Pedal Montclair: What do you ride?
Ari: I ride a 2016 Carbon Pivot Mach 429 Trail (before they renamed it) mostly everything is stock but I've upgraded with Reynolds Black Label 27.5 Plus carbon wheels, Enve carbon bars, Fox Transfer dropper post and Wolf Tooth elliptical chainring.
Pedal Montclair: Favorite places to ride? Why?
Ari: My favorite place to ride locally is Blue Mountain in Peekskill, NY Blue Mountain Reservation | Westchester Mountain Bike Association. The trails are a great combination of technical and flowy, plus they are well integrated into the natural rock formations. I think it's the best riding within an hour of Montclair.
My favorite place to ride if I can get away for the weekend is Lake Placid + Wilmington NY. The BETA team (Bark Eater Trails Alliance) Barkeater Trails Alliance has built a network of some the most fun and challenging mountain bike trails in the Adirondacks that always put a smile on my face.
Pedal Montclair: Where would you go on your ultimate biking trip?
Ari: There are so many places I'd love to mountain bike. Aside from the obvious Moab (which I've never done), I'd love to go to British Columbia in Canada and New Zealand both of which I've heard are magical for riding. I've also read that mountain biking in the Scottish Highlands is amazing and I'm going to get an opportunity to see for myself in September!
Pedal Montclair: Advice to any new comers?
Ari: First off - good equipment matters, get a bike that's meant for mountain biking, it's money well spent. Then get comfortable on your bike, riding rail trails and fire roads. Once you've mastered the fire roads head to a less technical single track where you can master your speed, braking, turns, etc. Before you venture on to more technical terrain with rocks and other obstacles try to find a friend with some experience or someone who is familiar with the trails so you don't end up on a trail that puts you in a compromised position. Most importantly keep riding and have fun.
Pedal Montclair: Who's your favorite rider?
Ari: My favorite rider in Montclair is my buddy Aaron Thall - he's the one who got me into mountain biking over 15 years ago and is the best riding partner.
My favorite pro rider is Kate Courtney the 2018 US Women's Elite National Champion. She's an amazing rider who leaves it all on the course every time she rides. She also seems humble, grateful and happy to be riding which is what it's all about.