Jesse Melamed's Rocky Mountain Instinct & 2 Transitions Stolen in Mexico

Nov 1, 2019
by Sarah Moore  


Jesse Melamed, Evan Powell, and Aaron Dobie were the victims of bike theft at the Airbnb they were staying at in Oaxaca City the night before the start of the Trans Sierra Norte four-day enduro race.


bigquotesSo unfortunately @powlermonkey, @dobiept and my AirBNB was broken into and our bikes were stolen. Besides this one negative it has been nothing but positives in Mexico. This shit happens everywhere and we're just unlucky it happened to us here. If anyone in Mexico sees our bikes let us know!

Everyone has been amazing in helping us out and we've gotten bikes and are back in the race! Huge thanks to @julia_sunnyrideoflife for lending me her bike! I'm trying to be gentle! And to @rockymountainmexico and @ridefoxmex for getting me back on a bike. Nothing but good times at @transierranorte so far!
Jesse Melamed


Here are the three bikes to keep an eye out for. Jesse's 2020 Rocky Mountain Instinct BC and Evan and Aaron's Transitions.







133 Comments

  • 305 8
 Theft is very unfortunate, obviously, but I treat my bike how I treat my daughter: Would I leave her sitting outside while I go inside of a building? No. Would I lock her to the radiator in my garage while I sleep? Absolutely.
  • 14 1
 Good one !
  • 6 34
flag jorgeposada (Nov 1, 2019 at 12:16) (Below Threshold)
 Is he switching to transition?
  • 22 2
 There's some people who might want to have a word with you after that post...
  • 51 16
 I treat my bike how I treat your daughter as well.
  • 8 0
 Much to the shagrin of my wife all my bikes are in the house! Haha
  • 11 0
 @cky78: where else would they be?
  • 5 5
 Youd huck your daughter down a mountain!?
  • 1 2
 @friendlyfoe: should have kept the answer short as in i keep my bike(s) inside the house. but sure at pinkbike we love some dark humour.
  • 2 0
 @Fishonshawn: Well I guess that's where the analogy breaks down.
  • 3 1
 Pablo Escobar joins the chat.
  • 4 4
 @robdpzero: oooooooh-fended! Alarmaaaaa! Whoop whoop whoop whoop!
  • 1 0
 @garrisond5: Exactly!
  • 1 0
 What . your daughter
  • 4 0
 Yes Officer, this comment right here
  • 79 2
 Let's see Pinkbike get a bike lock field test going!!!!
  • 62 5
 Any lock can be opened - they're just deterrents. There's not much that'll stop a cordless angle grinder.
  • 5 1
 Bike radar I believe did a big one a while ago
  • 15 1
 @slumgullion: how about a field test for the longest amount of time it takes to cut through the lock.
  • 9 1
 Going to have to be some sort of tracking device installed in the down tube of the frame if thieves are ever to really be deterred
  • 16 1
 @cuban-b: if the lock and cable are too hard to cut or will take too long theyll cut a section out of the frame and steal it for the parts. aluminum/carbon cuts like butter and the frames the most recognizable component anyway so theyll mostly end up parting it out and trashing the frame anyway.
  • 4 1
 @whitebullit: good point. did not think of that.
  • 11 1
 @slumgullion: Adding an explosive device that deploys pepper spray upon contact would be the type of deterrent I can get behind. And if that doesn't work, we gotta start using IED's. If I don't have my bike, at least neither will he.
  • 2 0
 Locks only keep honest people honest
  • 2 0
 Gps trackers guys!
  • 38 0
 @slumgullion: The only thing that stops a bad guy with a cordless angle grinder is a good guy with a cordless angle grinder.
  • 4 0
 @whitebullit: what? 9/10 times when the lock is too good they just cut the rack/pole/fence/railing.
  • 5 0
 @slumgullion: more than one lock, like three or four. Yeah it's a time consuming hassle to lock/unlock a bike every time an a lot of weight to carry when commuting but, anything that's gonna be a hassle or again slow down a thief could make them move to the bike next tours with one shitty cable or D lock. Though if a thief really wants your expensive bike they're gonna get it, no doubt. That's why the best bike lock is a shitty beater bike, something no one would want to steal.....
  • 1 0
 @mkotowski1: I’m going to look into that now
  • 2 0
 @cuban-b: the best lock is a hardened chain from the hardware store paired with the toughest padlock you can find. So then it really is just about what sort of tool you can bring. A good angle grinder will get through a hardened security chain in about two minutes, give or take.
  • 1 0
 @trialsracer: That's what I use, and I cover the chain with nylon tubular webbing so it doesn't damage the bikes. I think this is only good for a short time in a public place on the way home from a ride. Putting a cover over the bike so nobody knows what it is also helps.
  • 1 0
 Gonna have to review house locks too since that's what actually failed here.
  • 2 0
 @islandforlife: By far one of my favorites. He might even beat out "will it blend!"
  • 3 0
 lock it to your mother in law
  • 1 0
 @trialsracer: It depends where you lock the bike, in which conditions can thief operate, hoe much risks is he prepared to take. 2minutes with an angle grinder outside of your hotell room is a no go. In a cellar of your house when you are mot at home? May as well take 10 minutes, they’ll take their time. Ironically out in the public is actually a very good spot to steal bikes if you are capable of little performance and can keep your shit together if anyone asks. 2 guys dressed up as municipal company, or security company can come to a bike stand with angle grinder and cut off anything, as long as they look confident in what they are doing. When asked WTF, they can say this bike was stolen and pointed by the police to be returned. But that’s a high risk.

I see bike thieves regularly, they are well equipped for nicking poorly locked bikes. It takes them seconds. But solid chain and lock will deter them.
  • 1 0
 @trialsracer: Hello there. After my ride got nicked I got a 16mm Pragmasis chain for the new bike, looped through both triangles with either a Kryptonite 18mm Fuhgettaboutit U lock or an Abus 37/80 padlock.

Sure, you’d probably need to buy another airfare to Mexico to transport, and anything is possible with power tools. But you can also get motion alarm padlocks or disc locks just to make it more difficult, and you have to make thieves say holy shitballs and go find an easier mark....
  • 49 1
 Jesse got robada’d
  • 33 3
 Fuck bike thieves!!!
  • 21 2
 Is a wild idea for Bike manufacturers to offer options to install locator chips in frames?
I witnessed a dude steal an $8000 eMTB last week at my LBS. Shop guys said "nothing we can do now besides file a police report." b/s
  • 5 1
 I believe any type of GPS chip still needs a power source to send out a signal.
  • 7 1
 I think there are some devices you can put in ypur seatpost or handlebar.
  • 15 1
 @bforwil: trackers on wildlife can last years and are very small, I’m sure you could have a device that you proactively replace the battery on once/year and be good to go. However, these batteries lasts longer if it stores location and sends data in bursts and not live.
  • 3 3
 For carbon bikes this would be doable , for metal bikes you'd have to have a window in the frame / bar material to allow the signal to get in/out.
  • 4 0
 Thief just takes the tracker off......... Cars with trackers are stolen all the time, the thieves have access to the same tech that the tracker uses an can find it in an instant. They learn any updates or ways around new systems.
  • 15 1
 This is happening way too often. Bike theft is a bigger deal than many think. I had 2 bikes stolen in one day. One was a day old. It was my fault, I used a cable lock. Now I use Kryptonite NYC chain locks even if im leaving the bikes for just 5 minutes. I figure that $200 bucks in locks is better than losing thousands in bikes.
  • 6 7
 heard about a locker called skunklock a while ago. Never met anyone who owns one of these though... Anyone knows how it performs?
  • 2 0
 @aug7hallak: Tried looking it up, but the website doesn't seem to be updated and it looks like they may have run out of funding. but its a great concept.
  • 17 0
 Can I get a Pink Bike article if my bike was stolen?
  • 1 0
 100% would forget to deactivate before going for a ride at some point.
  • 20 4
 Definitely never getting those back
  • 125 1
 I had an Ibis Ripmo stolen out of my van in Northern Mexico. My fault. Drank a little too much and left the van parked on a busy street with my wife's brand new purse (still empty) sitting on the front passenger seat. I reached out to the mountain bike community in the Ensanada area on Facebook with a reward offer. The next day I got a text with a picture of my bike which was spotted locked up downtown. A few days later I got a text with a picture of my bike in the back of a fellow mountain bikers car. A few days later my bike was in transit to a bike shop in SoCal where they boxed it up and shipped it to me in CO. I can't tell you how grateful I am to the mountain bike community in Ensenada Mexico. Great group of fellow riders. BTW - they refused the reward.
  • 10 0
 @gfowkes: wow man...that is unreal. Cool people!
  • 3 0
 @gfowkes: Pretty righteous, glad you got your bike back!
  • 19 0
 @gfowkes: #tequilastorieswithhappyendings
  • 3 0
 @gfowkes: that is freaking awesome, glad theres still good people around
  • 12 1
 I had my bike stolen right as I was walking out the store, I chased after him but took off, I was in the middle of the street and stopped a car (just like a cop in the movies) I told him to give me a ride to try and catch the thief, he hesitated but said ok let's get this guy, we saw him going on a bridge that had train tracks, and I knew where that led, short story I ended up on the other side and that thief was hella tired, I swear I grabbed him by the neck and as soon as I was about to strike him, something told me, "it's okay, you have your bike back, no harm done". I took mercy on this poor soul, why beat someone that looks already beaten. It's easy to type "I'll kill a thief" but that day I was blessed to have someone help me chase after my bike. I couldn't believe I had gotten my bike back, I had just upgraded the wheels to Dt swiss 1700m with 54 tooth, pike rtc3, it was like a scene out of a movie.
  • 6 2
 i had the same thing happen, but i ended up beating the shit out of the person with 3 of there friends watching me do it hahah. Minus getting a ride from someone in a car
  • 4 0
 @DepressinglyAscending: If I have to leave my bike in sight, or just out of it, I first put it into the hardest gear so if anyone jumps on it it takes them a while to get going.
  • 4 0
 @iamamodel: I do that too, and put it upside down as well.
  • 2 0
 Well done on the determination and presence of mind to get your bike back. But it is our moral duty to beat the ever-living tar out of anyone who steals our bikes.
  • 2 0
 @Ian713: hahaha thanks, I was just glad I had my bike back, I am the type that sees blood red and blacks out when enraged. I've been in mental hospitals as a teen and as an adolescent young man, I've done a lot to change, and biking has been a catalyst in me being a better human. I worked hard to get that bike and the parts I upgraded ('17 Rocky Mountain thunderbolt), it would've set me back not doing anything, I'm not a rich man by any means, (living paycheck to paycheck) I still don't know how I thought to stop a car and ask for help. That f*cker that helped me out is a saint! This happened like six months ago. If you ever have the chance to get your bike back, do what it takes. But carry mercy in your heart, for you do not know the pain some humans carry on a regular basis. Maybe I should've done a 3 piece combo on him.
  • 1 0
 @DepressinglyAscending: I like where you're coming from. I ride a 17 T-bolt too!
But I don't know if mercy is something we deserve just because we carry pain or personal anguish.
From what I've seen and experienced, the thief and/or killer (it was an accident) who escapes justice the first time round will be just as sorry the next time they are caught. I wish it were different.
  • 8 1
 Cobra security systems Razor blade clamp on security grips and spring loaded anal spike security seat combo system. $ 99.99. Just make sure to swap them out before handling said bike and going for a trail ride.
  • 10 1
 SHOULDA HUNG THE NO MOLESTE SIGN ON THE DOORKNOB
  • 3 0
 Tig Notaro!
  • 3 0
 An interesting paradox of mountain biking's popularity. Mountain biking has to be popular enough that thieves know the value of the bikes they are stealing, but by that time, the community is usually active enough to turn in thieves or be on the lookout for stolen bikes. Sometimes bike thieves don't realize how unique bikes are, and, how to the vast majority of people, they are seen as toys with limited value.
  • 3 1
 www.google.ca/amp/s/www.bicycling.com/bikes-gear/amp28861849/altor-saf-lock-test

Agree with the deterrent aspect. Locks generally only keep honest people out is a fair statement.
That being said if there is a greater effort need to steal your bike it’s less likely to be nabbed.
  • 4 2
 Unfortunate that the bikes were stolen, sure those dudes day of reckoning is coming for being a "bad hombre". That being said is there a cooler story than loaning your bike to Jesse to get out there and tear it up??!! That dude has some serious skill and I would just be stoked that someone was actually getting the full value out of my bike.
  • 1 0
 IDK, he's probably 100x more likely to break it vs the average rider.
  • 5 1
 So, the robbers just happen to break into a house that had close to 20K worth of bikes inside? Seems like they knew the bikes were inside the house.
  • 6 0
 It isn’t too hard to see a bunch of guys coming and going with nice looking bikes.
  • 4 1
 Yeah. Could poss be the renter of the AirBNB tipped off some muchacho’s to steal these bikes. Could pay for some new doors knobs/broken doors 100x with the value of the bikes
  • 3 0
 @Austink:

wouldn't it seem more probable the thieves are either connected to the owners or whoever was in charge of transportation, than them staying in a sketchy area and being oblivious to it?
  • 1 0
 It is a possible scenario. Then the neighborhood they were in was bad if the robbers were in it.
  • 2 0
 @Ian713: I’m guessing that with it being a fairly big race, most of the locals were aware of it and those with nefarious intentions were actively scanning to see where those expensive bikes were staying. It really can’t be that hard especially when the locals will already know what properties are rentals.
  • 1 0
 @Austink: have some friends that stayed at an Air BNB in Mexico and had cell phones and cash straight ganked out of the “safe”. Owner is as like “whaaaaaaaa”. Couldn’t be the cleaners? Needless to say, nothing happened or was replaced or even offered up.
  • 3 1
 @lightsgetdimmer: that sounds super shady. Mexico isn’t as sketchy as is it made out to be though so long as you are aware. I had my car battery die while racing down there and not only did a local spend 30min trying to help, but he also called his friend to bring in some other cables since his were too corroded.
  • 1 0
 @Austink: good point. I concede your scenario makes more sense.
  • 1 0
 @Austink: Speak of the devil. My car just got broken in today. Sucks. There was a lot of people around too. About 10 people on bikes, 15 people in cars, 1 walker, and some construction workers doing road work about 700 yards away. Evil.
  • 1 2
 @tacklingdummy: At least 9 members of your family weren't shot to death then burned in the car they were in due to all the gun fire they took on. WTF?
  • 1 1
 @lightsgetdimmer: No need to complain about my comment. This thread is about criminals breaking and entering. Perhaps you should be barking those comments on those Mexico shooting articles or to those who say that Mexico isn't that dangerous.

Are you posting that on all the non-related articles today?
  • 1 0
 @tacklingdummy: damn that is a bummer. That is becoming all too common recently. I don’t know many people who actually keep valuables in their car so the people have to be pretty desperate.
  • 2 0
 @Austink: My bike was right in the car and they didn't steal it. Black Mirror weirdness.
  • 2 0
 Damn, good luck guys.
My friend's s bike has been stolen earlier this week, luckily another friend saw the notice he posted on fb group just the next morning and voilà he met the scumbag riding it while he was just getting his bike from a car, realised it's probably the stolen one he chased him, scumbag went crazy seeing someone is chasing his tail and jumped off the bike after a while. 23 hours from it has been stolen. Luck
  • 2 0
 This may sound dumb but there has to be a way to install a microchip internally to track if stolen. I would be doing some serious damage to the random thief, unless it's the c@rtel of course
  • 1 0
 there's quite a few GPS trackers available already.
  • 1 0
 Problem is the ‘micro’ part. Anything that would provide active tracking would 1) need a battery and 2) not be micro. Small, yes, but not small enough to easily hide inside a bike where it could still be accessed to change or charge a battery.
  • 1 0
 Yes, luggage trackers. Been talked about alot..do it.
  • 3 2
 Inside job for sure. Mexicans are way more clever that the average Stanford educated senior when it comes to knowing where and where to steal something rare and of value - I know, I’m married 10 years to one and she’d know that you’re bringing expensive bikes. Me, I don’t take the a bike out of our stable without the metolius gear vag stuffed with this bad boy

www.westechrigging.com/pewag-security-chain-012-galv-kit-10.html

Tested a link with a diamond blade in a Makita cordless grinder and it was an exercise in extreme patience. If you want to take that amount of time before I might show up and ruin your world, be my guest. Best two hundred bucks I’ve ever spent. The lead mechanic at Big Al’s in Created Butte came out to our car to see our bikes locked up and the only thing he could say was “ you’ve got to be F#%*ing kidding me!

I don’t doubt that a determined individual could steal our bikes, but after losing my last bike, I’m going to make it a little harder for them.
  • 1 0
 thanks for the link and the tip - that looks like an awesome chain!

www.westechrigging.com/pewag-security-chain-012-galv-kit-10.html
  • 1 0
 Inside job for sure.
  • 6 3
 if we could rig our bikes too explode if stolen I would buy that system. I think free shrapnel should be part of the deal
  • 1 0
 James Bond is way ahead of you... www.youtube.com/watch?v=CMgNpv-wJb4
  • 1 0
 You can purchase Bluetooth tracking tags that can be mounted under the seat or anywhere else on the bike for that matter. Links directly to your smart phone. Food for thought!
  • 4 1
 What happens to these things once they're stolen? Parted out on eBay?
  • 14 2
 yeah, then they keep your frame around their place for a bit while they play morrissey and fart down the seat tube.
  • 1 0
 @rocky-mtn-gman: oh gawd, Morrisey
  • 1 0
 @rocky-mtn-gman: Hang the DJ bike?
  • 4 1
 It’s always been common bicycles are a great target for thieves
  • 3 4
 Damn, far too many of us know the feeling of seeing that empty place where your bike should have been. Doesn't matter if it's factory pro or joe schmoe, we all love our bikes the same!

On a side note, it appears that Jesse rides Rocky Mountain in races, but Transitions for fun? hmmm....
  • 5 0
 Is that what you got from reading the article?
  • 7 1
 @onemind123: It's what I got from the title, but yeah, indeed after re-reading the article I see that those Transitions were not Jesse's. I retract my statement... f*ckin friday, is it beer o'clock yet?
  • 1 0
 @pedalandshredit: ah yes. Pinkbikes clickbait title fails
  • 3 2
 This really sucks! But, on a lighter note, were the stickers on them yet? Are they going to be penalized for changing parts?
  • 1 0
 Bike insurance might be the way to go. Check out Velosurance (I'm not affiliated).
  • 1 3
 Social media strikes again!
I bet if pro riders weren't required to be content creators every day they are alive along with being pro riders less eyes would be on the fact there's potentialy shit that can be stolen at a location.

What if pro riders didn't have so much pressure to post everyday and could go on a trip and post about it later after they got back?
  • 2 1
 Creating social media content is part of their contracts. No matter what we think about them posting x times a day, this is their job. The sponsors want to see the logos being sent out to thousands of followers. As sad as it may seem, that's business.
  • 4 2
 Third and first world problems!!
  • 1 0
 They should have still raced on beat down rental bikes. That would be a great story.
  • 1 0
 Sorry for Jesse and crew. Had lots of stuff stolen over the years. Always frustrating.
  • 1 0
 Such a bummer, that Trans Sierra Norte Enduro looks rad AF! Hopefully the boys can salvage their trip
  • 2 1
 f*ck bike thieves! My pride and joy was stolen this week to! Frown
  • 4 0
 I feel for you bro. My sled has 2oz of C4 in the seat tube and a 9 volt battery. Good luck to who ever steals it. When the Reverb hits 170 watch out...... I have to ride retracted fully down..... My neighbor is rough.
  • 4 2
 Lock your shit dude
  • 5 8
 Id have police interview airbnb host first, then nearby neighbors. Wasnt a rando breakin, it was inside job.

Yet another reason not to use the millenials beloved airbnbs, or as we in the travel business call them, "same or higher price, but poor location and no amenities''


Wouldnt have happened in a hotel.
  • 2 1
 DON’T TOUCH MY TACOS!!!
  • 1 0
 Never stop riding. Problem solved.
  • 1 0
 Insurance!!!!! Some things are worth it!
  • 4 5
 WTF!?!?!? Why is this becoming so common?
  • 19 1
 When bikes started selling for more than 5k
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