so, this is what the PROs mean.

Knowing that everything is done,
the engine is tuned, all cylinders
they say.  rested, kinda sharp,
kinda snappy. what's done is done,
and there ain't nothing you can 
do about it now.

Only thing there is to do now,
is to put your head down,
do the work, and fucking 
tear some legs off.

how to?

so, really getting the itch to jump into the overnight scene. Have a chincy rear rack that I'd hoped I would be suitable to use for a trial run or two. But, after tinkering last night, it won't clear the 29er tire without some serious mods.....soooooo, back to square 1.25.

Since I have to invest some money into some gear, and I hate buying two of something, which way to go?

Rack w/ compression sack is tried and true and functional for more than bikepacking, can always use the rack for grocery getting on another bike when not out n about. And the El Mar has eyelets, so the setup/teardown should be pretty simple.

Or, there's the bag route. This guy looks to make a quality, functional product. But for the money invested, it's not a very versatile system beyond it's intended purpose....and the lead time is an issue with the seasonal change and short days fast approaching.

Looks like I need to decide, rack or bag system. Seatbag, a partial frame bag and strap some bits to the handlebar, Ergon on the back. Or rack & sack, handlebar strapage and the Ergon.....leaning towards the rack.

Really wanna get these ducks in a row, so once I'm thru the triple crown of two hundos and a fitty over the next three wknds, I'll be able to roll out the door and sleep under the stars.

Already have two tours in mind.......



last year:  fixed the 101 in 9:22

coasted thru it in 8:20 this year.

last year, S100 fixed in 9:30.
soooooo......target 8:30 this year?

a fella can dream.


got a call

the other night about my 20th 

high school reunion.  don't plan 
on going, looked at the website 
anyway.  3 class members deceased.
One was accidental, heard he didn't
make it home one night, found him
where he stumbled or fell into a 
ditch or something, sounded fucked up.
I heard HIV got the second fella, totally
unconfirmed though.

Third one was more recent.  Left me
me more than the "oh, yeah...." reaction.

Guess I met Ralph in sixth grade,
I remember trading stories about riding
our bmx'ers back then.  And saying how we
should get together for a saturday ride, hit
all the neat shwwoops and step downs and
nooks and kranies of the hi/middle school.
Then we all 'grew up', he followed his music
and I'm doing whatever it is that I do.

We never did get together for that Saturday 
ride, which is a shame, 'cuz it woulda been 
a lot of fun.

fucking cancer.



here's what I know....via a short voicemail.

Carl Decker won it.
Homeboy Stubbie was 7th,
behind Travis Brown.

Stubbie was on the way to the hospital to,
yeah, you guessed it, pick up Buck.

Sounds like Bucky boogered up his knee,
"ACL or MCL or some shit...." according to Stubbie.

heal up Bucky!


winding down, up?

so it begins, here we go.
all the freaks are out in Napa,
probably sucking wind right now
before sucking down many many
many a cold cold beer.

tinkering with tapering for
this upcoming stretch. been
working that Thorpe theory.
unfortunately skipping the
Sunday grup thing for single
minded focus, trying to remain
tranquillo. quality of the efforts,
rebounding snap in the pedal
stroke, it' not about being able
go now, it's about going again,
finally the legs are coming around.

Salsa is set up in race trim and
running smoooooth. Qwik spit shine
and polish and we'll be hitting the
S&M100 ready to rock out with mah
cock out, booyahh!. Jabber's been shaken
down before heading to Cali on its
own. Refurbed Juicy 7 keeps the 32:20
coastiness under control. Running
blind rigid thru the rumored moondust
should be neat. Going for the scenery
as much as the racing action, psyyyyyched!
Couple days of vacation riding, before heading
home in time for the final Meeshow 50.

Then look ahead to the horizon.
Leaves will be changing soon enough,
I'm sensing mutliple trips, smaller
groups due to the nature of the
venues, with the old standbys as
backup. Time to use up my free
trails.com membership(s)......



from Canada, pretty fucking funny, eh.




for years, this climb has taunted me.

looking ahead, looking at the moment.
the 'competition' all seem to be throwing 
down a hundie somewhere or other this 
wknd, not ready to be a total slacker yet.  
today's the day.

grab an extra spare tube and extra co2's,
hit the road and hope I didn't screw
myself by not bringing a spare tire.
15ish mile stretch of pave' from the 
base until tarmac is reached again,
nice.  beeyoootiful day, mindset of 
May, not mid August, weather helped,
N-NW breezy hi-70's day, sweeeeet.

why we ride.
valley pave'
the base.
the top.

toughest climb around?
only 20 couple minutes long, surface
left a bit to be desired, sandyish dust
over hardpack w/not quite golfball
sized chunks lying about.  braking
bump washboard pushed a couple
pitches into the "just a bit too much"
realm.  dismounted the 40:15 twice
to take some steps, shucks.  Elk Hill
might be a bit tougher though, and
haven't rolled the fix up out of Roxbury
or taken 74 over the Tusc yet either.....
so, we'll leave that open to debate
and keep searching.

Visiting the Laurel Run drainage is
always notable, lots of adventures had
thru those woods, good times, good times.
return leg home was nice, also tic'd 
Doubling Gap for the first time on the fix,
wasn't too bad.  Hitting some foothill rollers
on the way back made the most of the day.

and now my beer is empty, time to go.


I should....

be on my bike, not just thinking about it.

radar shows splotches of precip 
directly overhead, but nothing hits 
the ground.  heavier looking blobs
moving in from down valley, I surf instead.

motivation.....is meh-tivation.
the accounts are stuffed full.
handful of fatty rides and qwik
hits on the road to keep the engine 
tuned, the mind is fragile, tired.

this is what I don't like about
being a 'bike racer.'  the questions.


I know the work is done, I know 
that more harm than good can easily 
be done over the next two weeks.

will a short hammer sesh up Waggoner's
really make me any faster in two weeks?

or will a smidge more rest let me see 
the HR reach out of the 180's for the first 
time since early June?  maybe we'll find
out this wknd..... 

Thorpe recommends:
under train, under eat, over sleep.

looking at the scale, 2 out of 3 ain't bad.
so now it's about trying to maintain, and
staying away from the cookie jar.

the 101 was an awesome ride,
couldn't ask for a better race.
got a result I'm happy with,
sure there's room for improvement,
always is, always is.

last wknd reminded me of the why.
can't just get off the couch and throw 
down an 11hr effort.  so even if not
racing, the work still needs to be done
if you're gonna enjoy the journey.  

so now we ride out the wave,
getting caught up on other things
to fill in the empty time slots, and 
lining up the ducks for the end of 
season splurge.

Tahoe 100
Teaberry 50.

bang bang bang, just like that.
(with connecting flights in Denver, 
Denver and Chicago in between)

then take inventory and maybe hit 
up the WVMBA ultra in Davis.

I have never ridden Plantation Trail,
I'd really like to, sometime.

gotta start looking at options for a 
Fall Classique, lots of hidden gems out there.....




6am departe'

5pm arrivvee'
57ish miles covered.
13 of that railtrail to/from camp.
4 looong technical hike a bikes, 
20-30min each, rewards were 
mindblowingly sweet insane 
big vistas & flowing mtn singletrack, 
primal flashbacks to the highlands 
of WV, just follow that loamy, rooty 
submerged knobby rock ribbon
of love thru the knee highhhhhh ferns.
cap it each time with a steep gnarl 
mostly ridable plunge into the holler...
rinse and repeat, all. day. long.

a tough, rewarding day, 
views and quietness not often 
experienced or expected in PeeYAY!

simply amazing, 
can't wait to go back.



so, I'm gonna exercise my freedoms and hit
the road for a bit of an impromptu trip.

Hope to see a bear, hopefully
he/she will be friendly.

JK, thanks for the beta.

regarding rules, looks like a
whole lot of grey area, here's to getting 'lost.'

If I'm not heard from by sometime Monday,
you might be able to find my carcass in the
wedge of woods between Rt 44 and Rt 414.
new scenery = YAY!!!!!!



let's say you're riding your mtn bicycle somewhere in Penn's Woods and you make a wrong turn and end up on one of the dozen or so PA Hiking Trails....

Anybody know what the actual penalty is if you bump into a grumpy DCNR type person while riding on said trail?  

I've searched the PA Code and can't really find anything that relates to violating a 'foot travel' only declaration.



thousands of words.



lots of smiles, whew.



nice rollout up along Penns Creek. Spin it to the front and chill with likeminded WV SS contingent.

Then two geared douches attack up the left and close the gap to.....the lead moto. You guys are so AWESOME! Left across the bridge and it is on. Swarmed by the masses, then try to settle into a long day of carrot munching. Way up ahead is a long line of riders, mostly two by two strung out, start picking 'em off. Look for known one speeders, try to stay in the mix. Hook up with Topher and Billy, can see Benji and Matt up towards the front of the group we're trying to latch onto. Spend the next hour and a half dangling in no man's land. Spend some time in a group of 5ish with Cheryl trying to close the gap. Painfully slow process, reel 'em in a bit, then the road tilts down, real 'em in a bit more, road tilts down. 400yds, 300yds, 200 yds, 100yds...all the geared folk I'm working with make the connection, I'm still off the back of what's probably the second main group on the road.

Hook up with Billy some more out near Coyler Lake reroute. "Spinning my nuts off!" he says, yeah, hear dat. Follow his wheel down Longerberger and ride the bridges and rock garden nice and clean. he big group that was up the road has disintegrated, decision to not blow up while mindlessly chasing looks like a wise one. Settle into a hard tempo up Laurel Run, catch back to the leading ladies and chomp down a big handful of carrots, munch munch munch. Little Shingletown, try not to touch the brakes at all, work the ss mo and flow, passed by some big rings, there goes Cheryl again. Onto the rolling road into CP2, pull off for a qwik piss, bike and head adjustment at just over 2 hours. Michelle rolls by tucked into a nice train, hook up with J. Martin and Buchness for a bit. Bottle swap and Camelbak splash n go out of CP2.

Relax on the bike, get the mind ready for the 1-2 combo of Greenlee & Seeger. Hit the tempo hard out of the gnomey pine forest and solo again picking off the long strung out line up Greenlee. Catch Cheryl again about 5minutes from the top, she's sort of slummin', I try to help, fun downhill coming. Punch it across the top to get clear trail, then rippin' smooth run down Croyle, catching one dude, dropping a bunch of others. Legs begin to feel funny, kinda tight. Here come the cramps, again. Recover a bit rolling towards Seeger, find a solid tempo, keep picking off riders looking for familiar faces. Base of Spencer Trail and I'm with Billy again, he gets off to hoof it a bit, I pedal up to him then dismount. Says he saw Topher just up ahead. Finally, pulling back into this thing. Tempo, tempo, tempo across Spencer into CP3. Holy shite, there's Deejay, there's Topher. Get by Deejay before the CP, there's Michelle too. Didn't plan to stop at 3, but get the bottles topped off for insurance. Roll out of there right behiond Topher and Kyle. Topher dismounts to hoof it, seems kinda early in the climb for that, decide to put in some effort, get around Topher and keep Kyle in sight. On the bike, off the bike, on the bike, off the bike. Walking that fine line of cramping vs not cramping, on the bike, off the bike.

Steady. Gunning. Kyle towing me across Sassafras until the brake scorching steepness, then I'm dropped and Topher's bringing me back I'm sure. Into the fun flowiness below Sass, Kyle is gone, can feel a presence building behind me. I'm not riding well, bumbling, fumbling, looking for the exit so I can recover for a bit. Mind jumbled, trying to remember what the climb back up to Beautiful/No Name is like. Out of the woods onto Coopers Gap and there's Huber popping some pills and Topher is back onto my wheel. Ride past Jamie and immediately cramp up. Hide the pain and soft pedal until I can settle in. Find that rythmn and hit the trailhead w/ Topher and Huber in tow. Bomb down the sweeeeeeeeet descent with Topher tight on my wheel, forcing me to ride it well. Big eyed wonderment whole way down to those rickety bridges, hooting and hollering good time. Are we done yet?

Recovery spin on the road, Jamie rolls up w/ his big ring and I do my best to not cramp up and not get dropped rolling into CP4. CP4, drop bag bottle swap and Camelbak refill. Hear across the radio that Schalk just hit CP5. So he's only about 1.5hours ahead, can I catch him? Refueled for the final push, roll out solo to the Stillhouse Hollow of pain. 2 minutes into the climb and I cramp, right leg all but locks up solid. Immediately begin hoofing it w/ Kyle back in sight and Topher pedals by with that lumbering ss cadence. I keep walking. Topher gets about a 30-45second gap. Keep walking, now get on. Settle in again, find that Tour tempo, use it. Begin pulling back Topher, get around and keep going. Reel in Kyle. Then James Kelly. And a few other unkowns. Don't look back until the top, afraid to find out that the effort didn't open any gaps. Finally a look over the shoulder and it's quiet back there. Now it's really time to go. Two hours max to the finish, you can do this, steady gunnin' and hold 'em all off, hopefully real in some more.

By choice, I've not been getting updates on placing, gauging position by feel and the company I'm with instead. And always keeping an eye on the clock. Judging by aid volunteer reactions, we must be up there in the standings. I'm guessing top 40ish, telling myself maybe, mayyyybe top ten ss. Counting those I haven't seen for a long time; Fuzzy, Benji, Wes, Gunnar, Matt...puts me at best, 6th. With these races becoming more stacked, I'm assuming there's also at least 2 or 3 unkown faces up ahead, so I'll be lucky to slot in at tenth. Just keep pedaling. Make it to Sand Mtn, neck is getting sore from the constant over the shoulder glances. Timmy D is chillin' in the lot and tells me Matt just passed thru. No shit! Now we're really getting somewhere. And yep, sure enough there's Matt. But Matt doesn't look 100%. He's stopped, just standing there, with a goo pack hanging out of his mouth. So, he's either done, or regrouping for a final assault. Damn, this is gonna be tense from here on out. Across Sand Mtn, pass some dude with gears, then it's awfully quiet both fwd and back. Looking way up the road, nothing. Get to that spot I was looking at, turn around.....nothing.

Little Poe, do. not. flat. Do not get lazy, stay focused, this isn't finished yet, no where near it. Focus and do. not. flat. Whew, safely down that abusive washed out dual track and swing the right onto the road to Poe Paddy. Cramps! shocking. Roll into CP5, blurt out Coke or Red bUll!?!?! Pleeeeeeeease have one or the other. Slam three small cups of Coke and gone. Told I'm 5ish ss, cool, still no one in sight. Bit of traffic on the first bridge, and that looong first tunnel is always so damn cool. Rail Trail, spinspinspinspin, 14mph tt hell. No on in site, still no signs behind. Off the rail trail and ramp up to the final climb. Cramps! Let out a holler and push on thru, tempo hammering, just give me ten more minutes, ten more minutes and I'm done climbing. Do not get caught now, brakeless screaming down the backside, please don't ball it up. Fisherman's Path, endo. ouch. dumbass. just walk it at a brisk pace. try to ride, falter again. just walk it. Always looking back, nervous. Back onto the rail trail. Look way up ahead, nothing. 2minutes later, look back the same stretch. FUCK! is that a white number plate wayyyyyy back there? ramp it from 14 to 14.8, spin spin spin, try to hide, work the line of sight. Convinced that I'm being chased by a ss, spin spin spin. Tunraround, nothing. Another looooong viewable stretch, nothing up ahead, 1:30 later, fuck! There's that white splotch way back there. 15.2 spinspinspin. Final tunnel, check the shoulder, holy shit, he's closing fast, now way that's a single. Into, out of the tunnel, turn around and damnit, here comes Huber. Let's make that bastard earn it. Onto the tarmac, 16.2 spin spin spin. 17.4, spinspinspin. 18.2, spin and tuck the little down. 17.8.

"Hey Tom. Been chasing you for a while." Damn you Huber! We let out a hoot and holler with the park in site. I sit up, Huber rolls it home with a small gap. Punch the clock, 8:20 elapsed. 6th singlespeed, which I'm reallllllly happy with. Huge weight off the shoulders. The fear. The fear that I wouldn't be any faster on the coasty vs the fix. Fear that I couldn't hang, couldn't be competitive. That I've been hiding behind the fix in order to not face those questions. And now I know. And now it's time to do something with that knowledge, only a couple more chances left this year......