Last weekend we had the pleasure of having Santa Barbara’s Eyal Aharoni visit us in San Antonio for some riding and socializing. I had ridden with Eyal at several California Muni weekends, and once in Austin, but was anxious to get him on my home trails. We got a small group together for a fast pace cross-country/muni ride on Sunday morning (Eyal, Phil Veale, Eric Lancaster, and me), then after a lunch break we were joined by Dave Stockton, and a fairly new but fast-progressing rider named Joseph, plus a few spectators on foot and bike. We headed off to an area with lots of fun descents and rock obstacles for some technical sessions.
Trapper wasn’t riding that day and was nice enough to take photos of the afternoon session. They are posted on his SA Muni site at: SAMuni gallery
It was great to watch Eyal with his smooth, controlled style cleaning sections on the second try when we had struggled with them for months. Everyone has their weakness and Eyal’s is that he just doesn’t provide his audience with any spectacular bone crunching, flesh abrading crashes. Fortunately Phil and I were ready and able to fill that need.
My wife and I also got to spend some time with Eyal’s parents which is always a pleasure.
And thanks to Phil and his wife for providing an impromptu barbeque and beer party for a few of us after the ride.
We look forward to Eyal coming back sometime and hopefully bringing some of the other California guys with him.
Eyal is really an excellent rider!! It’s really amazing to ride with Eyal because he can ride insane sections and not get hurt. Sure motivates me to accomplish the sections he does. It’s jaw-dropping to see the terrain he rolls over on a uni.
Glad you guys had a good time!
Funny thing is that Eyal, Josh and I were just saying the same thing about you, Dennis. But yeah, so far as rolling goes, Eyal is the shizat. But don’t let the smooth taste fool you. The guy’s got some serious leg strength. “Rabbi Rock,” that’s our Eyal.
Y’all are too kind, too kind I had the best time, and was similarly awed by the skills I saw. Scott with his rocket speed and scandelous climbing abilities, and Phil with his willingness to try any line after only 7 months of riding.
These guys say all they have is cross country riding in San Antonio, but they actually have a handfull of really treacherous drop-ins. Each one was about 40-50 feet long, steeper than anything I’ve seen in SB, but just as rocky and rooty. Generally, we were only able to mount these chutes from the middle, and ride the bottom half. Anything higher than that requires much more back pressure than we had, in order to keep the speed down. A hand brake would be tempting, but it would have to take super-finesse to hold it constant while bouncing down the rocks and roots.
So, the problem is not that the San Antonians don’t have any steep rocky lines - it’s that they are soo steep that it’s nearly impossible to even go about practicing on them. Anyway, these guys make up for it in speed, endurance, and climbing ability… not to mention, in 90+ degree heat.
Thanks, Trapper, for the awesome photos. Thanks to all for being great hosts.