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Spandies's posts

14 posts found

Oct. 20, 2021, 2:04 p.m.
Posts: 14
Joined: Nov. 1, 2017
Re: How far do you or would you commute to work by bike? Even in wet weather?

Used to commute by road bike, 50 ish km total with a bunch of elevation and it was doable, but tiring. Bought an ebike cargo commuter last year and now it's my new "car". I ride everywhere on it and do as many errands on it as possible, as it's convenient, fast, and keeps me in a better headspace. I ride every day to work, rain or shine (no snow), 30 ish KM total. From Vancouver to a suburb along some of the routes you've mentioned, takes me around 30 mins door:door if I'm hustling and if I'm not stopped at lights. I can do it as fast on my road bike but I'd have to ride hard tempo, and would have much less left in the tank at the end of the day for play. It's a no brainer for me to ride, as long as I have access to reasonably separated bike paths. Do it, it's much better than dealing with traffic and all the dickheads on the road. 

Having commuted through the city by bike for much of my life, the paths and infrastructure are getting pretty amazing. Wet, rainy, and dark days also mean fewer people on greenways - less to look out for when you're tired, and a much more enjoyable commuting experience.  Given this, having the ebike has really made things easier, and has also opened up different paths and parts of the city I would've otherwise not explored. Blah blah blah, I await the ebike haters.

Nov. 26, 2019, 9:54 a.m.
Posts: 14
Joined: Nov. 1, 2017
Re: Heart Health

Posted by: syncro

I just got news this morning that a motorcycling buddy of mine passed away from a heart attack. He was in the danger zone with age, high pressure job and carrying excess weight while not being very active at all. I know the last part doesn't really apply to most of us here, but that doesn't mean we aren't susceptible. Case in point is Chad Christy who passed away after having a heart attack while out riding in Whistler. If you've never had your ticker checked and aren't really aware of your family history take some time to look at your potential risk factors and consider getting in to see your doctor for a stress test to see where your risk level is at. If you don't know what going on then you can't do the right things to improve your heart health. Screening is something that could potentially save your life.

Here's a couple links that are worth taking the time to check out.

https://www.heartandstroke.ca/get-healthy/health-etools?gclid=EAIaIQobChMI_sTdoP2F5gIV5x6tBh1wiAijEAAYBCAAEgJuTPD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds

https://www.myheartmatters.ca/?utm_source=Google-Search&utm_medium=cpc&utm_term=heart%20disease%20disorders&utm_campaign=Proof-2019%20-%20Search%5BEng%5D%3A%20General%20Heart&utm_content=Heart%20Disease%20-%20Disorders

Sorry you just heard - we're all totally gutted and were caught by surprise. We lost a really good one way too early. PM if you want to chat.

May 13, 2019, 9:32 a.m.
Posts: 14
Joined: Nov. 1, 2017
Re: ebikes on the Shore

Posted by: syncro

Posted by: switch

Takes car to store to get milk and cookies...  ;-)

I've got three acoustic bikes.   No easy I can afford to replace then with electric bikes.

Ha!

No you might not be able to replace all three, but you may only need one. I can see the appeal of getting a bigger travel ebike that may be more dh oriented and using that as your one do-it-all bike to get up the hill and down. For me tho I have no real interest in that for the most part as getting there on my own is more important than being able to get there faster.

And this is a fair assessment. I just see this as a different bike that lets me ride in a different way. 'Analog' bikes are still very appealing and fun, and I will continue to own many as well.

May 13, 2019, 9:29 a.m.
Posts: 14
Joined: Nov. 1, 2017
Re: ebikes on the Shore

Posted by: norona

Posted by: Spandies

Posted by: norona

Posted by: Spandies

Posted by: Brocklanders

Posted by: Spandies

Posted by: craw

Posted by: LoamtoHome

e-bikers won't form any advocacy group unless they get banned. Even then, how you going to enforce?

Until batteries get way better, I can't see people chipping their ebikes. Even in Trail mode, battery power doesn't last too long. In Boost mode, it would be really hard to navigate up some trails.

It really boils down to the rider responsibility.

Totally. For me the big sell was to self-shuttle, not just up the hill but across town. I was intrigued by the prospect of not driving to ride.

Until a bit of research revealed that most ebikes would barely get my 220lbs from home in East Van over to one North Shore mountain up down and home again on a single charge. While here I was thinking I could skip the car and ride two mountains when I'd most likely end up hauling this 50lb bike with my truck as usual.

Agreed about the 'chipped' ebikes. For the pedelecs, even though you can chip it doesn't mean you'd want to. I've ridden one, it takes a good amount of wattage to spin it up to 50km/h even on pavement and the battery won't last very long. Good to brag about, not actually very functional in practice. 

For the self-shuttling, also my 'ideal' as well. Could be a market for a certain shop to offer battery charging/battery storage services. I'd love to ride from Vancouver on one battery and a set of slicks, swap at the base of mountain highway, do a loop, swap back and roll home. Much better than dealing with traffic, probably faster depending on time of day. One can dream.

So spandy... If you didn't live so far away from the NS trails would you have bought an ebike? Or is that just a lame excuse? I mean you used to race pro right?

I've had this thing for a week - I absolutely would buy a pedelec even if I lived on the North Shore. Currently, I meet my buds who live a few km away from one of the mountains, ride to the trails, and ride back. We can do a loop in a shorter period of time with no need to load up the cars, and ride the trails with none or minimal stopping even given different fitness and skill levels. If these are lame excuses, then I guess I don't mind being lame. And no, I never raced 'pro'; my comments earlier were contextual around how I foresee myself using this bike, nothing more. 

I'm not here to have a dick waving contest about fitness, the amount of volunteering one has done, or how technically proficient one may or may not be. These pedal assist bikes are a game-changer, and as much as many of you don't like it, this trend will grab hold. It has already been mentioned multiple times that enforcement is the crux of the issue, regardless of whether or not land managers/trail organizations/the wizard of oz plans to ban e-assist bikes. So the question is, if enforcement is nonexistent and we can't do jack-all about irresponsible people, wouldn't it be a better strategy to include those in the pedelec camp as part of the conversation to both help inform policy decisions and to deter abusive behaviours? Otherwise, we collectively have no platform to proactively address the preservation and growth of our sport and our trail assets. 

Shame all you want, but I suspect those who are irresponsible will continue to not give a shit and ignore whatever pleas we may tender, regardless of bans or no bans. Do you now also want to lose the camp of responsible pedelec riders who are interested in engaging in the discussion?

Ya man, have fun, only a week, you have not even discovered the radness yet, about three weeks on it and your world will open up even more, ignore the self feeding bro's on this thread, they don't get it, never did and won't in the future. 3 weeks into riding season here and just hit 1000km, get a second battery and the loops are rad! I put 6000km on a few bikes last season levo, devinci and rocky.

Nice, I can imagine I'll expand on the adventures I can have on the thing. Still setting it up and dialing it in, I'm stoked to be able to do a giant ride on it sometime. Given your experiences with the different brands, maybe you can expand on them a bit in terms of feel and character. I got the Devinci and was debating between the three you listed, but the angles, setup, and robust build sold it for me. I was very drawn to the powerplay but felt that the constant chain idler pulley sound would drive me nuts. Also, what are you riding now?

I ride the Devinci. Love it! 180mm suspension, easy battery exchange, and great spec and price. Christian Begin has opened Blazing Saddle Adventures at the Locavoire Food Truck in Squamish so we have wicked deals on rentals so if someone want to see what these are about, check out blazingsaddlesadventures on insta

I love the shimano Steps due to the fact that yo see your torque curve so it is like playing a game, keeping the light down means your not leaning on the battery as much which gives you more juice. With the Rocky or Specialized without seeing how your using it, you generally will use more, or lean on the battery more. The Shimano system is a bit louder than specialized for sure but it does not bother me, it is not as loud as some guys want their freehub to be.

Couple of things I have come to know

1- get the big suspension and tires2.5-2.8

2- you don't need carbon as the weight savings is not noticeable and the cost is more

3-you want a battery that can be exchanged for epic rides(riding from home to riding area or expanding that riding area)

4- all the other stuff that we use to worry about like having xtr etc, does not really matter, I was surprised I went 5000km on the same chain and sprokets, never had a chain break, sometimes that surprised me how I shifted ha ha, and somone else is still enjoying that bike.

Just have fun and like I said you will be constantly surprised what you can do on the bike and how much fun you will have! If you have some buddies that want to rent some bike and go for a cool ride, hit me up and we will do it. cheers dave

Shared the same thoughts before I got the Devinci - plus the fact that it's made in Canada was an extra bonus. I'm drawn to the fact that less money needs to be spent on fancy drivetrain components and weight weenie stuff in exchange for harder wearing items. I love the coil in the rear and may upgrade the forks to a coil after I get used to the bike some more. I do the same thing with the power graph as well and along those lines, it's great to have a super plush and fun downhill bike that is setup and feels like a dialed xc bike for long distances and on the uphills. Given the mileage you put on your last bikes, how was the battery health for the Shimano system after a season of riding?

May 12, 2019, 2:44 p.m.
Posts: 14
Joined: Nov. 1, 2017
Re: ebikes on the Shore

Posted by: norona

Posted by: Spandies

Posted by: Brocklanders

Posted by: Spandies

Posted by: craw

Posted by: LoamtoHome

e-bikers won't form any advocacy group unless they get banned. Even then, how you going to enforce?

Until batteries get way better, I can't see people chipping their ebikes. Even in Trail mode, battery power doesn't last too long. In Boost mode, it would be really hard to navigate up some trails.

It really boils down to the rider responsibility.

Totally. For me the big sell was to self-shuttle, not just up the hill but across town. I was intrigued by the prospect of not driving to ride.

Until a bit of research revealed that most ebikes would barely get my 220lbs from home in East Van over to one North Shore mountain up down and home again on a single charge. While here I was thinking I could skip the car and ride two mountains when I'd most likely end up hauling this 50lb bike with my truck as usual.

Agreed about the 'chipped' ebikes. For the pedelecs, even though you can chip it doesn't mean you'd want to. I've ridden one, it takes a good amount of wattage to spin it up to 50km/h even on pavement and the battery won't last very long. Good to brag about, not actually very functional in practice. 

For the self-shuttling, also my 'ideal' as well. Could be a market for a certain shop to offer battery charging/battery storage services. I'd love to ride from Vancouver on one battery and a set of slicks, swap at the base of mountain highway, do a loop, swap back and roll home. Much better than dealing with traffic, probably faster depending on time of day. One can dream.

So spandy... If you didn't live so far away from the NS trails would you have bought an ebike? Or is that just a lame excuse? I mean you used to race pro right?

I've had this thing for a week - I absolutely would buy a pedelec even if I lived on the North Shore. Currently, I meet my buds who live a few km away from one of the mountains, ride to the trails, and ride back. We can do a loop in a shorter period of time with no need to load up the cars, and ride the trails with none or minimal stopping even given different fitness and skill levels. If these are lame excuses, then I guess I don't mind being lame. And no, I never raced 'pro'; my comments earlier were contextual around how I foresee myself using this bike, nothing more. 

I'm not here to have a dick waving contest about fitness, the amount of volunteering one has done, or how technically proficient one may or may not be. These pedal assist bikes are a game-changer, and as much as many of you don't like it, this trend will grab hold. It has already been mentioned multiple times that enforcement is the crux of the issue, regardless of whether or not land managers/trail organizations/the wizard of oz plans to ban e-assist bikes. So the question is, if enforcement is nonexistent and we can't do jack-all about irresponsible people, wouldn't it be a better strategy to include those in the pedelec camp as part of the conversation to both help inform policy decisions and to deter abusive behaviours? Otherwise, we collectively have no platform to proactively address the preservation and growth of our sport and our trail assets. 

Shame all you want, but I suspect those who are irresponsible will continue to not give a shit and ignore whatever pleas we may tender, regardless of bans or no bans. Do you now also want to lose the camp of responsible pedelec riders who are interested in engaging in the discussion?

Ya man, have fun, only a week, you have not even discovered the radness yet, about three weeks on it and your world will open up even more, ignore the self feeding bro's on this thread, they don't get it, never did and won't in the future. 3 weeks into riding season here and just hit 1000km, get a second battery and the loops are rad! I put 6000km on a few bikes last season levo, devinci and rocky.

Nice, I can imagine I'll expand on the adventures I can have on the thing. Still setting it up and dialing it in, I'm stoked to be able to do a giant ride on it sometime. Given your experiences with the different brands, maybe you can expand on them a bit in terms of feel and character. I got the Devinci and was debating between the three you listed, but the angles, setup, and robust build sold it for me. I was very drawn to the powerplay but felt that the constant chain idler pulley sound would drive me nuts. Also, what are you riding now?

May 11, 2019, 10:49 a.m.
Posts: 14
Joined: Nov. 1, 2017
Re: ebikes on the Shore

Posted by: Brocklanders

Posted by: Spandies

Posted by: craw

Posted by: LoamtoHome

e-bikers won't form any advocacy group unless they get banned. Even then, how you going to enforce?

Until batteries get way better, I can't see people chipping their ebikes. Even in Trail mode, battery power doesn't last too long. In Boost mode, it would be really hard to navigate up some trails.

It really boils down to the rider responsibility.

Totally. For me the big sell was to self-shuttle, not just up the hill but across town. I was intrigued by the prospect of not driving to ride.

Until a bit of research revealed that most ebikes would barely get my 220lbs from home in East Van over to one North Shore mountain up down and home again on a single charge. While here I was thinking I could skip the car and ride two mountains when I'd most likely end up hauling this 50lb bike with my truck as usual.

Agreed about the 'chipped' ebikes. For the pedelecs, even though you can chip it doesn't mean you'd want to. I've ridden one, it takes a good amount of wattage to spin it up to 50km/h even on pavement and the battery won't last very long. Good to brag about, not actually very functional in practice. 

For the self-shuttling, also my 'ideal' as well. Could be a market for a certain shop to offer battery charging/battery storage services. I'd love to ride from Vancouver on one battery and a set of slicks, swap at the base of mountain highway, do a loop, swap back and roll home. Much better than dealing with traffic, probably faster depending on time of day. One can dream.

So spandy... If you didn't live so far away from the NS trails would you have bought an ebike? Or is that just a lame excuse? I mean you used to race pro right?

I've had this thing for a week - I absolutely would buy a pedelec even if I lived on the North Shore. Currently, I meet my buds who live a few km away from one of the mountains, ride to the trails, and ride back. We can do a loop in a shorter period of time with no need to load up the cars, and ride the trails with none or minimal stopping even given different fitness and skill levels. If these are lame excuses, then I guess I don't mind being lame. And no, I never raced 'pro'; my comments earlier were contextual around how I foresee myself using this bike, nothing more. 

I'm not here to have a dick waving contest about fitness, the amount of volunteering one has done, or how technically proficient one may or may not be. These pedal assist bikes are a game-changer, and as much as many of you don't like it, this trend will grab hold. It has already been mentioned multiple times that enforcement is the crux of the issue, regardless of whether or not land managers/trail organizations/the wizard of oz plans to ban e-assist bikes. So the question is, if enforcement is nonexistent and we can't do jack-all about irresponsible people, wouldn't it be a better strategy to include those in the pedelec camp as part of the conversation to both help inform policy decisions and to deter abusive behaviours? Otherwise, we collectively have no platform to proactively address the preservation and growth of our sport and our trail assets. 

Shame all you want, but I suspect those who are irresponsible will continue to not give a shit and ignore whatever pleas we may tender, regardless of bans or no bans. Do you now also want to lose the camp of responsible pedelec riders who are interested in engaging in the discussion?

May 9, 2019, 8:44 p.m.
Posts: 14
Joined: Nov. 1, 2017
Re: ebikes on the Shore

Posted by: craw

Posted by: LoamtoHome

e-bikers won't form any advocacy group unless they get banned. Even then, how you going to enforce?

Until batteries get way better, I can't see people chipping their ebikes. Even in Trail mode, battery power doesn't last too long. In Boost mode, it would be really hard to navigate up some trails.

It really boils down to the rider responsibility.

Totally. For me the big sell was to self-shuttle, not just up the hill but across town. I was intrigued by the prospect of not driving to ride.

Until a bit of research revealed that most ebikes would barely get my 220lbs from home in East Van over to one North Shore mountain up down and home again on a single charge. While here I was thinking I could skip the car and ride two mountains when I'd most likely end up hauling this 50lb bike with my truck as usual.

Agreed about the 'chipped' ebikes. For the pedelecs, even though you can chip it doesn't mean you'd want to. I've ridden one, it takes a good amount of wattage to spin it up to 50km/h even on pavement and the battery won't last very long. Good to brag about, not actually very functional in practice. 

For the self-shuttling, also my 'ideal' as well. Could be a market for a certain shop to offer battery charging/battery storage services. I'd love to ride from Vancouver on one battery and a set of slicks, swap at the base of mountain highway, do a loop, swap back and roll home. Much better than dealing with traffic, probably faster depending on time of day. One can dream.

May 7, 2019, 8:04 p.m.
Posts: 14
Joined: Nov. 1, 2017
Re: ebikes on the Shore

Posted by: Ddean

Up the climbing route or Mtn Hwy to 7th shouldn't be that different (in time).

No Quarter is 6km and 600m versus Mtn Hwy (from the lot) at 6.5km and 450m.

I guess on a relative basis NQ is harder 90% of the time and for 33% more elevation than Mtn Hwy, but absolute isn't horribly different in my eyes from a time perspective. One hurts way more than the other, but I don't think that Im getting up Mtn Hwy notably faster than up NQ - but I guess Im spinning my way up the Hwy with half a smile on my face while Im about to die by the time I hit Mtn Hwy via NQ.

Yeah, I cant imagine 1:10 for that ride. That's FLYING up NQ...Id be curious for someone to figure out the average speed required to do that ride in 70min. Assume decent 50% faster than ascent and I bet that's cooking up NQ in what, 10min? 5km in 10minutes is averaging 30kph up the climbing trail. Time to plot it out.

Perhaps Spandies can help us out with data? Far did you travel and how many kms were climbing versus how many were descending?

I feel that the Mountain Highway climb to be much easier to ascend than the NQ route, even given similar distance and elevation gain. You can cook up it pretty well with rhythm if you felt good, whereas the NQ route is filled with turns, and well, tech climbing. 

As for the data, just looked at my bike. Please see below:

Ride time: 1:11 (I assume only moving time)

Distance: 17.5km

Avg: 14.7 km/h

Max: 36.5 km/h (Assist cuts out around -31ish)

I wasn't going that fast on the NQ. I made up my time on Mtn Hwy; Max speed was probably on the flat between 4-5th switchback IIRC. I was going quick (for me) on the downhills, I essentially rode nonstop. My legs were pretty beat at the end but then again, I wanted to go fast and feel some discomfort. Battery was down 2 bars (3/5 remaining) when I got back to the car. And no, I don't do the Strava/Socialmedia thing. Discuss. 

Thanks for being open to the discussion guys.

May 7, 2019, 11:13 a.m.
Posts: 14
Joined: Nov. 1, 2017
Re: ebikes on the Shore

Posted by: Ddean

Sorry, it was me who wasn't clear, and I didn't take your post as confrontational at all (quite the opposite in fact). I think that the "I told you so" will be from the anti-ebike crowd after reading your post and saying that, "you see, eBikes:

1) are going to increase miles per rider on the trails,
2) will increase the number of people on the trails,
3) will make their way to climbing trails and wont stick to MTN HWY or access roads, and
4) If the bar is that low that even fit people choose eBikes, we are doomed when it comes to the general population"

There is also the giant concern that there are some fragile areas that cant be shuttled and are protected by climbs that would be deemed no longer an obstacle.

Thanks for clarifying, your post was clear but I misread it initially. I agree with all your points, hence if the inevitable is going to happen, I feel it is more reason to initiate discussions around this. Being out of the loop, does NSMBA have a position on ebikes yet? Outside of the argument for outright banning, are there any ideas you all may have about limiting the impact? Ie: ebike only routes/lines on certain trails, or outright bans of ebikes on trails that are more ecologically sensitive? Is there a way to do a pro-active approach; ie: Trail organizations working with LBC's to ensure ebike purchasers are given a 'trail etiquette' package as well as an incentive for 'learn to ride' courses where one can learn more about trail advocacy? Some great ideas so far, thanks for the discussion dudes.

May 7, 2019, 10:46 a.m.
Posts: 14
Joined: Nov. 1, 2017
Re: ebikes on the Shore

Posted by: Ddean

Thanks Spandies - I get where you are coming from but I do not understand why or how a fit former Cat1/2 road racer needs an ebike to ride the climbing trails. Those trails were meant for the general population to pedal up on normal bikes, and I think that No Quarter takes a similar duration to go up as Mtn Hwy so it shouldn't be a timing thing. To me it sounds like you are exactly the type of person who does not need an ebike to access the trails.

I think that, while you sound like a well-reasoned person who Im sure is a great riding partner, your post supports many of the points those who are dead set against ebikes are trying to make. Im not against ebikes in general, probably because I realize that they will likely have a role in my future at some point (Im getting older and my kid is getting faster), but your post is a giant "I told you so" for the anti-ebike crowd.

My apologies if my post sounded confrontational, it was not my intent to provide a 'I told you so'. I just wanted to provide my perspective as someone who (1) doesn't necessarily need an ebike due to the fitness aspect, and (2) had actually previously hated on them due to many of the arguments as tabled in this discussion. To clarify, I don't need an ebike to get up the trail; again I chose one because it would allow me to pack more riding in a shorter period of time. I don't think that I would be able to do the similar route I did on the weekend in the same allotted time on a non-assist bike, and with little leisure time, my intent is to prioritize smiles per hour; the more tech I get to enjoy on a ride, the better.

As for the changing of my perspective to not hating on ebikes, a couple of things did it for me. First, I wanted to incentivize riding and so had purchased an ebike for my wife for her to commute on and for us to go on rides together. I grew up with bikes, family had a bike shop, raced tons, in essence I obsess about being on two wheels. Unfortunately, my wife doesn't share the same love for riding that I do, nor does she have the same level of fitness. The ebike I bought for her was the equalizer - she looks forward riding to work knowing that she has extra assistance when she's tired; her MO is to get a good workout on regardless, but sometimes she's just tired and the different levels of assistance allow her to have the flexibility on those off days. As she has been riding more often, we get to go out on more excursions on the bikes, using our cars less. Living in Vancouver, we can traverse a relatively large distance and it has opened up her eyes to exploring trails as well; I can bomb about on my gravel bike and still have fun while she's not too far behind - bonus! The second was already mentioned - a bunch of my friends who previously only rode motorcycles (sportbikes, dirt) bought ebikes and I got to try one for a few rides. I wanted to hate on it but I couldn't, I had so much fun. Drilling up an FSR was fun. Riding super easy trails were fun because I was in good company, and because the ebikes allowed my friends with less fitness to stay in a group. Riding proper techy trails was fun because I was on a robust enduro bike which allowed for more speed and bigger hits. And I think that's the summary I have - they're just super fun.

I know they're not for everyone nor am I trying to convince everyone to buy one. There will always be a place for non-assisted bikes, that market isn't going away anytime soon. Again, I emphasize that I agree that policies need to be in place so as to circumvent abusive behaviours, however I feel we cannot do so by adopting a black and white position of banning outright. The reality is that they will only increase in popularity, and so I hope that we can have more fruitful discussions with trail organizations about integration, and subsequently, issues around increased trail wear and usage. 

On a related note, since I'm just getting back into riding the shore, I'm always looking for riding partners. Should anyone be interested, the offer is open for you to try my bike should we go on a ride.

May 7, 2019, 10:05 a.m.
Posts: 14
Joined: Nov. 1, 2017
Re: ebikes on the Shore

Posted by: oldmanbuilder

Posted by: Spandies
 Additionally, there seems to also be the argument that these ebikes will somehow open up the floodgates to inexperienced riders getting in over their heads. Think about this for a second - do you really think that the demographic who can afford a $6k+ e-assist mtb would really want to try to mangle themselves on the beloved shore trails we love?

thanks for confirming.  the shore as we know it will just get progressively dumbed down.  the NSMBA will either choose to follow the herd or will be told to support the herd by the land managers.

in current context of no new trails, dumbing down just means losing more of the classics and getting them turned into pablum.

Perhaps I was not clear in my point. I suspect that the majority who can afford these e-assist mtb's most likely won't be riding the shore - they're the ones who will ride in the endowment lands or around easy trails in the GVRD; for many it's about status after all. It's no different than the dudes who buy $15k road bikes with deep carbon wheels; very few have the fitness to fully utilize the bike, nor do many of them race. But these are the people who pay big bucks and flip bikes often, supporting our LBC's and ensuring that guys like you and I have access to barely ridden premium bikes at significant discount when they're sold. As previously mentioned, I see a lot of ebike riders on the shore as either old skool riders who have injuries or who have lost fitness, guys like me who just want to get more riding in a shorter period, or for those who want to do super long days. 

As for following herds and the dumbing down of trails, having been out of the 'shore scene' for a long time, it was interesting to see the volume of riders riding up the service road doing loops of bobsled/floppy bunny on the weekend; must've been 30-40+ riding up in a group along with 10-15 people waiting at the top of the trail. Not one ebike in sight. And so, perhaps another perspective is that an e-assist bike may make it so that 'the herds' will more likely be interested in attempting the old-skool trails as their skills improve with the incentive of having an easier time accessing said trails. Or, it could spawn or expand upon a different type of riding - North Shore uphill tech-gnar; slower speeds, just as technically challenging, fewer dudes impaling themselves on gaps and skinnies.

May 7, 2019, 9:09 a.m.
Posts: 14
Joined: Nov. 1, 2017
Re: ebikes on the Shore

I've been following this thread with a lot of interest as I've been in the market for a new bike, and I just bit the bullet and got an ebike (pedelec) last week. I'm not an apologist nor do I get paid for shilling product, I just wanted to share my impressions to add to further discussion. For those who aren't into fitness elitism, it's a game changer. Instead of riding up the fire road, I spend that same time riding up the climb trail now. Instead of riding alone or with the few others who have similar fitness and skills to me, I can now ride with a wider variety of friends, staying together as a group. Moreover, this has brought over friends from the motorcycle riding realm who otherwise have had no interest in bicycles. These same friends are now enjoying better fitness and have become passionate about riding bikes - more people who will support trail organizations and our LBC's. 

Can someone put their bike on turbo/boost (highest level) and just easy roll it up the hills? Perhaps, but it's not as simple. That will quickly drain the battery on an extended technical climb, and it won't change the fact that one still needs a certain amount of skill and experience to hustle and wrestle a 50+lb bike up and over obstacles. Moreover, most of the systems when in turbo/boost aren't very smooth at applying power in those gentle pedal applications; they can be jerky and take away from one's ability to navigate around obstacles. Where the benefits lie are in these systems ability to help a rider maintain momentum, and being able to do so riding a bigger bike. Having not ridden the shore extensively since the 90's, I now essentially have a DH bike of yesteryear that climbs. For those who worry about trail erosion because of tires spinning etc, that's not how these systems work. If anything, you erode the trail less due to said momentum, compliant long-travel suspension, and typically plus-sized tires. I encourage everyone to try one for an extended ride, not just a few minute putter. Now I truly have my one-mtb quiver - it will do everything from a day riding shore tech-gnar, to a full-day adventure that will allow me to explore and cover significantly more distance than I otherwise would on a trail bike. Being that I'm not that skilled as a dirt jumper or 'sending it', I'm not particularly worried that it's not light and lithe enough for fancy jump poses to be posted on instagram or facebook. 

Now why did I buy one? It's made riding accessible and fun again. As per above, I now have the opportunity to ride with a more diverse group of people. Living 45-60 minutes away from the shore, it's also made it so I can get a satisfying ride in a short amount of time; I still work just as hard, I just get more trail time in a shorter period. For example, for 1:10 riding time on Sunday, I was able to ride up the climb trails from Dempsey, ride up to 7th, down 7th, Leppard, crinkum crankum, kirkford, cedar tree, then up the fire road up and then down expresso, lower expresso, and pennzoil. Now keep in mind that I'm pretty fit (Previous cat 1-2 road racer, FTP high 4W/kg) and that I was working hard using eco/trail mode, but that same route would've typically taken a lot longer. I made most of my time on the service road as I was drilling it around the same pace/effort I would on my gravel bike. Did I pass some people on the trails? Sure I did, but I did what I would've done in any other instance when I would've passed these same people 'on my own power'; wait slowly for them to clear their section and/or wait for a more appropriate manner before announcing my pass. Etiquette doesn't just disappear when one rides an ebike, nor can we assume that jerks won't also do jerk passes when riding a normal bike. 

I agree with many of the comments that we need more stringent policies to govern the application of ebikes and what constitutes appropriate use. Throttle controlled bikes are a no-go; these are essentially motorcycles as many of stated. But pedal assist bikes are very different in their behaviour; I ride motorcycles as well and the skillset used to ride either proficiently is quite different. Additionally, there seems to also be the argument that these ebikes will somehow open up the floodgates to inexperienced riders getting in over their heads. Think about this for a second - do you really think that the demographic who can afford a $6k+ e-assist mtb would really want to try to mangle themselves on the beloved shore trails we love? Most who will come to the shore will be old-skool shore riders who are older and may not have the same fitness of their youth, or people like me who are pressed for time, or others who just want to pound out epic long days on the bike. Recall there were very many naysayers as well as MTB's have evolved - people used to bitch about suspension, then full suspension, and disc brakes etc... Recognize that these e-assist bikes are yet another evolution in the process and I can only foresee them growing in popularity. I encourage you all to give an assist-bike a proper go one day, you may be surprised as to how they can augment your enjoyment of riding.

Nov. 2, 2017, 12:45 p.m.
Posts: 14
Joined: Nov. 1, 2017
Re: Getting back into mountain biking - need some guidance

Hi Everyone,

Thank you so much for the comprehensive responses and feedback. The spot article (https://nsmb.com/articles/spot-mayhem-29-north-shore/) as well as the video that @syncro posted (https://youtu.be/Ptk3qUDlj_o) is part of the reason that I've been looking at 'lower' travel bikes. From what I've read, geometry is the 1st priority (~66 HA, ~74 SA) with wheel size a close second, dictating how 'quick' a bike can transition. Moreover, I'm a smaller dude as well (5'7, 145lbs) and so don't necessarily feel I need significant travel to blast through humps and chunder - however please correct me as it's been a while since I've ridden the 'newer' style trails. I will attempt to demo both the optic and sight in 27.5 or 29er - does anyone know a good place around the Vancouver area where I can rent or demo these bikes?

@syncro, good to see that you're posting elsewhere given BCSB is dead. Perhaps we can go for a ride on mountain bikes one day once I get a new steed.

Nov. 1, 2017, 4:31 p.m.
Posts: 14
Joined: Nov. 1, 2017
Getting back into mountain biking - need some guidance

Hi All,

This is another one of those annoying - 'what bike should I get' threads.

About me: Riding most of my life, spent my teens riding XC and Fromme on my 90's era Norco Torrent hardtail with a 2.5" fork - learned how to ride skinnies and trials-style which suited the trails back then. Moved on from that and raced road and cyclocross competitively and am now wanting to make the change back to mountain bikes - for fun and also perhaps to whet my appetite to do events like the BCBR and the like. Also ride motorcycles, sport bikes mainly, but will throw in some dirt and flat track on occasion. And so, I'm comfortable on two wheels and on 'dialing' bike setups, however my focus now is on accessible fun.

What I want to ride: I'm comfy and prefer super technical riding, however am at an age where I really can't afford to hurt myself too badly as before. And so, bombing down Cypress at Mach 10 doesn't' really appeal to me, however riding some flowy stuff and getting through a trail smoothly is more my style. I live in Vancouver proper and so my jaunts will be Fromme, Seymour, Burnaby mountain, Squamish, and whatever else you would recommend.

The bike: I am looking at Norco's as I'm able to get them at reasonable prices. That and they've always given me a good bang-for-buck for my needs; I don't need the best, but I'm willing to pay for proper suspension. I am however confused with all this new technology - 27+ this, 29er that, boost, blah blah blah and am pretty lost as well as I know the trends are now for 'slack, low, and long'.  As my focus is on fun first, thoughts on bikes for my background and anticipated trails of interest? What other things should i be looking for and aware of? I'm really siding towards a Norco Optic A1 (29er) as it seems to strike a reasonable balance of something that can pedal well that will still handle some of the more challenging trails.

Any suggestions would be great, thanks for your time!

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