"An adventure is only an inconvenience rightly considered. An inconvenience is an adventure wrongly considered."

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Riding Las Vegas

In Las Vegas, It's all about timing . . . 
(see what I mean . . .)
damn that gravel road looks tempting
but . . . on my skinny tire rental bike, probably not a good idea
Ellie . . . stopped along the side of the road "updating her Facebook page"
"Are you here for the bike demo?" she queries . . .
"What bike demo" my reply as five guys go blowing by . . .
Of course I can't pass that up, and I tag along to 
the bike demo, sponsored by Trek, Cannondale and Mcghie's Cycle
(the shop who loaned me Syndi for the week)
I hooked up with Dave McNeal, a pro cross rider from Alabama 
and rode an easy hour or so before turning around and riding into
(given the red rocks, it is rather cleverly named)
ok . . . so Syndi and I couldn't resist temptation on the ride back
until we came upon this sign
Now: being a rider of some intelligence, when I notice the 
no shooting sign, and the large number of shotgun shells
I figure discretion is the better part of valor and head back
to our booth at ConExpo
A great two weeks of working and riding when I could in Vegas
Thanks again to: McGhies Ski Bike and Board!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Thumbs up, Thumbs down

Thumbs up:
coffee with Martina and Jacob; Kappellen, Austria
lunch at the farm with Annelise; Altenberg, Austria
beer . . . ski area near Murzzuschlag, Austria
self explanatory; Neuberg, Austria
pierogi and garlic soup; Bratislava, Slovakia

new bike path; Neuberg, Austria

Fish & Chips, London . . .

Monday, March 7, 2011

Remnants of a weekend

After a ten day layoff due to travel, I was back on the bike, feelin' happy
Out the door;  clunk . . . clunk . . . clunk
What's that?  The bike was fine when I put it away;  clunk . . . clunk . . . clunk
huh . . . must be my imagination, or perhaps frost heaves, no worries
oops . . . I guess it was something
no worries, just a flat tire, alone out on some gravel road somewhere
Just a bit cold, not much time before I need to meet some friends,
I'm sure the tire is fine . . . why wouldn't it be?
Heck, the tire only has 2,516 miles, and I paid all of $22 
It must be OK . . . just get it on, get going, be at
the meeting place at 12:00 . . . no worries
oops . . . maybe not . . . 
I made it all of 1/4 mile before
Of course, I only had one spare tube (I know better than that)
As I reach for my phone . . .
The team car!!!!
 . . . and a lift to the appointed meeting place
(Thanks to Max Jeronimus and girlfriend!)
I know someone will have a tube I can borrow, better check the tire this time
hmm . . . I guess it says "made in Taiwan," no wonder it blew(?)
but . . . to my rescue . . . Wayne! who actually lent me a brand new tire!
A little fender modification, and we're off!
Sunday morning comes, I'm way too lazy to be up at 4:30 to 
meet Farrow et al at 6:00 to ride the Heck course (they're crazy)
decision is to meet Dave etal at 12:00, somewhere along the N Shore
So, being slow . . . I decide to leave before 10:00, ride the Heck
course for an undetermined distance, bail, and meet Dave et al
First gravel section, not too bad, I see bike tracks . . . 
I know I'm hot on the trail of Farrow et al, only 4 hrs behind
Sure, a little icy . . . hmm, next road . . . even icier . . .
man, those guys are ridin' brave, this is crazy.
From time to time I see bike tracks in the snow, anywhere to get traction.
Wait . . . no more tracks, what's up with that?  Must be the wind blowing
snow, obscuring their tracks . . . no other possible option.
I'm sure I'll meet Farrow etal somewhere around Fox Farm, say "hi,"
bail and head to the shore to meet Dave et al.
Damn . . . these roads are really gettin' bad . . .
I wonder if Farrow et al are really out here.
Hegberg road . . . this is scary . . .
good thing I had those titanium collar bones installed.
Fox farm . . . hmmm . . . where are they . . .
bail as planned, or keep ridin' gravel . . .
gravel wins . . .
You know, Hill road is bad without ice, I wonder what it's like now?
hell . . . pure hell . . . 
100% slippery snow covered glaze ice, except the part with the sharp tire cutting rocks, can't believe I got past those.
Oh oh . . . an uphill . . . what's that on top . . . shit . . . a dog
(he looks at me as if to say: "mate, you got enough on your hands, 
I'm cuttin' you some slack today)
Survival . . . made it to the Laine Rd . . .
Maybe those guys are out here somewhere, I know . . .
I'll catch 'em where the North Shore trail comes out
nope:  no Farrow et al
I shoulda paid attention to that sign long ago.
What the "Heck?" might as well head up the Rossini a while
ahh . . . this is more like it . . . not ridin' white knuckle
I bet if I turn around just about here (1/2 way up), if I hustle I'll just make it 
to the MOCHA MOOSE in time for Dave et al
Hustle man . . . now you have a headwind . . . ride hard . . .
Arrive exactly on time, 1:30 . . .
What?  No other bikes . . . What?
Kayla:  Had Dave been here?  Nope . . .
slam a dbl espresso and ride . . .
ahhh . . . there is a God . . . a tailwind
hmmm . . .  Knife River . . . that means I can hop on the gravel
why not?
Thanks to the warmth of the Lake, only a few icy patches. Of course by now it is snowing . . . figures . . .
What's that ahead . . . sustenance . . . SuperAmerica
a two minute stop for a chocolate milk before the uphill home
Arrive home, garage door opens as if by magic
It takes me minutes to make it inside as I stand and quiver
Great solo ride, one of the best ever
Just over 5 hrs of pure unadulterated terrifying hell