2010 Death By Hills, in memoriam

Greetings to you, you sadistic, sadistic people. Today I think we all reached new heights, both in wrist-snappage, cake consumption, and hill gradients. I know that I felt a lot like Billy from "Predator," who delivered one of the most amazing lines: "We gon' die out here, Major." He then proceeded to cut the shit out of his chest and face like a true badass:

The perfect weather we had today seemed to have a positive effect on this ride - I didn't even get a headcount, but I'm sure that there were between 50 and 60 people on that ride at some point. I can't fucking believe that many people showed up to a road ride put on by Team Seagal. It's kind of like going to a cow pie flinging contest put on by gold-medal-winning curling squad.

The reaction from everyone to the turn up Bartizan was worth the time spent on this ride alone, and the... "odor" in the Allenton Rd. gas station was enough to have me feeling euphoric while reminiscing about times past. Seeing Sherrid pull a manual like this down Alt road at like 35mph on his bmx bike was pretty sweet ("Who is he, just some local kid?"):

We went up all the same hills as last year (plus or minus a few more), and more people finished! The view from the top of Cremin's Green and the D9 Bulldozer that rusts away up there is in fact quite satisfying. Climbing that hill was enough to make me forget how sad I was after seeing that sappy stray-pet commercial with Sarah Mclaughlin singing that crappy song, and how much of a douche Apolo Ohno looks with that Turbo-Soulpatch.

Also quite satisfying is knowing that Nico completed the entire ride on a fancy hybrid. Not many people have singlespeed hybrids, by the way. Pete, once again, rode to the ride and then rode home, thus showing us up once more. One guy, probably twice my age, did 110 miles the day before. I learned that there is no such place as "Lone Elk Coffee Company." We found out that small pieces of cake are an amazing thing to put down your throat-hole after 43 miles. Also, as it turns out, the sound of weakness leaving the body is eerily similar to the sound of spokes pinging and popping under the stress of being torqued up a 25% grade at 4mph.

Damn, what a good day. Let's do this again soon.

-Casey F. Ryback, Regular Guy.

PS. Good day. Nico here. Attached is the Garmin link as recorded from my hybrid. It is close to the full course except I did not go up Cremin's Green or Babler Forest Dr. because the VGS-12 malfunctioned when I thought about them and almost dropped a Fugi on my Kona. Coach is a effin' ass-hole. PEACE!


Something To Remember this Sunday

Greetings Team Seagal Soldiers and Fans! We here at Team Seagal HQ are always thinking about your well-being, both physical and mental. Which is why we'd like to provide you with a "happy place" to where you can go when you are deep down in the Pain Cave, climbing to the top of the steepest, longest hill. Behold! We present to you Dolph Lungren (physically-imposing Star of such classic movies such as Rocky IV, Masters of the Universe, and Universal Soldier) singing Elvis:

Oh man. This is going to awesome, like in the move The Patriot, when Dr. Wesley McLaren broke the top of a wine glass off, then jammed the sharp glass stem into the temple of Floyd Chisolm, leader of the militia.

The ride might end up being more than 6 hours, so yeah. To help plan out water and fuel and what-not, this about what approximate mileage each of the water/food stops are:
-Mile 29 - Gas station at Allenton/44 - food, fluids, bathrooms
-Mile 43 - Thrasher's house - water
-Mile 55 - Drewballs' house - water
-Mile 82.5 - Gas station at Wild Horse Creek/109 - food, fluids, bathrooms

So notice that there is about 50 miles in between food stops.

See you there...

-Casey F. Ryback



Greetings. While wasting time trying to find any Olympic events on TV that *aren't* skiing or ice skating, ("ice-dancing" is on right now...) I've been getting super pumped to go ride some big fucking hills this Sunday. I've been out on some sneaky recon rides out within that perimeter, and let me tell you, they are still really hard. Having seen the bridge that is sort-of out on Hardt Road, I think that we'll probably skip that little jaunt over to and up Dehart Farms. We could probably walk the bridge, but who wants to walk when you can ride. I can't say that I'm too heartbroken over that one, as we'll all be either at the entrance to, or deep within the pain cave by then.

If you haven't ridden out in this area before, and are wondering whether you should run gears or SS, just know that there are several hills that go above 20% and in some cases approach or exceed 25%. That's pretty steep. Like ballpark-beer prices steep. That being said, 2 crazy jibroneys went singlespeed last year. One was even on his flipping mountain bike.

*Edit* Please note that this is not a supported ride in any way shape or form.

Now for our quiz of the... week. Extra points if you can identify this "celebrity" from the great Stonecutters Song on The Simpsons:

Second question: What hilarious line does Moe say in this scene?

So until this Sunday... make sure your derailleur's lower limit screws are set properly.

-Casey F. Ryback


Death By Hills Ride deetale

Greetings. So here's the lowdown. (I said "load.") If you'd like to do this ride, and really challenge yourself in the same way that Mason Storm challenged himself in "Hard To Kill," then listen up cuz' I'm fin'a drop a few truth bombs on you.
What: ROUTE Nearly 100 miles of hilly goodness, never more than 10 or 15 miles from the starting point.

Where: Starting at Lone Elk Coffee Please park in the lower area of the lot, per Ralph's request.

When: Sunday, Feb 28th at 9AM - clicking in at 9AM, so get there early and be ready to ride!

-Last year's ride took about 6 hours.
-This is a really fucking hard route. Seriously. That's why it took 6 hours to ride 83.5 miles last year.
-This is *not* a supported ride, so bring plenty of food and fluids, and cash/plastic to buy more when we stop at the few gas stations.
-I reserve the ability to cancel or alter the ride depending on weather - I'm not going out for a 6 hour ride below freezing or in the rain or snow. Might still ride, but won't be as ambitious. Jerks. Last year's weather was sunny and mid-to-high 30's, and I really hope we have that again!
-You might want to start limbering up your t'aint now.
-Unlike my underpants, this route isn't marked.
-I welcome random cursing and verbal bashing directed towards me at the base of any and all hills, as per the practice from last year.

The few, easy places to refuel on the route:
-the gas station at Allenton/44
-the gas station at Wild Horse Creek/Eatherton
-water @ Drew's house
-water @ Thrasher's house
-water fountains in Rockwoods Reservation next to Smokey the Bear, though they are probably off for the winter

Pace: NOT a hammerfest. Talking pace except on the hills, where you do whatever you have to do to get to the top. I want to ride in a nice cohesive group with friends and people I know (thus the idea of "organizing" a group ride) but I'd also like to throw out the idea the group break into smaller groups if people are waiting for more than 10 minutes at the top of each hill. So please print out a copy of the route or download the map-my-ride link onto your Garmin, and use that to guide you if you find yourself sans-group. I'll probably do this as well and bring some.

Here is the route, typed out. I made a couple of small changes over last year, notably the little out-and-back Dehardt Farms road, which will equalize your brain into a 1980's sitcom mush, and a little jaunt up Smith School Road - otherwise it is pretty much the same as last year:

-Start at Lone Wolf Coffee
-Head west on Clayton,
-Left on Thunderhead Canyon Dr.
-Left on Westglen Farms Dr.
-Right on "Village Plaza View Dr," toward the stripmall
-enter bike path opposite the parking lot
-left across black pedestrian bridge, crossing Hwy 100
-left after bridge
-right onto Old Manchester (across from the Jack in the Box)
-left onto Woods Rd. Descend and turn left up Bartizan, come back down, and continue down Woods.
-left onto bike path and ride south along Hwy 109.
-left up Old State for about .1 mile
-left onto Redtail Hawk Dr
-Then turn/veer left onto Johns Cabin Rd, which is a clockwise loop (Mitch's secret training loop) and will bring you back to Old State.
-Cross 109 at Old State, turn right up Alt Rd.
-Left on Forby.
-Right onN. Central Ave
-Cross over Hwy 44, turn right onto West Main St (in between train tracks.)
-left onto Wengler and start Allenton Loop, going CCW.
-Exit Allenton Loop to the left, go underneath Hwy 44, and climb Allenton Rd.
- right onto Scenic Loop Rd, going opposite direction.
-right, continuing on Allenton Rd.
-left onto Melrose
-right onto Hwy 100
-right onto Woodland Meadows Dr.
-right onto Old Manchester
-right onto Glencoe (through Rockwoods.)
-Go straight up Melrose
-Turn right (again) onto Hwy 100, cross over and turn left and continue on Melrose all the way until it descends to Hwy T.
-Left on T
-Left on Bassett
-Left onto Cremin's Green, out-and-back. Continue up Bassett.
-Left onto Old Manchester
-left onto Bouquet.
-Left onto Ossenfort, cross T, and continue on Ossenfort.
-Right turn onto Hardt Road (at the bottom of Ossenfort Hill)
-Left turn up Dehardt Farms Rd at stopsign - go to end and turn back around in cul-de-sac.
-right back onto Hardt Rd, returning to Ossenfort.
-right back onto Ossenfort
-Continue straight onto Wild Horse Creek
-turn left up Babler Forest as an out-and-back.
-Come back down, and turn right onto Wild Horse Creek, climbing to Rieger.
-Turn left onto Rieger
-Right on Pond.
-left on Smith School Rd.
-Left on BA.
-left into Babler State Park. Once in Babler, turn right onto John Cochran Dr (CCW loop), turn right up Theodore Wirth Drive, and left down Guy Park Dr (past the pool). Turn right back up John Cochran Dr, climb up the first hill, and turn left at the bottom of the other side (also John Cochran Dr (be careful on the gravel!) and duck under gate to exit Babler State Park.
-Immediately turn right up Wild Horse Creek Drive (Doberman.)
-Turn right onto Old Eatherton.
-Left onto Orville.
-Right up Shephard.
-Left onto bike path alongisde 109
-Left onto Clayton back to Lone Wolf Coffee.

*a mercy option to take Shephard to Streucker to Kehrs Mill back to Lone Wolf is in effect, thus shortening the ride by several miles.
*Please take note of where to exit Babler State Park - it is not well marked, and easy to miss. It is at the bottom of the second climb, when you will pass by it at first, and then loop back around to it. It is not very well paved, and you will have to go underneath a metal gate.
*UPDATE* the addition of going to DeHart Farms might be out because of bridge that is out, in which case we'll just continue down Ossenfort.

That should be it for important info. With any luck, Scott might actually get lucky with a man-boy-who-looks-like-chick, just hopefully not at the expense of the group's progress. At least there will be amazing food waiting afterwards.

Holy shit.

-Casey F. Ryback, Regular Guy


Death By Hill Ride Official Date, SON!

Greetings Team Seagal Loyalistas! Here Ye, Here Ye - Let ring through the streets and towns that the date for the Death By Hill ride has changed just slightly from Thursday the 25th to Sunday the 28th!

Let me repeat that - SUNDAY THE 28th. Of February.

We'll go up and down like a thousand times. We'll go up some hills that are so steep you'll wonder how the pavement hasn't tipped backwards and fallen back down the hill. I'll put the route up soon, so stay tuned.

By the way, has anyone else noticed that this site for the fake, unofficial team exists? www.teamsegal.blogspot.com

In the meantime, in order to mentally prepare for the mentality involved here, please look at this photo, closely, and thank me later.

-Casey F. Ryback, Regular Guy


Death By Hill Ride "Tentative" Date

Greetings, frozen Jerks. As a heads up, the tentative date that has been sent down from on High for this ride is Thursday, Feb 25th. You might remember last year's ride, and this will probably be mostly the same route, with a couple of minor extras thrown in. Stay tuned for more info, and a hammered-down date. Sorry 'bout the Thursday, most of us don't have m-f 9-5 jobs. It probably won't really go down if it is below freezing.

In the meantime, check out this meaty ride/race/thing that started showing up on radar at Team Seagal HQ - it's the inaugural year too! The 2010 Gravel World Championships!
150 miles of Nebraska dirt, and free!

Hopefully our group will be as diverse as this one:

...and be at least as much fun as a vacation with these folks:

-Casey F. Ryback, regular guy.