One thing about hire bikes in the USA is the brake setup. They do it ‘one’ way, and we Australian’s do it ‘another’. It was born from the need to have your hand free when signalling and transcended motorbikes down to bicycles.
What it means is coming into the first corner hot results in a nose wheelie of epic proportions. Once your brain makes the switch it’s no big deal. The first time I experienced this was the Slickrock Trail, Moab.
Sean T had been so kind to organise a day’s mountain biking for Prolly and I in his backyard while I was in LA. Topanga is a short drive from downtown in the Santa Monica mountains, and is remarkably free of just about everything. People included. It’s always a pleasure to have a local show your their local trails and I could tell Sean was ‘pumped’ to show them off.
To beat the heat you really need to start at sun up and be done by 10am or you have a fiery furnace sapping your strength from that point on. The trails are extensive and my favourite was the back bone / squirrel cage which is jaw aching fun – reminiscent of Les Gets and Morzine VTT course. It’s been great getting back to my cycling roots of mountain biking amongst great people.
We returned the bikes to Topanga Creek Bicycles which is a treat in itself. Home baked goods, amongst a great service pro-shop with the friendliness of a country pub. Just so happens to be have been rated one of America’s BEST Bike shops.
After the ride was done it was time to take in the culinary highlight of In-N-Out Burger. I made easy work of the standard double everything, and backed it up with a 4×4 ‘Animal style’. Calorie intake for the month complete.