The kids are in school, the tomatoes are heavy on the vine, and, god help us, people are already going on and on about CX season. Bike Monkey won’t be giving up summer’s ghost that easily, though. The exclamation point on your three-month hot-season trifecta still awaits: the Annadel XC, Sonoma County’s classic mountain bike race in one of California’s most storied single track venues.

By now, you’d have to be trapped in a tiny airspace in a capsized vessel to not know that Bike Monkey conducted a small-town-telephone-book-sized study for State Parks to demonstrate, in perpetuity, that this race doesn’t adversely affect the natural resources of the park. No doubt you also know that all the proceeds from this event go right into the coffers of the Sonoma County Trails Council and the Sonoma County Regional Parks Foundation, who magically turn that lettuce into hot new stretches of MTB-friendly singletrack. Surely, you know what it means to have a race in Annadel itself, the most adored and well-utilized mountain bike venue between Reno, the Bay, and the Oregon state line.

More than any of that however, is the idea that this place, this park, is our garden. It’s ours to tend, ours to watch over, ours to lose. Racing the Annadel XC won’t fix all the problems with our home trails. But it will celebrate a place that’s given us all so much day in and day out. And it’ll be a kick in the shorts, complete with prizes, cash purses, food, and big delicious Lagunitas beers.

More info and registration: bikemonkey.net/events/annadel

The creative team at Bike Monkey even came up with this, their version of an informercial. Okay, it’s light on info and the mercial part is questionable at best, but it is a worthwhile watch for 130 seconds when you should be working.

Annadel XC Start
Did we tell you lots of cyclists get way excited about Annadel XC? If not, we should have. Here they are in a congested swarm of breathless anticipation, pre-race 2014. This year the start will be staggered and moved to Spring Lake. Photo by Culture Pop.