Monday, February 27, 2012

The Search for Spock CX continues....

In my now never ending quest for CX bike action I went to The Bike Lane Reston and tried out a 58CM steed, a Trek ION CX Pro. Nice looking bike, VERY light. They adjusted it up and off I went into the night of Reston Town Center. Couldn't really push it like I did the bikes out on the Silver Spring gravel trail. But it rode nicely in town. Felt like the carbon fork on this did better than the others absorbing stuff, but still not used to the harshness of riding high pressure tires on the road. Even those 34c tires on it. Maybe I can see about arranging a longer test or getting it moved up to TBL Burke where I can take it out to Accotink/CCT and ride it more. A strong contender.

1 Point of Hate - The fucking bars piss me off, those weird humped-assed bars KB cooked up for use that aren't the traditional bull horns. They felt short at the far end of the drops (Closest to saddle). And the hump hurt my hands at least without gloves, and I don't think it's a matter of padding. Also riding "in town" I realized that I really would LIKE to have a cheater. At least for the front. Also due to the "humps" it felt like the reach for the brake levers was REALLY long.

Position wise the bike felt like a good fit. Wouldn't know whether to use clipless or clips on this bike. Noticed it less on this than the others the loss of "power" The gearing felt HUGE. It's running a 36/48 and 11-28 in the rear. I guess maybe it was the "HILLS" me thinks I'm in for some suffering on my first few rides when I start trying to ride shit I road on my beater bmx as a kid. Sigh.

Still on the list to try is hit Bikenetic and see what they have and I also want to try and hit spokes as I'd like to try some Salsa rides out.

Winter Party - Survived.

The MORE 2012 Winter Party was survived by all attendee's/participants/etc.

I was WAY late to the setup due to unfortunate issues with a big frickin screw in my rear passenger tire. I did help re-allign the tables so that row 4 didn't have room to drive a car in anymore and row 2 would have to sit on row 1 and 3's laps. IE. Row 1 had 4 paces from wall to far side of the chairs. Row/Table 2 had 2. Row 3 had 3. Row 4 had 7 paces of width.

Tons of food, I saw several people make it out with 5lbs of mixed brisket, chicken and potatoes.

Band was awesome.

20 Year Video - MORE Than Enough: 20 years of the Mid-Atlantic Off Road Enthusiasts.

MC wasn't very drunk till the near end.

Links to come to vid's and pictures.

Gave away my grand prize of ride leading to of all people Larry.
Quarterly winners were Debbie, Eric C, Joel K, and Debbie (Again).
Big cheers to all my leaders who get their paperwork in. Big shaking of finger at several who epic fail including JoeP (who gets a partial pass for organizing the winter party), Eric B, Pat M, Anne M, and a few others. GET YOUR WAIVERS IN!

Big thanks to our Beer Sponsor, Sierra Nevada for providing 2 kegs.

Now I'm going to process the first 2 months of 2012 ride entries.

Sunday I got to ride 3 cx bikes, the cross check was my favorite, the CDale AL bike wasn't terrible. The giant kinda blew, bad components, and the 58 left me feeling WAY stretched out. Looking to try a cross check in 58 and try some more bikes before making a decision. Not getting into cross racing, this is more for mixed surface rides/etc.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Thursday is BACK!

And we are back after 7 weeks of being shut out at WF for trail rides, we had almost 20 riders out for great conditions yesterday. Trails were near perfect, fast. a hint of tackiness in corners. Damn. The rollers on the power line were FAST!. Did phase 4 2x. Ended up with 10+ miles with the casual group at Wakefield on a semi late start.

Did a bunch of Accotink but my gps was paused apparently for a lot of it. ugh. ugh. ugh. Felt a bit stronger over there, climbed the damn Dam climb with no real problems for the first time and made the other climb that had stumped me on 1st try for most of last season.

Probably 45 miles so far this week and I may get to do FH with the WF Krewe on Saturday since I'm off.

I'm looking forward to kicking back with a good dinner and a brew tonight.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Is it possible? A Thursday night trail ride at Wakefield?

Stay tuned on this bat channel, at this bat time!

Anyways old Batman reruns aside, I think we've got a VERY VERY good chance of having a trail ride tonight at Wakefield, the first real ride since the beginning of January due to never ending rain's on Tues thru Thursday mucking up the trails. We got a bit last night but with how warm it should be today I think we'll be fine this evening.

Cleaned the bike last night, washed a ton of bike laundry, and cleaned up my junk room a good bit.

Also completed the final MORE Ride Reckoning for 2011. Mostly.
549 Rides on the Calendar
136 Waivers, 64 Known Weather Cancellations = 200 Known Ride's for the big raffle at the Winter Party.
4 Parks account for 3/4's of the rides: Patapsco, Wakefield, Schaeffer, and Rosaryville.
8 Parks had no official rides.
10 Parks had 2 or less rides.

New Waivers printed finally also.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

WMA Assault

Sounds like some sort of MMA or Wrestling event.

And it sorta was if you count wrestling my bike back up 700 feet of ascent in about half a mile. IE a 25%'ish grade. After already ascending about 150 feet of maybe worse hill. Needless to say I was pushing and pushing and pushing as evidenced by my GPS's un-logged distance and my miraculous jump of 400+ feet of elevation at one point. I did ride out the last bit of it, but it sucked.

Going down was a blast except for a bad blow down. On a big DH bike with a known clear line you could redefine FLYING. Honestly it would be a good non-technical shuttle spot. Park a car or two at the lot on the far side near 66 then drive to where we started then you get a 2.5'ish mile run descending 1300 feet. You would want a lead out with a radio or something to make sure the trail is clear of hikers and hunters and to probably take a hand saw to clear 2 of the blow downs. We were cruising down and rolled it in 17 minutes to the far side with a big detour that can be skipped. For the nutters they could really challenge/gauge their fitness trying to ride back up.

You do ride along about 50 feet or so of the AT. And one of the camping huts in nearby we rolled over to check it out and rest for the final leg.

Today I've got a MORE BOD meeting, I may try and get a bit of a ride in at Wakefield before hand.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Shed'ing Part Three

Sunday I got to do a 3rd section of the shed based around the Hamburg Rd lot including bits of Blue, VW, Rusted Bug, Knuckle Buster, Dave's Trail, Huggy Bear, Little Cannan and Bugflats. Almost 11 miles I think. Not in that order though. I was turned way around by the end. We came out where I though we wouldn't. Oops. Oh well. It worked out well, still a bit tired today. My arms were more tired than I realized.

Heading out to Thompson WMA out 66 today after work for a bit of explority riding.

Lots of drama at work recently just somewhat wrapped up yesterday with a person departing. Now we only have a shit ton more to deal with before the re-org on April 1.

I'll be glad when this is all done, especially if I get my promised Saturday's off back. I've been looking at that longingly since I was made shift lead 2 years ago, and instead gave up my 2nd day off, even if it was Monday.

I'll link up Denis's photo of me from the shed later. Pretty cool.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Newness of Note, rain never ending.

Got to ride the new NEW stuff out at FH on Wednesday after working doing the first 2 loop sections (ending at pick nick tables). That's now almost 6 miles. Compared to just shy of 3.75 miles 2 years ago before the first project started and now that the RTP grant work is nearing completion. I think it will be near 6.5 by the time they finish.

The new stuff leading up to and after Jackrabbit Run is going to be sick as it compresses down and gets FAST. The berms are REALLY nicely done.

There does need to be some re-work done especially on PTD's stuff on the Shockabily lead up and a bit of the bypass.

Rained enough yesterday I wasn't down for another CCT ride and didn't want to try chasing Larry around on his vintage '83 Canondale. My legs were tired and I got a LOT of work done on finishing up the 2011 Ride Lists. Hoping to finish the 1st half one today and start normalizing tonight/tomorrow.

Did get to try another CoCoNut Porter, still digging it. Also tried the DFH Pearl Jam beer, a nice mild Belgian ale, the currants were really not noticeable to my palate. Well done beer. Very approachable for Belgian style.

Snow inbound on Sunday the question is to stay local, semi-local or go farther afield and try some skiing. Not sure yet.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Oy who loves their bike?

Well I got a chance to love mine yesterday. I blew off the Rosey ride as honestly 100 extra miles of driving round trip was going to lead to someone ending up on the 11 o'clock news. And not in a good way.

So I did a near work ride and got in 11 or so miles. Even did some 1 mile sprints. God I suck. I have no REAL power and my sustained ability sucks. 3:25 and 3:34 were my times. Admittedly a mtn bike ain't no road bike, but still thats slow to me. I never did timed miles back when i used to ride Baylands a lot but I did do shorter sprints and I know I used to crack speeds for short term of 25+. I see near 23 as best. Ugh. More "ROAD" work ahead.

It was a good ride, I felt about 75% calmer and less like doing unspeakable acts upon certain people.

In geek news I got to play the new Mass Effect 3 demo last night after the ride and was very impressed. Good buy cruel March rides, I shall see you again in April...or May.

Gotta finalize my Fla trip today for March. Hoping to Santos with my Bro and see what other trouble we can get into. Gator Nationals that Sunday then who knows?

Great bit from Bike 198.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Thursday Sucks. Honestly.

Mother nature has made the Thursday Night Ride her B@#$@. Another night not on trails this week and last week was also. Next week isn't looking spiffy with rain/snow coming in again next Tuesday. This earns a giant WTF.

So we did the CCT south last night, but it was a comedy of issues. Dead Lights, Flat Tires, Group Drops, just to name a few. OH and REALLY wet low water crossings. ON the way out once you get past 7100 you have like 5 or 6 low water crossings. 5 were not that bad, if you rode slow you didn't get wet. Last one was a BIT DEEPER. As in about 6 inches deeper. Almost to my bottom bracket deep. AS in soaked my lakes almost. UGh. On the way back I wimped and used the steps carrying my bike, but my socks were already soaked. Wool is awesome as it did manage to stay mostly warm till the end. Damn things are still wet on the drying rack this morning. After that I gate up on staying mostly dry and did the 5 other crossings getting from wet to damn wet. 21 Miles I believe someone said, my gps had 20 so that makes sense.

Michaux on Sunday if I can get up on time. Jen's having a birthday party Saturday evening. We'll see how it goes. Might have a bit of snow on the ground. Won't be hugely disappointed if it gets rescheduled somewhat honestly. Next week I may run a lead ride at LH. Or maybe I'll try and hit Fairland.

Wednesday, February 08, 2012

Sun to Snow to Sun to Snow

That's the pattern this time of year, Tuesday last week (1/31) we had a high of 68 degrees. I rode in shorts and a shirt up until after dark, when I added a tech layer under the shirt. (Accotink and Wakefield).

Thursday it felt cold and I rode in mod weight winter gear on the CCT.

Sunday I rode the shed again. In the snow. In heavier winter gear but was a bit warm. It was pretty wet and most trails were not snow covered directly. We did Salamander to the Overlook then ridge and then ended up going all the way down Vandal to near the res. The climb up sucked. Sucked. Sucked. Or rather I sucked. Back up we went eventually I caught the main slower group and a few of us did Kinks back to the Sandflats lot. It was pretty good and I cleared most of it, skipping 2 sections.

Afterwards we enjoyed excellent homemade salsa and chips and PLB's. HeBrew's RIPA is pretty damn good. MAD Elf is still nyquil. Skipped super bowl as I was tired and I was actually in bed and sleeping by 10 I think.

Last night was J's birthday so I got no riding in, instead I'm hoping to get in another Snow Ride here in the lowlands of VA today. 1-2 inches. Yesterday it was 55 and felt closer to 65 in the sun, had my windows down in the car even!

Maybe some sledding if I can find a hill with enough snow!

Of course it's going to melt overnight/during Thursday so that means no snow/trail riding yet again for Wakefield Thursday Night. GRR.

Thursday, February 02, 2012

Support this.

I love Ride the Divide, I watch it probably once every 3 or 4 months. Throw it on as background when having social gathering. This new film sounds like another great production. So help em out if you can and lets break the 10K mark!

Reveal the Path!

Working on nailing down ride waivers for the last half of 2011 first, which I seem to have more of for the club. The amount of cancelations due to weather this fall is really kinda sad. Lots and lots of the C word.

Speaking of that tonights Wakefield ride is not looking good, we've had on and off rains and semi-continual misting. Ugh. Not looking foward to another Plan C ride.