Ha! Well this got like no love a couple years ago. This was originally made 3 years after my brief flirt with the sport of Mountain Biking. I had bought a Specialized Hardrock in 2010 and went right to the trails. After about 4 months I made up the excuse that my schedule was too packed to continue going...
Until this past summer when a friend of mine at work wanted to know where to go mountain biking around small town Ohio. I took him there one night after work with the idea of just a couple trips and I'd bow out. Boy was I wrong. Mountain Biking, even here in flat Ohio, is one of the most intimidating experiences I've ever had and extremely rewarding when you feel yourself improving.
Me taking a break after a ride early on into getting back on the bike, I had no endurance.
Riding in the fall colors. Bike still totally stock.
I met up with my original riding partner who bought his Specialized at the same time as me. Seeing his upgrades got me started.
I then decided I wanted to spend some money on my Specialized.
-3T 740mm Carbon Fiber Handlebar
-3T 85mm Stem
-Fizik Gobi M3 Carbon Fiber Seat
-Shimano Saint Flat Pedals
I then found parts for my second round of upgrades:
-Shimano Hydraulic Disc Brakes
-WTB Frequency i19 Wheelset with Shimano Deore Hubs
Round 3 will be a dropper seat post, new fork with lockout, and WTB tubeless tires. I expect that all to happen sometime in the early summer.
Knowing that winter was around the corner and not wanting to stop being out of the woods I took a slight risk and purchased a well outfitted entry level Fat Bike. For those of you who don't know, Fat Bikes are relatively new to the market and are becoming more and more popular for all around terrible condition riding. With 4 inch wide tires there isn't much you can't run over.
The only upgrades are:
3T 740mm Carbon Fiber Handle Bar
Shimano Saint Flat Pedals
SKS Grand MOM and Grand DAD Fenders (a must when riding this beast in the mud).
I've made it sound so rewarding that my wife wanted in on the sport. She is just getting started and has only been down the trail a few times but she is picking up the sport quick. She is on a brand new Cannondale Tango that looks oh so sharp going down the trail.
Mainly I'm to the point where I just need to ride more. My new year's resolution is to hit the trail at least twice a week and go and try a 24 mile trail at a nearby State Park...no matter how long it takes or how much it kicks my ass. If you are a rider post up. If you aren't a rider I suggest airing up that old walmart bike in your parent's garage and giving it a try. If you like it push on. If you don't like, try it again.