Thursday, January 31, 2008

Snow Bike #1

Apparently my race season started last weekend (I know - another late post, but I've been busy. More about that later.)

I got a comment from Bryan, wondering if I was going up to Matt's snowbike race, and could I give him a ride. He said Hansen was racing, and it would be a blast. I'd thought about going up for the race a little, but hadn't given it serious consideration. Afterall, lately my training has consisted of a 2-3 hour bike ride once a week, followed by celebratory beers afterwards. It turns out that was the perfect training for this race!

Bryan and Chris get ready for the race:

John Newell and Jim Logan were there .

The accomodations on the ride out were first class. We had a bus full of bikes:

And a bus full of riders. We kept pulling the "Please Stop now" rope, but it didn't help. Matt just kept driving into oblivion.

This is what oblivion looks like.

I hung with the main group for a while, then we split up into two groups, then it was just me.

I could see Hansen just ahead, spinning like mad man, but I couldn't catch him. BTW, Bryan was long gone, and WON THE RACE!

After the race, things got a little goofy.

Seems someone got a deal on fake mustaches.

The fun continued on the way home

What tastes best after a hard day in the cold? Homemade Chicago deep-dish pizza!

Oh, and my excuse for this post being so late? I finally got the MOB Racing kit order finalized. It Rocks! Check it out.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Hike Around Seven Oaks

Last weekend several of us decided to take a hike around Seven Oaks in Boone (sorry for the late post on the hike - I got busy and it got away from me).

It was a lovely day for a hike:

Five of us didn't have enough sense to stay home on a day like today. Troy Kyle, Taylor, me, and Ron.

The opening climb isn't much easier on foot.

This is as close as I've ever been to Kyle on that climb.

After climbing a few hills, the slight twinges of cold that we had felt out in the open gave way to open jackets and sweat. Down in the valley it actually felt warm.

After a while we were all covered with frozen condensation.

After the hike, Troy convinced Joel to let us take a few runs on the tubing hill. What a blast!
We looked like a bunch of kinds out there.

Clothing note from the trip. Although I have quite a bit of experience riding is these type of conditions, I'm not as experienced hiking in them. I overdressed. For next time, A base layer and my ski jacket was plenty warm. Fleece tights and ski pants were also enough. Unfortunately I also had jeans and a sweatshirt. That was too much and it held too much moisture. I also wore my down mittens. I spent half of the time with them off, because they were too warm! Ski gloves would have been enough. It's amazing how little clothing you can get away with at nine below zero if you are staying active. I'll get this all figured out someday.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

No Sense

A few of us dim-witted folks are going to hike around the Boone MTB course tomorrow morning at 9:00 for the fun of it. Apparently we have no sense about these things. All are welcome. Let me know if you also have no sense.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Leading from the Back

Today several of us went out on a gravel grinder. It was our little way of wishing Andrew Carney our best as he goes out to seek his fortune in the real world, in this case Colorado. As if that wasn't enough, it turned into a double farewell (I've got to stop losing friends to other states), but more about that later.

I'm not sure that I have any business leading a ride, seeing as how I'm usually the slowest guy on any ride I'm involved in. Some how I would figure it out. I had a route planned out that would end at my place, but I wasn't sure how I would lead the ride from the back.

Participants on the ride today:

Andrew -Reformed Triathlete and Endurance Freak. The guest of honor sporting a nice beard today. He's probably started it yesterday.

The next to appear was Alex. Alex is our resident engineer and bike geek (OK, we're all bike geeks). If you can imagine a bike part, he could make it.

Next was Greg - Bike Recycler Extraordinaire. He never met a bike that he didn't want to take home and give some TLC.

Bryan was next with a special guest. Byran is an up and coming road racer. He's also young enough to be my son (OK, most of these guys are).

Bryan was with Chris! WTF? I thought he had moved to Arizona or something. Chris is one of the fastest guys I have ever had the pleasure of riding with. He became the second guest of honor on this ride.

Shortly after that came OP, TransIowa and Dirty Kanza veteran. He is one of the more committed people that I know (or perhaps he should be committed).

The skies were clear, the winds were light, and the temps were tolerable. What am I doing at the front of this pack of talented cyclists? Tiz a puzzlement.

It wouldn't last.

Somewhere between these picture the second guest of honor (Chris), fell in an icy corner and took out the guest of honor (Andrew). Both got up laughing, as Andrew got knocked into the deep ditch snow, which doesn't hurt as much. I missed getting a picture - which is the difference between goodness and greatness.

The group broke up a couple of times, but then seemed to magically re-form every time they had to slow down and ask me for directions. Leading from the back, and controlling the pace. Hmm. It seemed to work.

Finally we got back to my place where there were there were the muched promised stories and beers.

Here Andrew tells us about riding across the country on his bike, or sleeping in a Jeep at -25 at Crested Butte, I can't remember which.

After a while we move inside, cause the stories got longer and the garage got colder.

It was a great day to hang out with great friends. Some friends I will probably see in the next week or two, and some that I won't see for a while. That is life as an old man in a college town.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Andrew Carney Mountain Ride

We're hosting an Andrew Carney Mountain Ride on Sunday at 10 AM. No, we won't be riding in the mountains, but Andrew is leaving us for the mountains. I can't blame him. It's pretty out there. Not to mention the snow, the skiing, and THE MOUNTAINS.

So anyway, we'll be leaving from the Ada Hayden north shelter at about 10:00 am on Sunday. Route is yet to be determined, and distance is yet to be deteremined. If we ride hard enough and long enough, there may be beers at my place on the way home.

Let me know if you'll be there, so we don't leave without you.

Sunday, January 06, 2008

Snow Bike

I've got the "Ice Tank" all rigged up for some snow and ice riding. Today the opportunity presented itself to actually ride offroad in the snow. But I had to do it quick before all of the snow melted and the trails turned into muck. Temps in the mid 40's in January? I've got to do something. After taking the dog for a walk this morning, I looked at the trails and thought "I can ride this slop". I was mostly right.

It looks harmless, but the going is actually pretty hard! 3 inches of slop will do that. Imagine riding through a margarita.

I even got into the woods some. In areas where the snow was tracked down, the riding was pretty sweet. In the more remote areas, not so good.

I got some strange looks, and some incredulous comments. "I can believe you're riding your bike back here", and "Don't you fall alot?" Yeah, I do fall alot, just not today.

The views were worth it.

Maybe if it freezes up, the woods will be ridable again.

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Seems Like Old Times

It seems like old times cause I went riding with old friends in frickin' cold weather!

My "Ice Tank" with studded tires:

Breakfast before the ride:

These boots are warm. If you are serious about riding in the winter get some some Lakes.

Serious desolation:

My companions for this ride - Cory and OP:

Time hasn't changed this view - OP and I chased Cory up the hills:

More desolation:

One final view with Cory behind me (he had to stop and pee - it wouldn't last). BTW, I need a shave.