Ed had never been there and so it was a treat to show off the trail and it's joys. We seldom get the chance to ride as much singletrack as you can handle in a day. Typically the trails in SO Cal are pretty short in length, but this one goes for miles and miles. The soil is mostly decomposed granite so it bears up well in wet weather. We were dressed for some soup but it never really was too bad at all. I am sure glad that we had a rack for the bikes though instead of shoehorning two sloppy 29ers into the back of my trusty 3. I was using the Kuat NV Core rack and that was solid and stable for the trip. I did have to take off my tool bag from the saddle to eliminate some handlebar interference. Super easy to get bikes on and off...very nice.
Ed had geared down for the cancelled trip and I never did, so I was jealous of his 32x21 gearing and 180mm cranks. I need to regear when I come here again. 34x21 is not enough for this trail and my old legs. And I think I am moving back to 180mm cranks to see what that feels like after being on 175s for a while now. We shall see.
We both had on those Gore Phantom II jackets we bought on sale and those have been just great for this season's use. I peeled the sleeves off to see how it was as a vest and sleeves or not, the jacket is a great balance of water shedding, warmth, breathability, and, most especially, wind-proof-ness. Love it.
The carbon Stumpy is a very competent bike and although it is not a 'trailbike' SS by nature, it never held me back. The SID fork with the RCT3 damper was stunningly good for SS use. I ran it in the middle platform position with the low speed compression dial two clicks 'in'. Fabulous for the way single speeds are ridden. I had a stable fork with basically no bob out of the saddle but it would move when I needed it to with only a feeling of 'firmness' to the travel. Super, super, super and the open setting was so much better than the old Fox it replaced.
Sweet bike for sure.
I think that trail requires more riding and soon. You can make this into a dawn to dusk trail day if you have the moxie.
|Clean bikes...for now.|
|Gore Phantom jacket with sleeves removed.|
|Red version of that Phantom soft-shell jacket.|
|Brothers of the knicker.|