Back to Basics

Funny how things come around.

Not that long ago, yet seemingly in a galaxy far away I was a die hard singlespeeder. I did not own a bike with more than one gear, I wouldn’t buy a new bike unless it could and would be able to tension a slackened chain.


I rode everywhere spinning like mad or grinding away with every muscle in my body straining to push those pedals. I raced those singing single gears any where from 45 minutes, to 24 hours and eventually a whole 16 days. I wasn’t trying to be more hard core, or garner more attention, I just loved the wonderful simplicity.


It has been a few years since I did much riding on a “oney”. I came back to riding gears and ended up loving it. I have to admit there have been a few rides that I couldn’t imagine doing again on a single speed. There are races that I went back to with gears and I laughed at all the singlespeeders, please do forgive me! I was faster, I was riding more, I did well and even won a race or two. The modern mountain bike drive train had evolved, far more reliable, smooth and durable. My mind had switched and I wondered why ride a bike that is less capable, harder on the body and potentially slower?


Well things do come around and I recently built my trusty Tranny up with no shifters or derailleurs. Just that brutally simple one gear. The switch has been thrown, the mind set has changed, the perspective altered and tainted. I can’t get enough. Despite the burning in my arms and back, I just want more. There really is a quiet that descends upon the mind in that special space that is mine every time I go for a ride. I can hardly wait to see what adventures are lurking around the next bend.


3 thoughts on “Back to Basics

  1. love me my SS…. but I admit, I am buying a dual suspension bike and running it 1x, to keep it simple. 🙂 Thanks, as always, for sharing your heart!!

  2. So funny I just dropped of my bike to be converted back to the SS it was z few months ago. Love that quiet no thinking riding !

  3. I know what you mean. Every time I put the gears back on my Santa Cruz Chameleon, I can’t ever seem to get used to how the bike feels. Everything feels off. The trail feels off, the way the bike handles feels off, and I feel off ~ like I’m torn between spinning and pushing the big gears, and frustrated because I’m not going as fast as I think I should be. I put the single cog back on, and all is right with the world again. For me it’s just one of those simple joys in life that I never get tired of.

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