Monday, April 21, 2008

Dig The Ribbit

What a weekend to remember - well most of it.

6:30am - Happy 32nd Birthday to me. I awoke feeling more like 72nd BD.
Noon - Departure time to meet up with LeRoy for the trip to Copper Hill Basin.
2pm - Finally leave Cola. Total chaos with packing one car all to have forgot important stuff in another car that was occupied.
8:30pm - some 6 hrs of traveling, I'm finally at the Ocoee WWC and meeting our group of Asheville folk.

3:30am - The rain starts falling and falling. (10pm "it will be raining you pansies" BrouSSard)

7:45am - Just one of 150 riders standing in the drizzle for the start of the 65 mile event "The Big Frog" the middle distance event of the Cohutta weekend. We started up the paved highway to spread things out. With no warm up this had to be a smart time of the day for me. Do I go hard and blow later or conserve a touch and survive? Made it to the Single track some riders back in a group of 15+. Rolling some sticky but super fun trails. A touch of wheels and I bobble into the woods. Lost my place in line and had to wait for a gap to hop back onto the trail. No real clue of where I was or where I was headed. First rest station at 17mi came quick. A right turn and up the gravel road. Gravel mile after gravel mile I climb. The rain had really made the FS roads slick and slow. The kind of mud that just wears you down. This was the first time I questioned my gear choice for the day.

9:45ish - Caught up with passing folks and really getting into the event. Realized I haven't had many calories since the start. Falling into my own pace, I caught up to several hot SS riders who had taxed themselves early. Luck me, I guess. Hooked up with another SS who was running a 32x16. My first response was "Crusher". So this fella and I switched around for a few hours. Pass and get passed.

11:00ish - Still going up or down a Gravel FS road in the mud with grit in my eye. My shades were worthless for the conditions. I would often catch geared riders on a climb, and then just ride away from them. All to have them cruise by in the big ring on the down hills. Finally really able to turn out some Power on the SS. With a slow cadence that kept ticking over with the cranks. It seemed to work well for me. A few times I would get off and walk. Only to get the blood flowing back to my feet again, and because the hill was just too damn steep.

12:00ish – Some 4:30 hours into this thing I once called a race, the first stages of a bonk starts. I haven’t seen any other riders for a while. Good and bad. Now I have no clue how far the next aid station is. I just plug along one pedal stroke at a time. Soon I begin to notice some FS roads I’ve seen before. It’s finally the end of the 34mi loop. This would be the lift I was looking for. The last section of single track was some fun stuff. Too bad I was blasted from the previous 6 hours of riding to fully enjoy it.

A secret goal of mine in all long distance races is not be chicked. Well all was well till the last half of single track. I heard this creaking bike coming up of a few switchbacks. Not yet sure as to whom it was. I started taking more risks on the descent. Popped out onto the final section of pavement and what you know she attacked me. This crazy chick drops some gears and attacked me. “Well Shit”, I only have one gear and it’s spinning as fast as I can without the cramps. I just laughed and fell happy to have not kisses the dirt all day. The effort was enough for a 3rd place in the 65mile SS class and a possible top 20 Overall. Still waiting on the results to be posted.

After Thoughts:

1 - 70oz. bladder H2O
3 - 16oz. HEED
1 - Cliff Bar
1 - Flask of Hammer Gel
6 - Endurolytes
6 - Sugar Cookies
1 - Muddy 29er
1 - Gear
0 - Mechanicals

Monday, April 14, 2008

Endurance Step 1

Well 5 days now to my first endurance challenge of the 2008 season. The Cohutta 65miler is on tap for this Saturday and all the anticipation is starting. What gear to run, pack no pack, what tires & how much pixie dust in my shoes? Yeah this feeling is something you never get enough of. After many endurance events I know one thing, go into the race to have fun and suffer. This being hard to image for some, at how one could pay to suffer and have fun doing so. Leave your expectations at the door. My inconsistent training has left my fitness level out of wack. This will just make for an interesting day on the bike. I'll try riding into a respectable fitness level during the race. It's been done before. Now off to clean the Rig and make a list of things I shouldn't forget to take.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Ebay Bound

Spring is here and it's time for a Spring Cleaning. Looking to get rid of some bike related stuff if anyone is interested let me know.

*Gary Fisher X-Caliber 29er - 17.5" (M) Frame - 2004 I think. Front Der. included. Bought this frame as a replacement for another. The frame has served me great. If you are wanting or thinking of going to the 29" platform this would be a great deal

*Independent Fabrication Steel Deluxe 26" - 17.5" Frame - Red/Sid Blue Fade. This a 1996 frame built of Reynolds 853 Steel. Canti brake bosses, sorry not disc tabs. This bike shows plenty of scuffs however thy are all cosmetic.

*Bontrager Race X Lite 31.8os Handlebar - Used normal scuffs around grip area, but no real scratches to worry about. I would still ride it for I prefer the Big Sweep Bar

*Power Tap Computer Harness - Brand New has been installed once but it's never seen the elements.

*Power Tap Rear Wheel w/ Campy wheel bag - PT hub is built up on a Mavic rim. Freehub is Shimano. This wheel has been hanging in this Campy bag for about 2 years.

*Shimano Road Shoes 44 - Near mint shape clean and they don't smell.

*Speed Play Zero Ti Pedals w/ cleats - Cleats have about 150miles on them. The pedals are few years old. They are in good shape would be great for a back-up bike if you already use SpeedPlays.

I'll follow up with some pictures soon.

Thursday, April 03, 2008


Meet my pup, Holly. Holly is a 6 year old German Shorthaired Pointer & reincarnated human. This dog truly believes she is human. This is not staged, she will sleep like this on occasions. Always keeping one eye open for an opportunity to play. Favorite activities include eating, sleeping, chasing her ball and or squirrels when provoked and digging in my flower bed.
I have tried to take her on bike rides but it's very aggravating. She has such a drive to hunt that she seeks out any varmint in the woods. I do on occasions take her for a bike ride around the neighborhood. I always wear a helmet with this beast. One pass across the front wheel and I'm a babbling idiot. She hit 22mph one night cruising around the block.

Happy Birthday Mom

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Don't be Fooled

SpokeJunky this is for you to guess the location. One hint: coastal county. There were two gators in the water. Every few minutes a shoulder check and a head count. They usually sun on the bank right behind the EDM. This is about extreme as work gets.
Update 4/02: Location Raw Water Canal, Jasper Co. About 2miles east of Hwy 17. The structure to the left is a concrete flume that transports the river water over the swamp area. This water will travel East for 17miles before entering the Beaufort Co. raw water plant to convert it into drinkable water for the citizens of Beaufort & Jasper Co. So don't pee in the river, you may have to drink it.

SpokeJunky 's new handlebar mounted toy for his AM commute. Possibly NiteRider makes a bar mount for this WWII model. Good Luck with the commuting - stay safe.