Lacy Kemp

Bicycling Magazine Loves the Process

“Whether you’re on slow technical trails or high-speed terrain littered with loose, rocky ruts, the 153 is predictable, balanced, and easy to control.”

-Daniel Sapp, Bicycling Magazine

This week Bicycling listed seven reasons why they love the Kona Process! We think it’s pretty great too, but we may be a little biased. Check out their full list here

If you haven’t seen our videos featuring the Process, be sure to check them out!


Ali and Hannah absolutely shredding on the Process 153 CR.

A little love from the Alps!

Squamish riding at its finest!

Trans Puerto Vallarta

With the major portion of the enduro race season still a few months away but a month or two of training already on the books, Becky and I decided to head south for a few days and check out the Trans Puerto Vallarta. The Trans PV was new this year and included some awesome trails we had already ridden in the little mountain town of Mascota Mexico. We were also treated to some new trails in San Sabastian and mountains surrounding Puerta Vallarta. The whole race took four days with travel to Mascota and included 15 special stages. It was the perfect opportunity to test new bikes, dial in suspension, and shake off the cobwebs from a few months away from racing. Plus, it’s hard to say no to warm temps, tacos, and those chill Mexican vibes.

After flying into PV we built up bikes including my brand new Process 153 29”. I only had one day on this monster before I crammed its big wheels into my Evoc bag, but I had already set a few PR’s on my home trails. This bike breathes fire.


After a bike building session, 5-6 tacos, and a margarita (It’s ok to go full gringo) we were off to bed and excited to travel to San Sabastian the next day.


The trails of San Sabastian (and neighboring Mascota) are old. Really old. Most of the trails we raced are leftover mining trails and roads from the 1700’s. Even the estate where we camped for the first two nights was built sometime around 1750 and was the center of gold and other mineral mining for the surrounding areas. From here, mules carried the valuable metals down to the Puerto Vallarta so they could be exported. From these ancient paths, the riders of Mexico have reclaimed (sometimes very) narrow single tracks. This, coupled with the dry season, made for some exiting blind racing as riders struggled to find speed, traction, and flow throughout the day. Ryan had a solid day placing second behind good friend and training partner Cory Sullivan by just one second, and ahead of the rest of the field by over 30 seconds. Becky crushed the first four stages before taking a big crash, splitting her knee open, and taking a stem to the sternum. Even with the crash, she finished the day in first place.

Once back to camp, riders were treated to cervecas and a mountain of carnitas. This particular combination results in near instantaneous sleep. Not even the snoring of racers and barking of extremely photogenic Mexican dogs could keep us awake.

Day two of racing saw us move to the steep and fast trails of Mascota. The tracks here are varied and include some wide open sections, some incredibly tight switchbacks, and some pretty gnarly rock gardens. It was in the latter that I made a critical error. My Process 153 had been egging me on all day, seemingly frustrated by my pace. The whole bike comes alive at speed and it’s a constant battle to keep things under control on a trail you have never ridden. I got just a little too excited in one gnarly rock garden and instead of rolling a 4ft boulder, I pulled up and hucked out towards a side hill hoping to keep some speed. Unfortunately, I landed juuuuust a bit to the right and clipped a knife-edged rock which put a 2.5-inch slice in my tough casing WTB vigilante. It was an immediate flat for me and a 30-minute time loss as I finagled a fix to get me back to town. After some Mexican ingenuity and the incredible durability of my Vigilante, I was able to get it patched up and win 3 of the 4 remaining stages including a super tight trail on which my “dinosaur bike” was supposed to be slow.


Becky, denouncing stitches which would have taken her out of the race, soldiered on to the amazement of everyone in the field. Rocking last season’s Process 134 and fueled by ice cream stops and adorable Mexican puppies, she rallied through the day only losing one spot on the timesheet by day’s end.

That night we set up camp at a beautiful ranch outside Mascota. There was only one cold shower, but the home-cooked food and late night pizza delivery made up for it. Talking that evening with friend and event promoter Alvaro Gutierrez Leal, he confided that the next morning’s transfer to the stages was what he was most worried about. It was a three-hour drive through 4×4 roads, in two-wheel drive Toyota vans. Turns out he was right. After a few sketchy river crossings and putting some serious wear on the clutch plate, we arrived in the coastal mountains above Puerto Vallarta.
Where the first two days were loose, these trails were on another level of negative traction. No front breaking here. Every stage of the day was wide open with almost no traction, some sand, and scary off-camber corners. We were also given some “Mexican surprises,” like a trail that enters a backyard, loops around a house, and then exits through the front gate. A flock of chickens presented a few opportunities for nose-bawks.

After finishing on a steep and sandy track known as El Scorpion we gathered together for a chill ride back to the ocean, buckets of beers, more tacos, and a bit of Raicilla (the traditional liquor Mascota made from wild agave and brewed in backyard stills). Due to the tire fiasco, Ryan finished off the podium. Becky finished the race in second place, injury and all!



Photos by Nico Switalski

Words by Ryan Gardner



The Demo Tour is Rolling to Arizona, Nevada, and Florida!

The 2018 Kona Demo Tour is making stops in Arizona, Las Vegas, and Florida this week! Check out details below and come test ride a new Process 153 CR 27.5Process 153 AL/DL 29, Hei Hei Trail CRHonzo AL/DL or the brand new Satori DL!

We will also be at Moses Creek in St. Augustine, Florida on Saturday, March 17th from 10am-4pm. Contact A1A Cycle Works for more information.

On Sunday, March 18th, we’ll be at Tillie Fowler Park in Jacksonville from 10am to 4pm. Contact Zen Cog for more information.

For the west coast stops, we’ll be hitting the Brownlow Trails at Pioneer Park in Prescott, AZ this Friday from 12-4pm. Check in with  Manzanita Outfitters for details.

Planning to hit Vegas this weekend? Don’t miss us on Sunday at Twilight! Details below!

Disco Process

It’s International Women’s Day and we’re celebrating by showing off some of our favorite lady rippers, Hannah Bergemann and Ali Osgood. Hannah and Ali are riding the Kona Process 153 CR, a bike made for everyone- men, women, Wookies, you name it. Thanks to all of the amazing female athletes and industry heavy hitters that keep us rolling!

Hannah Bergemann

Ali Osgood


Video by Axl Fostvedt and Joonas Vinnari
Photos by Caleb Smith
Awesome riding by Ali Osgood and Hannah Bergemann

Race Report From Australian National Championships

This past weekend Australian National Downhill Championships were held in Bright.

Leading the way for Kona was Connor Fearon, who, unfortunately, suffered some pretty bad luck throughout the weekend. He crashed in practice and suffered a nasty gash in his elbow. Not to be phased by the injury, he went on to race but suffered a flat tire in his run. He finished the race in 8th place. Not the result he was looking for Connor is happy to have that weekend out of the way and is excited to move forward with the core of the season.

On the ladies side, Tegan Molloy had a stellar weekend finishing second behind 10-time champion Tracy Hannah aboard her Operator. Congrats on a great weekend, Tegan!

All photos courtesy of @kaneophoto

Kona Dream Builds

Do you have a stunning, custom Kona? Does it have custom parts or maybe a special paint job? We’d love to see it! We’re looking for submissions for Dream Build feature that we share on the Cog and on our social channels. While we know everyone loves their Kona, we’re looking for people who take the extra step in making their bike truly unique.

If you’ve got something special, let’s see it! Upload your Dream Builds to Facebook or Instagram with the tag #KonaDreamBuilds and if it fits the criteria we’ll reach out to you for details!

Check out some examples:

This gorgeous Rove LTD

Or this killer Honzo ST

or this pumpkin Operator

We’ve got more Dream Builds coming soon! Could yours be next?

Toni Lund’s Thousand Mile Quest

It’s March in Alaska. The temperature hovers at minus 25 degrees Fahrenheit. You’ve been traveling alone and mostly unsupported for nearly 5 days across Alaska’s frozen tundra by bike. You’ve made it 250 miles so far. You’ve still got 750 to go. The weather? Unpredictable at best. Companionship? Let’s just say it’s lonely out there.

Welcome to the Iditarod Trail Invitational, a 1000 mile point to point race and pure test of mettle.

Athletes set off on February 25th for the world’s longest winter ultra race. One of only 19 people to attempt the full 1000 miles this year is Finnish athlete Toni Lund, who is riding a Kona Wo.

It’s fascinating to follow along with Toni’s progress on the race tracker located here:

As of this posting, Toni currently sits in 5th place, 11 miles behind the current leader. Anything can happen between now and projected remaining 11 days of racing, so be sure to stay tuned to the tracker for Toni’s progress. You can check out all of Toni’s race preparation on his Facebook page.

We’re cheering for you, Toni!


How to Train a Trail Dog

Dr. Dew with Snoop Dog

Fewer things bring a smile to a mountain biker’s face then a well-trained trail dog. The best of the best can scrub jumps like a world cup racer, take ninja inside lines, stay right on your wheel, and wag their tails with pure delight at the end of a great descent. Training a trail dog takes time, but if done well, you’ll always have a buddy ready to ride with you, no matter what Ma Nature may have in mind. The old saying, “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks” may hold true, as it’s best to groom younger dogs for riding. Considering training your pup? Here are a few tips:

Tip 1: Start ‘em young, but not too young. While training puppies new things is typically easier than older dogs, it is crucial you don’t run your puppy too hard at too young of an age. Experts suggest waiting until the puppy is about 8 months old before you start running them longer distances. If eight months seems like forever, consider starting with short hikes in the woods with your dog. This will get them familiar with the type of terrain you’ll bike on. Hike on trails with obvious paths so they understand how to follow a trail. Keep them on a leash and heeling close to you so they know to stay near. Once they become comfortable with your pace and surroundings (and don’t have a tendency to bolt), let them off leash. Give them vocal queues to keep them near you, and reward them for doing so. Jog a little bit to see if they are apt to keep up with you. If not, put them back on the leash and jog with them so they understand that they need to stay with you.

Mike the trail pup

Tip 2: Once comfortable off leash try playing hide and seek. This may seem silly, but there may be occasions when you outride your dog and you’re separated. Instead of panicking that you’ve lost each other, a quick game of hide and seek will have you reunited in no time! Go back to the familiar paths where your dog first learned to walk off leash. Have the dog sit and stay while you go hide behind a tree, out of sight. Once hidden, whistle, or yell, “OK!” When the dog finds you, reward him again so he knows he’s always supposed to find you.

Roscoe the trail dog Photo by Ian Coble

 Lacy Kemp (front) and Roscoe the trial dog (back)  Photo credit: Ian Coble

Tip 3: Teaching your dog how to drink out of a hydration pack is a great way to ensure he stays hydrated on warmer days. There’s not much magic to this, but ensure you can keep a consistent stream of water coming from the hose so Fido gets adequately hydrated. Practice at home before you hit the trails on hot days.

Tip 4: Speaking of hot days don’t run your dog long distances on days that are too hot. There’s no magic number, but use your common sense. If there aren’t constant streams for your dog to rest in and recharge, don’t take him if it’s too hot.

Tip 5: When ready to move to the bike, start by taking your dog on short rides on your bike while leashed. This can be dangerous, so make sure you’re confident on holding a leash while your dog runs alongside. Make sure the leash is long enough so your dog won’t get too close to your wheel. One thing I do is attach the loop of the handle to my chest strap on my hydration pack. That way if he pulls, he’s pulling from my center of mass and not likely to pull me off of my bike. Go slow at first until you’re able to have your dog trot alongside you without having him pull.

Tip 6: When your dog is comfortable running alongside you on a leash, take him back to the trails you first learned to walk in the woods off leash. While on your bike, have the dog sit. Unleash him and keep him seated. When you’re ready to go, start slow and call for him. If he gets in front of you, immediately give the command, “follow,” and stop and place him behind you. Reward him for getting behind you, so he understands he needs to stay out of the way. Most dogs understand this quite easily, but repeating the behavior until he grasps it will ensure better behavior when on a longer ride or with a group.

Kona Senior Engineer James Westerfield and Shadow

Tip 7: Once you’ve mastered your local stomping grounds, take him on a longer ride. The same rules apply. Leash him until you’re ready to go, then ensure he’s following alongside. As he gets more comfortable on more rides he will learn to explore and come back to you. Practice the “hide and seek” rule on rides, too, to reinforce that behavior.
Tip 8: The best rides for your dogs are rides that aren’t incredibly fast. Remember, they’re running the entire thing. A 20-mile ride for you is a massive day for your dog. Try to take him on rides with multiple water sources. Try to stay away from super hard packed, steep descents. This type of terrain is bad on the hips and joints for your dog. Just like us, dogs love the loam!

Roxy the trail dog doing some product testing w/ Kona product managers

Tip 9: After a long day of riding, give your dog a massage. Have him lie on one side and massage his hips and shoulders. Stretch his legs. Make sure to do both sides. Just like people, dogs need to recover from a big day on the bike. Choose your dogs rides wisely. Don’t run him every day, and give ample resting time between big runs.

Tip 10: Make sure he knows how great of a job he’s doing. In between segments, stop and tell him he’s a good boy! Dogs love to be rewarded verbally and will always appreciate the positive reinforcement. But the most important thing of all, have fun!


Bruce Wayne guarding his owner’s Hei Hei.

Title image by @andyvathis

My Kona: Joe Hamilton

The My Kona series is back. This time we’re featuring one of our inside sales representatives, Bellingham’s Joe Hamilton. Joe has worked with Kona for the past five years. When not at work or riding, he’s a member of local rock band Cousin Marvin. Check out the video of Joe on the all-new Satori DL, set to the soundtrack of one of Cousin Marvin’s original songs!


You can check out more from the My Kona series on our Vimeo page.

Announcing the 2018 Kona Roster!


Spring is just around the corner, and that can only mean one thing: bike season is near! We’re excited to kick things off by announcing our 2018 roster, which is chock full of speed, talent, and creativity, ensuring an exciting and memorable season.


On the gravity side Connor Fearon will be flying the Kona colors at the 2018 downhill World Cup races, set to kick off in Croatia in April. Connor will be running the Operator as he attempts to climb atop the podium throughout the season’s seven races. Also returning is legendary Kona athlete
Graham Agassiz. Whoever said, “freeride is dead,” clearly never rubbed elbows with Aggy and friends. Aggy’s goals for 2018 are to continue to push the limits of what’s possible on a bike, ride as many wild lines as possible, and create some interesting content.

The gravity team is rounded out by North Shore standout Caleb Holonko, and downhillers
Josh Button of Australia, and Anthony Poulson from Quebec.


New for 2018 is the Kona Global Enduro Team. The Global Enduro Team will compete in races throughout the world, including the EWS. Squamish ripper Rhys Verner, who saw strong results in 2017 will be leading the EWS charge alongside Ireland’s multi-national champion Leah Maunsell. Verner and Maunsell are joined by Swede Alexander Kangas and Americans Ryan Gardner and Scott Countryman.


Keeping the spirit of fun alive is the major goal of Kona’s Endurance and Adventure Team. Personality and talent run deep with this crew, and a good time is never far away. With 24 Hour Solo World Champion Cory Wallace in the mix, big races, and bigger challenges are sure to unfold. Finishing in 3rd place at US cyclocross nationals, Kerry Werner is back and ready to challenge for the top step of the podium. Americans Barry Wicks and Spencer Paxson are always up for whatever shenanigans they can concoct on their bikes and will be joined on big adventure days by Sechelt’s Kris Sneddon.

The 2018 Kona team covers a massive spectrum of riding talent and abilities and we’re looking forward to seeing what’s in store! Be sure to check out our team page on for more info on each rider, and tune into the Cog throughout the season for updates on race results, expeditions, and adventure logs.