Bike Test in Patagonia

By JASON MAGNESS

A marriage proposal. A medical emergency. A weeklong adventure race in Chile. International travel. A major earthquake. These were scenes from my life in the past month. To say things have been dramatic would greatly understate the evidence.

Indeed, before heading south to Chile in early February for the Wenger Patagonian Expedition Race, my race partner — and now my new fiancĂ©! — Chelsey Gribbon, had a serious medical incident. But we rode it out and made it to Chile to start what was to be one of the biggest endurance events we’d ever signed up to do.

Bike Section Patagonia Photo.jpg

Biking in Patagonia. Photo: T.C. Worley

But that was not before the suspension fork on my mountain bike blew a seal and became unusable for Patagonia. A quick solution was needed. I made a phone call. Some explanation. A loaner agreement. And in short order I had an Ellsworth Truth mountain bike to test and ride for a couple hundred miles in a race across the wilds of Tierra del Fuego.

In fact, my first actual ride on the Ellsworth Truth was a long and grueling leg in the Wenger Patagonian race. We pedaled away from a beach transition area on the first day of the race in strong winds. We rode up gut-wrenching climbs, down steep, twisting descents, and southward on a road with side wind so harsh that it blew one team member into the ditch.

Ellsworth Truth.jpg

Ellsworth Truth

But the Truth took it all in stride. Indeed, the biggest compliment that I can give the fresh-out-of-the-box bike is that it felt like I’d been riding it for years.

continued on next page. . .

Commenting on post : Bike Test in Patagonia
Posted by Pat - 03/10/2010 03:32 PM

Awesome that the bike performed with zero time spent on it prior to the race. You must have been concerned with that, cool looking ride!

Posted by jason - 04/01/2010 10:31 AM

Actually Pat – normally I would have been (had bad experience with similar situation in the past) but I was so concerned with everything else going on that the fact the the bike had wheel and pedals and that those two things were connected by a chain…that was enough for me.

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