My plan here is to provide a few posts about my experience with the Colorado Trail Race 2012. This first entry is simply an overview of my thoughts of the event in general, some idea of my background, and how I came to do CTR.
The 13,271ft view
The Colorado Trail Race (CTR) is not a bicycle race; don't let anyone try to convince you otherwise. Yes, it involves a bicycle, and even some riding of it, but it also requires much more than racing a bicycle...
The office view for the pat 10 days
How, can I say this? Well, for one thing bike racing is about the only sport that I can honestly say that I understand completely. I have over 20 years of personal racing experience in every discipline of the sport from Road, Track, to CX and MTB. I have raced events so small they have had to combine fields just to make the numbers to have a start list and I have raced National events that you were lucky to get an entry. I have been, and am still, an event promoter. I have also worked in the bike industry and been the service manager for a multi-chain bike shop. I am a cycling coach and am versed in the use of "power based" training methods to extract the best performance from my client athletes.
Additionally, I am a past member of the Santa Barbara County Search and Rescue Team. I held certifications as an EMT, High Angle Rope Rescue Technician, and in Man Tracking and Route Finding/Orienteering. So when I tell you CTR is not a bike race, I do so with some authority.
So, if it's not a bike race then what the hell is CTR? Most appropriately, it could be called a "Grand Traverse." It requires route finding, hiking, weather prediction, a huge amount of logistical planning, some pedaling, and a fair amount of suffering well beyond what is to be expected of a bicycle race.
With that in mind, I will confirm that there is a ridiculous amount of Hike-A-Bike (HA required to complete the CTR. I read Judd's excellent and funny write up of his experiences on the CTR as part of my planning for doing the event. Even so, I thought his 100 mile estimates of the HAB distance was simply overestimated due to the single speed/fully rigid bike he chooses to ride. Well, he was right, there's at least 100mi of HAB on this thing regardless of what you ride. Do not underestimate the toll that will take on you if you choose to attempt the CTR.
The technical riding sections of trail were just that - 'technical." This is not something to be attempted if you aren't comfortable with pretty much every MTB trail obstacle imaginable. Seriously, the CTR will kill you if you're not ready for it and no, that's not hyperbole.
To my Santa Barbara/Central Coast riding friends I can summarize the route like this: take your favorite MTB, hang 30lbs of food, clothing, bike spare parts and camping gear off of it, then add in wearing a day pack with an additional 15lbs of gear and ~6.5lbs of water in the hydration bladder. Now, go try to ride UP Tunnel Trail, across the top of Camino Cielo to Cold Springs, then ride DOWN Cold Springs to 192, ride back to Tunnel. Then just for fun throw in a lightning/rain/hail/thunderstorm every day between approximately 2PM and 5PM.
Sleep somewhere/anywhere on course as needed. Repeat this exercise for a total of ~500 miles.
How did I get wrapped up into this thing? Well, I do like to ride my bike: a lot, and for long periods of time. I also really like racing other people on bicycles. So combine the two and you've more than got my attention. Prior to CTR, I have done a self supported "TransAlp" from Munich across the Alps and the Dolomites to Lago di Garda in northern Italy, the Durango to Moab hut trip, as well as several shorter bikepacking trips over the past five years, so I'm not new to this whole ride/camp in the middle of nowhere thing. What did it though really, was one of my best friends - Greg Steele, attempted CTR in 2011. CTR that year bested him somewhere around day two/three but his description of, and excitement for the event was just too much for me to resist - I was hooked. So about nine months ago I quietly made it a goal, started training and gathering all the kit I thought I'd need/want for a successful run at CTR. Five months ago I publicly committed to Steele that I was going to join him for the 2012 edition.
Was it fun? In a twisted kind of way, yes. But, be warned you must be entertained by long stretches of pushing yourself to both physical and mental breaking points - and be willing and able to exceed those limits if you want to keep going and complete the route. I think this is true regardless of whether you finish in the 3d23h38min of the winner Jefe Branham or the 10d11hr10min that I did it in. Although it would be dishonest to leave the answer at "it was twisted fun," alone. There, for me at least, was a lot of really not fun things: the huge sections of un-rideable trail, the monotony of many of the rideable sections, the threat of death by lightning while well above tree-line for hours at time, the fact that a 55lb loaded MTB on a trail running with water on it like a river handles like a greased pig, blistered sore feet, two fingers on my right hand that are still numb, crashing into a ravine 20ft off trail and fatigue by the bucket load.
How did I cope with that? Bart Spedden in a post on bikepacking.net, probably unknowingly, gave me a mantra to use that looped through my head for most of the toughest parts of the race, and I thank him for the comment and the insight:
"Just be humble, and brave, and finish. Through the highs and lows, keep it together."
Humility is not something I always do very well (remember I am a bike racer) and being aware of the need to be humble really helped me. Brave I can usually fake if needed, and keeping it together between the highs and lows is both the subtlety and genius in the comment - it worked for me anyway.
Interestingly, the physical challenge of riding/hiking the course was for me, slightly less demanding than the mental challenge of spending, quite literally, multiple days alone riding in silence; to the point that any interaction with another cyclist or hiker on trail would often be the high point of a day for me. OK, for those that know me "silence" here is a relative concept as I was more than capable of having long rambling conversations with myself, recanting an assortment of random movie scenes, singing out-loud horribly, as well as many embarrassingly childish cursing episodes at full volume at the trail, the weather, myself for being stupid, and whatever deity it was that seemed to want to try to kill me with "the lightning," at the time.
That's not to say that even when following my uber-conservative pacing strategy of racing from sunrise-to-sunset didn't allow for near complete exhaustion after the 9 to 14 hours that would sometimes entail. Let's just say that sleeping in the dirt in my tent was not an issue. Sleep came on fast and the pre-dawn alarm too quickly again.
To expand on my ride strategy a bit: this was my rookie run at the event. I had never seen the whole course before and felt simply given the scale of the event to go any harder (basically ride longer each day with less sleep) without having seen the whole thing would be stupid. When on the ragged edge already, to have the course shift in an unexpected way and crack me, causing me to fail to complete the race would have been all too easy to have happen. The side benefit of my pacing plan was I was at least able to enjoy the scenery that the course traverses instead of passing through it quickly in the night - well, that is when I wasn't focused intently on the 40ft of trail right in front of me. In theory I could race the course at this point. The hard parts for me are firmly cemented in my mind, as well as where I could go fast and still "recover."
Would I do it again? Probably not. The course is just not "rideable" enough for my tastes. Also, one of the more interesting aspects about CTR is that I learned the type of racing/riding that makes up the bulk of the CTR experience is not what I enjoy about riding/racing. The camaraderie of the shared experience of travel with friends is much more important to me than any ascetic wisdom that may be gained from the levels of sleep deprivation required to really be successful in this type of event. Basically most of what makes the event unique is anathema to my Epicurean nature and holds little appeal after having done it. That said it has given me a renewed focus for planning/executing many more bikepacking trips. So expect some invitations in the near future to do some exploring...
Really this starts the day before with Steele and I pre-riding to the start and back from his gracious friends Krista and Allen, who allowed us to crash at their place. They live very close to Waterton making it a no-brainer as to how to get to the start. Seven easy, mostly downhill miles and you're at Waterton Cyn. Steele and I spend Sunday getting last minute things from REI, some lunch and then rank and stack gear to go the next morning.
5AM alarm, dress and roll out to the start. We show up at the start about 25min before roll out. We listen to Stephen's pre-race debrief of the rules and chat with Scott Junker. I discover that the batteries in my camera are dead so I quickly dump the old ones and soon after Steele and I are rolling out of the start. In the photo below I look decidedly more happy than Steele to be starting this race.
Soon after this photo I would also realize that the badass, brand new eTrex30 will fail to load Toby Gadd's GPX file of the route. Thankfully I didn't delete all the associated waypoints with the track and was able to spend the next 500mi effectively connecting the breadcrumb waypoint dots from flag to flag. Not ideal, but that, in addition to the CTR trail databook and all the signage made the task of following the CT manageable enough.
The road out of Waterton was easy enough, followed by the first pieces of singletrack where I realize that I have way too much weight on the bike in the form of food - granted I decided on purpose to carry all I thought I would need but it's feeling less and less like the right strategy at the time. Steele tries to climb away from me only to be found later fixing the busted chain on his single speed. I refuse to make a comment about his stupidly making something already hard enough even harder, or questioning his choice of chain - Izumi Super Toughness for SS use, anything else and you are dumber than you look...
The next several hours are a rude introduction to the general idea of what the next several days will be like - lots of HAB, some fun techy stuff, stuff you have to hike up and down, and still too much stuff on the bike. Eat, drink, breathe, ride, repeat...thunderstorm, lightning, go faster or risk dying...
Just before hitting the first town on the course, Bailey, around mile 45, I see someone up ahead walking their bike. It's Steele; apparently he's crashed at some point and has hurt his shoulder and has been walking for a while. We ride together into Bailey and get a burger and a Coke. He decides to try to continue to Kenosha pass, bivy for the night then see how it feels in the AM before deciding to continue the race or not.
Camping at the Kenosha pass camp site is like sleeping in a washing machine in the middle of a freeway. We have raging thunderstorms all night and are close enough to the downside of the pass that I hear truck engine brakes all night. Scott Junker is bivied at our campsite as well although he has taken up residence in the entry to the toilet - the entry probably because someone else has already claimed the toilet proper - yes, it smells like shit in there, however it is dry and quiet - depends on what you value I guess.
Day 2 Kenosha Pass to mile three or four of the "Ten Mile Range"
Sometime around 5AM the next morning I hear someone scream something to the effect of "THIS IS SPARTA!!" as they roll past our camp - I'm convinced it was Junker. Granted day two seems a bit early for that level of fervor but I can dig it. A couple more restless hours pass and finally Steele and I are both awake. He has the "I'm out" look and I'm trying to sort exactly how long and boring this race is going to be as a fully solo effort. By 9AM, Steele has dressed, pulled the plug on his 2012 CTR and headed back down Kenosha to Bailey. I packed and rolled out to take on Georgia Pass and day two.
This photo was taken about half way through the rollers before Georgia Pass. Really fun trail here.
Several hours later I crested the first brush with 12,000ft and Georgia Pass.
Hey, look at that, the lens has moisture on it...we call this foreshadowing. Much more water from the skies to come.
I spent the next several hours riding as hard as I could. I ended up passing the Hwy 9 cross to Breckenridge. I was hungry and already worried about burning through my food before the Buena to Sliverton push, thankfully there is a private RV camp (Tiger Run?) just where the trail dumps out and crosses the 9 to start the run up the 10 mile range. Even better they had a wall of shitty food that I bought and plowed through. Two hot pockets, two red bull, a Nutty Buddy, a Coke and a bag of M&Ms. I haven't eaten shit food this bad in over a year - but hey, at this point a calorie is a calorie is a calorie, and I felt like the more the merrier.
I sat in their porch swing, feasted and then got back to it...I needed more miles before sunset. I managed to camp somewhere around mile 5 of Segment 7 with a couple other guys. One from Bishop, CA and one from Wisconsin. A learning disability of makes it near impossible to remember their names.
Day 3 half way up Ten Mile Pass to Camp Haile
Ten Mile Pass tried to kill me, both going up and coming down. Except for Mt. Whitney (the hard way) and some things in the Golden Trout Wilderness I've yet to encounter more challenging terrain for HAB. It's a rock staircase - both ways, and just as steep. I've said it a couple of times already but I've ridden rock spiral staircases that were less challenging.
Ten Mile would remain the most challenging section of trail I felt I ran into for the remainder of the trip. Sargent's Mesa was hard, but not nearly as soul crushing as Ten Mile. I kept finding myself saying "yep, this is hard but not as hard as ten mile, and I survived ten mile, I'll survive this."
After clearing ten mile and surviving the descent off ten mile I made an unplanned divert to Copper Mtn resort for food and a beer just to recoup. It helped. I called Jenelle to let her know I was alive and tried to sound like I was still having fun. She knew better though.
Rolled out, made the climb up Copper Mtn, then on to Searle Pass and Kokomo Pass. I met Wendy Skeane and Randy(?) for the first time on the climb to Searle out of Copper, really really nice people.
The climb to Koko is crazy beautiful
This at the top of Searle cracked me up
Well, all except for being above treeline at thunderstorm 'o clock. Nothing will focus your technical skill and ability like the "added thrill of death" from lightning, I pushed hard to get over Koko, diving down the descent on the backside to Camp Haile as hard and as fast as I could go.
I felt a bit guilty stopping at Camp Haile around 6PM given how much daylight remained but as the thunderstorms rolled through and dropped the temp into the lower 40'sF, I felt less guilty and more happy to be warm, dry and asleep by 8PM.
Wendy and Randy rolled past about then, and I urged them to camp near as there was no benefit in keeping going that night and even the company by proximity would be welcome.
Day 4 Camp Haile to Buena Vista
I pushed hard this day. I felt I was losing too much mileage/time and wanted a hot meal and a beer - badly.I powered over Tennessee pass and Leadville (I admit I giggled at the people clustered around the "official" Leadville race headquarters downtown) - pussies. HA!
Motored as hard as I could to Buena from here. The relatively easy road riding was a welcome change.
Side note: on the way to Halfmoon Creek trailhead to start the next section I encountered a number of what I can only guess are Mennonites. I can't for the life of me, other than irony, figure out why a Mennonite would want to go camping...
Buena and the Cattlemen cafe. Room at the Super 8, and steak and beer. I was coated in mud upon entering town and a bit pissed that they made me leave the road and ride the old RR bed to town, well at least until I hit the old tunnel sections,
Yeah, except for feeling like I was pedaling through pudding due to the thunderstorms on the gravel roads it was awesome.
Day 5 Buena Vista to the Angel of Shavano Camp
It may not seem like it but the ride here was a push too, although the Raspberry Gulch segment was pretty damn fun.
I rolled into the Angel of Shavano camp at dusk, only to find the camp full. Thankfully I found Dane from Golden Bike Shop in Golden, CO - sitting alone in his camp, waiting for his friends. He allowed me to pay for part of the campsite, offered conversation and food that made the effort of the day seem suddenly worth it after all.
I was asleep by the time his buddies showed up but their conversation was so familiar that as I dropped in and out of consciousness I felt I could have joined in at anytime.
I was up at 5AM and packnig as quietly as I could amongst the bodies/tents of Dane's friends - I didn't want to bother them if I didn't have to, they had already made the night so much more fun.
Day 6 Angel of Shavano Camp to Tank 7 Seven camp.
Sitting on the hill overlooking Foose's Creek back at Poncha Springs is the first time I nearly pulled the plug on CTR. I was tired, and fully coming to the realization that this wasn't going to get any better. I sat down, fired up the iPhone and tried to figure out how far to Durango from where I was at the time. ~210 miles by road, 190 miles by trail, so I was riding to Durango either way but only one of them had honor. A text from Jenelle came through saying that Junker was holed up in Poncha Springs since 3PM the day before. I tell her I know why, it's hard as hell out here and it's starting to suck.
I shut the phone down, sucked it up, HTFU and started the climb up Foose's Creek. Foose's is deceptive, the first part is double track and rideable, the second third is single track and rideable, and the last segment is like a full body cavity search by the TSA, sans lube.
Just as I was cresting the last super steep HAB section a head with a GoPro camera attached to it pops over the edge. It's a group of super nice riders doing a shuttle run of Monarch Pass to Slaughter Creek camp. They offered to "smoke me out," or food and whatever else I needed. I settled for Cliff shot chews. A smoke at that point would have been welcome but the resulting 10hr nap wouldn't have gotten me to Durango any sooner. They were awesomely nice though, once again confirming my belief in the MTB'er.
I pushed on to the last reliable water source somewhere just before Tank 7. I met some through hikers that were very welcoming and let me camp near them. Soon after Eric and Jason from Durango ended up camping in the same spot, along with some tourist guys - all looking for the "last good water" and a place to camp. Again it was welcome to have people near me sleeping. I'm convinced there's something pimally comforting in knowing you're not the only ape on watch.
Day 7 Sargent's Mesa to Just past Los Pinos Pass
Sargent's is hard - period. It's a series of super steep ridgeline trails covered in baby head sized rocks. some rideable, some taunting you to ride it just enough to crash, and/or get caught out by the day's thunderstorm.
It's hard enough that if Apple hadn't been at the exit of Segment 17, I again might have quit. But two bags of Fritos, a power aide, a coke and a roady Silver Bullet for that night in camp made it all worthwhile. Simple I know, but it was all it took for me to press on.
Segment 18 was so easy/boring it rode almost as an apology to seg 17.
Never the less you can't hold an artist back forever so here's the "Bone Bike"from Sgt Mesa.
I camped overnight after riding through the dark and rain here, it was a beautiful site
Day 8 Slumgullion Pass and Coney Peak.
Eric and Jason rolled past my camp about an hour before I was ready to leave, I never saw them again and am not sure if they finished, although Eric looked strong as was riding home to Durango so I assume he made it - Jason I'm not sure about.
Cannibal Plateau. I couldn't help but envision Merckx and his poor Molteni teammates.
The ride up Slumgullion was a favorite of mine. Good times, high altitude and at the top I ran into the Colorado Rocky Mountain Bike Tour - people with cash and $10k bikes who think they are killing it by riding the high passes of the Colorado Roads while someone else carries all of their shit. Well, it seems to me there is still a sucker born every minute and that P.T. Barnum would be the organizer of a ride for these folks. A full picture of "how the '1%' lives."
Again, I just giggled to myself, waived polielty and rode on, I'd have my own challenges soon enough. Coney Peak namely and the high point of the CT. 13,271 ft.
Just before Sage Creek and Coney Peak though was the funniest Spanglish Road sign:
Coney Pk, several hours later...anvil headed thunderstorm launching bolts of lightning trying to kill me.
I spent the night hiding from lightning in a busted old mining shack. I really wanted to move onto Segment 23 and the Cataract ridge but was forced to bivy overnight at ~12,500ft. It was cold (upper 30sF) and raining all night. It sucked even in the tent inside the shack.
Day 9 Cataract Ridge to Silverton
Catract Ridge (segment 23) is beautiful and hard. It bangs off of 13k ft about 7x. but on the first big climb there were Moosen!! Three in fact. I'd never seen Moose herd like this as I always thought they were solitary.
The third one is not in view.
Insert obligatory marmot photo here:
Make no mistake, Silverton was attained only after a long difficult wet day dodging storms and climbing as hard and fast as possible. And even though the beer at Silverton Brewing was sub-par the Frito Pie and French Fries were not.
Day 10 Silverton to the Base of Bolam Pass Rd.
Molas was fast and easy work at sunrise. I even got artistic with the camera for a bit
That photo was harder than it looks to get.
Silverton at dawn from Molas Pass lower slopes
Segment 25 was perhaps my favorite
Fun, flowy, fast, striking.
Black Hawk Peak saw another thunderstorm (yeah) with hail this time (double yeah) and a slow scary wet ride down the first part of the descent down to Hotel Draw.
Again, I decide stop stop early due to weather. Oh, well, what else is there to do? I could roll on but that would suck worse.
Day 11 Straight Creek Camp to Durango.
Today is the day. I will finish this. I've had my fill and will push throough whatever is thrown at me. Good thing to because this race isn't over until you're off trail and on pavement - and it will keep beating on you until then.
Rain, oh fuck, more rain?!
Th trails are slick enough to have been coated in a fresh layer of Astrolube. I can't steer anymore, it's optional. I can force direction change by modulating the brakes though so I got that going for me...
Why is this descent so slow?! Oh yeah, trying not to die...
Wait, is this the climbing part of the descent, yeah, must be....
OK, now th brakes are gone. The rain and subsequent grit has killed this set of brake pads. Nothing as fun as swapping front disc pads in a driving rain, where all those critical fits are now filled with grit.
4 miles later and we're done - it only took an hour and a half to get here from there...
Not to wax to starry eyed but, that 15 year old bike is still the most fun to ride MTB I've ever been on. It just "knows" what I want it to do. And, it will still pitch you over the bars when you go into an off camber turn over some logs too hot, because it keeps daring you to go faster - and I've got the fresh bruise to prove it.
The 100mm fork dulls the laser like handling a but, it's what I had lying around so, I'm learning the Kona's new manners.
Also there are "Low Key TT's" in the AM before the race.
APRIL 17, MAY 15, JULY 10
Encino Velo Low Key Time Trials
REGISTRATION: Opens at 8:15am Closes at 9:15 am. Racing
starts at 9:30am. Track opens for Warm-up at 8:15am. Entry $10, Oneentry
fee and race as many events as you like. Race day entries only. Makechecks
payable to Encino Velo Cycling Club. Must sign Standard Athlete’sRelease
form. Racers under 18 years must have signature of parent or guardian on
the release form.
RULES: Must have track experience. All 2010 USCF rules apply. Helmets
must be worn at all times while on the bike.
Individual events 500m Time Trial 1000m Time Trial 2000m Time Trial 3000m Time Trial 4000m Time Trial Flying 200 Encino style Team Time Trial & Team Sprints *Must provide holders for Team Time Trial and TeamSprint. Team events 4000m Team Time Trial 3000m Team Time Trial Team Sprint
81.8kph is 50.8mph is my new speed record down Miguelito Canyon.
In the process of setting the above record I nearly slammed into a doe that decided her best plan of evasive action when faced with The Meat Pie flying down at her was to run directly in front of said flying Meat Pie. Since I know how stupid deer can be I backed off the gravity fueled fun and slowed allowing her to cross in front - at that point her two other deer buddies I didn't see jumped from the brush and decided they needed to run across the road in front of me too.
Deer are stupid like horses, only faster and more tasty.
In addition, today was the first 12C ride of the year and apparently it killed the battery in the SRM crank. Zero offset dropped from 565 to 0 in the first 10min of the ride. Seems that even though the SRM is from good German stock it's adapted to the SoCal weather completely. Now it's off to Colorado for service, and I'm on the hamster wheel if I want power data. Can I leverage this into a Quarq Cinco purchase though...?
I've actually ridden my bike a bit. At least to the point that I don't want to cry when I go hard for longer than five minutes. It's going to be a loooong winter...maybe I will go play with TjK in the mud on the CX bike.
It's done. Now WTF the am I going to do with 5hrs of TV watching time I've built into my day? -------------
3 weeks of being back on the bike. I'm still brutally fat and slow. CTL is up to a whopping 35. woo.
Since Assos changed the formulation of their chamois cream I've been at a total loss for friction reduction that keeps saddle sores at bay - while still providing that 'minty fresh balls' feeling. I'm happy to report that I have found two reasonable substitutes: DZNuts and Chamois Butt'r Euro style.
The DZNuts is the more expensive of the two and has the bigger burn factor on first application but the Chamois Butt'r is thicker and has a more lasting warming sensation. The one concern I have about the DZNuts is the toothpaste tube like applicator that I know will have me struggling to get the last bits out near the end of it's life.
For better or worse this race season seems to be the nadir of what is apparently my 4 year rhythm of racing. It seems I go three years real hard, race like crazy, then get tired of all the work required to get to the races and lose the motivation required to actually get out to the races. It's not the training or the pain of racing; I love that. It's the unidimensional nature of life as a bike racer that gets in the way. Maybe I just live too far away from the racing I like to do...
Locally I know there are big changes afoot with racing clubs.
This will serve as the first notification that Privateer will accept applications for review for new members.
It's an early sign up window I know, but if your team is folding and/or you want to race in new kit during the upcoming cyclocross season contact Privateer.
Just like the title says. Twitter is the anti-blog. Or the lazy man's blog, or whatever. Point being, you can tweet your ass off and feel like you've blogged. Not the case. So, I'm trying to go "old school" and push past the 140 character limit. And I mean besides, what else are you going to read Tuesday afternoon when you should really be working?
-------------- Since it's been a while... -------------- The Bos:
To all the pro roadies (and posers) that could never hope to even sniff at a 1:01kilo, or a sub 10s flying 200m - STFU about Theo Bos. You don't know what you're talking about and that's the end of it. I won't even validate your argument with any sort of response - well except to laugh in your face and walk away.
Boonen. Tommeke can't you at least get caught in flagrante delicto with some "pros" and the Coke, instead of saying, "I get hammered and loose control" Pussy. Cipo would have, well, Cipo would have never gotten caught.
-------------- Great Giro - Bad Giro:
The coverage on Universal HD's webcast is what I've always wanted for a grand tour. No Phil. No Paul. No Bob. No commercials, just the RAI-TV live feed, and only one talking head to have to drown out. I don't care what the racer's back story is - I'm here to watch the racing thank you very much. Now stop talking so I can think.
Poor Levi. Poor VdV. Lance?
Poor Voeckler. (OK I didn't mean that one) hehehe. >:}
At least Menchov proved he wasn't a pod person by showing some emotion on the last day.
--------------- Collar Bones:
Breaking them sucks. 15 years of racing, and my first collar bone break on Cinco de Mayo. Totally my fault - I can be a dumbass at times I guess.
With no riding for the past 6 weeks, I'm getting fat enough to have my own gravitational field. If I throw the cats just right, I can get them to a stable orbit around me.
Just to add a little more mental torture on the whole IR list thing, my brother kindly setup a family vacation to Tahoe over Memorial Day weekend/week. I was stoked until I broke the collar bone and realized it meant I'd be sitting on my ass, drinking cocktails out of boredom because I can't ride. (The Gondola to the top of Heavenly was painful, so many cool trails to ride) No paddling, no sailing, no rock climbing - and I think gambling at the casinos is about as stupid as asking to get hit in the face with a hammer. I don't like to pay voluntary taxes.
---------------- No District ITT No District TTT No Master's States
Since Master's Nats isn't going to be at Indy I was hoping to at least have one event to salvage for the season, when it was rumored to be at ADT. Now it seems it's going to be in COS. Greeeaaattt.....
----------------- Maybe this is the first season I "race" CX?
Christ, that means running at some point....without getting chased by a bear. Where will I find the motivation without the big snarling carnivore?
------------------ SuperDave at Felt has to be a little proud, and a little pissed that every bike manufacturer is following nearly all of the Felt DA design cues, while giving them none of the credit. Figures. ------------------ Mavic and the stupidity that most cyclists have about equipment choices:
"Crabon" performs poorly in compression. That's why you shouldn't use it that way. It might just break your shoulder to teach that lesson, as a Velonews tech editor has recently demonstrated. (props to BSNYC for conveying the general distaste and over use of the material with nothing more than a simple misspelling)
Even without the crabon spokes those wheels are a design travesty. They are slightly less aero than a standard brick and not nearly as attractive, while still weighing about the same as a steel wire spoked wheel. Wow. Where can I spend $2k with less effect? Stoopid Monkey. ---------------------