Team Granite goes West with the First Bucket Biker in the US

Many of you have heard of our good buddy Ryan St. Lawrence by now. To the audience on social media, you've probably seen a glimpse of his journey since his life-altering spinal cord injury. You may have seen the videos of him getting back on 2 wheels this summer (first bucket biker in the USA) two years after his accident. There’s a good chance you’ve seen pictures of his fully customized adaptive Santa Cruz V10 bucket bike and have seen him competing in the US Open of mountain bike as an adaptive athlete next to Motocross legend Doug Henry. You may have noticed as he and others helped local adaptive athlete Lyndsey Runkel get her own bucket bike set up.

But his friends know him as Ryguy. I met Ryguy in the parking lot of the local riding spot near my house over five years ago and we've been riding together ever since. We have competed against each other in many a local enduro race; rubbing tires on local trails, literally. Before his accident we knew him as the driving force and "President" of Team Granite along with buddies Keith, aka “Coach” and Jonny, aka “Vermont Chapter President.” He was also the driving force behind a weekly ride series we called “beerleague,” which was basically a ride up and down the mountain multiple times followed by post-ride beers. At the time, many of us were not a part of Team Granite, but we all rode, raced, and laughed together over those post ride/race beers. Our weekly beerleague slowly evolved into a legit mountain event @Highland-Mountain-Bike-Park known as Wednesduro.

Fast forward to his accident, and you saw the local riding community rally together. It also brought all of us who rode together closer. Fast forward to the present, years after his accident, after everyone has continued going about their daily lives and responsibilities. You'll find the guys behind the scenes, the original guys of Team Granite, still there, along with many new members, enthusiastic as ever, helping in any way they can to get Ryguy out on his bike.

So, with that history lesson out of the way, the real reason for this post is to show you just how far you can go with grit, determination, skill, and the right team around you. This year for our annual Team Granite summit we headed west to some of the best mountain biking destinations in the United States. We went all over Utah and Colorado. We got Ryguy out on as many rides as we could in the 9 days we were out there. Logistics, weather, and trail conditions made it challenging, but that wouldn't stop any of us. We managed to get in a decent ride in Moab despite Ryan's battery showing only a quarter charge Only about a third of our members could make the trip but you can be sure they all wanted to be there Ryan probably spent five times as much time shuttling us to ride and getting drone footage as he did riding, but was always stoked to do so

Look for a full trip report and photo epic coming soon...

Special thanks to: Highland-Mountain-Bike-Park High Fives Foundation Cycles Etc. Chris Yank for always wrenching Members of Team Granite

Words and images by ZOIC Ambassador Jonathan Emery.

Follow him on Instagram and check out his bio here.