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We had this question posted on another, much smaller, MTB related board I frequent and thought it garnered some interesting perspective so I figured I'd throw out the question here....

I know I probably over-use the term and frequently say "that trail" or "that ride" was epic. When I say it, I'm more or less implying to anybody willing to listen that the trail is a "must do" when you're in the area.

What say you?
 

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Epic is a word I'll use at most once every few years. For a ride to be epic it would have to require a bit of planning and training and self-doubt - if you know at the start that you can finish a ride, it's not epic.

Someone once told me a ride was "long" if you start to doubt you'll be able to finish right around the point of no return (that is the point where it's just as much work to finish the ride as it would be to turn around). That definition mostly works for me.
 

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The connotation of "epic" has changed over the years. It used to mean "a very long ride with consequences and potentially an overnight stay in the woods if your map-reading skills aren't that good". 8+ hours on the trail, some hike-a-bike and some bushwhacking were good signs you were on an EPIC RIDE.

In the last few years, the meaning has morphed into "a long ride, likely tedious", where upon completion you will be quietly thankful that it's over and never contemplate riding it again.
 

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If I liked it it is an Epic.
If I thought it was meh, it is not epic.

Anyone else's opinion is wrong.
 

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The term has been popularized and overused as of recently. Everything can't be epic, or there would really be no epic anything. To get back to the original intent of the word... "extending beyond the usual or ordinary especially in size or scope"

So, in today's overuse of the term, if everything is "epic" --sh1t has to get real crazy to truly be epic. Like you found a unicorn on your ride or something.
 

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big show (15 riders or more)

miles of mud

beaver pond up to headset

35+ miles

(all in one ride)
 

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A word that goes with dude. I would never call someone dude nor a ride epic.

Last winter I spent six days skiing bottomless power off piste (backcountry) in the French Alps with constant avalanche danger and that wasn't epic. Extreme? Nah, not that either. Fun, yes.

That's about it for me. A ride is either fun or it sucked but never epic. ;)
 

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Due to Specialized's legal team, be advised that no longer can the term EPIC be used without fear of retaliation.

Anyone using a GPS to track their rides who even mutters that once trendy word can expect to be swooped down upon by a Blackhawk helio sporting a big red "S", and at gunpoint be repeatedly flogged by corporate goons.

From now on whenever riding and lost, running out of light, suffering from dehydration, mechanicals, or caught in a shiitestorm - I'll just refer to the ride as another SAM.
(Sinyard's an Azz Muncher)

(tapa)
 
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Due to Specialized's legal team, be advised that no longer can the term EPIC be used without fear of retaliation.

Anyone using a GPS to track their rides who even mutters that once trendy word can expect to be swooped down upon by a Blackhawk helio sporting a big red "S", and at gunpoint be repeatedly flogged by corporate goons.

From now on whenever riding and lost, running out of light, suffering from dehydration, mechanicals, or caught in a shiitestorm - I'll just refer to the ride as another SAM.
(Sinyard's an Azz Muncher)

(tapa)
Just so we're clear, I trademarked the capital E before they trademarked the word Epic so from now on I would prefer if the MTB community would refer to all really challenging or cool rides as "Ride I can't describe without pissing off those lawyer bastards at Specialized!" Your cooperation is appreciated.
 

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epic - a ride that did not go as planned but ended up with lots of memories and adventures.
 

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I don't know why all you twisted ****s associate 'epic' with pain, suffering, and riding in shite conditions. If hike a bike is your thing, maybe leave the bike at home, take up hiking, and all your 'rides' will be epic. I find that increasing the amount of hours riding inherently decreases the pace and quality of ones riding, so 8 hours in the saddle only makes for epic saddle sores IMO.

I like challenging tech, so any substantial ride with double black segments is likely to qualify. Something with a lot of challenge/reward. Also could be a ride on any trail that elicits that rare, but awesome, "I could mash forever" type of feeling.

Actually, scratch all that. IMBA decrees that which is, or is not epic. If you had a ride, which you thought was epic, but it does not appear on the list, it was not truly epic at all. You were obviously just confused.
 
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^^ This would actually be pretty Epic.
No, it would be pretty "thing I can't describe without pissing off those lawyer bastards at Specialized." Man, if you don't become more Specialized Neutral in your language they'll come get us all and ship us to the prison in the town formally known as Roubaix.
 

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I have to go by examples...
2 "epic" riding days out of my 20-some years of MTBing:
1 was a ~28 mile day in PA that started with 16 people and ended with 5, due to broken bikes, cramps, bonking, dehydration, etc. I was in the 5 and I rode everything like a boss that day. Plus, I drove 3 hrs. that morning to get there. Did the ride. Then drove 3 hrs. home in a monsoon without crashing my truck or falling asleep at the wheel. The above-and-beyond-o-meter was pegged that day.

The other was 111 miles of N. GA trails in 4 days. Each day by itself was hardly "epic", but looking back on the sum-total of shenanigans over the 4 days, it qualifies as an epic trip.

So I guess "epic" requires larger-than-usual challenges, success, and shenanigans. Food and beer helps, too.

-F
 
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