to get more miles in with time constraints. I don't like losing the group, feeling like I'm holding someone back, or having to push so hard I'm too exhausted to enjoy the downhills. But if I'm with fitness peers, putting in all my own effort is satisfying and bonding. I'm happy in my unhappiness because I know we're sharing an experience. Showing up with an ebike is neutral at best, or even alienating if everyone else pulling their own weight.

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just6979
Justin White
1 month, 1 week ago
+4 Mammal ZigaK Lynx . Timer

I don't think you should ever worry about holding someone back, unless it's specifically a training ride and they have specific goals that were stated ahead of time. If it's a fun ride and they can't adjust for you, ride with someone else, because they're now holding you back from having full enjoyment.

And why the want for more miles? Isn't the time on the bike enough?

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mammal
Mammal
1 month, 1 week ago
+2 Lynx . Justin White

I love this message, and it's true. Those same fit friends would probably be more satisfied seeing you give your best under your own power. Having been that guy at certain points in my life, the biggest barrier is usually in your own mind, not theirs.

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alexdi
Alex D
1 month, 1 week ago
0

I like downhills more than uphills. I also like improving my skill, which takes more repetitions and higher speeds. If I'm too tired to attack the downs, I don't get any better. 

Most people want to ride with peers who can maintain a similar pace. If you're faster, you end up feeling like elastic AI, waiting at the top of every hill. That doesn't work if you want to push yourself. Viewed from the other direction, I'm not keen to trade out people I get along with just because I'm slower.

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Dogl0rd
Dogl0rd
1 month, 1 week ago
+4 Mark Velocipedestrian cheapondirt Pete Roggeman

One of my riding buddies climbs SO much slower than me. I've felt uncomfortable climbing separately from him, but it's either I do that or lose a chunk of fitness that I'm not willing to give up. We've still managed to maintain our friendship. Much better when we do lift or shuttle days together. It's a tough decision sometimes!

I think this issue could be content for its own article!

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syncro
Mark
1 month, 1 week ago
+2 Pete Roggeman Lynx .

I learned early on when I first started riding that some people just don't get invited on certain rides - whether it's fitness or riding capabilities. There would always be bigger more social rides where the pace was more relaxed, people might stop and session certain features and you just knew it was going to be a longer day. Then you had the rides where if you didn't have the chops you didn't go. In the start it sucked being left out at times, but I knew I needed to up my game if I wanted to go on those higher level rides. It's just the nature of the beast and people figure it out. If you have a good relationship with your riding buddies then there shouldn't be any worry in saying the pace is going to be XXX so it's not going to be a good fit for you today. Personally I don't mind riding with slower people and am happy to accommodate riders who aren't at the same level, but it couldn't happen at the expense of never riding at a higher pace.

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Lynx
Lynx .
1 month ago
+1 Skooks

@Mark - and yet a lot of people don't like me because of exactly this. I'll ride with almost anyone, slow or fast, if they're slower, I'll ride ahead and come back or slow my pace, if they're faster, I'll try my best to keep up, but then there's certain days/rides that I just don't want to be stopping/riding slowly all the time waiting on slower/newer riders and why is that such a bad thing? For me those days are the bank holidays usually, those who ride with me know that the ride's going to be at least 4 hours long, probably longer and we're going to cover some good ground, both going up, down and on flat/pedaly trails, maybe with some road connects in between, if you don't like that, come another day.

I stop "inviting" those slower riders along who don't try and make an effort to improve their own fitness, doing rides by themselves or pushing on group rides, it's just not fair to those who do put in the effort and are improving - you've been riding now 2 months and you're getting no fitter because you deem other things more important, well that's fine, but for those of us who deem being/getting fitter/better on their bike, don't expect us to constantly be inviting you and waiting on you.

BillT
Bill T
1 month, 1 week ago
+3 Mike Ferrentino Kerry Williams Cam McRae

Everyone has their line in the sand they don't want to cross

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Jghansen
James Hansen
1 month, 1 week ago
+3 Mammal Andy Eunson Cam McRae

We are all overconsumers and luddites. Humans have a hard time with change. Good article, gives me more pondering on our state of our world.

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tashi
tashi
1 month, 1 week ago
+3 DCLee Kerry Williams Cam McRae

Hey Mr. F, thanks for taking the time to learn to write well.  I really appreciate that someone has the ability the articulate my feelings better than I can!

100% in agreement with everything you've written here.

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mikeferrentino
Mike Ferrentino
1 month ago
+2 tashi Cam McRae

Awww, shucks. Thanks. I owe it all to those formative years spent at the Derek Zoolander Center For Kids Who Can't Read Good...

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mikesee
mikesee
1 month, 1 week ago
+2 Mike Ferrentino Mammal

Sort of an omnivores dilemma we as a society have created with recreational locomotion, no?

None of us can say that we have the right answer, nor that others have the wrong answer.  I just hope that people make an honest assessment of what they actually need, what they're really capable of, and somehow take the highest road possible given their scenario.

Which is unrealistically optimistic.  Sue me for hoping.

Also: https://lacemine29.blogspot.com/2022/05/my-02-e-mtbs.html

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mikeferrentino
Mike Ferrentino
1 month, 1 week ago
0

The Omnivore's Dilemna. Such a good book!

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pete@nsmb.com
Pete Roggeman
1 month, 1 week ago
0 mikesee Mammal

@Mikesee, I don't at all mind you linking to a blog I presume is yours, but please be sure to include context, along the lines of 'here's a little something I wrote about it'. Otherwise you're just link-stuffing and that's not ok.

Edit: I should add that I enjoyed your piece ;)

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mikesee
mikesee
1 month, 1 week ago
+1 Cam McRae

Not sure what link stuffing is, but -- mea culpa anyway.  I mistakenly assumed that you could see in the hyperlink that there was e-mtb content.

Will do better if I link to things in the future.

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mammal
Mammal
1 month, 1 week ago
+3 Mike Ferrentino mrbrett Jerry Willows

My Aunt adds sausage to her stuffing as a general rule for holiday meals. Not my jam, but I'll eat it. Apparently it's not cool around here.

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cam@nsmb.com
Cam McRae
1 month ago
0

My grandmother used to put both stuffing and 'sausage meat' (just what it sounds like - the stuff that goes into the skin of the sausage) in the turkey. It was always one of the best parts of thanksgiving and Xmas dinners.

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lamar454
Peter Appleton
1 month, 1 week ago
+2 Velocipedestrian Cam McRae

video link at the end isn't working, prolly ran out of batteries

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skooks
Skooks
1 month, 1 week ago
+2 Mike Ferrentino Niels van Kampenhout

I love riding my e-commuter, but have zero interest in a motorized mountain bike. I've been trying to understand why I have such divergent feelings towards them. One just makes so much sense to me and the other is an anathema. I too grew up riding dirt- and street -bikes, but gave both of them up once I started riding mountain bikes. I love everything about them, and have never once wondered if having a motor would enhance my experience.  It doesn't bother me if other people ride motorized bikes, but for me it feels like capitulation. The day may eventually come when I can no longer pedal,  but until then I intend to propel myself up the hill for as long as possible.

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kos
Kos
1 month, 1 week ago
+1 Mike Ferrentino

"where I never, ever have to clean an air filter again"

THIS would put me in the saddle of a dirt bike again!

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mammal
Mammal
1 month, 1 week ago
0

They do make electric dirt bikes.

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mikeferrentino
Mike Ferrentino
1 month, 1 week ago
+1 Kos

Well, to be fair, so far there has been ONE legit electric dirt bike, the Alta Redshift. I got to spend an afternoon on one and it was, for me, an absolute game changer. Unfortunately Alta got shuttered before really getting to send a message. The upcoming Stark Varg from Sweden looks super promising, and then there's the slightly frustrating KTM e-Freeride as well as a few legit and rad trials brands. There are more on the way, but so much vaporware and so many misfires getting to market.

And no, I do not consider the Segways and Sur-Rons and Cakes to be legit dirt bikes. They are fun, but not really full-on legit.

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mammal
Mammal
1 month, 1 week ago
0

Fair! I'm not a moto enthusiast, so when KTM put them on the market a number of years ago, I was pretty certain there would be tonnes of good options by now. I'm surprised.

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mikeferrentino
Mike Ferrentino
1 month, 1 week ago
+4 Cr4w Mammal Kos 4Runner1

High weight and abysmal range have been the sticking points so far. As soon as someone comes out with a "proper" dirt bike that can get a legit 50+ miles or say 4 solid hours of technical singletrack at a relatively respectable weight, it'll be game on. Some are getting very close.

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Joe_Dick
Adrian Bostock
1 month, 1 week ago
+4 Mike Ferrentino Todd Hellinga Kos Velocipedestrian

one of my concerns with ebikes is longevity. the life span of a battery is pretty short. I doubt any of the current ebikes will last 10 years. the batteries definitely won’t. lots of older motorcycles still being ridden. 

transitioning to a battery power world while maintaining rampant consumerism is kin to kick the door to you house open to cool it down when your kitchen is on fire.

jt
JT
1 month, 1 week ago
+1 Mike Ferrentino

As The Disposable Heroes of Hiphoprisy said, Hypocrisy is the greatest luxury. Obviously they weren't rapping about bikes, but the sentiment still stands. Rode a Livewire. I fully endorse e motos, because gawddamn! Rode a couple ebikes and while I dig some aspects (like climbing like a banshee) I felt a disconnect from the environment I was rolling in. Might be my hippydippytrippy side showing on that, but it was flipped on the emoto. I was more aware of things around me because of the lack of BRAAAP. I own my hypocrisy. I drive a SUV for cripes' sake, though if I buy a tank of gas once a month it's because I went somewhere much further afield from local haunts. We're a virus on the planet, but we can do what we can to be a considerably less virulent one.

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GB
GB
1 month, 1 week ago
+1 Mammal

This comment has been removed.

syncro
Mark
1 month, 1 week ago
+1 Kerry Williams

I don't know if it's easy or possible to draw the proverbial hypocrite dividing line in the sand when it comes to making things easier on mtb's, even though I've tried to make that argument in the past myself. There's a broad continuum of easy and fun to consider in all the choices we have on tap. Is fun on a fully rigid, rim braked bike necessarily any worse or better than fun on a plastic wunderbike? I for sure think that far too many people in the modern world get caught up in buying the latest/greatest simply because it's new or better or easier, but it can be hard to deny that there are often real benefits in the progress of technology. Unless we want to go back to stone age lifestyles, the nature of our existence means we are going to have negative impacts on this place called home, so maybe it's enough that we do our best to minimize those impacts in a way that still allows us to take advantage of some of the amazings things and experiences available to us.

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cheapondirt
cheapondirt
1 month, 1 week ago
+1 Cam McRae

E-bikes just don't fit into my carefully cultivated self-image.

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cam@nsmb.com
Cam McRae
1 month ago
0

That should ring true for many of us on this topic.

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papa44
papa44
1 month, 1 week ago
+1 Mike Ferrentino

French General Pierre Bosquet, commanding a French infantry division during the Crimean War, on ebikes:

C’est magnifique, mais ce n’est pas la Cyclisme

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kos
Kos
1 month ago
+1 Mike Ferrentino Sam Burkhardt Cam McRae DCLee papa44

I just love fast corners, and an e-bike would give me more of those per hour.

Plus, looking above, I didn't realize how many people I could pi$$ off.

Which, of course, goes into the bonus column!

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