Monday, September 30, 2013

Fun Mountain Biking Retreat, A Cabin in the Mountains, by Rideon

cabin in mountains for mountain biking and bike touring travelers

I had moved from Suquamish, Washington to Pagosa Springs, Colorado in 1997 one year after having been in a car collision.  I was told I would require two years of physical therapy and would not be able to work hard physically (I was landscaping at the time) ever again.
Picture of Ponderosa Pine, Pagosa Springs, CO mountain biking getaway
Tree growing inside "mud room" and exits roof.

During the autumn of 2002 I purchased a small piece of property of 1.8 acres and finished building a cabin on it.  Mountain bike and walking trails make for some nice casual after dinner jaunts.
Partly to prove something to myself as I built the majority of it by myself with very little help. As the property is "off grid" that first winter I did not have electricity or running water. A year later I was able to install solar power enough to run lights, laptop and other small devices.  Getting water to the cabin was challenging at times as the road leading up to the property is very steep and I would often carry grocery items and drinking water on my bike up to the cabin.

Scenic walkway from road to cabin
I worked very hard to get the cabin buttoned up enough to ride out that first winter and had gathered just enough fire wood to stay warm for several months.  It was all very hard physical labor that challenged my mind and body on many levels as I felt the need to work through the night at times to get things done on time.  I am very grateful to have been able to accomplish such a silly task as this and love the property for what it is, a quaint, natural place still off the grid with propane cooking appliances, two buildings each with its own wood stove, wood storage, enough water storage for weeks of washing dishes, etc.  
Mountain Bike retreat cabin exterior
Several years later finally got some finish work done.

 It wasn't until the spring of 2007 that I was able to get some much needed finish work done to the exterior including trim and stucco work.  A project that took so many years to complete should be well cared for and not just allowed to rot away.  Property building in harsh climates requires some maintenance particularly after a hard winter.  This cabin has held up to such severe winter snow storms that other buildings in the area were flattened.  I was concerned about going to visit after the spring melt off, that I might find the place crushed.  I was so pleased to see that the work I had done was good enough to still be standing after such a heavy storm.  I have since sold the property to a family member who is not taking very good care of the place at all and who doesn't seem to care about it much for anything other than to have a false sense of possession.  So, thought I would give my old cabin a blog about with some very nice photos to accompany it.
Mountain Bike retreat cabin in the mountains
Sink drain lines empty to drainage trough and are less likely to freeze in winter, propane line exits wall for easy propane hook up.
Mountain cabin retreat for mountain biking
Cabin Interior with propane appliances including refrigerator and stove top with oven.

Cabin built off grid for mountain biking retreats or getaways
Composting toilet with PVC pipe vent installed above large south facing glass window.
Scenic view of Broken Off Point from property
                 Although the property is off grid and seems to be remotely placed some conveniences include eight mile bike ride to town with a nice wide shoulder along highway.  A bus stop approximately one quarter mile from property has a bike carrier on the front for winter commutes.  At times I really miss the property and reminisce on the three winters I spent there while working at Pedal and Powder Bike Shop.  A blog article written in fond memory was hoping to rent out to cyclists interested in staying in a unique area but doesn't look like that will be happening any time soon.  For more information about Pagosa Springs, visit this informative blog article with links to mountain bike rental shops and other information to make your visit smooth and fun.
Have a nice day.
P.S. Lisa Piper of Natural Living provided a couple of the very nice photos here.  Visit her shop at

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Retro Style Images for Classic Mountain Touring Bike Build, by Rideon

Retro style bike ad
New mountain bike build with retro style
Nothing definitive, calling it the "Rigamaroll"
                               This has been such a fun project so far I that I simply enjoy creating these images reminiscent of old fashioned risque bike ads from Europe.  Some of the risque style which weren't displayed here in the U. S. much.  One of the reasons for having this personal blog, not concerned about offending folks, this is my fun, personal blog.
Retro bike poster advertisement

A fun theme modeling this new bike build after the Rover Safety bike.  So many ideas were blended into this new build and it is so fun to ride that I wanted to share some images created along the way.

mountain bike for touring

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Newly Built Mountain Bike for bike travel, touring and commuting, the "Rigamaroll", by Rideon

Abstract black and white photo of touring bike for bicycle touring
From the Light of Traditional Touring bikes....
Bike Tourings' blog and site continues to provide information and product reviews for folks interested in bike travel, bicycle touring and bicycle commuting.  Site includes links to free information and quality products from well reputed industry leaders and suppliers.

Recently we built up a new touring bike for a customer who only had an idea of what he wanted.  Sort of a beach cruiser mountain bike that he could efficiently ride around the countryside on.  Hmm.  With a mindset of traditional touring builds having developed a knack or understanding of combining quality, comfort and performance for long hours on the saddle I kind of had an idea of where to start.  With the proliferation of fat tire bikes on the market and an ongoing yet burgeoning interest with expedition, mountain bike touring style bikes we sketched out an idea. 

Approximately one year later and lots of fun experimenting with different ideas (some of which we will keep) we built what we have affectionately dubbed the "Rigamaroll".  Built with longevity, durability, comfort and quality performance I included Avid BB7 disc brake, Mountain Riser Comfort Bars, Kona Project 2 Fork and some pretty fat 2.35 inch tires.  This is a fun bike to ride in an area where bike lanes are not very common so going around and riding over typical urban obstacles not a problem with this fun commuter.
Links below provided for information regarding this bike build project.
Fork InstallationTire Selection, Rear Rack Install, Nice Blend of Nature and Nurture
Newly built mountain bike for bike travel, bike camping, bicycle touring, bicycle commuting
Nothing definitive calling it the Rigamaroll