Thursday, November 20, 2008

Rough ride

This is actually a picture of White Rock Mountain, but it pretty much describes the conditions of my mountain bike ride. My favorite trail at Devils Den State Park was far Rockier and rough than it has ever been. The Huricane that passed over the state a couple months ago ravished many large trees as they layed across the trail about every 20 to 50 feet apart. The trees are huge and not just a technical challenge, but several were at chest level or full of limbs and debree. Aside from the extreme number of small to large jagged rocks on the trail, everything is covered with leaves which hides any true line that might present itself. Because I haven't ridden a mountain bike in a long time, or at least the technical sections I use to ride, I had to walk several sections because they were too dangerous or the trail was blocked by large trees that had been blown over and ripped from the ground from their roots. As I rode on, my mountain biking instincts began to come back and my technical skills were not that bad. However, because I was riding a borrowed bike that I was not use to, and that seemed to sag the bottom bracket too low for rocky conditions, I found my pedal hitting rocks and I just didn't feel set up for some of the more challenging and scary spots, so I just used good old common sense and hiked the scary sections. I got some really good down hill experience where my balance and forward scanning came back into play, but I felt I needed to be extra careful being away from medical help if I needed it. If I get a mountain bike in the future, it will definitely be a full suspension as a hard tail would have beaten me to death. Very hard work out. I felt strong and my endurance was good, but the trail was too rough and needs attention. Besides the very cold north wind, it was a glorious day to be out in nature and on the bike.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Cool Mountain Ride

Thursday morning I am going to borrow my friend, Ranger Tim Scott's mountain bike and visit my favorite mountain bike trail. Mountain biking use to be my only form of riding and I put a great deal of energy and time into it. Well since then I sold my equipment and then later migrated to Road riding. What I loved about mountain biking was the fact that I had to focus and get into a zone, not only physically, but mentally or I would suffer possibly hazardous results. It use to be my form of meditation where after an hour or so, the problems I felt took a back seat to living in the moment. I look forward to my ride tomorrow. It is suppose to be colder than the last few days, but being in the trees deep in the woods shouldn't be too bad. It will certainly be a change of pace.

Friday, November 7, 2008


Well now it is getting cooler. I am less motivated, and I have never really enjoyed cooler air. I would do more on my bike, but I don't want to put a lock on my road bike to do errands. I am thinking about getting a light cable lock and putting a terry cloth around it so it won't scratch my bike. I am considering finding a place to do weight training or core exercises during the up coming winter months. My big goal is to get my truck fixed and taken care of as I certainly can't afford to get another one. Anyway, this picture pretty much describes my mood lately, tumultuous. I am needing something positive to focus on, so I think I will just go for a ride as a good form of meditation, come home, and clean my house. The tour de cure ride went well, but the wind the second half of the century was murder for everyone. The roads in Missouri were rough. I took a wrong turn at the end of the ride just a few miles from the end and ended up doing 105.36 miles. I did ride a little before the event to warm up, but most of the added miles were from getting lost. I felt pretty good except for a little tendinitis from working so hard in the wind. I rode 13 the next day, and then did 40 the next week, and then 35 the next week. I guess I need some cross training, and I am thinking of borrowing a mountain bike to do some single track next week.