Jeremy Benson moved to Tahoe from the East Coast in 2001 and never looked back. Since then, he’s become prolific in both his words and on his bike. The author of two guidebooks published by Mountaineers Books—Mountain Bike Tahoe and Backcountry Ski and Snowboard Routes: California—he’s also a longtime tester and reviewer for Outdoor Gear Lab and a dedicated cross-country mountain biker and backcountry skier.
On any given day, you’ll find Jeremy logging 8-hour days in the saddle, linking together rides that most people wouldn’t even consider doing in a single day, but he does somehow effortlessly. Maybe he’s training for an upcoming race, or more likely, he’s just putting in the hours on his bike because being on a trail, deep in the mountains is where he finds his happy place.
In this episode, Jeremy strings together some 50 miles and 8,000 vertical feet of climbing in California’s so-called Lost Sierra, connecting a network of legendary trails in a single ride with a brief break for an ice cream frostee in the middle. If he’s in pain through these sufferfests, it doesn’t show.
“I like to go uphill fast,” Jeremy says. “For me, that’s a huge part of riding. Enjoying the challenge and accepting that it hurts.