|JeffJ gearing-up. It was a clyde friendly day.|
|My ride for the day...the Breezer Cloud 9 carbon 29er.|
I was uncertain of the exact mileage, but I expected it to be over 30 and under 40. I got that right...barely...sort of. I also figured on 4-5 hours to complete. Missed that pretty much completely, but it was a friendly pace. I like to make Ramble Rides 'no-drop' events if possible. The route began on the local backyard trails and roads and kept climbing for another 6 miles or so on fireroad. That was a bit of an energy sucker as it dropped nearly as much as it gained and by the time we found our connector road to the next section, we had lost 3 riders to time constraints.
And then there were 8.
|Typical So Cal ridgeline fireroad.|
|Gates in So Cal have a hard life.|
|The Magnificent 7...KT the Man makes 8>>>|
|KT the Man is also a scoff law. Caught in the act.|
|JeffJ, grinning and riding.|
|Sometimes you really did not want to turn right. On the edge of a biiig drop.|
I was noticing that I was beginning to feel a bit tired here. My back was getting a bit beat up from the hardtail and a very stiff seatpost. I was out of any kind of performance drink, so I was running on just water and Elete. Some of the group was running strong though. I had always wondered how Kevin did it...he always looks good, always is fast, and seems, well, more than a mere mortal. Then, as we were watching, something amazing happened. Jeff was taking some pics as Kevin took a classic Greek pose.
|Looking very manly, but....|
|The truth is revealed.|
You know how sometimes you just know you are going the wrong way? Yep. But why does it always seem that you go the wrong way downhill! This was a fun hill to go down. Not so fun to go back up.
|What goes down in error, sometimes goes right back up in misery.|
|Still bravely smilin'. The worst was yet to come.|
Finally I made it to the singletracks that we began on, but I was in so much pain, I could barely navigate the creekbed. Every bump shot arrows through my back and I was whining like a little girl.
Finally we were back with right at 40 miles and 5 3/4 hours under our belts. I made a couple of errors. I have not been on any longer rides lately, mostly just after work night stuff....nothing over 3 hours. I was thinking I could get by with basically just water and electrolytes and I really do run better on some kind of performance drink like Carborocket. I also underestimated that last bit of ridiculously steep trail by the water tank...the Trail of Tears...The Bataan Death March...Armageddon.
Well, OK, I am sure with fresh legs it ain't no biggie, but I was waaaaay past fresh. I was firmly on the day-old rack like a bit of stale bagels. KT the Man rode up it like it was flat. He rocks. Even Hermes pushed. I guess having wings on your helmet is not all that it is cracked up to be, huh big guy?
It was a great day on the bikes, the company was stellar...not one whiner among them...and the trails were just for us to enjoy. We never saw another soul once we left the local loop.
What is next? Not sure, but I am enjoying the Ramble Ride idea. I guess it is time to get out the maps and plan Ramble #3.