Got up to Leb today for our ride and right away things started to go wrong... Eric's tubeless front wheel (xtr wheel, panaracer firex tires) was leaking, and leaking again after being refilled. After Eric wrangled a tube into it we got under way. I was riding the Marin with the swamp things and 32x22 gearing. Early on conditions were pretty good. It was hard-pack snow under 2-3 inches of snow. In a few spots there were drifts that were impassable, but that improved once we got to the other side of the ridgeline. I had very little trouble overall until the windy climb (with tight switchback to the right at the very top) that is about 2.5 or 3 miles in- that section was just too narrow to climb while staying on top of the bike. I did almost make the entire sustained climb after that. I knew my bike was working well because Eric's setup was obviously a disadvantage for him. We continued on and I BROKE THE CHAIN. Fun walk out... I don't know what I need to do with chains, but it's driving me nuts all the problems I'm having with them. This one is "newer" but does maybe have 300 or 400 miles on it. I will replace it.
Later I found out that the MORC guys didn't want anyone riding Leb, absolutely no one on *GASP* regular tires. I posted a brief synopsis on MORC (the tracks are out there anyways) and got a bit slammed for it. In the summer I get where they are coming from with their rules etc. etc., but I'm literally one negative post away from just not re-upping my membership. I suppose by next year I'll be on a "snow bike" (although certainly not a Surly) and it will all be a moot point. Heck those bastards will welcome me then... but this manicuring is driving me nuts. Conditions much 'easier' than today and I'd prefer riding on snowmobile trails, and they'd actually be just as challenging. If I hadn't deliberately handicapped myself by riding the 26" SS it would have been no sweat at all. I just can't wrap my head around where they are coming from.. Isn't the whole point of this stuff the challenge? There aren't beginners out there in the winter, and if there were- send em somewhere else or let them love the challenge and learn from it. When I started riding last winter the absolute harshness and difficulty of winter riding is what really drew me in. Tim W. and I basically pushed our bikes for laps up there on multiple occassions and LOVED it. On top of all that- see my race result from Sunday... I'm not even very good at riding this stuff!
Called in to work so that I could watch the national championship game. As much as I dislike Colt McCoy I was disappointed to see him go down. It's been a strange game since with lots of huge mistakes from both sides in the first half followed by basically no action here in the second. I will be happy to see Alabama win!
ooh- also super excited about
finding out about stuff like that is a huge advantage of having a blog, which I would have never expected.
ooh- while I was typing that... Texas touchdown. I'd love to see a couple more of those from the freshman to keep this entertaining.
Hitting the Hero Gravel. - I wan't able to ride Monday due to Gymnastics and with rain predicted all day today into Thursday I really wanted to ride on Tuesday. Well, in the morning...
5 hours ago