A while back Justin signed us up to provide coverage for Mtbr at Sea Otter. At the time I was excited to have definite plans to be there. As we returned from traveling for spring break my excitement was waning. The thought of packing back up to travel again seemed daunting. However we had the time off and it was great to be able to attend through Mtbr. Here is how it went:


We arrive and knowing we have 10 assignments decide to hit up a manufacturer on our list as we make our way to the Mtbr booth. Make an appointment to come back and chat with the right person. Feeling pretty good about getting an early start.

Due to not knowing how to use the Sea Otter map to find the Mtbr booth, decide to visit another one.

Upon interviewing this manufacturer I discover I would never make it in a career of dictation. I can’t write fast enough while geeking out over new products.

We designate roles as a family. Justin will get the interview going and I will take notes. I will ask follow up questions as he snaps photos. Riley will get fed candy cause everyone loves the MTB kids.

The division of labor enables me to make jokes about how Justin snapping photos while I wait is like how our rides go. This comedy routine gets laughs and one company owner comments on what a great team we are. He obviously has never seen us use GPS together. It ain’t pretty.

Seriously I can’t read this map. I think a mountain biker made it. It would really help if each booth had a number. It’s a labyrinth. I blame the late David Bowie.

Oooh women specific port-a-potties. Sea Otter has won back my heart.

Finally find the Mtbr booth and see a familiar face. Our buddy Brian, otherwise known as BKXC is hanging out there. Pretty soon Dane Petersen from TrailPeek shows up. He is working for Mtbr as well. These two get pretty busy with Youtubers seeing their trail video heroes together under one roof. If you want to check out how the rest of Dane’s Sea Otter trip went check out his Instagram @trailpeek.

A few minutes later I am sitting in the booth resting. Unbeknownst to me Brian had taken off to meet his friend Sonya Looney.  As I am sitting there zoning out, taking in all the festivities here he comes with her in tow. He wanted to introduce us since she is a fabulous role model for getting more women on bikes. She did not disappoint. Very down to earth and we have a running past in common. We both said we have that nagging feeling of wanted to run a 100 miler in the future. I am pretty sure my knees called me a liar.

Riley proceeds to giggle at her business card after she leaves. He says it is better than mine. It says “Do Epic Shit.” Love her.


As we were ending our day and heading out, the crowd had dwindled down. In a perfect spot with no one around, Danny MacAskill walks by and waves at Riley. Riley’s face was priceless.


It is like the entire Instagram mountain biking community is here. I feel terrible cause I only know user names. I refrain from saying what’s up garagefiftyfour?  Although at the Tasco MTB booth “SALESPUNK IS HERE?” flew out of my mouth before I could stop myself.

Riley sees Aaron Gwin.  He is officially returning every year.

We visit the remaining manufacturers on our list and have a fabulous time learning about so many new products and bikes. I am pretty sure Justin is questioning his mortality and wonders if he in fact passed away and entered his idea of the after life.

Riley Tent Photo

My advice to future Sea Otter visitors would be to BUNDLE UP FOR THE DUAL SLALOM. My friend warned me about it but damn that shiz was cold. It is so exciting to watch that the shaking is worth it. However note to self, bring a puffy jacket.

Oh and at one point Brett Tippie came straight at us with microphone in hand. I fled real fast leaving Justin to take one for the team. He moved on and went straight for some kids who quickly got deer in the headlight looks. The fleeing does not go unnoticed by JC Wages.


Justin has his moment upon seeing Curtis Keene.

I thought we missed Danny MacAskill’s shows and we had one very disappointed little shredder. At the last minute we realize there was a show on Sunday.  With a few minutes to spare we raced over to catch his show.

I am pretty sure I hooted and hollered at Danny MacAskill like a 1982 Whitesnake groupie.  It was so incredible to see the tricks we all love in his videos in person and only a few feet away.

I was thrilled when they announced he would do autographs after the show. Riley stood in line and got his Mtbr hat signed. Danny made small talk with everyone and truly showed what a great role model he is.

I got to meet my new boss and some new co-workers at the Northstar booth. I couldn’t help but think of my first trip to Northstar where I clutched the map (that one I could read) deathly afraid of going on a trail way over my ability. I have really come a long way.

Riley scores a long term demo review. Seriously? I can’t even get a hat.

Riley announces he is implementing a Braapp rating on all his reviews.

As we were walking to our car an Anneke Beerten close up sighting got me. She is just so badass and talented.

That’s a wrap. It was incredibly worth it to pack up and travel again. I cannot thank Francis Cebedo and Mtbr enough for the hospitality. We had a quiet house of Mtbr staff working away to go back to each night. I saw the camping situation by the downhill track. I am sure it was fun at night but the looks on faces as they stood in line at the port-a-potties every morning made me incredibly grateful for a nice warm house.

Oh and I think Riley wants to be adopted into the Cebedo family and not because of all the MTB perks. Cherubin, Francis’ wife, gave him a huge peanut butter egg that he had been coveting (along with Francis and Justin) at the house we all stayed in.

Off to write some articles- Jeni