Friday, September 28, 2007

(N Plus One) + 5

Mike D. is in the process of moving and needed a place to store the bikes temporarily. Just got a little more crowded in the N Plus One garage but the wife can still pull into the garage. Not pictured are the 2 mountain bikes hanging on the opposite wall.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

The Joy After the Pain

Time to relax and take in the sites* after cross practice atop Trashmore. (*I'm talking about the moon and not Young Mark's behind.)

Photo courtesy of JB (who made me go thru most of the pain).

Besides my fitness, this is what I need to work on most:

Find more of these instructional videos on VeloNews TV.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Trashmore Craziness

Checked out the Tuesday cross "practice" that Crazy and K-dog set up. About a dozen folks showed up including Brownie and Shawn from the team as well as the boys of VBW and Chris, Tim and a few other TP guys. I told Brownie before we started, "at least this won't hurt as bad as the Pungo Death rides on Tuesdays." That was 100% WRONG. Crazy spurted out the route - run up this big hill, ride down the hill, zig-zag climb up the small up stairs....jump the barriers...repeat. Basically it was last year's cross route but added in the big hill run-up. Nothing like starting out with a run-up on the big hill for a warmup. GB Tuesday rides got nothing on this.

It was a good ride as I worked on my poor dismounting and remounting skills. I almost ate the barriers once when I couldn't unclip my left foot and missed my seat twice on remounts. I also realized that 3 weeks off of any serious training has taken it's toll.

Thanks to Tripower for opening this up to other teams and getting the approval from the city to let us ride around the park.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

The Quarry Ride

Went up to see mom in the 'burg this weekend and brought my roadie and mountain bike. There are tons of roads with rolling hills up in her area. But there's one problem - there's too many cars. Found a group ride that heads into Quantico Marine Base on Saturday morning and decided to hook up with them. I grew up close to there and know the area pretty good but somehow I went S when I need to go N when I got off the highway. Ended up missing the rollout and never saw them. Drove back down to the city of F-burg and rode around. Hit the farmer's market and some doggie festival at the park. I don't think my heart rate got over 80 on the ride. I did keep an eye out of Jess as I rode around UMW.

Stopped by Bike Works in downtown to pass out some race flyers and talked to a guy named Tom. He pointed out some road routes to ride and then I asked him about the 'quarry' trail. He said the trail is by the VOC and has miles of great technical single track. I made up my mind that I'll hit that trail on Sunday morning.

Got to the trailhead Sunday about 9am and there were a few cars there. Not exactly knowing where I was going, I just road down the trail looking for well worn paths. I came to the end of the gravel road and there was the 'quarry'. An awesome sight of a several acre lake surrounded by a high ridge of rock and trees. There were about a dozen divers in the water for some class. As I'm stopped to figure out where to go, a little kid about 5 years old started to point. He said, "they went that way" and pointed to the trail. I rode into the trail and was immediately on a trail that required to be in a granny. Since I was in my middle ring I was hopeless and bailed. There was a connecting trail that looked less technical so I rode on that for about 1 mile or so. I came across a log pile then a quick turn and lost it. I almost ended up in the Rappahanock. I got up but my chain was jammed between my granny and bottom bracket. After about 10 minutes of trying to fix it (read "force it free"), I gave up and decided that this was not my weekend for biking (and the real reason was for mom to spend time with my daughter). I did the "walk of shame" back and was about 100 yards from my car when another mountain biker stopped. It happened to be Tom from Bike Works. He took a quick look at my chain, gave it a couple of spins on the crank and worked my chain loose. Cool. He said he was going to do a quick loop and welcomed me to join.
We went back past the quarry on the lower trail (less technical) but about 100 yards into the trail he took a quick left up a long climb. Of course, I had no idea this was coming and was in my middle ring again and had to circle around, drop into my granny and get momentum up the climb. I made it about 1/2 way up until I bailed and walked it. At the top we ran into a group of 4 riders and rode the rest of the trail with them.

This trail, whatever it's called - The Quarry, Rappahanock Ridge, VOC - is a gem of a trail right within city limits (and 5 mins from mom's). It's got technical switchbacks, steep decents, logs, rocks, jumps and even a 200 yard "tunnel" that takes you underneath Interstate 95. I didn't make it to the tunnel but they said all you see is a little speck of light at the end of the tunnel. They said it's pretty intimidating the first time you ride it. There's alot more trails as I only hit about 1/4 of the trails back in that area.

If I get my bike in working order - replace my bent large chainring and installing disk brakes by this weekend - I may head up there again to do a dualthon. The race is a 1m/6m/1m course on the same trails.
And whenever I head to mom's in the 'burg, I'll only bring my mountain bike and leave my skinny wheels at home.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

VA CX Series Posted

2007 VA Cyclocross Series
A few more races added this year and add to that some MABRA races and that makes a fun fall. (Pending approval from the "house" budget and travel committee)
Unfortunately, there's some conflicts in my schedule. IronCross or Urban Cross. Yorktown Du that we're sponsoring is the same weekend as the Pole Green weekend. The Tidewater Mtn Bike Challenge falls on the Richmond Weekend (cross race Saturday and Mountain bike Sunday?).

Monday, September 3, 2007

Labor Day Ride

Met up with Kim and the group out of GB Cyclery for a fun and fast ride to S. Mills. Total miles ended up with 65 and a 21.5 avg speed.

Sunday I caught up with the Virginia Beach Wheelmen team on their cx training ride in the 'switch. These guys (and girl) will be a team to watch in the race series this year. I rode a lap or so on the cross then hit it again on my neglected stumpjumper. Everytime I ride my mountain bike I keep telling myself that I need to do this more.

Schools back in session on Tuesday so my morning rides will be filled with minivans and cheese-graters.