Local brewers hoping to make 5th Lake Tahoe Mountain Bike & Brew Festival grow (video) | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Local brewers hoping to make 5th Lake Tahoe Mountain Bike & Brew Festival grow (video)

The 5th annual Lake Tahoe Mountain Bike & Brew Festival will take place Saturday and Sunday.

Following an "epic" day of bike riding a few years ago, South Lake Tahoe's Peter Brumis sat around a dimly lit room at the Divided Sky in Meyers with owner Brian Levy, bartender Mike Decker, DJ David Berkman and tossed around an idea they thought could be a world-class event.

Five years later, the idea has taken off and the Meyers Mountain Bike Festival has turned into the fifth annual Lake Tahoe Mountain Bike & Brew Festival.

The event this year, Saturday and Sunday, will feature local brewers South Tahoe Brewing, Cold Water, FiftyFifty and Lake Tahoe AleWorX, as well as others.

"Bringing in the breweries will bring this event to another level," Brumis said.

In the first year it was a one-day event and about 30 riders participated. It's been a two-day event since 2015 and now about 130 are registered.

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"The event has expanded every year, but it's not a race, it's a ride," said Brumis, who has been riding since 2000. "The focus is on camaraderie, no rules, just going out there and helping somebody. We're celebrating the sport."

And that celebration will include 5,200 feet of climbing in 31-plus miles during Saturday's Tahoe Triple Crown of riding, which includes the world renowned Mr. Toad's Wild Ride, Armstrong Pass Connector and Corral trails and a grueling climb up Christmas Valley Trail.

Bikers hit the dirt at 7 a.m. and the ride descends back to its birthplace at the Divided Sky where an outdoor party begins at 2 p.m. with live music from The Umpires, Tracorum and DJ Berkman. Along with the music, there will be a fast-paced raffle featuring big-ticket mountain bike items among other giveaways.

Sunday is Demo and Shuttle Day with bikes supplied through local shops WattaBike, Sports LTD, Over the Edge, Shoreline and South Shore Bikes.

Full suspension bikes and company reps for some brands will be on hand from Ibis, Specialized, Norco, Pivot, YT, Intense, Rocky Mountain and Niner.

"People can try as many bikes as they want and can be shuttled up if they like from the Divided Sky and Corral trailhead," Brumis said.

Shuttles begin rolling at 9 a.m. But the morning session was nearly full early in the week so Brumis suggested signing up for the afternoon session.

Saturday's ride costs $45 and Sunday's Demo Day costs $40.

Proceeds benefit Lake Tahoe trail building and maintenance projects through nonprofit TAMBA (Tahoe Area Mountain Biking Association) and the U.S. Forest Service.

Over the Edge Tahoe will host a pancake breakfast at 8 a.m. before the first demo session at Corral trailhead.

Brumis credits Levy, Decker, Rosey Parker, Nils Miller and Mike Miller and Marley Reel from Rise Designs for performing the "heavy lifting" to make this event what it has become and what it will be this weekend.

Along with the breweries, the event is also sponsored by Barton Health, Tahoe Trailbar, Sierra-at-Tahoe, local bike shops WattaBike, Sports LTD, Over the Edge, Shoreline and South Shore Bikes.

"The ride is really fun with moments of pain," Brumis said. "It's gnarly and adrenaline-filled. There's nothing like it. You often come off the trail dirty, ugly, bruised and bloody, and with a big smile."

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