2011 Death By Hills - Attrition Through PAIN

Greetings, Team Seagal Loyalistas. Let us mark February 27th, 2011 as the day which found all 50+ riders taking part today losing the weakest parts of our being. Fears, insecurities, intimidations, limits - they were all cast off of our from out bodies much like a monkey craps into his hand, only to fling it at another monkey. Unfortunately, I, Casey Fucking Ryback, much like everyone on our team, have no weak parts. So despite the punishment that was dealt today directly to my leg muscles, I lost only sweat, and my jenkem buzz with which I left the parking lot this morning. Oooo-weeee, talk about a good day. Almost perfect weather, lots of cool broski's with whom to spend the day, and good road conditions lead to a fine time had by all.

There was a report that we had 56 people start out the ride. (It would have been 57, but when Taggort sees "Designing Women marathon" in the TV Guide, there's nothing that will keep him from that TV. Must be something about that Delta Burke.) I fully believe that, because when I looked back as we rolled out, I realized that I was the locomotive in a man-train the likes of which I had never seen. It was at that point that I also was giving thanks to Energor for blessing me with a last minute fuji which I had left perched atop Mt. Kohler during a pit stop on the way over to the ride meeting point - because had I had any left within me, there would have surely been some home-made brown chamois butter magically appearing in my bibs. And it wasn't long after the magic fuji stop that Stormy and I happened to be driving down Claytorn Road approaching our destination when we found a couple of interesting things - Pete Goode choo-chooing his way on his bike, to which we made sure to remind him of his jerk status. We also pulled alongside our own Cockpunchor in his Cock-mobile. Attached to which, was his custom labeled bike. Storm and I had a good laugh at the thought of all other drivers pulling up behind him at stop lights or on the highway, and seeing the name "Cock Puncher" affixed to the bike, and all of them wondering just what the fuck that means:

An epic journey such as the one on which we were embarking required extensive preparation, and proper warming up. Stove and Peat showed the rest of us how to warm your shit up:

Rolling out at a very mild, chilly pace might have seemed a little slow to those towards the back of the pack, but it would surely pay off later. We kept a talking pace down Clayton to the first hill, which would lead us through neighborhood, over hill and dale, down my favorite descent (Woods Road) and quickly turn us up one of the harder climbs of the day, one that would surely wake your legs up - Bartizan. Continuing on, the climbs only got longer, and with the addition of Starwoods, we probably upset a couple of emo dogwalkers. Approaching the base of the main part of Starwoods, I was very amused by the reactions from those around me - "Is that the hill? I don't see where else we can go, so I guess that has to be the hill... Shit! That's the hill!"

One by one, the hills became flattened as we flexed our quads, calves and hamstrings. We continued up Alt past Nelly's house and Hidden Valley, through Eureka, around the "Allenton Loop" where I climbed up the second hill next to Donjo and Larry Koester and found it surreal to hold a conversation with them on that climb, whereas a few years back, I couldn't make it up that hill without stopping.

The first gas station at Allenton Rd/Hwy 44 was a welcome sight, unlike the inbred redneck in his Dodge 2500 Cummin's Diesel who told us how much he didn't like us being on the road. He then sped off with a spew of black diesel exhaust, no doubt upset at being late for the Criss Angel tea-bag orgy try-outs being held just a few miles farther down the highway. The neat thing about one of those is that instead of standing over you, Criss Angel levitates.

Allenton Road was then followed by two hidden gems, Scenic Loop and Woodland Meadow - during which I was believing to be on my own personal vision quest. I found myself slamming Mountain Dew and driving a monster truck, only to be thrown into a lake, at which point I awoke and realized that I was just remembering one of my favorite childhood commercials:

I came to, and found myself effortlessly cruising through Rockwoods Reservation, past my cherished Smokey The Bear, and up Melrose for a mid-climb break at Thrasher's house, at which he and his wife graciously provided bits of delicious cake and water:

Thrasher's wife recently opened the Celebrate Life Bakery, and this is the second year they provided this much-needed stop, and it was UH-MAZING! Thanks a ton! I think those cake flavors should be re-named "The Bubonic Chronic" because that it was it was like.

Peeling away from the cake, we headed out towards the D9 Bulldozer, which sits atop what I think to be the steepest hill of the day, Cremin's Green. It was almost a cheering section waiting at the top as I punched the pavement into submission with each of my swollen quad muscles. This is the only climb on the route that actually has a switchback. While recovering at the top, Mitch had the glorious idea of stopping by the recently "re-discovered" monument just a 1/4th mile off the route. I think we did a good thing by getting a huge group of people perched around one of these monuments, of which there are supposedly many around the city. The sign (closeup) refers to cyclists of the time making that point, the county line, their "mecca". I think we paid homage to that tradition in making that our farthest-most point on the ride. Not that much has changed in these group rides, right?
(next to the Pond/Old Manchester Monument)

There will be more to come regarding these monuments, I assure you.

Continuing on, we found Babler Forest (a climb that some former co-workers of mine refered to as "The Cunt-Punch") to be a climb well worth doing for the 50+mph descent:

A quick loop through Babler Park and up Doberman brought us to the second gas station. This was about the 75 mile mark:

On this ride, Punchor and I discussed how Nokeward, Stove and Peat are not made of human parts, but rather, whatever the T-1000 is made of. How else could they conquer such beasts as we encountered that day, doing so with only one gear? The first photo up above confirms that, because no human would do whatever it is that Nokeward would be doing on the ground there. God, what, a, fucking, JERK.

There was a surprisingly large group left at this point in the ride. Those of us left utitlized our superior attitude and superior state of mind to flatten Orville, Shepard, Clayton, and for Mitch, Stephen, Barry and I, the final obstacle, the Saddle Creek neighborhood, before returning to the sight of our departure. I know that Peat and Mitch both achieved Centuriosity today, though I wonder if anyone else did as well - Mr. Goode?

Finishing this ride in sunlight was simply a feeling that is hard to beat. Kind of like a road ride without the stigma of being a prissy roadie - just a bunch of friends who needed to get the season started in the best possible way - by skipping Froze Toes and challenging yourself at your own pace. Fattest tire award goes to Lawman, narrowly beating out Peat. First place award went to someone whom I probably never saw, because they were crushing everything, and maybe skipping the important parts. Who knows.

In case you didn't know who that guy at the bottom of Bartizan was, that was Thrasher, with a camera. If you look closely at the end, you can see Jerkward and his super-slow cadence:

Here's my Garmin Link! Which shows everything on the provided route except for Dehart Farms, and the Smith School extension.

It was awesome to see everyone Sunday. I don't know about you, but 2011 is starting out to be the best year yet.

-Casey F. Ryback

p.s. I am holding t'aint-salve-application-specialist interviews today.

Oh Yes We Climbed the Hills

Good day. Did you go on a ride today? We did. I hope you were there to receive your death from them hills- NO ONE can hide from the hills. You can expect Coratch to string together some very fancy word groupings to describe the experience very soon. Until then, here is the Garmin Link from the 2011 Death By Mutha Fuckin' Hills ride as recorded from my hybrid. Stay Cool, thanks for stopping by.



Found some Remnants from last year's Death By Hills Ride

Spotted less than 1/2 mile from the actual DBH route.

Preparation(h) should be well in play by now. You will not forget this day. Just don't forget where you ghost-rode your bike while your mind is simultaneously melting away and your soul cries for mercy-surely what happened here.

Jenkem before Bartizan for anyone who can identify the exact location of this monument.



DBMFH - It Looms

Greetings, skinny-tire-riding jorks. Climbing can be a wonderful experience, given the proper challenge and setting. That's why it'll be great to kick off the new season with some serious leg-shredding. If you're feeling good up the hill, you might be able to steal a peak at your neighbor, to see how he or she is doing, kinda like Commander Riker here:

I always knew his beard was just for show.

Just remember, avoiding a climb because you don't want to descend it is weak. Think of how much stronger you'll be. Ask yourself the same question that The Ultimate Warrior asks at :40 in this video:

...find the answer to that question, then show up.

Please park across the street from Ralph's place so we don't jam up the lot, and I'll see you there. Bring food and money, with which you can take advantage of the few gas stations along the way, as this isn't supported.

-Casey F. Ryback, Regular Guy


Death By Hills, just over the hill

NOTICE: To all jerks planning on jerkin' it up on the ride, please Park in the lot directly across Clayton Road from Lone Wolf Coffee. This makes things better for everyone! Jerks!

Greetings Team Seagal Soldiers. This winter so far has had more white powder than I did that time I got to meet Tom Boonen at the sex and drugs party. Rest assured, the wintry conditions have not kept the Seagal Pain Train from loosing steam. In fact, we've picked up more fuel to put on this year's fire - a fire that will burn longer than a tire fire, and more intensely than Energor's jet packs.

In order to further stoke the fire, Death By Hills is happening. And by "it's happening," I mean I got someone to work for me that day, so I'm doin' a road ride with whomever else shows up. Like I said last year, if it is below freezing, I probably won't be committing to the full route, because 6+ hours is pretty fucking tricky in that kind of weather. Same goes for if it is snowing/has recently snowed, or is raining.

NEW AND IMPROVED: Last year, Mitch "I Eat Spikey-Metal Krusty-O's For Breakfast Because I Like Pain" Mashor discovered another hill, that is fairly early in the ride, and I think that I, and anyone else who is going, should go up this thing. It's another out and back, and it is called STARWOOD RD. It lies between Old State Road and John's Cabin Rd, on Red Tail Hawk Drive. HERE. It may be one of the steepest hills on the route.

Only a few places to refuel, so come prepared:
-gas station at Allenton/I-44
-gas station at Wildhorse Creek/Eatherton (at the top of "Doberman Hill")
-gas station at 109/Hwy 100 - this isn't exactly ON the route, but it's fairly close by.
-Thrasher? Got any more cake chunks? Bueller?

Deets Me, Brah:

Where: Ralph's Place - they close at 3 on Sundays, so don't expect to get food there after the ride.
Where to: almost the same as last year, Route. Keep in mind that the route isn't marked at all.
When: Same day as Froze Toes! Feb 27th, 9AM - that means CLICKING IN AT 9, so fucking get there early.
Pace: Cheesy does it. Hammer if you want to, but almost all the cars were gone by the time the group that I was in finished.

The route, typed out for you to print:

-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. (BUT not before making a quick left up and back down Starwood Rd!)
-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.

Nico Toscani posted a Garmin link from the ride last year, seen here. Note that it does not include Cremin's Green or Babler Forest.

Simpsons Trivia Time:

What video game is this for, and what does Santa say here?

That's all for now,
-Casey F. Ryback, Regular Guy


MFXC2011 Registration Opens NOW

Registration for the 2011 MFXC opens TODAY!

The 2011 edition of the Middlefork XC race will take place sometime in May, and it is only open to the first 75 to register. Register you say, but I thought Non Races are free?! They are, but this one is special so in order to get all the info(The Where, When, Why, and the WHAT!) You must mail me postcard containing your info, and if you are one of the lucky 75 you will receive all the race info in your mail shortly after. This race has only 3 cats. Men Open, Women Open, and SS Open. It will be 30-40mi mix of single track and country road. It will be one large loop, and expect finishing times to be roughly in the 3-5hr range. Registration closes Monday, March 28 2011. All postcards postmarked after March 28 will not be accepted.

MFXC2010 Blog Recap

Send your non race entry to...

Mason Storm
5912 Southwest Ave.
St. Louis MO 63139

Postcards must contain this info.

CAT(M,F,or SS)

2010 Men Open/Overall Winner Matt James 3:24:08
2010 Single Speed Open Winner Dan Fuhrman 3:24:50
2010 Women Open Winner Karen Holtman 4:44:46