The crew waits for Tony to bang out a line up the rocks on the “waterfall” portion of the trail

Ok, I’ll get this part out of the way up front. This video was a little more difficult to edit than usual. In fact, it took almost an entire year to get around to doing it. The challenge was not due to technical reasons or an artistic mental block. No, this one was tough because every time I think of this day, I have flashbacks to the part of the ride when my friend Alex had the nastiest crash I’ve ever seen in trials, at least in person. It happened in the blink of an eye, before Alex or anyone else could even react. Fortunately he healed up in just a few weeks, and while it was brutal, it could have been much worse. And before you rush to go see it, I cut the clip off just prior to the part where he actually got injured. I’m sure Alex doesn’t want to see it, and it makes me very uncomfortable to watch it myself. I wrestled with the decision of how much to include or whether to even include any of the clip at all.

Alex drops in while Jim searches for… I have no idea what he’s looking for

As I mentioned above, this ride was from last summer (i.e., 2022). I missed riding most of the season last year due to a painful case of lateral epicondylitis, so you won’t see any of my riding in this particular edit. Maybe I couldn’t ride, but I could still record video and hang out with my trials riding crew. True, I hated not being able to ride, but at the same time, I could focus on watching everyone else ride, which is also pretty cool. And of course just spending time with friends is enjoyable, even if you can’t directly participate.

Ryan with a lunge & gap

Typically when we ride at this location, we ride at several different spots, often ending the ride at a part of the trail we call the “waterfall”. Every time we ride here and finish up at the waterfall, we tell ourselves we should start there instead of ending there since it tends to take more energy to ride than the other spots. It’s better to hit it when we’re fresh instead of when we’re already tired. So on this day, everyone decided to buck the routine, and start at the waterfall. It was a good plan – they had some pretty good riding. And of course lots of the typical wit.

So back to the crash. What actually happened? If you’re an experienced trials rider, you’ll probably be able to spot the problem the instant before the crash. If the rear wheel is behind anything like the peak point of a rock or a rail and you try to hop, in a move such as a gap, for instance, the wheel will hang up on the high point, thrusting your front wheel downward with a force relative to that which you used to preload and launch. In some cases, the result is just annoying, but if a move really requires a lot of “oomph”, you end up getting launched over the handlebars. I’ve had a few close calls (and a small but painful mountain bike crash) due to this effect. And now, after witnessing this crash from just a few feet away, now I’m paranoid about it.

In addition to the standard group ride highlights edit, I’ve also generated a bonus edit with some of the footage that didn’t quite make the cut. It’s still good stuff, it just didn’t fit in the edit.

Group ride highlights video
B-roll bonus video


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