Wednesday, October 31, 2007
Halloween eve, working in Jamies shop/garage with the rain and lightening outside, I couldn't help but think this bike is going to be something special.
I stopped by Sam's to pick up a bar, then straight to Joey's house/shop to add a wheel set, bottom bracket, derailer, cranks. And then over to Jamie's to add a casette and rear wheel, front derailer, brake parts, tires, a chain, seat clamp, spacers, etc.. Then Tony showed up with a headset and chocolate cake.
These good friends have helped me put together an almost complete cross bike. I have offifically offered this bike to anyone who wants to try a cyclo-cross race. It shall be the community bike.
I'm still searching for a front brake, shifters, and a seat post. I expect to have this machine up and running by next weekend.
Take a look at Jamie working his magic:
Tuesday, October 30, 2007
Thursday, October 25, 2007
It's a big deal. In fact, every year, there is a theme which includes a poster (compliments of Kenny Jones at Kenny's One Hour Photo).
These posters make their way on to the windows of every car in the caravan and can usually be seen in Racer's shop and eventually on some restaurant windows in Moab. Here is a sample of Fall Moab 05:
(click on it to enlarge)
This year, Fall Moab is being held in St. George (but will still be called Fall Moab). The original plan was to stay in Brad K.'s yurt right on Gooseberry Mesa. Brad purchased the last piece of land for sale on Gooseberry and is in the process of putting in several yurts which he plans to rent out. Seriously, check out his site: http://www.gooseberrymesa.net/
Due to some permit delay's the yurts are not ready but we still plan to camp on Brad's property and ride Gooseberry as part of the trip.
You can bet that there will stories of spectacular crashes, riders cleaning insane moves, big drops (especially for guys on rigid single speeds), good food, and plenty of "homo" jokes.
Tuesday, October 23, 2007
In years past, I've looked forward to backcountry skiing and have used that as good cross training.
but something is different this year. I'm still in bike mode and am not yet ready to hang up the bikes for the season.
I've been trying to plan out my winter training schedule. Something that can keep me in good form during the winter. Jamie and Brad have both used a software package from trainingpeaks.com that can outline a winter training schedule based on the amount of time you have to train and your race goals. Maybe I'll try that.
Monday, October 22, 2007
Thursday afternoon Tony, Jamie and I left town to go down to Fruita, CO for a long weekend of mountain biking. We would meet up with the rest of the group, Steve, Adam, Sam, Trent, Brad P., Ryan, Keith, Jon, and Jeff later that night.
We were so excited about the trip that we forgot to watch the gas gage in Jamie's 4 Runner and realized about 40 miles out of Fruita that the gas light was on and had probably been on for a while. Not knowing if there were any towns with a gas station before Fruita, we tried to keep our minds off the situation by playing "name that tune" on Tony's ipod. It turns out, Jamie pretty much knows every song ever produced. (For future reference, Loma, CO has one gas station which is like 50 miles off the highway and doesn't stay open past 9pm. )
After 4.5 hours on the road and one tank of gas, we rolled into town (literally). We stayed in Grand Junction and were fortunate enough to have a hotel w/ a gas station right in the parking lot. This would be important for the pre-ride diet coke runs since the Holiday Inn is a Pepsi joint. I like the fact that several of the guys are addicted to diet coke as much as I am. Brad, a pro-mtb racer, drinks the sweet nectar too. It doesn't seem to slow Brad down. So it's official for me....I have no plans to stop drinking it.
One morning I stopped into the gas station to buy a few Salted Nut Rolls and a Pay Day bar (these are great for riding cuz they don't melt and taste good even when 5 years old. Just ask Brad). The heavy set lady behind the counter who must have been like 60 years old, began to tell me about the advantages of the protein bar version of Pay Day and all the specs about how many grams of protein, total calories etc...I knew were in for a good weekend. Even the gas station lady seemed like she got out on the bike every now and then.
We kicked it off with a ride on Mary's Loop and several of the surrounding loops. With the Alpha male established and the rest of the pecking order in line, we were off. Some of the terrain was technical and the trails were full of big rocks and drops. I'm pretty sure I shaved at least a few grams off my rims and pedals from hitting so many rocks. I was amazed that we only had 1 flat the entire ride. Steve managed to blow his rear tire (tubeless) off the rim which sounded like a shot gun. My ears are still ringing. Maybe it's time to tell Steve he can run 35 PSI instead of 50. Ironic that the one guy in the group who refuses to ride w/ a spare tube or CO2 cartridge, would be the only guy who flated the entire trip. It's a good thing Steve is such a nice guy.
The best pizza in the world (or at least in Fruita) is at the Hot Tomato. They sell pizza by the slice and it's damn good. So good, in fact, we ate there both days for lunch.
After lunch, we visited the local shop - Over the Edge Sports, and fixed Steve's tire. Fruita seems slow to accept the tubeless-Stans movement and gave us a little push back about getting the shop floor dirty. The guys at the shop gave us directions to the next trail head and we set out for a short ride before dark. Fruita is big on fractions. The street signs often read "17 1/2 road" or "18 3/4 road". It gave me a headache doing the math to try and find 18th street.
About 30 min into the ride, we met up with 2 locals, Andy and Noah. They were total opposites. Andy was on a rigid SS, with a Mary bar, and BMX pedals. He had tattoos everywhere, wore cut off church pants, a full button down shirt, and vans high-top skate shoes. Noah, was on a 36 lb downhill bike with a backpack. An odd couple but they showed us the goods. We followed them down Zippity which was fast single track with some exposed sections and a roller coaster type ending which consited of a tight left hand turn which dropped down a steep, loose, rutted section. It only lasted a few seconds but it was a cool sensation full of adrenaline. The ride was so good that we forgot to stop for pictures.
After the ride, the two locals offered to take us out to Rabbit Valley the next morning. It would end up costing us $50 in beer as payment but well worth it.
We met Andy and Noah at 10am in town and followed them out to Rabbit Valley. This ride had it all, some rock moves, sand, fast single track, and a section of whoop dee doos that had endo potential. Sam managed to do an uphill endo and sheed first blood of the trip. I'm amazed at how well Sam has picked up mountain biking. Coming from a road bike and a soccer background, he obviously has the legs and lungs for mountain biking but the technical skills usually take years of riding to develop. Sam is a natural. We rode for a couple of hours and showed the locals how to clean a few technical moves. Jamie pulled off the move of the trip when he cleared a steep rock section that the locals didn't even bother to try (The same move that caused Keith to brake this thumb). And he did it on a single speed. (Does that mean Jamie gets to name that move?).
Me, Steve, Jamie, Tony (Noah and Jon in the background)
After lunch again at the Hot Tomato, we broke up into groups. Some called it a day and caught a flick in town, Me, Tony, Trent, Jon and Jeff, went back out to Zippity to ride it in the day light. While Jamie, Brad and Ryan took off to ride "The Edge". With a storm threatening, we weren't sure we would see Jamie, Brad and Ryan again and immediatley decided who would get Jamie's bike when he died. The Edge is a 3-7 hour ride (3 is the fastest time according to the guide book) w/ some exposed areas, a downclimb down a waterfall, and several washes that, according to the locals, have caused people to ditch their bikes and hike out during storms. I knew the pace was going to be ridiculous trying to keep up with those 3 on the Edge ride. It was after 3pm, a storm was rolling in and Brad and Jamie seemed motivated to sneak this ride in before they lost their window of opportunity. I was sure we were going to need to send Search & Rescue out to find them.
I was happy to end the day on Zippity. It is like nothing we have here in Utah and I wanted to ride it one more time (at a slower pace). I grabbed my ipod and settled into a nice pace and just enjoyed the ride.
Jon, Trent, Me
Later that night, as the group went to eat, we got the call from Jamie that they had made it back to the car. At first I was glad I wasn't with them, but something about the epic journey made me a little bummed I missed it. Stories of hurricane head winds, hail, big exposure, amazing views, something about an extra climb, two broken chains, and a race up a long jeep road climb. It sounded like a suffer fest but with some great rewards.
I have a feeling the core group will make it back to Fruita soon.
Monday, October 15, 2007
Friday, October 12, 2007
Last night the group was small (Jamie, Tony, Brad K., and me). We rode up Clarks, down Ghost Falls, caught a new section of trail over to the jeep road, back up and down Ghost again and then finished it off with pancakes, eggs, and hashbrowns.
It's been years since Brad has done a night ride so it was fun to have him along. He will be racing the 24 hours of Moab http://www.grannygear.com/Races/Moab/index.shtml this weekend as part of a 4 person single speed / rigid team and probably wanted to get a quick night ride in to fine tune his skills before the big race. I'm just glad he kept the pace slow and didn't encourage Jamie to go all out. The pace was fast but good.
The morning after is always a bit rough. My recovery plan usually includes a couple of Diet Cokes. However yesterday, the Red Bull girls visited the Omniture offices and handed out samples of Red Bull. I should be flying high by 10am after I polish these off....
Wednesday, October 10, 2007
Tuesday, October 9, 2007
Monday, October 8, 2007
I bought this on ebay over the weekend. It's a 2003 (never before used) Redline Team Scandium frame w/ aluminum fork. I'm going to build it up as a 1X9 with some used parts and try and get a few cross races in this season.
Rachelle is being a good sport about it since I really didn't mean to purchase this and gave her absolutley no warning that I had placed a bid. I need to get on the ball and find her a sweet (or as my brother-in-law says "cherry") mountain bike.
If you have any used cyclocross parts, please send my way.
Friday, October 5, 2007
I've never ridden Mueller before and am kicking myself for finding out about it this late in the season. I'm actually a little bit annoyed that my "friends" have never showed me this gem of a ride until now.
The group: Jamie, Tony, Joe, Sam, Justin, Jon L., Keith, and I.
We met at Mueller at about 9:45 and rode the 14 mile out and back of pure single track. The whole ride was in the woods with tight single track (did I mention that it was all single track yet?). It was one of the best rides of the year for me. At times, it was so tight, that I had to move my hands in an inch or so on my bar to avoid the branches.
Jamie started out at race pace and for the first 20 min, many of us were redlined. It turns out, Jamie was trying to duplicate the odd heart rate scenario he experienced earlier this week. The doctors have him hooked up to a HR monitor for the next 2 weeks (I guess he needs to leave this on 24 hours a day) and have told him to ride and see if his HR spikes unusually high again. Lucky for us, we were all trying to keep his wheel and ride at that pace while he was doing this test.
So when Joe mananged to break his chain about half way up the climb, I was happy to stop and wait for him while he fixed it. )Note: I always like to have Joe or Jamie along on a ride. They are both killer mechanics and usually can fix anything.)
Joe fixing his chain:
The entire climb, I kept thinking about how fun the downhill was going to be. I followed Jon L.'s wheel for the first half and had a huge smile. I didn't want to lose his wheel since he has ridden this trail a lot and knew what was coming. This was my first time down Mueller. It was in the dark and we were flying. I thought Jon was going to crash hard on one of the many bridges but he manged to ride it out.
The Post Ride Chill:
The "Heartland Scramble" (This is what I ordered...Mmmmm)
Two eggs scrambled with chopped bacon, country-fried potatoes, green peppers and onions, and topped with Cheddar cheese. Served with two strips of bacon, two sausage links, hash browns and three fluffy buttermilk pancakes.
This time we met at Denny's for some food. Did you know EVERY breakfast plate at Denny's either comes with sausage and bacon or bacon and ham? It's out of control how much food they give you for $6.
The storm is rolling in so probably no rides this weekend. This night ride should hold me over until Monday.
Wednesday, October 3, 2007
Tuesday, October 2, 2007
(Jamies HR Chart)