Greetings, Team Seagal Bandoleros! When it comes to doing shit on mountain bikes, what better time is there than when the ground is frozen? Almost none, that's what. Since the first Jerkduro got squished by poor conditions (since the freeze-thaw cycle is immune to yak semen, the active ingredient in our rain-preventing dance) we pushed it off to today, CX Worlds/Superbowl Sunday. And what luck, our ground was frozen solid, despite a full day of freezing rain yesterday.
I, Casey "Glacier" Ryback, awoke this morning to find that as I slept, a brown iceberg had cleaved off of the stinky glacier inside my colon. This was discussed with both our good Doctor and with C-Dubs, who bestowed upon me the glorious news that they were also commemorating the first Jerkduro, CX Worlds, and Superbowl Sunday with super turds in their toilet bowls. This had me thankful for the wonders of technology, which was, at that moment, allowing me to talk about pooping with two dudes who were each 1000+ miles away from me, in opposite directions. Truly, this is a great time to be alive.
Saddling up in the ole Maxima, with rusty weight-reducing holes, I mounted my not-cool-anymore 2.2" wide tire mountain bike to my ancient roof rack, and speedily made the journey out to the start of the Al Foster Trail, to see who would show up. Turns out, it was just enough dudes to make a nice man-train. The conditions would be treacherous, though. The Power Duo of Larry and Bryan rolled up, having just descended down the trail, and told a tale of reduced traction, unpredictable surfaces, and heinous epicnicity. I was stoked. So stoked in fact, that I had to pull up some recumbent stunt videos on my smart telephone just to calm the fuck down. Good thing I found this video, which turned my over-stoked status into uncontrollable laughter:
So our Bluff View Strike Force was assembled: Nico "Gold Cans" Toscani, Orin "I put the 'Ti' into 'riding my Ti bike with tennis shoes' " Boyd, Gino "Delivering Pizzas to the Packwood Estate" Felino, Strove "thermal headgear?" Frodeman, Larry K, Bryan A, and myself, Casey "Sorry for the Smell" Ryback.
Since there weren't really many dudes having shown up, and since the racing against the clock in these conditions would have been pretty sketchy, we decided to make it a nice leisure-suit-larry ride to the top and back. But what a ride it was!
Despite traction that could be described as more slick than STLPAF Dave's downtube when it is sprayed with Pam prior to a potentially muddy CX race. Nevertheless, we were able to avoid serious jam-jobbage while choo-chooing our way up the climb on the way to superior glory:
From near the top, we reveled in all of Energor's Creation:
For once, the moderate rutting from people being dicks by riding the muddy trails was a bit of a help to us in the traction department. We rested briefly for translations and imbibing, just long enough for the sun to actually show itself for a moment. What perfect timing. It was here though, that I found out Strove's secret to making his psuedo-fatbike so light. In addition to buying a lots of boutique, expensive go-fast parts, he really sweats the details, like forgoing unneeded bolts:
On a dicey descent, one in which I executed a miserable pass on Jerkward and broke a tree, we found the ground to be less slippery than we thought. Back at the cars, a few of us headed out, while myself and PizzaTime headed out for Round 2. We rode back out, with plans for a hot lap of Stinging Nettle, Blue Ribbon, and finally, a victory lap of Blorff View.
We told these swans to get fucked, to which the responded "HONK HONK HONK," which I'm sure translates into "Don't turn us into sleeping bag insulation!"
We kept the party rolling, passing by all the major trail landmarks. We entered Blue Ribbon Trail, a loop which the Mayor disclosed he had not presided over in years. Pretty surprising, for a man of his political power. We embarked clockwise, and upon cresting the first hill, we took a moment for a viewing of someone's memorial just off the trail:
We pondered, reflected, and silently pressed on, which meant immediately taking the downhill to shred-town. Approaching the bottom, our tires clawed up to the top of the second hill, where we descended once again at Ludicrous Speed, under the tunnel, and back onto the Al Foster. One good turn of the Bluff View deserves another, so we ascended once more, though it was clear that the trail surface was becoming less "textured" and more "peep-show-floor-esque."
Slowly ascending, we did come across Geez0r and Thrash0r, engaging in illegal (in some states) acts. Geez0r was fresh onto some Goldilocks wheels, and telling tales of going faster than everyone younger than him. We discussed using our turds for added traction, and possible devices for deployment of said turds onto the ground surface. He knows that we are down, and will help finance this product's development.
Upon reaching the bluff, the second time, myself and ItsNotDelivery found our very first GeoCache. How exciting! It was even camouflaged. That didn't stop my eagle eyes from seeing it through the brush, much like Titty's Hawk eyes saw the fox down on the river banks. Oooooweee. Anyway, since we had nothing to deposit in the Cache besides turds, (and we didn't want to give away free jenkem to the next person to open the container) we made sure to sign the guest-book!
I think it was a success, even though there was no timing to be had. No worries. Beer and bikes once again came together, not unlike the pages of Criss Angel's copies of "Boys Life" magazine. And despite having to hit the brakes to keep my speed in check more often than Leg-Titty buys and/or sells a bike, we had a totally excellent ride.
Anyway, as a reminder, Feb. 23rd is Death By Hills, same place, time, route. More details to come.
-Casey F. Ryback