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.



Anonymous said...

sounds like a good loop tom. i'm guessin' by readin' tween the lines...sheriff onto northbranch,up to middleridge, out to anthill & right to laurel run to spotts and then back on the TT. the section between phoenix & bill miller could use a bit of work to make it more ridable but the rest of the TT is sweet. throw college trail into the mix sometime. it's a nice little gem.

Tomi said...

hey Ray, what's the beta on Rising Mtn up along Hemlock Rd? looks like a nice stretch on the map, link up to Bowman....

Anonymous said...

rising mtn. is ok. it used to be super sweet until they used it for a logging rd. and now let the snowmobiles run on the upper half of it. same for shearer-dug. haven't been on the lower half of rising mtn. this year but it looks like they ran enduro up it. bowman is cool if you don't get confused by where they ran enduro on it, off it, on it, off it. bowman hollow is open also and not too bad. robinson is open, again with some enduro use.

Tomi said...

cool, thanks for the low down Ray. Figure to sneak back up there late Sept....