Well as most of you may not know, my first bike was a Gary Fisher Kaiti. I had shopped around for about 3 months before deciding to buy the GF from Pasadena Cyclery. Immediately, I fell in love with Mtn Biking, that was about 12 years ago. It had no Front shock and it was a rough ride, I remember doing the Reseda to sea ride and having a headache from the jarring. I had many great times on that bike and that tough welded aluminum frame held up to all those beginner crashes. I replaced most of the parts eventually, even the rigid fork but I learned a lot by having a fully rigid bike. Well now, most of us are riding FS bikes with disc brakes and enjoying are all the advancements. For this I think we owe a lot to Gary Fisher, he started the sport!
I had no idea that day when I went to ride in Marin County with Lloyd that we would meet Gary Fisher on the trail but we did. We were done with our ride and about to leave the Boy Scout trail and he was just starting. Gary Fisher was riding his Rig, the 29er SS and was happy to stop and chat with us. We talked about trail access and he even took a few pictures with Lloyd and I. I told him my first bike was a Gary Fisher but I was on my Trek 8900 so I don’t know how that came across. I told him thanks and let him go on his ride.
When I got home I did a little research on Gary Fisher and his bikes.
What can be said about the man who is almost single-handedly responsible for the creation and evolution of mountain biking? A lot. In just over 20 years, Gary Fisher has become a sports god of sorts while becoming the leader in the design and racing of mountain bikes. Even the name “mountain bike” was a creation of Gary’s when he and partner Charlie Kelly named their new invention and company “Mountain Bikes” in 1979. Without Gary Fisher the sport of mountain biking may have never been.
Gary began competitive road and track racing at age 12. In his teens, he grew into a formidable road racer earning a number of titles throughout California. But in 1968 when he was suspended from bicycle racing because his hair was too long to comply with racing rules, Gary knew he would never quite fit in. Still, his love for bike racing grew on, and while continuing to ride road bikes in 1974 he built his legendary “Clunker.” It was an unprecedented wide gear range and heavy-duty braking, off-road bike that could ride up mountains as well as down. And that, as some say, was the beginning of a beautiful friendship.
Today, aside from spearheading innovations in mountain bike technology and design with his company Gary Fisher Mountain Bikes, Gary Fisher is a world-class rider. Recently he captured the 1997 NORBA National Championship in the Master’s category and in 1998, with teammate Jim Gentes of Giro, the Master’s category at the inaugural TransAlp Challenge in Europe.
Need I say more, look at the photos in my gallery