Revelate Designs

It’d be really hard not to love Revelate Designs.  I’ve been riding with their stuff since I first got into bikepacking many years ago.  Despite the abuse, my original bags are still going strong.  So I jumped at the recent chance to bring Revelate into the VeloDirt family as our latest sponsor.  The fit is pretty perfect – as our shop sponsor 21st Avenue Bikes is a stocking Revelate dealer.  And for those of you in Oregon who are into buying “local”, most (all?) of his bags are hand sewn right here in Oregon.

Big thanks to Revelate for helping us keep the dream alive here at VeloDirt.


Interview with Western Bikeworks

The fine folks over at Western Bikeworks interviewed Donnie about bikepacking, gravel, and the Oregon Outback and did a great job putting together a short video.   Enjoy!


Western Bikeworks Conversations: Donnie Kolb of Velodirt from Western Bikeworks on Vimeo.

Hart of Darkness: A Bikepacking Journey into the Sheldon and Hart Nat’l Antetlope Refuges



“Now when I was a little chap I had a passion for maps. I would look for hours at South America, or Africa, or Australia, and lose myself in all the glories of exploration. At that time there were many blank spaces on the earth, and when I saw one that looked particularly inviting on a map (but they all look that) I would put my finger on it and say, `When I grow up I will go there.’”

-Charles Marlow, Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad

The dichotomy of my life is never more clear to me than when pouring over maps and planning trips.  Raised on fictional characters like “Smoke” Bellew and Charles Marlow, my dreams have always been those of the solitary traveler, heading off into the unknown, fragile and alone but inevitably poised to become the hero (anti-hero?).  The ever-constant themes of liberation from the yoke of a stifling society and evolution (if only in psychological terms) drilled into me by Jack London, et al. molded me over decades.   Add in a childhood dash of Big Sky Country, tales of the Old West, and its no wonder my dreams are solo endeavors in the classic man-against-nature mold.  But dreams are just that, and despite my insistence on the hatching of each new plan to go it alone, invariably each successively bigger trip results in an invite and a mild sense of disappointment in myself. Fear and the desire for companionship (even from a self-professed loner) are strong motivators. Read more →

Bunyan Velo – Issue #4


Once again we’re honored to be part of Bunyan Velo’s fantastic, and free, online magazine.  Look for Gabe’s article “It’s Always Sunny in The Dalles” and Donnie’s collaboration with Daniel Powell on fatbiking the Oregon Dunes.

Lucas puts a huge amount of work into each quarterly issue and it shows.  Big, big thanks to Lucas.


Bikepacking Seminar – February 27, 2014 @ Chris King


With support from 21st Avenue Bikes and Chris King Precision Components, we’re putting on a bikepacking seminar on February 27th, 2014 at 7:30 p.m.  We’ll be talking about bikes, different types of bikepacking setups, camping gear, etc.  We’ll also be talking about routes, navigation, electronics, and DIY gear.   We’ll have plenty of time for Q&A, so bring your questions.

We’ll have plenty of sample rigs on display, including Surly’s ECR, Ogre, Karate Monkey and Pugsley, Salsa’s el Mariachi, Fargo and Warbird, a custom Ti DeSalvo 29er and bikepacking gear from Revelate Designs and Porcelain Rocket to check out.

The seminar is free and so is the beer.  Come on down and bullshit with us about bikes.  If you have any questions, drop us a line:



Bunyan Velo – Issue #3

I love it when a fresh issue comes out, hot off the internet presses.  Click the photo for the new issue, and click here for an interview with the man behind the curtain, Lucas Winzenburg


New Bike Day – Surly Ogre

Spring has sprung in Oregon and with it comes dreams of big bike trips.  We’ve got several in the works and I expect to put my new Surly Ogre through its paces this Spring.

Big kudos to the fine folks over at 21st Ave Bikes for the order/buildup.  A few more tweaks, a bike fitting with Ward later this week, and I’ll be all set for Rickreall on Saturday.