Thursday, April 28, 2011
Sunday, April 24, 2011
Hit the in town trails with the threat of rain that did not appear until late in the evening. Started up Skyline for the 3rd trip up there of the week, as it has become the go to warm up climb. It is also the go to run and not just bike. If you loop in the entire Ridge and then trails around FLC it's exactly 10-miles and 1800-ft of climbing, on rocky techy trails that are fun to run on.
Saturday was very social as this time of year everyone is riding the same stuff in and around town. Ran into Chris, James, and then Rob and some of his friends when I did my usual Test Tracks loop backwards after the Raiders ride. Came back and watched criterium that FLC put on, here their women pretty much dusted the field with one lone CU Buffalo hanging on.
Good times in Durango, and I've been told the CT, Hoffheins, and even High Point are open. Hermosa should be open as well, and it's not even May yet. Good thing it rained all last night.....
Sunday, April 17, 2011
Durango Gravel Grinder (DGG) is under the belt, all 158-miles and 10,372-ft of climbing! We had 2 people complete the 158-miles - myself and Steve Reiter, and 4 people make the 115-miler which came out to near 9k of climbing! Actually, 3 of those four finishers actually did 120-miles due to a wrong turn - but Jeni was their navigator and she pulled them through. Congrats to Jeni for rocking the course and making a good finish! Of the 7 finishers, 3 rocked singlespeed!
It was an awesome day because the weather was just spot on - we crested CR 125 as the sunrise came up - just perfect timing! The ride starts out on the western loop - which we decided to call the Deer Loop due to all of the friendly ungulates along the route - and the eastern loop we call the Dog Loop due to all the darn dogs along that side of the route. And it was here that the wind came on strong and slowed things down. Steve and I finished right around 11 hours, but since it was only 2 of us, we spent some time at the feed stations (convenience stores) - much more than we needed to. This is a route that sub 10-hours is probably the norm when competitive fields show up. We timed the La Plata County Road maintenance schedule just perfect as the magnesium chloride has been freshly applied and those dirt roads were just insanely fast. I rode the Bianchi San Jose single speed of course and with the "system" wheels - trimmed down road tire inside of a cross tire - that heavy wheel combo is also bomb proof. The only downside was the ridiculous head winds in mid afternoon - especially on the rollers on CR 510, that was just tortuous!
Fun times, I love the course and it reminded me of the first San Ysidro Dirty Century when only 3 people showed up - Mike Mangan, Nathan Franke and myself - and only one finished. Now a few years later that course rocks between 70-90 people depending on the year and weather. I fully expect the DDG to be similar.
Monday, April 11, 2011
Some time it just needs to stop with the bike creaks and perhaps soon I'll get a new Ipod since the other one did not fully survive the Maytag (although it did intermittently for nearly a half year).
Specialized helmets kinda work the opposite though and there really isn't anything uglier than a Spez helmet. But a creaky helmet is even more bothersome, and that is what has become of the black Spez. Wish I was a Packers fan because the cheesehead look beats the best of the peloton.
"What beauty. I saw clouds and their light shadows on the distant dear earth.... The water looked like darkish, slightly gleaming spots.... When I watched the horizon, I saw the abrupt, contrasting transition from the earth's light-colored surface to the absolutely black sky. I enjoyed the rich color spectrum of the earth. It is surrounded by a light blue aureole that gradually darkens, becoming turquoise, dark blue, violet, and finally coal black."
"Orbiting Earth in the spaceship, I saw how beautiful our planet is. People, let us preserve and increase this beauty, not destroy it!"
- Yuri Gagarin, first human to travel into outer space.
Fifty years ago this evening, a young Cosmonaut went to bed and most likely did not sleep a wink. The next morning he boarded the Vostok, which I believe in Russian simply means "hermetically sealed Volkswagen Beetle with a rocket attached to it." The Vostok took him on an orbit of the Earth for a little under 2 hours time and when he touched down our final frontier had been visited.
In honor of Gagarin, I decided to do a bit of exploring on my own. While my new horizons were limited to terra firma, I could at least explore new-to-me trails and that I did. I went out to Log Chutes and climbed trail to FR 171 and reached the Animas Outlook. I had previously heard of a rim trail that descended from there and I caught it back down to the valley - overlooking Falls Creek down below. The trail was fast and fun, but at one point I saw a mountain lion dash across the trail, obviously spooked. It is at times like this, that you are so thankful for fast DOWNHILL trail.
The trail continued on and it got very steep and rocky and then back down to the steep road at Barker's Corner. It was a bit chilly, so I went home from there.
The ride terrain is opening up here fast, and I got my picture in the Telegraph last week while up on Animas Mountain. The destruction from logging on Log Chutes is not as bad as it first appeared and just a bit of clean-up will clear the trail of dead fall. We might have to venture toward Missionary Ridge soon, but I suspect a ton of dead fall there from the high winds of late.
Note: This photo is the exact opposite perspective of the valley than the photo in the Myths post, and the mesa just above my saddle is Animas Peak, of which I have yet to post a 2011 photo, but have scaled 3 times thus far.
Tuesday, April 05, 2011
Like the roll of the astragali the weather here at times seems almost random. With brutal forecasts of rain and snow, the locals offered up sacrifice to the great god Kennebec.
Sunday, April 03, 2011
We've been told for years that Beatles are the truest representation of British rock-n-roll, leaders of a new genre, but yet after seeing the full careers of The Rolling Stones, The Who, and Lead Zeppelin and Pink Floyd you realize it's nothing more than a very far fetched exaggeration. Lest we forget Iron Maiden, Queen and of course The Clash/Joe Strummer.
Ride, enjoy life and carry on. Find those reasons that prevent you from doing so and call them mythical.