Monday, January 26, 2009

Gambrill First Ride Today

Man, what a day to ride frickin Gambrill for the first time! It was a great drive up with on and off flurries of snow. By the time I hit Fredrock it had slowed a bit, vs the MoCo-270 corridor.

Parked in the lot at around 10:15, 1 other car there but obviously a pedestrian as no bike tracks were visible. Finished changing gear and headed out a bit before 11.

Since I read a recent thread on the MORE forums about best routes, I knew I was going yellow and decided to do the clockwise from the lot loop, going across the street first and up to the Upper loop, then back down the other side.

Wow! It was fun, but damn sketchy in a LOT of places, some nasty black ice for sure under a fine layer of snow. Had the bike slip out from under me 3-4 times but caught myself each time. Had to push a few more hills than I would have liked but with the ice on some sides seeming worse I preferred that to a bad/dumb fall. I did make a few climbs with single dabs that I was proud of as well as 2 descents.

Lots of fun stuff to play with, I session a couple small sections trying to find best lines/etc. Some of the BIG formations were definitely a bit sketch but fun. It was a beautiful and empty day out on the trails with the snow and myself. Didn't see a single soul until I returned to the lot just in time to donate money infront of the very nice ranger. :) The envelope box was smashed and so I hadn't earlier. Oh well she was very nice about it.

Looking forward to trying again when less ice is present. A bit more snow would have made it funner also. I'll be back for sure now. I just have to get faster. Though a bit of that was due to creeping around turns/down straight sets where the ice tended to like to hide at a slow pace. :)

Post ride stop at Hard Times REALLY hit the spot.


DaveG said...

The first time I rode Gambrill (98-99 or so?) it was the day after an ice storm. I didn't know any better and I took the blue to Hamburg road. Those are some steep nasty climbs/descents.

I didn't come back for another year :)

Rob said...

Yah I was lucky there was the light snow fall that morning, it kept stuff manageable. Plus I was only doing the yellow loop. Also I bet in the last 10 years of evolution that trail has also gotten better.