#3 on the checklist

no Cold Hop, Hazed & Infused instead.

Wonder if it'll be safe from Buddy?

blink blink

man, why don't I have the skillz of Samantha? A quick twitch of the nose and a blinkity blink and it'd be gametime already, just like that. Stokesville sunrise can't come soon enough, trigger finger is itchy, let's get this thang rollin'. Plenty of last minute to do of course. Spent the week 'recovering' with the feet up, so now I still need to hit the grocery shop for loose ends, then the beer store, run some laundry, patch a handful of tubes, pack up the kitchen box after doing dishes, pack up the food box, pack the clothes bag after the laundry is done, then shuffle back and forth loading the CR-Vizzle and maybe even prep some oil for a batch of special deserts. Hopefully have all of this done by 8ish tonight, including a light spin, then prop up the feet while watching more bad television.

On the road 10ish tomorrow is the plan, maybe earlier in order to secure a decent spot for the 'cakes and friends. Sounds like the race is gonna be off the hook and the rockstar comp could be a spectacular affair. The defending champ isn't targeting it this year, but I've heard that Bender is gonna let it roll and see how it plays out, let the trail come to you, young Jedi. It's been a short long summer, lot's of things have happened to get to this point, try not to reflect too much, then cash in those chips and leave it all on the table....well, maybe leave a little stash for the Teaberry throwdown, we're not totally finished yet.

Less coastin', more roastin'!

See you fools in Stokesville.


last minute....

so, this is very important shite.
question for those that are heading to the ShendoHundo.

Who's bringing what flavor beer for their private stash?
With a full body count, figure the supplied libations might run dry,
so for variety, who's bringing what?

I'm leaning towards the Cold Hop from Boulder.....

oh yeah,

I'm gonna rip the fucking cranks off that bike on Sunday,
Don't get in my way.



Did an interesting thing today. Still felt like there's something to give, so I gave it, in hopes of collecting later next week, with interest. Laid out the loop, Google Earth projected it at 26ish miles, over familiar and not so familiar terrain. Up early, then back to sleep, it's the wknd. Nice morning nap, then bacon & eggs and a quick gear shuffle, out the door, crack of ten-ish. Gear up and rolling the Dos by shortly past 11ish, gonna catch the heat of the day, neat.

Figure that the projected 26ish should roll in about 3-4hrs, with a few techy moves to keep me honest. I actually finished with almost 5 elapsed, 4 on the 'ride time.' My powers of estimation are getting better, I think.... 20 minutes of fireroad granny out of the gate to the 40mph descent into the valley followed by a bug in the eye and then some funky fungus. Found myself on trail in less than an hour. 15 minutes later, while rolling up a challenging benchy climb, I did the last thing I wanted to do, and ended up picking myself up off the ground. Stupid machismo tendencies found me falling to the low side of the bench cut before saying oh shit, just go with it..... Took a finicky punch to the kidney on the bounce and the Dos finished with a shortish ghost ride down the steepness. I decided to calm the fuck down, and took a step back.
Got to one of Huxley's favorite swimming holes and drank a beer in her memory, then wondered why I haven't ridden this trail downstream yet, instead of always up? Betchya that it rolls really nice. Tempo up a fireroad climb for 15 minutes to correct a mistake from last time, Middle Ridge. Found the left at the deer fence, thanks Ray!, and discovered a sweetheart stash of singletrack. Damn, too many flashbacks to WV, VA and State College all at once. Ant Hill rocks out, damn that was a fine experience. The overlook and Spotts Road option did nothing but add time to the day.
The turn onto the final trailhead left a bit to be desired in the flow dept. Big portion of downclimbing scramble before finally hitting the upper tract of the drainage. Then it got sweet. Really sweet.

Final 9 miles to the car, 1:30 to get across it. Lots of rock, lots of extended ridable gardens, loooooong gardens of torque-ey false flat rocky luv. And puzzles that read like hieroglyphics with serious penalties if you fuck up the translation. So, lots and lots of flowing rock garden, just give it kind of terrain with some loamy rest peppered about and a handful of short gnarly, fuck that, hike a bikes to keep you honest. I smell a new Fall Classique on the seasonal winds, figure I need one more scouting mission either before or right after Teaberry, and we'll be ready for a big day in the Tuscarora come the end of the month.

Hazy days.

Polar opposite.



mind games

The final push. this is it, the end of this year's official programme is approaching.

The hundo is in the books, what's done is done, and that will be that. Only thing to do now is to keep the engine running smooth & clean. The question is the end result. Sub-10 fixed? If not this year, then probably never. I'm tired of chasing ghosts. The Stoopid, le Tour and the 101, I've made my statement. S&M100 will be the exclamation point, a big fat stick with a dot underneath it. I'm bringing a party into the house of pain, and I'm gonna burn that mother fucker down, nothing left but ashes and a velvet rope. Went thru the self doubt and those nagging questions for most of the week. The fear of shifting weather and shared safety gear throwing my health into turmoil was unfounded. No sniffles or scratches to muddy the system, whew.

Tomorrow, exploration is again on tap. Back up into the Tuscarora, taking a much smaller bite now that the lay of the land is familiar, hoping for only 4 hours this time. Will it really be 6-8ish miles of ridgetop love ending with a descent to the car? The maps say yes, the navigator, he's not so sure. Sunday we're up to Lykens for a change of scenery and further sharpening of the ninja skillz. Tonight, running to G'burg for parts, then bleeding brakes and tuning up clapped out bikes in the basement. ahhhh, the glamorous life of a wannabe bike bum racer, lovin' it.



yep, slow(ish) day at work.
sometimes I think I should
just keep my mouth shut.

Or at least know when to cut bait and
get out of the shallow end of the pool.

looks like a cool damp spin on
the road tonight, ahhhwsome.


stay calm.

Tranquilo (adj): Quiet; calm; undisturbed; peaceful; not agitated; as, the atmosphere is tranquil; the condition of the country is tranquil.
Cheshire Jake

Man, it's been a long road. Or not. The miles, the white line zoning out. The questions. The quiet contemplation. The huff and the puff and the blowing down of the fucking house.

Man, what a fun trip it's been. Start at the Punk. 60 miler's road fixy style in the cold wind. Finally skiskiski. Skiskiski. KNEE! (oh shit.) Roady fix in the rain and wind. The almost century that opened my eyes. The Dos. LOVE the Dos! Spring race, following a plan. More miles. Losing my best friend, fuck. FUCK! Escape to il Giro. Time to climb, climbclimbclimb. Stoopid 50 & Reinventing the Big Stupid Road Ride. Setting a precedent at le Tour, incredible. Working the Curse. Always fun to heckle, full solo pre-ride made it a shared experience. Feeling the pain, but not really. Tuscorora exploration, setting the mental bar and emptying the tank. The 101, showing what's possible. 9:23, never expected that.

Early Snack

And now. Shuttle '07 is in the books, just another 8ish hour ride thru Michaux from South to North. For those in the know, here's the ticklist: Heaven&Hell-up Buckets-Hermit over & up to Snowy Mtn Tower to Karumba. Link a bit of road to Racoon Run to BlueBlaze to multiple flat tires to Caledonia. Link a bit of road to GapTrail (blueblaze) to Sting to Lollipop (1st half) Hanzel&Grettal (Camp Trail) to Big Flat. Drink some beers at the luv shak (Bender showing a flash of Rockstar brilliance). Out Ridge to Lewis Rocks and rippin' across and down Rattlesnake to Heisler's to Nowhere Loop to Community Service and we're at 7.5+ hours. Serendipitous timing as Pete and the Evil Dr. share barley pops on their way home to family. Social spin on the rail trail to Fern Hill and the Keefer family Corn Bake '07.

Rollin' onto the overlook.

Oh MY God! Was that ever awesome! Somewhat spur of the moment planning for the shuttle ride coincided with Keeferkeefer's family shindig at the cabin at Lake Two Hawks. Ride for 8 hours with 8 to 10 of your bestest damn riding buddies and finish at a cabin next to a spring fed ore hole where there happens to be a potluck family reunion type corn bake thang going on.

Camelbak Reunion stop.

Heaven. Thanks to the Keefers for the hospitality. The corn and bar-b-Q and the pot luck and the corn and the beer was simply awesome! If only Mike coulda swung a partial loop on the bikes with us.

Old Mule

The ride was reallyreally fun. Nipped some elbows for fun, opening up the legs, tried to keep the flow and tax the system. Highlights were the entire day, nice to see everybody on their game at this time of year, even Jake revealing some latent fitness. Handful of flat tires south of Rt 30 (a front for me included), couple of dinged derailleurs that needed attention and Lee blew a bead and bounced off terra firma, that's one tough fella, eff'in singlespeeders.

Churtle leads the train.

Official stats: 48+ mile, 5:55 ride time, 8:05 elapsed. 11 started, 9 were committed, 2 bailed early, Buck & Johnny Tourettes got the gold stars for finishing with LowBush, 5 of us took the pavement spin option.
No free salsa.

Slept not well for a long time and found out that today's forecast called for rain, at 7:30am. Watched the blobs move across the radar and timed it as close to perfect as possible. Nice spin of not quite 40 to pick up the car at South Mtn, turning pedals for 2:20 and seeing what's left in the tank. Maybe hit King's Gap tomorrow before putting the feet up for a few days to let it all soak in. It's fun to see it all come together.

rock n roll Jake.



Time for the annual Meeshoshlow Shuttle Shession. Try to do this once a year, big phatty point to point in the backyard. One final ride w/ underlying purpose as the days grow shorter and the focus shifts from race prep to riding without hidden meaning. Pedals have been turning sweetly with flow and lightness. Handful of road bike sessions up over hill and dale, chasing cars thru the Holly Gap trying to hang in the draft at 33-35 on the 40:15 brings up the revs and confidence. The Hundo, the final jewel in the crown, is coming. This wknd, one final push before the taper. Do the big mtn thang tomorrow, then onto the skinny tires to retrieve the car on Sunday. Maybe one final effort on Monday depending on what's left in the tank. Sub-10, that's what's on my mind.

The route.

sub-10, can I uncork another one? 101 showed me the way and opened the door to the party. Now it's time to raise the roof and tear that shit down, fucking wreck the joint in a blaze of glory. It's gonna be fun, all of it.


drive to ride

rare that I load up the road bike to go someplace to ride it. normal loops out the door getting stale as summertime peaks and rolls on into fall. took a nice spin over hill and dale, eventually out thru Horse Valley, change of scenery does a body good.



ya know, maybe Churtle & the Mule would let me drop my car at their place, start there, then to here, then back to there......

the next level

what is it?
what will it take?

I love the long race, feels good to do a solid day's work.

been watching the growth of unsupported, multi day events.
GDR, CTR, recently attempted Wasatch Classic.

what could be done in this neck of the woods?
something that doesn't involve plane tickets and lots of travel to venues.

ya know, Massaunutten and Michaux share the same ridgeline.
Reddish and the Tuscarrora on the other side of the valley.

Or from the 'burg to Canaan, 3-4 days of big classiques.

Guess I should get an S-D-S ride under my belt first though.

Or a house to the MD line and back via Michaux two dayer.
hmmmm, drive & drop the car down south, ride home, eat, sleep, ride back to pick up the car. A fall project? Just kicking around some ideas on a chill Friday afternoon.....


on the road again

Got out in the muggy heat for a little spin to a cool mtn spring last night. Legs were unmotivated and sluggish as expected, started turning over nicely though about an hour in. Rolling into Mt Holly, sitting on the white line as usual, with a "shoulder" of about 8 inches. A residential type area, posted limit is 35mph, line of sight is clear enough to see up the road.

And some douche in a red F-150 decides he needs to pass me right here, right now. I guess he was late getting to the 24hr WalMart or something. Thing is, there's also some chick coming from the other direction in some sort of VW Golf. We're not at a blind corner or anything, he could see her coming. And as he squeezes by me, he ends up crowding her out of her lane, she dips some wheels off into the gravel/grass and lays on the horn. I'm thinking, what a fucking douche! (But at least he didn't take me out.)

I take a moment to digest it all, then flip the dude off as he rolls on up to the stoplight which just came into sight. And which is now red. No immediate response from the guy, but I'm pretty sure he saw the gesture. I continue to just sit and spin, watching this tard sit in line at the red light he so urgently needed to get to. Rolling along, still red. Rolling closer, still red. Time to either start scripting what I'm gonna say to this asshat, or maybe I should just roll thru the redlight and forget about it. Well, I get to within about 100yds when the light turns green. The car in front is turning left, so he's hung up trying to turn right and I get to about 100ft off his bumper when it clears and he starts to roll.

Now that he's moving, now that he isn't 'stuck', this is when the yellow bellied piece of shit flips me off in response. So I sit up, really flip him the bird, mouth a big F-YOU! and figure that's that. And now this fuckwad slows down, but doesn't stop, and begins waving me towards him out the window as he's driving thru the intersection away from me. This makes no sense to me.

If you have something to fucking say, or you think you wanna throw down or whatever, then pull your fucking small penis mobile over, shut off the motor and we'll have a conversation. Don't pull this tough guy routine as you drive away bullshit, you fucking pussy. And no, I'm not gonna chase you down on my bike just because you're taunting me, you're in a 3/4 ton weapon, I'm in lycra with a beer cooler on my head.

Of course, I'm sitting here doing the whole rant on the interweb tough guy routine, so what does that say? But still.....it pisses me off. Someday I'd love to grab one of these worthless, out of shape piles of flatulance by a roll of their fat greasey necks and have a chat.....

Do you have any kids? yeah?
Well, do they a have a bike?
You know, to ride around the neighborhood?
Maybe to the park or school or to deliver papers or something?
Or are you grooming them to grow up to be a fat slob like yourself?

Oh, so your boy does have a bike?

Well, how would you like it if I was driving through your neighborhood and pulled the old brushback maneuver on your son? You know, just a little scrub, to let 'em know who really owns the road. How would you feel if the shoe was on the other foot, if it was your son getting run off the road? How would you like that?

Then what makes you think that it's cool to do it to me?



101 by the numbers

yeah, I'm an enginerd, I like numbers.

39,452 = Pedal revs req'd to roll a 2:1 ratio'd
mtn fixy over 101 miles.
563 = Minutes to pedal a fixed mtn bike over
101 miles w/ 10k of climbing
400 = Oz's of fluid during the race.
151 = avg heartrate.
70.1 = avg cadence.
10.7 = avg speed.
5 = gel flasks emptied.
4 = albums listened to via the pod.
3 = Number of times I 'coasted' w/ feet off the pedals.
3 = Approx total minutes spent 'coasting', I get skeered.
3 = Hours chopped off of last year's time.
2 = Qty of flat tires
2 = Slugs of bourbon for the nerves the night before,
thanks Buck.
2 = Fingers that are still kinda numb & tingley.
1 = my placing in the 'fixy' class.

? = number of times that I'll do this again.


W101, qwik n dirty

W101 is getting all grown up.
Emergence of a true rockstar class,
lot's of training for the Shen100 logged,
post race kegstands are fun.

got to hang and meet with lots of cool
and interesting and fun people. Good to see
the old Meatplow still in action.
(shhh, somebody's interested in a fixy.....)

the race?

the race went beyond better than expected.
managed to stick to a programme this time.....

Don't blow by chasing across the flats/roads,
work over the climbs like you own them,
and survive the descents.

oh, and don't cramp.

on course highlights:
Getting to see the lead pack develop on the
first climb. Early morning misty light thru
the pines was inspiring, don't forget to look
around! Longerberger on into the Bridges was
zen money. Renegade beer stop was actually
not a mirage, riding the Croyle downhill after
said beer stop was like a loopy dream, and
then I ejected the Keystone Light ballast at
the bottom.
Had a flat after Telephone trail, apparently
it's been awhile since I re-upped the Stan's.
29er tubes do work in a 26" sized tire.
Plenty of long quiet periods of pedal pedal pedal.
pedal pedal pedal.
Found good flow along Sandbank and on top
of Sassafras. Top Trail was tits and then
stupidly flatted dropping into Poe Paddy/cp 5.

And that second tunnel is much further
away than I remember.

Kept my head in the game, road smart
and finished whole damn the thang in 9:23.
3 hours faster than last year and good
enough for 14th or so in the ss, maybe 60th
overall with everybody figured in.

Sounds like JB and Harlan had a good battle going
until an errant stick jumped into Harlan's wheel &
req'd a dismount. That's racing.....

Popularity is rising, lots of people figuring it
out and the field is getting crowded. It's been
a lot of fun being along for the ride, here's to
the next one.

Thanks everybody!


last minute

my dilema.

just took a quick loosen up spin & soak on the DBR.
it felt pretty damn good, that bike is like an extension.
thoughts started bouncing around my thick skull.

shoot for a top 10 overall?
or dream stupid big and try for top 10 ss on a fixed?

looking at history,
one is an 8hr effort,
the other about 10....
I think I've got either one in me.

do it one way, and the pain is somewhat dictated by others.
the other, well, that's an entirely different story.

both bikes are loaded.
looks like a gametime decision.....


yakkity yak

gear in the car.
bag is packed.
Dos is cleaned and tuned.

took special care to polish up the rear hub,
since that's the only part ya'll will be seeing.

damn is this gonna be fun.

shakedown shivers

hmmmmm, found that old familiar feeling. The heat is on, both literally from our friend the Sun, and from the internal workings of a trembling mind. Trying to get it 100% physically while the subconciously restrained at 87.3%. Makes for goofy rythmn and questions of Am I really ready? Blowing out corners, misstimed logs, pinging tires off rocks.......flow cannot be forced. Odd to have what I call a Saturday ride on a Wednesday.

Finally after a few deep breaths and a psst psst or two from the tires after the Comm Service warmup, rode into some tranquility up Woodrow & Jake's. Across the ridge to Rattlesnake, found a snappy pace then called myself a pussy outloud for not riding the big bone breaking move on Rattlesnake, pussy. Back it up, regrouped on the leftside cheater line, dropped into v2.0 and rode that cleanly, even the righthander gnarl. Been awhile since I've done that, gold star for Tomi. Finished with more awkwardness thru the Nowhere loop and a backtrack cooldown spin on Comm Service.

So the shakedown is done, rode thru the jitters and unfocused mind. Well, not really unfocused, just have the sights set on Saturday, so the focal point is not the here and now, but the there and then. The ride ramping is in the books, time to tie up loose ends with trips to stock the feed bag and get the CR-Vizzle loaded. Dos is dialed, just need to clean her up a bit and judging by appetite, my engine is revving and ready to blow doors. I have a lofty goal in mind, but seeing as how the start list is becoming more stacked by the day, may need to revise that. The time on course is still attainable, final standings shuffle will depend on how many rockstars vs ponies toe the line.

My plan? Latch onto that lead group, tear up some trail, suffer like I know how and see where the chips fall. It sure as hell can't hurt nearly as bad as last year. Well, maybe it can, but it'll have a different flavor for sure.