Thursday, September 29, 2011
Let's see...I'm still alive, which is a good thing!! I still ride a bike, which is definitely a good thing!!! I guess I just haven't had much to write about since the DK 200.
Scratch that...there's been stuff to write about, albeit not very much, I'm just a little lazy!!!
A condensed version of the last however many months it has been since the last post...
After the DK 200 my friend the IT band issue came back and pretty much screwed my training up AGAIN!! So another week off the bike followed by some easy rides blah blah blah...you know the story.
Which brings me to the State MTB race. A state bike race in my neck of the woods for a change and a race that I circled in late January to do well at. I was a little worried about my fitness with the freakin IT thing having it's way with me...The week I took off the bike for recovery from the DK put me right at a month away. That month rolled by with no real pain form my IT and to the start line I went.
By the way, eating spaghetti and trying to type is not so easy....
Anyhoo...That race went better than I had expected. I bought mud tires for that race mainly because I knew it would be muddy!! Guess what...IT WAS FREAKIN MUDDY!!!!
If you've read this blog for a while, I have talked about how much of an advantage it is to inspect the course the day before. In this case it was definitely an advantage, not so much for the course but mostly for figuring out the right tire pressure, which eventually I found the right number and stopped pinballing and loosing traction, woooohooooo life just got a lot easier!!!
Race day morning, I'm getting my bike ready and think, surely it has dried out some, I'm gonna add 2 pounds of pressure front and rear to my tires because it won't be as slick as it was yesterday...WRONG!!!! The conditions were exactly the same...there goes my advantage. Which in the end would have gotten me 3rd in state, I could not not pinball long enough on the last lap to catch and pass the guy in third...I would reel him in and start to put pressure on and then a greasy rock or root or both would bring that to a screaming halt...I've said it before and I will say it again...listen to your gut...IT'S ALWAYS RIGHT!!!!!
Hmmm....oh yeah!! I managed to go on a vacation this year. An epic journey to the Colorado high country. Did I mention we were camping? Before this trip I was all about camping in the high country, now, HELL NO!!! I'm officially done camping. It's not that it was crappy weather, the weather was great, with the exception of the straw that broke camels back. It rained on us for a good 5 hours one night. I wasn't too worried about that til the tent started dripping on me about 2 hours into this event...at that point it was game over for camping.
Moving on...We started in Crested Butte for 3 days, had to stay long enough to watch the pros go flying by on the 2nd stage of the Tour of Colorado. As soon as the road was clear, we burned down the road and headed north to Vail.
We get to Vail about 8:30pm...We try to find a campground with no luck. So we get a hotel room, which I must say was a nice respite from the tent if only for one night. We wake up fairly early and head down for some free breakfast. A local coffee joint that was highly recommended by the paper was spied by the keen eye of Leadfoot and off we go.
The coffee shop was a definite highlight of this trip, just for the fact the locals that were coming in were freakin hilarious for the most part, telling a few great stories whilst we drank waaaaaaaaaaaay too much espresso and coffee. After the first round of espresso and coffee, I get back in line and order the exact same thing for round 2 and the barista says "YOU WANT ANOTHER ROUND...ARE YOU SERIOUS"?!?!
Yes I am. We drank coffee and shots for about 2 hours...it was awesome, I have never shook so much from coffee!! Oh...and a mexican fellow come strolling in bout 8:00 and orders a jack and coke and a beer...odd...very odd...
We head to a bike shop for a trial map to find a campsite only to realize there aren't any in decent proximity to a lot of riding...so we asked the bike shop guy and he points us in a direction and off we go.
We drive up a dirt road where there's free camping only to find nowhere to set up our camp. We drive a little further and end up at a trail head. We stop to ponder for a minute and decide to ride this trail which was about a 12 mile round trip.
This was a good ride, it had a little of everything on it, I would recommend it to anyone!! We finish the ride and Leadfoot rolls down the road to an opening in the trees. About the time I come rolling up he screams in agonizing pain, rips his helmet off and continues to hate life!! I ask him what happened and look down and see the bee that stung him on his forehead try to fly away and die...I was laughing my ass off and I have a great picture of it!!! If I had better computer skills it would be on this blog!!! So we load up and drive from there to Frisco Colorado.
We find a campground and set up house. The next morning we do a ride which was really cool and this one I would also recommend to anyone!! It was a lot of climbing on the way out with some great views but the return trip was a screamin fast descent on some sweeeeeeeet single track!! The one thing I noticed when we were in Vail is there are a lot of dead pine trees. I guess the pine beetle is the cause of this...it's kinda depressing, because everywhere you look, entire mountainsides are brown with dead trees...It wasn't like that in Crested Butte. I'm sure in time it will be unless they are on top of it now...
We finish our ride and decide to pack it up and head to Winter Park for the final leg of this epic journey...it's Thursday at this point. I make the call to stay in a pay campground by St. Louis creek just outside of Fraser Colorado...The last time I was there you couldn't see the sky for the trees...now it's more or less clear cut from the pine beetle devastation...I was bummed!!!
On to the backup campsite in Winter Park, which was heavily forested, and free HOORAY!!! Once again we set up camp and chill for a bit. A quick Eye to the sky says it's gonna rain soon...an hour later it starts. After an hour or so it stops and it's time to feast. It's too wet to try and cook so off we go to town for food.
As I mentioned earlier this is the night that did camping in for me...Fast forward to morning. We get a fire going, boil some water for coffee and oatmeal, and set of for what would be our last ride.
We had initially planned on ending our trip with the King of the Rockies series finale. A 26 mile point to point MTB race. That wasn't going to happen...on the way to inspect this course I throw out when we get back to camp we should pack up and get a hotel room and bail in the morning. This was met with no resistance.
After riding that course I can honestly say that it would have been a brutal race. We get back to camp and Leadfoot suggests we pack up and head home...be on the road by 3:00pm...I'm in!!! We finished the drive at 2:00am...I was retarded tired for the next week...It was a blast though. NO MORE CAMPING!!!! There's a ton more to this whole adventure...
let's see...this is going longer than I had anticipated...so I wanted to use that riding as a spring board for R.I.M. That was not to happen...for some reason it got cancelled...This made me mad!!! I had circled this race to do well at in January when the schedule was posted...GRRRRRRrrrrr!!!!
So instead of that race, I do a standard MTB race. It was 27.5 miles in length, and since I'm getting tired of typing, you get the really short version. I was in 2nd place going into the 4th lap of 4. About halfway through that lap my 1 1/2 month old new bike starts ghost shifting at the rear derailleur...I think it's cable stretch so I try to dial it out at the barrel adjuster on the shifter only to find out it's not working and getting worse. While I'm doing this my pace has slowed, I take a quick peek over my shoulder and 3rd place is at the bottom of the climb i was about to finish. I put it on kill and put some time on him only to be passed on the 2nd to last hill from trying to remedy my shifting.
He goes by and I keep him in site, we hit the last climb and about halfway up I finally find out what was wrong...the rear derailleur hanger snapped in half...game over with 2 miles to go...I finished 4th.
Now that's an update...sheesh!!! I should really post more often so I don't have to sit here this long!!
The first CX race for me is this weekend, I can't wait!!! Race report to follow!!!