*A trip for two to sunny Las Vegas, entry to 2007's Interbike and the chance to ogle all the new cycling goodies slated to hit the shelves in 2008*

*A 2008 Mission 3, Diamondback’s versatile all-mountain machine. Nimble, efficient and stable, the Mission 3 features Shimano’s new Deore XT components, including the Shadow rear derailleur and high power disc brakes.*

*15 minutes of fame in a Diamondback ad that will appear in Dirt Rag featuring the winner on their new Mission 3.*

*Swag from Dirt Rag, Diamondback, Fox Racing Shox, Rockshox, Shimano and WTB. *

To enter, simply go to diamondback.com and click on the “What’s Your Mission?” button to submit your all-mountain inspiring description and photo.

You will also find the fine print there, too, but here’s some to get you started: No purchase necessary to enter or win. One entry per person. Void where prohibited by law. Contest submissions will be accepted from May 1 through August 1, 2007. Entrant must both author their description and take the photo submitted

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Jacob Nester - Durango, CO

What turns my Cranks you ask? I’ll tell you what makes my fingers tingle and my hair stand on end: a series of trails that makes a rider walk the line is what tickles my fancy. The line is no more than a nanometer wide but sharply delineates pure pleasure from total pain. A trail must possess such an ideological thought turned almost tangible in order for my Cranks to turn. The archetype is within city limits of my current hometown of Durango, Colorado. After ascending Horse Gulch to meet Meadow Loop, you’ll continue climbing Telegraph. At the apex, your elevation has been earned and the pleasure/pain experience begins. Making a left off of Telegraph and winding around to descend Hell Climb my heart rate increases. Not because of elevated energy output, but due to the anticipation of the increments of thrill to come. You ask what turns my Cranks. This is it: Hell Climb to Sidewinder to Cowboy to Big Canyon; a series of trails that remind you of the child-like elation riding a bike affords. To descend Hell Climb you must first learn to pucker your other set of lips. Once this new talent is mastered, drop in and make some noise. As you plummet, the ditch to your left constantly holds its magnetic pull to your bike. The trail is in cahoots with the drainage ditch and gives itself away by sloping toward its cohort. If your speed is manageable, hang a fast right onto Sidewinder and Crank with the intention of attaining that quad-swelling lactic-acid-burning pump. The grade is just-so as to nearly achieve your masochistic goal, but luckily a direct side effect is extreme velocity. Carrying this speed onto Cowboy it’s really time for some yeeee-haaaaws. Banking deep and tight through the curves and launching like NASA when the berms present their sneak-attack, you can’t help but smile and welcome the bugs into teeth. Don’t worry – like a Quentin Terentino film – there is more to come. Big Canyon harbors the finish line for this extravagant ride and is coming at you, relatively speaking, as fast as you’ll permit your bike to travel. As you navigate the tight single track with all of the momentum the curves will allow, the vegetation grows in around you. At this point, let instinct be your guide. Up and down through the mostly dried-out creek beds; in and out of the thick foliage and then, out of nowhere a glorious wall-ride that ushers you immediately back into the bush. When the green growth releases you, the sun bathes you in its beauty and all that remains is the pavement ride home that with every Crank reminds you of the memory you just created within the Durango city limits.