I met Cholo Reyes late 2014 when I decided to join a local bike group on rides. He was always the storyteller-loved to describe adventures, gear and experiences from rides. I recall having a couple daytours with him and he has always been the cheerful spirit-no matter how beat or tired everyone was. In today’s featured build, he shares his time talking about his Surly Karate Monkey.
PV: Does your bike have a name and what’s the story behind it?
CR: I call my bike frankie or Frankenstein short because he is from parts that i used from my past bikes. Back when pmtb had a forum website i saw this orange surly troll named el sibakero and automatically fell in love with the curves of surly. Now after 5 bikes and loads of miles of saddle time I got a surly karate monkey from Sabak (Makati) at a really bargain price and instantly sold my Niner EMD.
PV: yeah, I recall you had a Mosso 26er before and that Niner. Personally, the Niner was fine but the Surly had personality. And I recall you panicked-selling that Niner to get the Monkey hahaha…anyway, What’s in that build of yours?
CR: Since I do long distance rides and xc races from time to time, I wanted to have a do it all bike for every ride i wanted to do. With the karate monkey all i needed was a change of tires and it did the job well. My bike uses two forks, a fox 32 factory kashima coat for trail usage and a surly karate monkey fork for touring. The wheelset consists of velocity blunt SL, novatech hubs and pillar racing spokes for that do it all capabilities, a light wheelset for road touring but strong enough for trail abuse. For gears my groupset consist of a mixture of xt and slx.
PV: Quite solid, and that’s what I like about the monkey-really fit for the trails that you love doing but at the same time you got a rigid for your mostly asphalt trips here. What’s the most difficult ride for you? And memorable one?
CR:. So far my hardest route ive done would be kaybiang loop (with a sungay interlude) (200km plus, estimated 2700m elevation) https://www.strava.com/activities/457410673?fb_action_ids=10205556095408435&fb_action_types=fitness.bikes&fb_source=other_multiline&action_object_map=%5B926441170783186%5D&action_type_map=%5B%22fitness.bikes%22%5D&action_ref_map=%5B%5D coming from parañaque but my most memorable ride would be my very first jariel’s peak ride (240km, est 3000m elevation )because of the fact that views in the quezon province is breathtaking along with steep climbs that literally bust your balls.
PV: hahaha yeah I recall that Kaybiang Loop, that was spooky hahaha! Jariel’s was great as well-that was my first time to try adobong Rabbit haha! So why is this build for you?
CR: My build is the way it is today because i am utilitarian in nature so i build my bike with the way i use
PV: Cool, any tips for budding tourers out there?
CR: My tip for those new bikers or tourer a like is to never go cheap when it comes to helmets and always be prepared with rides. Dont expect your buddies to fix your bike for you all the time.
That’s great man and hope to see awesome pics from your trail work and daytrips in the future!