From May 25th
Double Southern Traverse
The Virginia IMBA mt. bike festival is a great time to get down to the GW area and ride some really great trails. Also helps as a warm up for the SM100. This year I did a quick jaunt down to the festival for just Friday night. I got Alex involved and we left at 6:30am and were riding at 12:30pm to do the Southern Traverse trail From the South out and back. I really liked doing the trail this way I felt that it was allot better to be on singletrak the whole time. I didn't mean for us to go down a hill to the fireroad and then right back up it, but once we started heading down we ended up at the fire road. I will say going South to North is allot harder, there is more climbing, and almost all the downhill parts are on off camber sections. The good news is going back the traditional way North to South it is allot faster and easier. Also you get the 3 mile down hill at the end. Kent and his wife Paula came out and went at their own pace, we caught up to them when we turned around and started on our way back.
The Huge Ride-less road
The Fallowing day we got up had a nice pancake breakfast, and Sid and Erik came down for the day and we started our ride up Hankey. Within the first 2 miles Sid broke a chain so he had to fix that. I had wanted to get in front of people but now we were in the mix with a huge group of Bike Line riders, and Pouch, and Mark from DCMTB who had caught up with us. We kinda rode behind the Bike Line folks for a bit and then started up the steep part of Hankey. I almost made it thru that section without dabbing, but I ran out of gas and had to walk a little. For the rest of the climb up Hankey it was myself in front with Erik, or Alex behind and Sid off the back. We made it down Dowells and then to the store, there we were back with the Bike Line folks again. We got out of there, and hooked up with Mike S. and Co. for the road ride up to Braileys. Mike was setting a good tempo and then I took it over, almost had to gear down but Braileys was there. Alex had fallen off the pace but caught back up while regrouped at Braileys to refill our camelbacks with the water pump which was a team effort to work. Going into the Singletrak we were yet again bunched with the Bike Line people. We get to the stream and people go through and start the climb. I don't like getting my feet wet if I don't have to, and since I was not in a race, I was the only one to take off my shoes and socks and then walk across the stream. I then put on my shoes and socks and walked the first part of the climb. I seem to climb pretty good for how big I am, and I wasn't upset that I was the last person on the trail. This way I knew I would have more open trail and not be stuck behind someone and have to stop. I was spinning up, cause I knew you had to save you strength for the couple of sections of rock where you need your speed to get through it. As I went up I caught all of my group and passed some of the Bike Line people. I made it up without dabbing(ok I did kick off one tree but did not touch the ground or stop). Only the second time I have done that, the first being during the SM100 I did in 2007. At the top we bumped into Joe, who was riding with Punga. We ate some and found out after a couple of minutes that Alex had stopped like 500ft from the top cause he didn't know how much longer it was to the top :-) so I yelled for him and he came up. Sid and Erik got going cause they needed to get back to their cars to get home. Alex was pretty spent so he rode back with Jonathan. I wanted to go up Dowells to Hankey and then down that to the campsite. I was now solo since others didn't want to do hill climb. I timed it up Dowells not killing it but riding consistantly and getting out of the saddle when I could to keep the back happy. I made it up it in like 30 minutes or so. After the hike a bike up Hankey I went to the lookout and took pictures. I then started on my way back passing the Dan hudson group, and he said the Bike Line boys were ahead. I then caught them, and kind of rode by them. I think Rob from that team kept up with me for a bit, but I pushed the pace as if I was finishing the SM100. I kept it up and I ended up with like 4:11 ride time. I was pretty happy with that. I even beat Alex back!
We then packed up and were out of there by 5:00pm to get back to DC.
Got this as a temp frame and it was a little too small for me, rides like a 56-57. The 59cm seat tube C-T fooled me so I need to let this go to make room for a Moots"life bike" Check out the pictures for Measurements too.
FSC cyclone frame
Spinergy Xaero Lite Wheels
1 year old Easton 90 SL full carbon fork
Rival Shifter R. Deraileur 10sp 11-26
Ultegra Brakes, and Ft. Deraileur
RaceFace Compact Candence cranks
ITM Millenium bar
Would cost over $2000 new.
Contact via email = ou98dtbiggs AT gmail
from May 17th
I had put this ride out there for people to do, and didn't get any of the usual suspects, but did get to ride with some of my teammates that I don't usually get to ride with. The day started off around 9:30 meeting up at Hamburg rd. I took the crew down south on the yellow trail, and was doing a good job leading until we didn't stay on the yellow trail :-( I got us back on track with the red trail, and then at the gambril parking lot had us go down the black trail to the blue to an unknown trail to the road then we took the fire rd up through the down hill course, then back on the blue to hamburg. I think Samantha really enjoyed the ride, and Chris was looking to be having fun in between wrecking :-) Vince was happy as usual too. That was around 12:30
Then as they were leaving I started my own epic ride, where I was doing great finding trails that I have been on with other people, but had not been on by myself. I went from Hamburg, to Little Cannan, to Deathmarch, then on to the Pit. Back up not the roadclimb trail, that goes into Salamandar. This was where my troubles started, I was starting to feel tired, so I thought to hit Iceberg on the way back to Hamburg Rd. I couldn't find the trail head! I had seen the end of it on the blue trail. I then got turned around and thought I would go on the blue trail back, I took a wrong turn cause an hour later I ended up where I stated on the blue trail. I then went the opposite way on Fisher creek, and really screwed myself. I knew I was in trouble when I was descending for a long time, and I saw a Lake I had never seen before. I ended up on Mountain dale Rd. and talked to some people doing yard work and found out I was 6-8 miles from Hamburg Rd. I have done road rides out here so I was familiar with where I was now, but I still had to get to my car. It was 6 or so miles to Hamburg and then I had to climb up that beast. By the time I got back to my car it was 7:10pm. A long day in the saddle and the under carriage was not too happy. Was a good ride to prep for the IMBA weekend over memorial day.
So Bike to work day was allot smoother then last year where my bike broke and I had to fix a flat. This year, Jon and I did our bike to work day, with a side adventure to Sara's House to get my ID badge for work. We actually did a good bit of miles. The funnest pert of the ride was doing a picture on our friend's front porch when he wasn't there. I also got to see Wolfgang, Joel, Ryan, Ricky, Ilana and say hi to a few other bike friends along the way. With traffic getting worse and worse it is the time to bike to work. Photos and quotes done by Jonny J.
After doing a mini epic in Bald Eagle State forest the previous day, I was up in the air about riding, but I had routed out this ride that was only 40miles but still did like 4200 feet of climbing. So I headed off in the early morning so that I would be missed too much.
The first half of the ride was Foggy, I mean it was just hanging. The Fog didn't really go away until I got to the higher elevations.
I went across the Susquehanna river into East Lewisburg and Liberty township. I got off the bigger road and got on to Covered Bridges rd. The road had a covered bridge where your car needed to be under 6'2" Was the lowest overhang I have been under, well I got through that and then started the climb. The road turned to gravel, which wasn't ideal, but I was riding the cross bike with some new 23mm top model Forte tires, which have a diamond tread pattern and were able to offer some grip. I am climbing and I come to Mountain Rd. I start going up that and the road is getting worse. I get to a fork one goes straight, and the other up a switch back. I go straight and end up at someone's trailer home, so I head down backs towards the fork, and I see a kid in camo who lets me know the other road goes over the mountain.
So I start on the switch back and this is a steep one, and I have passed the end state maintance sign. So the road is now a blown out jeep road. I am riding hoping not to get a flat, and tring to pick my way through the rocks. Since I was riding my cross bike I had a 34-50 in front and I had a 32-11 in back , so I was sitting and riding the 34-32 at like 6mph since you couldn't stand. I hit another switch back and I walked part of that and got back on, and it was really bad rocks but flatter, then all of sudden I cross the township line and boom I have asphalt! The road was there cause there is a Tower that must need to be serviced. So I go down the mountain and I am thinking that I am to do another road over the mountain then this one again. I deceded after doing the other climb to go back up and over instead of coming back to this road again. Now that I know about this road, I will only go down it(gingerly) instead of going up it. After the climbing I got down to Northumberland, and I took a wrong turn and had to backtrack a bit, and then went over the Susquehanna river and back to Lewisburg, I had some climbing on this side of the river as well, no gravel roads, but some shorter steep hills.
I was happy with the ride, and realised if I lived here I would be good at climbing cause there is a ton of it around this place. Also the scenery was nice.
I was up in Lewisburg central Pa over mother's day weekend. I was visiting Sara's Parents, and was going to get some rides in while I was there. I wanted to do a mountain bike ride, and I had found that the Rocktober race is run at Bald Eagle State Forest which is somewhat near their house. The first issue was that I forgot my bike shoes! So I went to the local Shop Big Als in Miffilin on the way there. I got some shoes that are not as good as my shimanos, but they have a more rubber tread to them.
So I get to the forest area and I parked off of a fire road and started on my way. I started on the Old Tram Trail. This trail was ROCKY! it reminded me of parts of Gambril and the Shed. The rocks where not put there for a better ride like some of the shed trails but more that the rocks were just there. The other issue was the blow downs, the race is be this weekend and I saw quite a bit of blow downs on all the trails the race is to use. I was liking my 29er and I lowered the rear shock pressure to help with the riding. Once the trail intersected the Boiling Spring Trail then it was more of a slightly downhill fast ride.
I was then on Copper rd. where I biked all the way up to the Cowbell trail which was a blast to ride. The trail is mostly downhill, not sketchy more the kind of down hill if you have the balls you could fly down it. I was a little conservative since there was no need for me to get hurt all alone in the forest.
I thought to take a trail not on the Rocktober route, and got screwed as the trail turned to nothing, and I had to back track to the road.
I was then on White Deer Creek rd. Where I missed a turn and ran into another mt. biker who was really friendly and he got me turned around the right way. Running Gap Rd. was a tuff climb,and it took me to next trail the Top Mt. Trail. Before I did the trail I ate lunch, and I was running low on water. I had forgot the camelbak lid so I had two 33oz bottles to drink from.
The Top Mtn Trail was a good one, I was a little tired when I rode it but It was great cause it was pretty much all ridable but you had to pick your line in the rocks and be able to gas it every now and then to get through the rock gardens. You really felt you were up on the mountain there, was able to get a great panorama shot. I was to take a left off the trail and work my way to Sands rd. I somehow missed it and ended up taking a trail not on the map that had me come out on copper rd. which I thought was Sands, so I climbed another hill for like 10 minutes only to find I was going the wrong way.
I then went back down and then up again to Sands rd. that rd went up and up for awhile, then went down, which meant I would have to climb back to the car. I got to the backend of R.B. Winter Park and then headed up to my Car.
The ride was really tuff, the terrain was hard and there was a good deal of climbing. I give credit to the folks that do the Rocktober race it is a tuff place to ride. Also I was running out of water, so I think that didn't help with my energy levels. I will be up here again, I might try some of the easier trails next time, but I did like this ride, would maybe park near Top mtn trail it might flow better.
Photo by:Jason Berry
This was my first SS race, and I think it was a great one to do SS. The Lodi course near Fredricksburg seems to get twistier and twister each year. The course is up to 9.6 miles compared to the 7mile course in years past. The 12 hours of Lodi was my first Mt. bike race back in 2000 I had never done a night ride and the race started at 12am. This year the race starts at 12 noon, to 12 midnight. I miss the midnight start but like not having the hassle of almost sleeping driving home.
The plan was to have Alex, Erik then myself go out. I was on antibiotics and was getting over a lingering sinus infection. I didn't know how I would ride until I was out there on the course. Alex went out and did a great 1st lap. Erik did a solid second lap, and then it was my turn. The Pedal Shop team was in front of us, so I tried to catch him on the starting climbs of the race. I was able to catch and pass him but those first 2.5 miles hurt!; really steep up and downs. I finished my lap with a 101 I think so I was pretty happy with that. So we were now in first place and we would continue to build on that as the day went on.
I changed my gear from a 21T to a 22T and that really helped. The coarse has no flat sections to spin a gear out. It was more important that you could spin your rear wheel up quickly out of turns. I had a small mechanical on the second lap, but still did a 105 or something, my ride time was only 30 seconds slower then my 1st lap.
The weather was great, was even a little hot with the sun being out. Then around 7pm the skies opened big time. The race course went from dry to thick sandy mud. I figured out with the longer course and with the Mudfest I would only have like one more lap. So I went out juiced to ride as fast as I could which wasn't too fast if I didn't want to fall down. When I came to the finish line I found out the Pedal Shop Boys had bagged it since they were already an hour behind us, and the Bike Lane wasn't going to be able to catch up so we ended our race at 10:20pm!
The other DCMTB team of Ilana, Vince, Kevin doing the open catagory got 3rd so they were really putting in some solid laps. I heard that Ilana's last lap was like 2 hours so that must not been that fun.
I had a sinus headache, so I left the place around 11:20 to go to a nice warm shower and bed at my parents house about 30minutes away.
Was a great race and Erik, and Alex were great teammates wanting to have fun and be competitive at the same time. I don't think I will ever race Lodi not on a SS I mean there is not the need for gears cause your speed is so slow. Also with a SS the mud was not as much of an issue, my last lap there were so many people with broken bikes, chains, derailleurs. I was happy I didn't have that stuff.
Looking forward to racing with Alex again at the 12 hours of Cranky Monkey.
Also Sara gets the trooper award for coming out to the race with some mid race Soft tacos from Chipotle. I was happy she came and she seemed ok with the rain.