December Rider of the Month - Terry Gaylord

Our December Rider of the Month comes from the 'Riders of the Mend' list - Terry Gaylord.

Terry has been mountain biking since 1995 and like many of our riders, got into mountain biking because it hurt less than when he crashed his motorcycle.  Terry currently rides a 1999 Specialized s-works fsr-xc team and also owns a 2009 Titus x carbon.  His dream bike would be a 2011 Specialized Epic s-works.

Terry's favorite trail is one he put together in the foothills for his dad called it the EG 63 - hopefully he'll take us all out on it when he's back on his bike.  His favorite things about mountain biking are the challenge of the climbs and the people he meets while out riding - and what he likes least is crashing.  Terry considers himself fortunate to belong to such a great club of wonderful people.  'Now lets go ride'.

Below are photographs of Terry  at the Homegrown Cross Series in Fresno - he's often seen participating in mountain bike races and events around California, or just at an SSFTA family barbecue and ride - he's always willing to get involved and get out on the bike - no matter where it is or what's involved.




November Rider of the Month: Esteban Solano

November Rider of the Month is Esteban Solano.  Esteban has been riding regularly for about 6 years, he originally started road riding when he was young, but since he loves mountains and all things dirt related - he decided that mountain biking was more his style.  He can still occasionally be seen on the road bike (like on regularly training rides for the Cool Breeze Century), but baggies are more his style.

Esteban currently rides a Redline Ridgid Single Speed but on occasion will pull out the Specialized Rockhopper. He would love to someday to get a Specialized Epic.  Esteban's favorite trail is the Kern River Trail. He loves it because it offers plenty of everything - technical, downhill, uphill and the views are spectacular. He believes that the Kern County trail on a cool fall day is a slice of heaven on earth.

What he loves most about mountain biking is the challenge - you need to concentrate on more than just pedalling - obstacles, balance, cornering - it all adds to the excitement.  He loves it so much, he can't even think of any dislikes about the sport!

Esteban is definitely a team player - if you've ever been out on a group ride with him, you'll know that he's happy riding at the front of the pack and taking on the dirt with the best of them, but he's also really happy to ride with the riders in the middle or the back of the back, and is very generous with his advice and support of other riders.  Esteban has also been a regular at the BTC Summer Series, and ran in the Volkslauf with his daughter this year.


October Rider of the Month: Brandon Hill

Brandon Hill is a new member to SSFTA in 2010.  He started mountain biking in 1990 and took a couple of years off when he was in the Air Force, due to lack of good trails in Kansas.  He restarted in 1994 untill he had a bad accident in 2003.  He took up mountain biking again in 2009.

Brandon currently rides a GT Avalance, but would love a GT Force.  His favorite trail in the foothills is Sand Canyon and he loves Cactus too (but can't always find it!).  What Brandon loves most about mountain biking is the people, and that its much more exciting than bike-commuting.  But he hates the ruts - they're always were he wants the line to be.

He's been helping his wife improve her mountain biking skills, and when she's more confident - he'll be back out more with the SSFTA.  (Bring her out too!).  We look forward to seeing you out there soon Brandon.


September Rider of the Month: Michael Wade

September rider of the month is Michael Wade.  Michael turned 15 this year, and completed his first century road bike ride in August at the Cool Breeze Century in Ventura - way to go Michael!!!!  Michael attends Highland High School, and commonly out in the foothills, on the out of town rides, as well as leading rides and suggesting ride ideas.

Michael is exceptionally enthusiastic about biking, and his race schedule this year has included:

Bakersfield Foothill Classic

Rio Bravo Rumble

Keyesville Classic - cross-country and downhill

Uncle Trent's Time Trial Race in Pyru


Michael currently rides a Trek Fuel EX9, but his dream bike (in addition to any bike that is sponsored by someone else) is a Santa Cruz Carbon V10.  His favorite trail in Bakersfield is Toad's, and his favorite out of town trail is Follow Me at Mammoth.  As far as his favorite thing about mountain biking - Michael just loves to get out and ride.

Mammoth is one of Michael's favorite places to ride, so much so, that he recently got good at picking up horse poop in order to earn his weekend of riding at Mammoth last month.  But apparently emptying the trash and keeping his room clean is still a challenge.  His goal for 2011 is to race at the Sea Otter Classic in Monterey in April - good luck Michael!


AUGUST RIDER OF THE MONTH: In Memory of Grant Salyers

August Rider of the Month: a memorial to Grant Salyers. 

I met Grant in not the normal of circumstances. Picture the top of the Keyesville Snake Pit down hill race course, rocks, sand, roots and pine trees, a Tandem Mt. Bike with a bent front wheel, with his young son Scott waiting for his dad to get their bike fixed so they could tear down the mountain. I lent him my spoke wrench and made a friend that would last a life time.

A word that comes to mind when thinking of Grant would be “tough”. He had guts and perseverance. And he was frugal. His pickup had over 300 thousand miles on it! He chose to ride a downhill mountain bike everywhere because he wanted to buy just one bike. It must weigh 40-45 lbs. He wanted a bike that would do anything, and that, he made it do. We were all going to ride the Kern Canyon Trail one day. I told everyone, for my own motivation, that I would buy all a round of brews at the Kern River Brewery if I could not climb the Black Gulch climb. It’s a very long steep hill with water bars placed in strategic locations along the way by the evil forest service. As I made my way up to the top, I just couldn’t go any longer. My legs gave up, my heart was pounding. As I moved over Grant came by me like he was on a Sunday drive and rode over the top, on that down hill bike. I know he stayed in shape, but mostly it was determination and guts that made him go on while most just give up.

Grant was an unassuming quiet man. No bragging about his accomplishments. He loved his family and taught me a few things about faith that I will take with me for the rest of my life. Life is short. And in Grants case it was shorter than most. They say that only the good die young, and I believe it. I personally will strive to make each day count and not put off the things that I want to do or accomplish in my life time. Now is the time, make it count before it’s too late.

Jim McWhorter



Item ThumbnailJuly rider of the month is KP Enderle.

KP has been mountain biking for 10 years, he was looking for a fun way to stay in shape and met Tommy Bryant at Sniders Cyclery (and who can't resist Tommy....).  After showing up for his first ride he loved the atmosphere of the club, everyone was really friendly so he kept riding and then got into racing.  KP currently rides a 2004 Specialized Epic, and says he'll buy everyone on the board a new Huffy if he wins the lottery!!!!

KP's favorite trail is Sand Canyon, and he rode the McGill trail for the first time on July 5th - crazily he enjoyed riding up more than coming down!!! He enjoyed riding among the mountains and trees, but didn't like the pot holes on the trail.  KP was also the instigator for a Memorial Day ride back in May.  Like so many of us, KP loves the camaraderie of the people who mountain bike and enjoys seeing new people come and experience the fun of mt biking and challenge themselves to make it up the hills.  We were glad to have KP (among others) at the May board meeting to support this mission of the club as a supportive and fun riding group.

He is bummed that our riding area in northeast Bakersfield is getting smaller and smaller.  But feels one good thing about the economic downturn is they've stopped building so we have a few more years before we'll have to travel out of town to ride hills. KP would like to thank everyone who makes the SSFTA happen, without your commitment sacrifice, it wouldn't be nearly as much fun.

Thanks for being part of the club KP - its great to have people like you out there riding.




June Rider of the Month is Jeff Marshall. 

Formerly known as Giant Jeff, not only for his stature, but also for his ride; he will now be known as Niner Jeff, due to his spankin new X-Large, flashy orange, Niner Rip Nine. Jeff loves the feeling of freedom when riding bikes and fondly remembers his BMX days as a kid and “skiing” full rigids down the face of Hang Glider Hill.  After 25 years of riding, his favorite trails today include Cactus and Toads in Bakersfield, and regional trails such as Just Outstanding and McGill. Jeff has been a member of SSFTA since 2000, and after several years away from the bike focusing on family priorities, he has been back in full force for the last year and a half. Jeff loved the club’s Mammoth adventure last year and can’t wait for the trip again this August. When not riding, Jeff is spending time with his wife and 4 children (2 biological, 2 adopted), providing foster care (18 children over the last 5 years), working as a Counselor Supervisor for the CA Dept. of Corrections, and taking the family RVing. He is considering writing a book about his family’s 26 day tour of the U.S. in 2005. So watch for Jeff on his new noble steed – you can’t miss that flash of orange as Jeff whizzes by on the trails, sure to be smiling.



May’s Rider of the Month is Deanne Renting. Deanne started mountain biking and road riding in 2004 in her home city of Perth, Western Australia. Her job as a petroleum engineer with Chevron brought her to the Bay Area in 2007 and then here to Bakersfield last spring. Not even a week as Bakersfield residents, Deanne and her husband James became SSFTA volunteers, helping with a trail maintenance day at Keyesville, and everything else since then. Originally on James’ old Mongoose Rockadile, she graduated to her own Santa Cruz Superlite in 2008, and loves to take it on anything fast and swoopy.  She enjoys the satisfaction of making it up (or down) something really tough. Just look for Deanne out on the trails – she’s the one with the Aussie accent who is always smiling, chatting, and organizing some after-event social gathering. Deanne says, “What I love about the SSFTA is the great friends and the fact that you can always ride and there will be someone to ride with, but also someone to go get a beer or some food with afterwards.” Never idle, Deanne finds time to ride (she just completed 2 metric centuries and is planning her first century ride) amidst her busy work schedule, yoga classes, book club, MBA classes (she’s receiving her MBA from Berkeley this month) and has recently stepped up to become SSFTA’s new Membership Coordinator. Thanks Deanne!



Cowboy Bob is our March/April Rider of the Month. Riding a mountain bike for 15 years, Bob joined SSFTA 3 years ago, and began leading Sunday afternoon beginner rides last year. Bob's successful Sunday rides are enjoyed by everyone and even our expert riders sometimes come out just for the fun, social vibe this group generates. Always a jokester, Bob takes his support of new riders seriously and will ensure riders are safe and having a good time. Bob says he loves to mountain bike because he enjoys the people and the outdoors. When asked how long he's been mountain biking, Bob responds, "Not long enough to burn off this fat belly!" Bob was a dedicated volunteer at the Keyesville race this year despite being sick, and he managed to feed the rest of the volunteers with his mean tri-tip. So go join Bob on Sundays and help him work off that belly!



February's Rider of the Month is Kari with a K's husband and favorite Valentine Kevin. Kevin, an IT guy who recently joined SSFTA, is responsible for the wonderful new SSFTA website. He has generously donated countless hours of website work to the club, since moving here late last year from Vermont. Riding a mountain bike since 1997, Kevin finds time to ride no matter where he is living, whether it be California, Utah or Vermont. While deployed to Kuwait (Kevin is also a Major in the Army Reserves who has done two overseas tours in Kuwait [1 year] and Iraq [9 months]), he purchased an $80 full suspension mountain bike and rode 5-mile laps inside the the base perimeter in the sand! Dedicated bicycle and trail advocates, Kevin and Kari were members of a trail advocacy club in their region of Vermont.  During Kevin's stint in Iraq last year, Kari came home to Bakersfield and found SSFTA. And the rest is history. Now, Kevin and Kari are closing escrow on a house out by the Foothills, and they join a growing number of husband and wife riders. Welcome to Bakersfield and SSFTA Kevin, and thanks for our cool new website!



January's Rider of the Month is popular ride leader Mark, an expert in the dirt despite only starting to ride four years ago. Mark, a former professional motocross racer, was introduced to mountain biking by his buddy Jerry. Mark, Jerry and Eddie all rode together in the foothills before finding SSFTA in 2007. Now, a few short years later, Mark consistently leads weekly foothill rides (particularly on Saturday), as well as organizes fun out-of-town rides. Mark's first ride of 2010 was the New Year's Day Kern Canyon Trail ride, which brought out over 30 riders! Mark may prefer a mountain bike to a dirt bike these days, but don't be fooled into following him up or down some of the "trails" he finds. Everyone who rides knows when NOT to follow Mark: it's when he decides to ride up or off a cliff just to see if it's "rideable." Daredevil and "fast guy" to the max, Mark still finds a way to keep rides accessible to all ability levels. And like his friends Jerry and Eddie, Mark is one of the nicest and most helpful guys you'll ever meet. He knows the foothills like the back of his hand, and he'll be happy to show all who are interested some great Bakersfield and out-of-town riding!


Helmets are required on all rides because mountain biking can be a dangerous activity, even while just hangin’ around before or after a ride!

The SSFTA is a fun social group and our invitation to ride is not an assumption of any liability whatsoever on the Club’s, member’s, sponsor’s, or affiliate’s part. The terrain and group-ride dynamics can be extremely variable and can possibly exceed any rider’s ability at any time. The SSFTA is not responsible for accidents or ignorance on yours or anyone’s part.

Your decision to show up and ride with SSFTA or any of its members, affiliates, sponsors, et al., expressly waives your right to blame anyone else for your or others poor judgment, mishaps, equipment failures, dumb luck, or any other “lame-blame-game” or excuse you or others may harbor or concoct.

Speaking of equipment failures, if yours does, someone else might be able to fix it but you should be prepared to deal with it without counting on others. Wear proper clothing and by all means come prepared to hydrate and nourish yourself before and during the event. You should also consult with a physician before attempting any exercise (and you should consult with a psychiatrist if you have any other issues). Always carry clear identification and insurance cards.

“Remember, in man vs oak tree the oak tree wins” C.K.


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