So my buddy and I just got back from a spring road trip to St George and Hurricane, Utah with a side trip to California. I ride a Tracer 2 converted to 275, he rides a Santa Cruz Nomad. So it was a VPP tour for us Canadian boys from Ottawa, Ontario where we were trying to knock off a few bucket list rides.
As we were in the SoCal area and wanted to ride the San Juan Trail I reached out to Sam at Intense to see if we could stop by to get some swag for my Tracer. I half jokingly asked in my email if we could get a factory tour. Sam responded almost instantly and graciously said yes. Having owned 5 Intense frames since 2001 and having followed the company here and in the bike press for years I was giddy like a school girl to have the chance to see the operation in action.
We rolled in around 11:30 and were greeted with a lobby full of the full Intense line up, all dressed up in their Sunday finest. Stunning...truly stunning. Highlights were a blinged out M9 and the new Tracer 275 carbon dressed in XX1 with Enve wheels. Show stopper.... panty dropper!
Sam took us around back to see the assembly area, Jeff's personal work area where he builds the prototypes/mules, CNC mills, heat treating, etc. We got to meet Rick the welder, who likely personally welded each frame I purchased and definitely welded the backbone seam on my Tracer2. Great guy, we talked a lot about the lineage of the bikes and his love for fishing and camping in the BC interior. Awesome to meet the PERSON who welded my bikes.
The icing on the cake? Jeff Steber came down to say hello and chat with us, posed for pictures and THANKED us for coming in and for being customers. WOW. So down to earth, awesome cool guy. Highlight moment for me.
Finally, Sam helped me out with getting some bits including the 180mm rear brake adaptor for T275 conversions, a sticker kit for my frame and a spare main pivot bolt for my legacy 2002 Tracer.
To finish it off, Sam gave us great directions to the San Juan trail where we climbed 4 miles from the bottom to Cocktail Point. It felt like we rode 200 switchbacks over 1500ft of climbing. As we got a late start and were running out of daylight, we stopped there and bombed back down. According to Sam, San Juan is the trail he and Jeff would tell everyone to ride if they only had one day to ride near Temecula. I would agree, but if you have two vehicles do it as a shuttle and run the whole thing.
Thanks to Sam for making this happen. You are a great brand ambassador and an asset to Intense Cycles.
That was INTENSE!
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