The Checkpoint is a relatively new bike from Trek which was released late in 2018. It fills a category between gravel capable road bikes like the Domane and full fledged cyclocross bikes like the Crockett and Boone. The Checkpoint may be the most versatile 700c bike in Trek’s lineup, capable both on the road and in the dirt this bike is always ready for an adventure.

Some of the features that make it so capable are things like the 45c tire clearance, hydraulic disc brakes, and tubeless wheels and tires. The Checkpoint comes in both aluminum and carbon frame options. A big benefit of opting for the carbon frame is the ISO Speed  decoupler which allows for added flex at the junction of the top tube and seat tube. It’s not all marketing hype, the carbon models do offer a buttery smooth ride at the back of the bike. One improvement that would be nice to have on the next version of the bike would be front ISO Speed, which trek already has in some of their other gravel and dirt oriented models. For now running low pressure in the front tire will do the trick.

The Checkpoint also has some smaller details that help contribute to the bikes versatility. Things like four bottle cage mounts and the option to mount racks front and rear really turn this bike from your standard gravel bike into an adventure machine. It also has 12mm through axles in the front and rear as well as an adjustable horizontal dropout in the back. This means you can easily change the wheelbase of the bike or run it as a single speed for riders looking to simplify things. All in all the Checkpoint is an impressive bike, the guys and girls designing it really packed in a lot of features and didn’t seem to overlook anything. We are stoked on its out of the front door adventure capability!

The way that kids learn to ride bikes now is different than how most adults learned. Thanks to the introduction of walking bikes, the most well known being Striders, kids of today can learn to ride a bike not too long after they start walking. Our own Roger Rintala has written up an article highlighting the huge benefits and the thought processes behind kids learning to ride with walking bikes rather than training wheels. Rodger, who has had a lifelong relationship with athletics and has been a sports coach for over twenty years, explains some of the basic advantages to walking bikes in his article saying “The entire time the child is on the bike, they are learning to steer, lean, balance, and put their feet to the ground to stop. The rate of development can be amazing and the child is empowered to explore at their own pace. Because they always have immediate access to the ground with their feet, and they naturally learn to control speed, balance and steer, their progression is natural and intuitive.”

Check out Roger’s full article here: Teaching Kids the Love of Bicycles.

 

 

 

We had a chance to get out and do some test rides on this year’s Trek Slash 9.7 and it did not disappoint. If you are the type of rider looking for a no holds barred, all out speed machine then look no farther than the Slash. Trek’s long travel 29’er has 150mm of travel in the rear with a 160mm fork up front, it pedals like a dream but still crushes through the rough stuff. This is largely due to the RE:AKTIV rear shock which is extremely supportive toward the top of the travel but blows off and gains a more supple feel on big hits. We rode the Slash on a classic Downieville lap which was a great match for the bike, when the trail straightened out this bike turned into an absolute rocket. It is a big and long bike, maybe not ideal for slower paced trails or really tight technical climbs. However if you are looking for a bike to get after it on steep chunky shuttles or just an all day backcountry adventure sled then this bike will check all the boxes.

Pros: Long and slack, pedals great, short chainstays keep things playful.

Cons: Stock tires not ideal for loose dirt, suspension needs some small bump adjusting, LT 29’r is a lot of bike for some.

 

Photo: Quincy Shanks

Summer is officially here and that means bike season is in full swing! The bike shop at the Hub is ready to get you out on the trails on a new bike or we can dial in your current rig and keep you riding. Our 2019 bikes are in, the demo fleet is fully built up ready to rip, and the repair shop is cranking. If you need anything bike related this summer the Tahoe Sports Hub is here to help. Stop by and check things out!

Photo: Quincy Shanks

Throughout the winter we will be dishing out Board Breakdown videos highlighting a few of the many snowboards we carry at the shop. This video focuses on the Jellyfish from Moss Snowstick, for more information and specs on this specific board visit their website.

 

The holidays are here and it is crunch time for last minute gifts! We threw together a Holiday Gear Guide to help you with some ideas and inspiration. Stop by the shop to pick up any of these items or to check out other options!

 

 

Guys Gear:

Hestra Alpine Pro: Built with quality in mind for someone who needs a super durable, waterproof, and warm ski glove.

Smith I/O MAG: Magnetic lens change system for swapping lenses mid-lift.

Toko T8 IronKeep the shred sticks gliding at top speed.

Wend Performance Snow Wax: Have the right temp wax for the right conditions.

Coal Headwear: Don’t worry about that helmet hair.

 

Girls Gear:

Black Diamond Murcury Mitts: Keep those hands extra toasty even on the coldest days.

Giro Contact Goggle: Technically sound and style for miles, a very easy magnetic lens system and multiple lenses make it one of our best selling goggles.

Outdoor Tech Audio Chips: Perfect for jamming out, finding friends, or just keeping in touch on the mountain.

Arcade Adventure Belt: Stretchy but supportive, you will never want to wear another belt again.

Patagonia Beanies: A hug for your head.

 

Backcountry Gear:

Black Diamond Deploy 7 Shovel: Maybe the quickest most packable shovel on the market.

Black Diamond Compactor Poles: Three piece packability so you have great poles when you need them, and they fit inside your pack when you don’t.

BCA Snow Study Kit: Know before you go, or in this case learn more while you are out there.

Voile Strap (Tahoe Sports Hub): These things may literally save your life, or at the very least they will make it easier.

AIARE Field Book: Because you are always learning in the mountains and the more information you can have the better.

Black Diamond Probe: Quick to deploy and lock out, ease of use and reliability is the name of the game here.

Black Diamond Multi-tool: For those of you with a screw loose.

 

The second half of summer is here and there is still plenty of time to get some good backpacking trips in. We’ve compiled a list of gear for the Tahoe backpacker, some pieces of gear on the list are essentials and others are staff picks. Hopefully this helps get ready for the next overnight trip or week long journey!

  • Backpack – Something between 45L and 65L depending on what type of trip and personal preference.
  • Dehydrated Meals – It’s always nice to have some real food also but dehydrated meals are awesome for saving weight.
  • Camp Stove – Whether it is a stand alone system like an MSR or a self contained set up like a Jet Boil nothing beats a hot meal on a cold night.
  • Water Filter – Being able to filter water trail side is essential while backpacking, fill up anywhere and don’t haul extra water.
  • Hammock – Not an absolute necessity but with some weighing less than 6 oz. why not bring it for some much needed relaxation.
  • Headlamp – The more lumens the better unless you are being a stickler about weight.
  • Solar Lantern – A little easier on the eyes than a headlamp and they are much better at spreading out light.
  • Sleeping Bag – Down is the lightest and most pack-able but synthetic bags help keep you warm even when there is some moisture.
  • Sleeping Pad – There are two schools of thought on sleeping pads, inflatable pads are very light and compact but foam pads will not go flat.
  • Shelter – Protection from the elements can range anywhere from a tarp to a bivy to a tent, it is all about how much “protection” you want.

Pro Tip – Some dehydrated meals don’t require hot water meaning you can leave the stove at home.

 

 

We’re in the heat of summer now, don’t get stuck out there in the boondocks. We put together a trailside gear guide that will keep you riding your bike not walking it. Not all of this stuff is necessary every ride but it will all definitely help you out of a pinch. Swing by the shop and we will get you all set up!

  • Tubeless Tire Repair Kit – Bacon strips usually do the trick to plug up what your sealant won’t.
  • CO2 System –  Who wants to use a hand pump for 20 minutes?
  • Multi-Tool –  The only way you can tighten anything on your bike.
  • Derailleur Cable – When you lose your shifting 5 minutes out of the parking lot.
  • Master Link – Hands down the easiest way to fix a chain.
  • Missing Link Tire Levers – Between setting the master link and taking a tire off they are a life saver, without them you would need hands of steel.
  • Tube – Gets you home in time for dinner even after your second flat.
  • Extra Co2 Cartridge – Good thing you brought an extra.
  • Patch Kit – Scratch that, third flat. Just patched the tube and had to steal your friends Co2.
  • Zip Ties – If you can’t fix it with zip ties it can’t be fixed.
  • Trail Snacks – When you bonk and still need to get back to the car.
  • Riding Light – You didn’t plan on finishing your ride an hour late after all the mechanical mayhem.

It’s hard to say which we love more: steep pow days or spring skiing full of sunshine and après. Thankfully, Miracle March left us with plenty of snow to enjoy for weeks to come. Stop by the Hub to stock up on fresh gear – just about everything is on sale! While you’re here, grab a new pair of shades from brands like Smith, Oakley and Vuarnet. Then, it’s time to find those board shorts and Hawaiian shirts and get out there.

Here are some more ways to dig into spring skiing here in Lake Tahoe:

Get Your Skis Waxed

Don’t get stuck in sticky spring sludge – this is the perfect time to come in for a wax and tune-up! We’re currently offering 40% off all shop work, tune-ups and wax through the end of the month, when you mention this blog post.

Après at Tahoe’s Spring Skiing Capital

Spring skiing doesn’t get much better than Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows. From cold beer at Chamois to the High Camp Pool and Hot Tub to Alpine’s Ice Bar, the party is just getting started! We’ll see you there.

Cushing Crossing – May 5

It’s that time of year again: the original pond skimming event that started a spring resort ritual is back. Enjoy a celebrity judging panel at Squaw Valley and amazing emcee’s for this spectacle filled with big spills and laughable thrills. This year’s 28th Annual Cushing Crossing kicks off at 1 PM – awards at 3 PM at the KT Base Bar. Note: this event was originally scheduled for April 28, but has now been moved to May 5.

Lather Up

While sunscreen is important all winter, it’s especially vital during sunny spring days. Remember: your skin will be more exposed to the sun’s rays at elevation, so lather up! We especially love the Natural SPF 30 sunscreen from Surface – multiple options sold at Tahoe Sports Hub. Don’t forget polarized shades while you’re at it!

Family Fun at Northstar

Did you know that Northstar gives out free s’mores in the Village every day at 3:30 PM? After a fun day of spring shred, this is the perfect way to unwind with the kiddos. Need something stronger? Snag a bloody for yourself from the cabana bar, and don’t miss tōst – a free champagne tasting at 2 PM each day on the East Ridge (Blue) trail. To top it all off, live music is dished up in the Village each Friday, Saturday and Sunday!

Tahoe Sports Hub is open from 8 AM-8 PM every day. Questions? Give us a call: (530) 582-4510.

Following the success of our annual Customer Appreciation Party last month and with a Miracle March well underway, we decided to throw a second party last Saturday! Everything in the store was 40% off (or more) and we enjoyed beer from Fifty Fifty, a fabulous raffle benefiting Sierra Avalanche Center (over $4,000 was donated from both parties!), delicious food from Morgan’s, and tunes from 101.5. While our Customer Appreciation Party in February was NUTS, we really enjoyed our Miracle March party as a chance to connect with our customers and increase the stoke.

Here are some photos from the event, shot by Laura Lawson Visconti. Thanks again to all our reps, sponsors, and most of all, our customers, for making our jobs so fun!

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