The Growler’s 2020 Outdoor Guide: Biking Edition

I’ve found considerable solace in simple pleasures lately, and pedaling a bicycle is one of the purest of them all. Perhaps whirring along on two wheels can bring you some contentment, or even jubilance, this summer too. Enjoy this Outdoor Guide: Biking Edition

Bike Camping & Touring: Gear Guide

For those looking to up the ante in their biking, “bikepacking” takes road biking and backpacking to a whole new level. But in order to be successful, it’s essential that you’ve got all the right gear. Here, we’ve got everything you need from bikes to bags to shelters, plus a handy directory to all the … [ Read more]

Explore Minnesota’s Mountain Biking Trails

Despite our unmistakable lack of actual mountains (sorry Eagle Mountain, you’re an overgrown hill), Minnesota has been home to a rich tradition of mountain biking dating back to the early ‘90s. Our state’s emphasis on conservation and the outdoors has created a robust network of trails that crisscross the state and metro area, while advocacy … [ Read more]

The Beginner’s Guide to Bike Camping & Touring

When your long-distance rides just aren’t long enough, it might be time for you to tackle a multi-day bike camping tour. But be warned, there’s far more to touring than just crushing mileage. In fact, many cyclists, even extremely athletic ones, struggle with the transition. You’ll have to adjust your equipment, your riding style, and … [ Read more]

8 Twin Cities Metro Area Destinations Worthy of an Afternoon Bike Ride

  Minneapolis (and St. Paul, if not by name then by dint of proximity and association) often comes out on top of lists of the most bike-friendly cities in America. Great bike lane and bike path infrastructure, relatively flat terrain, and a general ease of access to necessities by bicycle contribute to routinely high rankings … [ Read more]

From Zero to 629.4: Surviving the North Star Bicycle Race — Part 3

I thought I knew what pain was. I was wrong. Just outside of Two Harbors, I was facing wind gusts of 20–35 mph as I moved one painstaking mile marker at a time. Everything I owned was wet, and my ass felt like ground beef. I had cried in a Kwik Trip that morning, almost … [ Read more]

From Zero to 629.4: Tackling the North Star Bicycle Race — Part 2

When we last checked in, I was still training in the storage room staring at drywall, and we still had snow on the ground. Our weather has come a long way, and with the first days of summer under our belts, it’s time for another check up on training for the North Star Bicycle Race, … [ Read more]

From Zero to 629.4: Tackling the North Star Bicycle Race — Part 1

When I announced to my family in February that I intended to participate in an unsupported, 629.4-mile bike race this September, they started planning my funeral. When I get up in the morning and look in the mirror, I see an oft-unemployed 25-year-old man, roughly 40 pounds overweight, balding and out of breath from climbing up … [ Read more]

Pedals and Pull-Tabs: The dive bars of U.S. Bike Route 41

The North Star Bicycle Route (a.k.a., U.S. Bicycle Route 41) connects St. Paul, Minnesota, to the Canadian border, winding through Duluth, Grand Marais, two national parks, past nine state parks, and along the shores of Lake Superior. The route offers 315 miles of safe and sound pedaling, either on mixed-used paths or highways with bike-friendly … [ Read more]

Pages: 1 2 3 4 5

Afton Alps pedaling in the mountain biking season June 3

With summer just around the corner, Afton Alps is inviting Minnesotans to trade in skis for mountain bikes on June 3 when they open a new single track mountain biking course. This is the first time that Afton Alps has opened the property to mountain biking since it discontinued its mountain biking program four years ago. The new course is mainly … [ Read more]

A bike route for every personality

Minnesota: the land of ten thousand miles of bike trails (probably). Sounds like a biking aficionado’s dream come true, right? Right. But what about for us normal people? Us, we-love-biking-but-don’t-have-kids-named-Trek, people? We have some of the most beautiful bike routes around, but they can be pretty intimidating—not to mention, poorly mapped. Who has time to … [ Read more]

Pages: 1 2 3 4 5

Single-Speed Service: The fast-paced world of bike delivery couriers

I arrive at the Uptown Minneapolis office of Rock-It Delivery at 10am on a warm Thursday in June. It’s a cave-like space, dank and minimal, with a vintage couch by the window, a desk with a computer, and, of course, bikes lined up along the far wall. There is a cargo bike for large orders … [ Read more]

Pages: 1 2

Craft Culture: Custom messenger bags at Trash

When Modist Brewing Company painted its trademark teal floor and started pouring beers this spring, Andy Larson, the 34-year-old owner and CEO of Trash Messenger Bags, had a front-row seat. That’s because the North Loop brewery is also his landlord. Tucked into the narrow, low-ceilinged loft above Modist’s brewing tanks, the doorway and stairs leading … [ Read more]

Pages: 1 2

Pain & Glory: The brutal, beer-soaked, free-for-all also known as Cyclocross

Holy hell this hurts. Holy Hell this hurts. Holy hell This Hurts. HOLY HELL THIS HURTS… What starts as a cursory observation turns into a sadistic mantra that ricochets around the brain during the 45–60 minute full-tilt boogie that is the average cyclocross race. Sure, other thoughts creep in from time to time, like “Why I am … [ Read more]

Rules of the Road: Understanging our shared responsibility to make biking safer in Minnesota

The alleycat bike race sounded easy enough: pedal to as many beaches in the Twin Cities as you can in a set time, and take a photo of yourself at each lake as proof. A scavenger hunt with a lakeside theme—the perfect Saturday in July. The morning of the race, Shaina Briscoe showed up ready … [ Read more]

Pages: 1 2