After deciding not to start the 2015 Tour Divide, I wanted life to return to normal. I stripped the bike of all bikepacking gear, removed the now unnecessary aerobars, and gave it a good washing. Any remnants of bikepacking gear and training might cause me to re-think my decision not to race. It was time to ride hard and fast on narrow trails with an unladen bike.
I decided to keep the MRP Rock Solid rigid fork mounted rather than switch back to my 100mm Lefty. I’ve heard that riding a rigid fork makes you a better rider – you have to pick lines more carefully rather than have your suspension smooth out your mistakes. Plus, the Lefty fork needs to be re-built. Even more work, I’d have to remove a Lefty => QR9 hub adapter that I installed, re-dish the wheel, and risk damaging the hub bearings.
Fast forward to October 2015 – riding the rigid fork was getting quite old. My hands constantly hurt during when riding rocky singletrack. I was seriously under-biked for many of the trails and crashed hard once because of it. I decided I would re-install the Lefty for a more comfortable, controlled ride.
I put the bike on a repair stand and started cleaning the fork and headset prior to disassembly. I couldn’t bring myself to swap out the fork, though. It irked me that I had never was able to organize the cockpit for the Tour Divide. I wanted to see if I could figure out a better configuration. Instead of replacing the fork, I reinstalled aerobars and brought some bikepacking gear out of storage.
I’m in the process of figuring out a proper cockpit for the Tour Divide. Partly for fun; Partly because 2016 is here and the Tour Divide Bug has started stirring in my brain. Nothing is decided yet.