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  1. #1
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    Am i just stupid???

    So i recently got into mountain biking and what not just over a month ago. Picked up a Norco Fluid with a Fox Float RL rear shock and a Marzocchi Dirt jumper 3 fork for free. Had some issues with the brakes and shifters but got that taken care of.

    Now i can handle a decent bit for a beginner i think, but the one thing thats really annoyed beyond belief is a CAN NOT climb a bloody hill....ive dropped my rear tire's pressure down to about 28psi to help with traction, ive tried to do the whole lean back over the rear tire but lean forward enough to keep the front wheel down trick, but i always seem to either spin out, or lean to far back and lift the front wheel, or be pedaling and my feet just slip off the pedals...

    I absolutly hate go up hills with a passion now both on my bike and in the jeep and at this point im ready to just give up...

    I'll post up pics of my junk and the tires to show you what im running...so please tell me im riding junk, im a sucky rider and should get off the trails or something please...

    Im using the velociraptor front tire and the kenda klaw XT for the rear (i'll get a pic of it soon), but the kenda is kinda chewed up. I have a set of decent set of these

    Spare set of tires..



    Current front tire



    And heres the bike..

    Last edited by Tankerblade; 06-14-2011 at 11:56 AM.

  2. #2
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    Don't worry, we won't judge you (to your face) if you decide you want to shuttle.

    The trick to getting better at climbing is the same as if you want to get to Carnige Hall.
    Nobody gives a s#$t you singlespeed.

  3. #3
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    I'm not a pro at all but would suggest trying other tires. I know it went thru 4 different kinds before finding one I really like for "All Mountain" riding. Also when riding with other people try riding their bikes. Get a feel for other suspensions...... My .02

  4. #4
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    Yeah...practice makes perfect. But I find that this time of year (before the summer rains) is about as loose as things get around here....so it makes things a bit more difficult.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tankerblade View Post
    So i recently got into mountain biking and what not just over a month ago. Picked up a Norco Fluid with a Fox Float RL rear shock and a Marzocchi Dirt jumper 3 fork for free. Had some issues with the brakes and shifters but got that taken care of.

    Now i can handle a decent bit for a beginner i think, but the one thing thats really annoyed beyond belief is a CAN NOT climb a bloody hill....ive dropped my rear tire's pressure down to about 28psi to help with traction, ive tried to do the whole lean back over the rear tire but lean forward enough to keep the front wheel down trick, but i always seem to either spin out, or lean to far back and lift the front wheel, or be pedaling and my feet just slip off the pedals...

    I absolutly hate go up hills with a passion now both on my bike and in the jeep and at this point im ready to just give up...

    I'll post up pics of my junk and the tires to show you what im running...so please tell me im riding junk, im a sucky rider and should get off the trails or something please...

    Im using the velociraptor front tire and the kenda klaw XT for the rear (i'll get a pic of it soon), but the kenda is kinda chewed up. I have a set of decent set of these
    Are you sitting or standing when climbing? Also what climbs are you having issues with? Where are you riding?
    “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did." Mark Twain

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by skinny-tire View Post
    Don't worry, we won't judge you (to your face) if you decide you want to shuttle.

    The trick to getting better at climbing is the same as if you want to get to Carnige Hall.
    Its all good. I expect alot of judging of a noob.

    Im definitely down to do some shuttling if you can stand a new guy with a crappy bike tagging along and biffing it...

    Quote Originally Posted by Douger-1 View Post
    Are you sitting or standing when climbing? Also what climbs are you having issues with? Where are you riding?
    Ive done both. Ive sat down and leaned forward, and stand up in a ton of different positions. lean forward, leaned back, leaned back but forward at the same time etc...

    Its just climbing in general. But i mainly ride out in Hawes and Usery, but did silly mountain this morning and its just starting to piss me off, especially when its something like a small hill...

  7. #7
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    Raise that seat for climbing. Looks way to low right now. It's not the tires unless the tread is completely gone on the rear which looks like that may be the case.
    Bender to AZDog: I'm not the best person to give advice on not riding!

  8. #8
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    So are you saying that you are unable to climb any hill no matter the size/length/grade?
    Is your rear shock set too soft?
    What climbs specifically in Hawes and Usery?

  9. #9
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    I'm a noob as well so I might be way wrong here, but it helped me out a little. Try climbing the hills in a harder gear to pedal in. You might just be putting too much power to the ground.

  10. #10
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    If mountain biking was easy, everyone would be doin' it I would say if your primary reason your not making it is because your spinning out, try going slower (and maybe in a lower gear). Don't try to power up the hill going your fastest, not yet anyways. Get the feel of climbing first (shifting weight, centering yourself with your core), then you can speed up. After 4 years, I finally learned how to climb decent about a year ago - I challenged myself to see how slow I could go up a hill and before I knew it I wasn't spinning out anymore and I gained confidence. Now I'm more in tune to the hill angle and the amount of pressure I need to apply, gearing, etc, and MY ability, not anyone elses.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by azdog View Post
    Raise that seat for climbing. Looks way to low right now. It's not the tires unless the tread is completely gone on the rear which looks like that may be the case.
    The seat is as high as i can sit and pedal at the same time

    Quote Originally Posted by ajmelin View Post
    So are you saying that you are unable to climb any hill no matter the size/length/grade?
    Is your rear shock set too soft?
    What climbs specifically in Hawes and Usery?
    Well i mean i can climb the super short hills, or the long really low grade hills...but its the steeper ones.
    My shock is set up to the right amount of sag, and often i use the lock out feature also...

    One specific climb is some of the starting hills on the Hawes Trail, so once you drop in from the canal parking area, and stay to the right...

    Quote Originally Posted by jcsxj View Post
    I'm a noob as well so I might be way wrong here, but it helped me out a little. Try climbing the hills in a harder gear to pedal in. You might just be putting too much power to the ground.
    Ive tried that, because i thought the same thing, but then i stall out halfway up the hill and even more pissed off because i wore myself out haha

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tankerblade View Post

    Ive done both. Ive sat down and leaned forward, and stand up in a ton of different positions. lean forward, leaned back, leaned back but forward at the same time etc...

    Its just climbing in general. But i mainly ride out in Hawes and Usery, but did silly mountain this morning and its just starting to piss me off, especially when its something like a small hill...
    Make sure your saddle allows your leg to reach a near full extension without fully extending or locking. Next when you approach a climb slide forward slightly on your saddle, but remain seated, and drop your elbows a little. Your chest should move slightly toward the bars. Focus on smooth pedaling throughout the entire pedal stroke. Try not to give huge amounts of power on the down stroke as this may be breaking the rear loose.

    This of course is a generalization and may not work in all cases. I believe I introduced myself to you on the No Clue Crew ride at Pass Mt on Memorial day. I was riding the yellow Wildhare. Id be glad to ride with you anytime and give you pointers if you'd like. I live very close to Usery/Hawes. Im no pro by any means but I've always prided myself on climbing.
    “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did." Mark Twain

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by loveaz View Post
    If mountain biking was easy, everyone would be doin' it I would say if your primary reason your not making it is because your spinning out, try going slower (and maybe in a lower gear). Don't try to power up the hill going your fastest, not yet anyways. Get the feel of climbing first (shifting weight, centering yourself with your core), then you can speed up. After 4 years, I finally learned how to climb decent about a year ago - I challenged myself to see how slow I could go up a hill and before I knew it I wasn't spinning out anymore and I gained confidence. Now I'm more in tune to the hill angle and the amount of pressure I need to apply, gearing, etc, and MY ability, not anyone elses.
    But how slow is slow? i try to go up slow, and in the lowest gear i can go, but i still cant get up these hills....i spin, or flop...

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tankerblade View Post
    But how slow is slow? i try to go up slow, and in the lowest gear i can go, but i still cant get up these hills....i spin, or flop...
    Deeper Gear.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Douger-1 View Post
    Make sure your saddle allows your leg to reach a near full extension without fully extending or locking. Next when you approach a climb slide forward slightly on your saddle, but remain seated, and drop your elbows a little. Your chest should move slightly toward the bars. Focus on smooth pedaling throughout the entire pedal stroke. Try not to give huge amounts of power on the down stroke as this may be breaking the rear loose.

    This of course is a generalization and may not work in all cases. I believe I introduced myself to you on the No Clue Crew ride at Pass Mt on Memorial day. I was riding the yellow Wildhare. Id be glad to ride with you anytime and give you pointers if you'd like. I live very close to Usery/Hawes. Im no pro by any means but I've always prided myself on climbing.
    Thats right about where my saddle is set up. I'll definitely try your advice. It might be the fact of wrong position, crappy tires, and the i need to power through this mentality that might be causing all this frustration...

    I think i remember you from that ride, although i am horrible with remembering that crap especially after what happened with my rear shock and had to bail. but i'll keep that in mind and i'll be sure to give you a holler

  16. #16
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    Climbing can be tricky, and I am at best "competent" myself. As noted above, this is the time of year where everything is super loose, making it even sketchier. Without seeing you climb, it's tough for me to say what to adjust with your body position.

    Also, when pedaling, think about spinning the cranks, not mashing them down, keeping it smooth. You know how your car would jerk forward if you mash the gas, let off, mash the gas etc, same thing here. Smooth power delivery is key, especially when traction is poor and the climb is steep.

  17. #17
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    Well, you did say you just started over a month ago? Skills take years to accomplish....just be the little engine that could..."I think I can, I think I can". Vision yourself finishing that hill, and if you don't..well try, try again. Also, your on platform pedals?...when your comfortable you might try switching to clipless so you can pull with the opposite leg that your pushing with, then you can get the smoothness referred to above.

  18. #18
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    IMO...Climbing is all about "spinning". Make sure you are shifted into a comfortable gear that you can maintain a steady, fast spinning motion all the way to the top. Don't try to shift in the middle of the climb. The key is to never let up. Keep your butt planted on the seat. The only reason to lift your butt is to clear an obstacle (i.e. rock ledge), once your back tire is over the obstacle, lower back into the saddle smoothly and continue to spin. You will be spinning the pedals fast (high RPM), but will be moving relatively slow...this is normal. Keep your head low and your elbows in tight. If you feel the front end getting light, shift your weight forward a little. Oh and practice, practice, practice...Good Luck!

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tankerblade View Post
    The seat is as high as i can sit and pedal at the same time



    Well i mean i can climb the super short hills, or the long really low grade hills...but its the steeper ones.
    My shock is set up to the right amount of sag, and often i use the lock out feature also...

    One specific climb is some of the starting hills on the Hawes Trail, so once you drop in from the canal parking area, and stay to the right...



    Ive tried that, because i thought the same thing, but then i stall out halfway up the hill and even more pissed off because i wore myself out haha
    You need to get out and ride with guys that can climb and ride in general and do what they do , you can learn alot by watching and seeing how it works. ( this is the fastest learning curve )
    Cycling is hard and causes alot of mental and physical pain that you need to put out of your mind and just pedal .

    There are alot of rides going on daily , check this site and get in on some rides , you will learn fast.

    That bike of yours is just fine

  20. #20
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    I like to have a little momentum built up at the bottom of a climb and shift into a climbing gear right before I start uphill. Like everybody else is saying stay on the seat. It's amazing how much easier it is to subtly shift weight when you've got your butt on the seat. Make sure that everything you do is as smooth and fluid as possible. One jerky pedal stroke can spin you out, flip you over, or just get you off of your line.

    Like somebody else said, ride with some experienced people. Watch what they do. Riding with guys a lot better than I was extremely frustrating at first, but I learned the most that way. Now, I beat them uphill and keep up on the down.
    The secret to mountain biking is pretty simple. The slower you go the more likely it is you’ll crash.
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  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tankerblade View Post
    I'll post up pics of my junk and...
    Please do not post pictures of your "junk"....this is not the forum for that.

  22. #22
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    Are you using clipless pedals.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by azokie View Post
    IMO...Climbing is all about "spinning". Make sure you are shifted into a comfortable gear that you can maintain a steady, fast spinning motion all the way to the top. Don't try to shift in the middle of the climb. The key is to never let up. Keep your butt planted on the seat. The only reason to lift your butt is to clear an obstacle (i.e. rock ledge), once your back tire is over the obstacle, lower back into the saddle smoothly and continue to spin. You will be spinning the pedals fast (high RPM), but will be moving relatively slow...this is normal. Keep your head low and your elbows in tight. If you feel the front end getting light, shift your weight forward a little. Oh and practice, practice, practice...Good Luck!
    That makes alot of sense...

    Quote Originally Posted by kelstr View Post
    You need to get out and ride with guys that can climb and ride in general and do what they do , you can learn alot by watching and seeing how it works. ( this is the fastest learning curve )
    Cycling is hard and causes alot of mental and physical pain that you need to put out of your mind and just pedal .

    There are alot of rides going on daily , check this site and get in on some rides , you will learn fast.

    That bike of yours is just fine
    i tried to get out one time...but the mountain bike gods were against me that day...

    Quote Originally Posted by Hardcore Ken View Post
    Are you using clipless pedals.
    No platforms with the egg beater things in the center....

    So by the looks of it, i need to keep by butt planted to the seat, and in a comfortable gear keeping up a high RPM on the crank in a smooth continuous motion, and adjusting my body weight up or down depending on the situation...makes a ton more sense...

    So here is the tire ive been running in the rear...



    as you can see its really used and torn up...Is it time to retire this one??

    And since i had another set of tires laying around i replaced the rear one to this...



    which style tire is best for out here??

  24. #24
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    Elbows in, lean a bit forward, pedal cadence should be approaching the coefficient of friciton for the terrain type. Think sticky thoughts, dream of powerful legs and don't quit. One day, cardiac will be yours. True story. Lower tire pressure works, but I've found only to a point. Too low and the rear end seems squirrely. For 26" tire, I'd never go under 35psi, tubeless or otherwise. For a 29er, I like 30-32. Practice practice practice. If you're not close to puking, you're not trying hard enough. Session weekly. Even slight progress can boost your riding esteem. Hard will become easy soon enough. Stay with it.
    Today's the day I eat bikes.

  25. #25
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    Elbows was my problem. I tended to keep mine IN like suggested but would find myself wandering all over and screwing up lines and generally letting the front do stupid things. I started putting my elbows out (familiar to me due to shooting) and it helped keep things much more stable up front and i started getting some climbs that were eluding me. I do find that now for the longer cadence climbs the elbows come in and I can maintain a longer pace.. slow still but i can make it. Overall the tweaks and trials the practice is what made the most difference. Knowing where to be in the gearing, which lines i can make, and what my bike will do; theres no substitute for that kind of knowledge no matter the trick.

  26. #26
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    I'm guessing your saddle is too low, too big, and pointed up too much. Perhaps you need to consider replacing that boat of a saddle with something like a WTB Rocket V, a favorite amongst many of us. Install the saddle so that it is centered on the rails and is level instead of with the nose pointing up like the boat is doing now. Also, be sure that your legs are almost fully extended when the pedal is down so that you get full use of those big things called quads on the fronts of your legs Could be that the slack geometry of the seat tube is going to make it difficult to get that bike into a true XC climbing mode, but give it a try! oh yea... and you gotta practice and dig deep when the heart gets to pounding. Don't give up!
    Last edited by DurtGurl; 06-15-2011 at 05:20 AM.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dag Nabbit View Post
    Elbows in, lean a bit forward, pedal cadence should be approaching the coefficient of friciton for the terrain type. Think sticky thoughts, dream of powerful legs and don't quit. One day, cardiac will be yours. True story. Lower tire pressure works, but I've found only to a point. Too low and the rear end seems squirrely. For 26" tire, I'd never go under 35psi, tubeless or otherwise. For a 29er, I like 30-32. Practice practice practice. If you're not close to puking, you're not trying hard enough. Session weekly. Even slight progress can boost your riding esteem. Hard will become easy soon enough. Stay with it.
    Tire pressures are a funny thing. They depend on too many factors to use what someone else uses without really having a close look. For example, I use 22-25 PSI and rarely more than 30psi. I do not doubt your 35+ psi works for you. The point is Mr. Tanker Blade may have to experiment to find what works best for his preferences, weight, condition and type of tire, bike geometry and behavior, terrain and so on.

    No doubt the right pressure (for him) can make a big difference in climbing.

  28. #28
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    Climbing is just really hard for people who have not ridden much.
    When I fall out of shape, I notice that I start flailing around and spinning out more just as you describe.
    When I'm in shape, I can climb up stuff easily. Tires and bike equipment will help a bit, but the main problem is your fitness I'm guessing. Like one guy said, you should come close to puking on that hill climb in hawes loop. The techniques describe by people are all accurate, but you just can't do them until you reach a certain level of fitness. If you keep riding hawes all summer and chase some guys who can do it, you'll be there in no time. It's a cool feeling to clean those widowmaker type hills with no dabs and keep riding over the top.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by rideflatout View Post
    Also, when pedaling, think about spinning the cranks, not mashing them down, keeping it smooth. You know how your car would jerk forward if you mash the gas, let off, mash the gas etc, same thing here. Smooth power delivery is key, especially when traction is poor and the climb is steep.
    This. Is key... If you keep a constant cadence your tires will be less likely to spin out.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tankerblade View Post
    So by the looks of it, i need to keep by butt planted to the seat, and in a comfortable gear keeping up a high RPM on the crank in a smooth continuous motion
    Keeping it SMOOTH is key. Doesn't matter how high the RPMs but it just so happens that difficulty increases as the RPMs drop.

    Those tires are a little beat up but unless they were slick I wouldn't think they are the culprit. Just undeveloped skills...

    And, I would have to agree with many that your seat seems too low. You'd be hard pressed to find anyone's seat lower than their bars. I've got a dropper post and in the up position it's actually above my bars. If the seat is high enough that your leg is near full extension then I'd say that your bike just doesn't fit you. Take your stem off and flip it upside down. That should lower your bars a couple inches and get you closer to a "normal" position.

  30. #30
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    Thanks guys for all the help, it really helps the motivation to get back out. I'll be heading out to Hawes later tonight if anyone wants to head out and play.

    Quote Originally Posted by DurtGurl View Post
    I'm guessing your saddle is too low, too big, and pointed up too much. Perhaps you need to consider replacing that boat of a saddle with something like a WTB Rocket V, a favorite amongst many of us. Install the saddle so that it is centered on the rails and is level instead of with the nose pointing up like the boat is doing now. Also, be sure that your legs are almost fully extended when the pedal is down so that you get full use of those big things called quads on the fronts of your legs Could be that the slack geometry of the seat tube is going to make it difficult to get that bike into a true XC climbing mode, but give it a try! oh yea... and you gotta practice and dig deep when the heart gets to pounding. Don't give up!
    and your right, the seat is a boat. I had an Easton seat on it, but the post was too small, so i had to swap out the post, and the seat wouldnt transfer...so im on a look out for another seat post..

    I'll also try flipping the stem to!

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tankerblade View Post
    Thanks guys for all the help, it really helps the motivation to get back out. I'll be heading out to Hawes later tonight if anyone wants to head out and play.



    and your right, the seat is a boat. I had an Easton seat on it, but the post was too small, so i had to swap out the post, and the seat wouldnt transfer...so im on a look out for another seat post..

    I'll also try flipping the stem to!
    What time and where you parking?
    “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did." Mark Twain

  32. #32
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    I'll probably be out there around 5:30-6ish. At i'll be parking at the canal parkinglot

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tankerblade View Post
    I'll probably be out there around 5:30-6ish. At i'll be parking at the canal parkinglot
    Its going to be a hot one today. That might work for me. Ill have to run it past the wife and see if I can get off work in time as well. Have you parked at the Walgreens? I feel its a bit safer but its up to you.
    “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did." Mark Twain

  34. #34
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    it's just going to take practice. yea, that rear tire needs replacing, but even with some 2.4 motoraptors, if you dont learn how to dig that rear end down, your going to keep slipping.
    Ride like a boss..... Single speed all mountain full suspension

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Douger-1 View Post
    Its going to be a hot one today. That might work for me. Ill have to run it past the wife and see if I can get off work in time as well. Have you parked at the Walgreens? I feel its a bit safer but its up to you.
    I have never had issues yet parking there (knock on wood)....but if you would like to park at the walgreens you can bike up to that point and meet up or i can load your bike up on my rack at walgreens since it can hold two, dont matter to me.

    Shoot me a text 602-four6threee-7three8zero

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tankerblade View Post
    I have never had issues yet parking there (knock on wood)....but if you would like to park at the walgreens you can bike up to that point and meet up or i can load your bike up on my rack at walgreens since it can hold two, dont matter to me.

    Shoot me a text 602-four6threee-7three8zero
    I can meet you at the canal parking closer to 6 than 5:30 if that works.
    “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did." Mark Twain

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Douger-1 View Post
    I can meet you at the canal parking closer to 6 than 5:30 if that works.
    fine by me. see you there!

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    So great but extremely slow ride tonight. Headed out to Hawes with Douger. And WOW. I can not express how much all your advice has helped...between changing the tire, changing my riding style, raised the seat, i was able to do a whole lot better.

    THANK YOU ALL!!!! Its definitly a big motivator just to see that little bit of light...

    Also have to say a huge thanks to Douger for coming out and riding super slow to stay with me

  39. #39
    "No Clue Crew"
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tankerblade View Post
    So great but extremely slow ride tonight. Headed out to Hawes with Douger. And WOW. I can not express how much all your advice has helped...between changing the tire, changing my riding style, raised the seat, i was able to do a whole lot better.

    THANK YOU ALL!!!! Its definitly a big motivator just to see that little bit of light...

    Also have to say a huge thanks to Douger for coming out and riding super slow to stay with me
    that's what it's all about.

  40. #40
    Kathleen in AZ
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tankerblade View Post
    So great but extremely slow ride tonight. Headed out to Hawes with Douger. And WOW. I can not express how much all your advice has helped...between changing the tire, changing my riding style, raised the seat, i was able to do a whole lot better.

    THANK YOU ALL!!!! Its definitly a big motivator just to see that little bit of light...

    Also have to say a huge thanks to Douger for coming out and riding super slow to stay with me
    Good job!! Anyone riding in today's afternoon heat deserves a round of applause.

  41. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by DurtGurl View Post
    Good job!! Anyone riding in today's afternoon heat deserves a round of applause.
    No kidding! I thought about riding today after work...but then I realized I wasn't thinking.
    The secret to mountain biking is pretty simple. The slower you go the more likely it is you’ll crash.
    - Julie Furtado

  42. #42
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    I didnt think i was that bad...i was just wayyyy to out of shape...

    Maybe you guys are just a bunch of little girls just kidding...

  43. #43
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    the best solution for me was to practice riding long steep hills on the street once you can master a hill on pavement without using your granny gear you will be fine on dirt. it took me 2months of street riding and trail riding to get in decent enough shape to take on a steep loose dirt hill. (this worked for me but everyone is different)

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    It's been said a couple of times but I will repeat because it sure sounds like the problem. Pick one gear up from what you have been using and try it again. Sounds to me like you are in too low of a gear, hence the spinning and lifting the front end. There's nothing wrong with really having to grunt to turn the cranks over. I know its just one style of climbing and a lot of DH guys seem to pick the smallest gear and spin their legs off while seated. For me, I feel like I can pick my way through obstacles and climb in a slightly higher gear even if it means standing. I think I get more feel for the trail this way.

    Also since you are a new rider, when you don't make a hill stay and session it for awhile until you get it. I've found that once you clean something you have made it over that mental hurdle and now you KNOW you can make it. Confidence goes such a long way in this sport.

  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by NTAPHSE View Post
    It's been said a couple of times but I will repeat because it sure sounds like the problem. Pick one gear up from what you have been using and try it again. Sounds to me like you are in too low of a gear, hence the spinning and lifting the front end. There's nothing wrong with really having to grunt to turn the cranks over. I know its just one style of climbing and a lot of DH guys seem to pick the smallest gear and spin their legs off while seated. For me, I feel like I can pick my way through obstacles and climb in a slightly higher gear even if it means standing. I think I get more feel for the trail this way.

    Also since you are a new rider, when you don't make a hill stay and session it for awhile until you get it. I've found that once you clean something you have made it over that mental hurdle and now you KNOW you can make it. Confidence goes such a long way in this sport.
    Well said, that was one of the issues i was having. I was in too low of a gear. But as soon as i dropped the gears 2 sprokets, it helped a TON.

  46. #46
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    Right on. The more you ride the more you will be able to anticipate which gear you need to be in. It's sometimes enlightening to go riding with friends who are new riders because you realize things that you granted like knowing which gear you should be in as you approach a hill or obstacle.

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