Into The High Country - EWS Aspen Event Preview

Jul 27, 2017 at 19:37
by Matthew DeLorme  



We've had a nice little break since we left the Enduro World Series last. Time to dry out our bones and put one of the toughest races of the year behind us. For round number six we are back in Aspen, Colorado. There will be six stages over two days of racing, and a few fresh sections of track which we really dig. We have plenty of elevation here, eleven thousand plus feet at the start of stage two. Marijuana laws aside, we have indeed entered the high country. Let's take a look at Aspen and the tracks, as we gear up for what is hopefully, a dry weekend.


Bald Eagles trucker hats fireworks and aviators... Merica.
Bald eagles, trucker hats, fireworks and aviators... 'Merica.

Suspension ready to be serviced.
Suspension ready to be serviced.

Time to strip those bikes down and give them some love.
Time to strip those bikes down and give them some love.

Top of Snowmass and the start of stage 4 which has much new loamy goodness.
Top of Snowmass, and the start of stage four, which has much new loamy goodness.

The last remnants of winter can still be seen at the top of Independence Pass.
The last remnants of winter can still be seen at the top of Independence Pass.

The top of Stage 4 is up there.
The top of Stage four is up there.

It s usually sunny in Aspen but nothing is ever for certain in the high mountains. Fog and rain can appear in the blink of an eye when above 9k feet.
It's usually sunny in Aspen, but nothing is ever for certain in the high mountains. Fog and rain can appear in the blink of an eye above 9000 feet.

Those views though.
Those views though.

Matt Delorme has been living on a ranch all summer and has some custom fur that he claims to provide superior protection in a thunderstorm.
Matt Delorme has been living on a ranch all summer, and has a custom fur that he claims will provide superior protection in a thunderstorm.

Someone s curious what all the commotion is about on the slopes of Aspen Mountain this weekend.
Someone's curious what all the commotion is about on the slopes of Aspen Mountain this weekend.

Seager and Sven square off.
Seager and Sven square off.

The iconic Maroon Bells peak through the cloud cover at the top of Stage 4.
The iconic Maroon Bells peek through the cloud cover at the top of Stage four.

This will not be a fun lift ride if any kind of foul weather rolls in.
This will not be a fun lift ride if any kind of foul weather rolls in.

Dave gets shreddy on the very long stage two in Aspen. It s a media squid favorite.
Dave gets shreddy on the very long stage two in Aspen. It's a media squid favorite.

More point and shooting through the aspens from Fraser Britton.
More point and shooting through the aspens from Fraser Britton.

We happened upon some people jumping off a perfectly good cliff near the top of stage two.
We happened upon some people jumping off a perfectly good cliff near the top of stage two.

Down the hatch. Dave and Mad Dog Boris chug a crisp Budweiser at the top of stage two. What could be more American besides shoving a Bic Mac and fries down their gullets first
Down the hatch. Dave and Mad Dog Boris chug a crisp Budweiser at the top of stage two. What could be more American besides shoving a Bic Mac and fries down their gullets first?

Aspens in Aspen.
Aspens in Aspen.

The weather followed the EWS to Aspen but luckily Colorado gets better with a little moisture.
The weather followed the EWS to Aspen. Luckily, Colorado gets better with a little moisture.

Stage 1 is identical to last year but with the racing line a bit more bedded in the time around.
Stage one is identical to last year, but with the racing line a bit more bedded in the time around.

Dave was having a grand old time on Sam s Nob.
Dave was having a grand old time on Sam's Nob.

Baller finding his way down stage five which happens to run down a mountain called Sam s Nob. Do with that what you will.
Baller finding his way down stage five, which happens to run down a mountain called Sam's Nob. Do with that what you will.

Sven Lee and Boris race for position down Sam s nob.
Sven, Lee, and Boris race for position down Sam's Nob.

Enduro Boris gets his bar-drag on in one of the high switchbacks on Stage 4.
Enduro Boris gets his bar-drag on in one of the high switchbacks on Stage 4.

Stage 5 is fresh cut and raw. With no established racing line just yet it will be interesting to see how things cut in during the training sessions.
Stage five is fresh cut and raw. With no established racing line just yet, it will be interesting to see how things cut in during the training sessions.

While most of the stages are raw single track there are still a few bike park features scattered about.
While most of the stages are raw singletrack, there are still a few bike park features scattered about.

The Mad Dog dips into stage one. It s Boris first Enduro in quite some time but we were very happy to have him join our squidy ranks.
The Mad Dog dips into stage one. It's Boris' first enduro in quite some time, but we were very happy to have him join our squidy ranks.

Duncan Philpott enjoying a rare bit of damp Colorado hero dirt.
Duncan Philpott enjoying a rare bit of damp Colorado hero dirt.

Our fearless presenter Ric working hard to get you those course previews.
Our fearless presenter, Ric working hard to get you those course previews.

When the clouds part there are some mega views to be had from the upper slopes of every stage.
When the clouds part, there are some mega views to be had from the upper slopes of every stage.

Dropping into the Aspens on Stage 2.
Dropping into the aspens on Stage two.

Welcome to cowboy country.
Welcome to cowboy country.

The Snowmass Rodeo held every Wednesday night in the summer is a great chance for racers to take in a little bit of what makes America s Western culture so unique.
The Snowmass Rodeo, held every Wednesday night in the summer, is a great chance for racers to take in a little bit of what makes America's Western culture so unique.

Some of the 10 year olds in Aspen are out shredding bikes in the park while others are taming a different kind of steed.
Some of the ten-year-olds in Aspen are out shredding bikes in the park, while others are taming a different kind of steed.

Hopefully the rain holds off so the only dust flying we witness is from barrel racing.
Hopefully the rain holds off so the only dust flying we witness is from barrel racing.

Bull riding is always a pleasant distraction the day before practice starts.
Bull riding is always a pleasant distraction the day before practice starts.

With lots of descending ample chairlift uplifts and plenty of fresh cut stages Colorado Juan approves.
With lots of descending, ample chairlift uplifts, and plenty of fresh cut stages, Colorado Juan approves.

There s rodeo roping here in Aspen then there is roping on a real ranch. Both a pretty rad part of Colorado.
There's rodeo roping here in Aspen, then there is roping on a real ranch. Both a pretty rad part of Colorado.

On the eastern prairie the cowboys are a little less flashy.
On the eastern prairie the cowboys are a little less flashy.

Keep your eyeballs glued to this site for all the wild action in Aspen coming up over the next three days.
Keep your eyeballs glued to this site for all the wild action in Aspen coming up over the next three days.



55 Comments

  • + 27
 "A place where the beer flows like wine where beautiful women instinctively flock like the salmon of Capistrano. A little place called Aspen." - Lloyd

Yeah I'm old but that was still a great movie.
  • + 2
 I believe its pronounced. ASSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSPEN
  • + 4
 That John Denver is full of shit man!
  • + 1
 I don't know @Powderface, the french are a*sholes
  • + 1
 The most overly used quote on PB this week. Congrats.
  • + 2
 @zorba73: Thanks!!!!!!!! My mom is really proud of me Big Grin Big Grin Big Grin Big Grin
  • + 18
 The west.. Feels good to work so hard
  • + 7
 Is it not blasphemy to be drinking anything other than Coors in CO? Why is it that Budweiser is considered the 'Beer of America'? You could only get me to drink that crap if you hand it to me for free.
  • + 3
 Coors, the last American macro. Sometimes you just wanna pound light beer, and it might as well be a CL.
  • + 3
 Coors Banquet is my victory beer of choice even here in canada, And when in colorado it is the only beer i get! When i think of cracking a beer on a summit i think coors banquet
  • + 3
 Why do people say this so often? Oh I remember, they aren't aware that there is a massive Budweiser brewery in Colorado.

Both Bud and Coors are owned by foreign companies. Neither are America's beers anymore. all hail the micro brew revolution.
  • - 1
 Coloradans (especially those that ride bikes) drink "Fat Tire" as their go-to brew...
  • + 2
 Agreed. The only beer to drink in CO should be a Banquet Beer.
  • + 4
 Oskar Blues
  • + 1
 @asboites: This. End of conversation.
  • + 8
 This is the worst thread on what people in Colorado drink I've ever seen.
  • + 1
 @mdelorme: how many different banquet beers have you tried?
  • + 1
 I'll drink whatever makes me feel good. And La Croix. Lots of La Croix.
  • + 2
 @NoahColorado: pls sponsor me La Croix.
  • + 7
 Why does Fox use different color Kashima coating for its forks vs the shocks?
  • + 1
 My understanding is there is a variation in colour from batch to batch, due to variables in the process. They don't choose them to be different colours, its how they come out.
  • + 14
 @BobChicken: But then, you are a chicken
  • + 3
 @BobChicken: nope the x2 coating has always been darker than the forks/dropper. I don't know any reason for it.
  • + 1
 @Creg: Since I'm a chicken and an expert on Kashima, apparently the thickness of the coating plays a part too. There are stories of people with forks with different coloured stanchions... but who believes what you read on the internet.
  • + 8
 Gandalf discussing kashima coating with two chickens. Nice.
  • + 1
 @BobChicken: the X2 is more like marzocchi colour - I'll bet there is some variation between batches but X2 are significantly darker than the forks. I'd like to know why, maybe X2 shafts are darker metal to begin with.
  • + 5
 The base metal affects the coating color. Since there are different types of aluminum used in different applications, including some proprietary alloys, the colors will be different. Thickness will also play a role, but it's marginal. Also note that the color itself has changed slightly over the years.
  • + 1
 Anodizing, and specifically Kashima reacts differently based on the material. 6061 looks different than 7075 and even individual batches of 6061 will look differently depending on material quality. I've had parts made with that process before, it's cool, but for me inconsistent.
  • + 3
 I don't know why - but it bothers me so much that a new 2017 bike will have different shades of fox stanchions/coating on the fork, shock, and seat post (look at Rude's Yeti posted today) - it looks so bush league I can't understand why Fox wouldn't work on sorting it out. Yeah I know it would not change the performance. And for the record I have a dark brown kashima shock and then a pike out front with black stanchions...
  • + 1
 @tincancharlie: they need to pick materials that work vs asthetics. The base material is what affects the color the most. Its normal too see this with conversion coatings, pvd, cvd, etc. If it bugs you dont look at landing gear before its painted. Lol.
  • + 5
 UNREAL! looking forward to the videos !
  • + 2
 Just out of curiosity why is this race in the latter half of the racing season in the heart of the monsoon season?

Just for the sake of weather moving this race a month or two forward could be beneficial...
  • + 13
 Because of scheduling. With MSA WC next week, and Crankworx the week after, it's more cost effective for teams to stay in North America for a 3 week period, rather than have them come over, go to Europe and then have to come back.
  • + 2
 Plus at least in CO it only usually rains for an hour or two in the afternoon. So it helps the dirt become not so blown out.
  • + 3
 Props to both Matt and Dave, those are some awesome photos! Just freaking beautiful... Never been riding in Aspen before, it's now on my short list.
  • + 3
 I hope they open some of these "fresh trails" for the public after the race! That trail on Sams Knob looks rad.
  • + 2
 Is it a happy trail?
  • + 3
 @drummuy04: Are you asking if Sam's Knob is hard?
  • + 2
 Humidity is going over 50% this weekend in Aspen... this is typical monsoon weather so you can count on rain both days.
  • + 1
 @BobChicken then how come the forks and shocks dont have variations in Color amongst themselves and its only the shocks and forks that are different?
  • + 2
 Fantastic imagery by Dave and Matthew!
  • + 1
 Fantastic Pictures. Looks like a great event. I'm hoping to go to Colorado Freeride festival but this looks awesome!
  • + 1
 You said it @keithrad, incredible photographs!
  • + 1
 best article eeeevvvveeer, I love the rodeo pics!
  • + 0
 The higher you get, the higher you get.....
  • + 1
 Bullseye!
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