30 August 2011
I see that Surly has dropped the science of their MOonlander (which, let's face it...shall be refereed to as the MOonraker) and it is something I am anxious to test ride. I thought the Pugsley(*want for Ultimate Camping Bike!!!!!) was too one-trick of a pony until I rode it for a day and a half because it was too fun to get off, so. I will test the waters of their Ogre, as well.
Otherwise, I got nothing. Who's got a product/service/food item/strip club that I simply muuuuust try?
Parts is parts. I'll check the Shimano cross stuff. Tektro's fancy new levers, and their disc brake adaptor (road lever to hydraulics...). What else?
29 August 2011
28 August 2011
It is some riding!
Today was the inaugural ride of the local juniors club (as per Carmel High), and it was an inauspicious event. 1 member of the club attended; this, in spite of the fact that one of my roommates is a (not the attending) member. Adding to the pungent mix was a duo of likely comers, S___ and D_____, fronting Carmel Middle School mightily armed with fierce determinations and special dispensation. J______ represented the Elementary as well as could be asked of a 20" in a 26" world. I won.
Wildly varying levels of speed and endurance make for a hucklebuck progression of fits and starts. We took the by now familiar route from Parker Flats Cutoff to the Caprock, via the New Stairs and Mudhen Express. D and J opted to remain at the Caprock while S and C and meself rode #50 to #49. The 2 of them hemmed and hawed when asked if they wanted to climb up some more (for some good DH payoff!) and I decided for them.
I decided we'd climb some more- they'll learn- and go get some from #82. You should have heard them fuss. Ruffled feathers on the top of the admittedly exposed/hot climb to #82. Wet hen style. Turned those frowns upside down with a speedy drop (including an exciting! crash for C).
I out-climbed them so's I could privately drink a beer from under the Caprock while they huffed and puffed their way up #50. CanNOT have the junior cycling club knowing everthing there is to know about that place...
On the return, all the little piggies opted for the road, but still demanded Blair Witch. I lik their style- pooped, but unwilling to allow that detail to derail the Fun riding. All in all, we: saw a fair number of people, found a 7" section of smoothly articulating, bleachy clean, snake spine (with many ribs still attached), followed wind-strewn pieces of shed snakeskin to a hole into which more shed skin disappeared, caught and handled a red Racer Snake, got musked by same, rope swang, bike rode, and picnicked.
Maybe it was auspicious...I try to foster the possibles with these kids. Thinking of the P_____ V_____ High guys' overnight tour to Monterey, thinking of backcountry to and beyond Arroyo Seco, putting bugs in their ears...
27 August 2011
A way to come home from work.
A possible payload, which could be found on a given day on a given trail.
A toast: Here's to August. Here's to remembering to bring some clippers, a saw, and some long sleeves.
26 August 2011
C___, recent grommet, thunk of and started a mountain bike club up at the high school. He and his friends taunted daughter N___, asking if she could ride.
Her reply? She'll kick allllllll their asses. Now she's in the club. Of course, this means I will be underwriting this club in many ways.
Awwww, yeah. I'm with this.
This fall (duuude, it is August!) is turning out to be some bicycle fun.
24 August 2011
Sorry? No, really. Are you ready for the time of your Life? Seriously. I look at the clock, at the old clock on the wall, and it is almost time for cyclocross?!?
Duuuuuuuude. It is August!
Welp, the 1st race round these parts is CCCx #1, on Sunday, September 11th! Heck yes, that's real soon. D says he wants to race 14/unders this year. I support that. Whooo! I support that a lot. But, I'm a little concerned this means I may have to race as well, and I have the poor fitness.
And, plus, I have it on the poor authority that Surf City will step up this year again and as well- beginning October 30th. BAM! Perhaps some more Peak Season, too? You tell me.
I may have some work reschedulin' to do.
You may have some more Isley Bros to listen to.
Who wants to race?! Whooo! You know what they say about rubbing.
23 August 2011
Last week we met at the elementary school, having dropped off our respective chirrens, and wandered up the hill to some close, above-board trails which are very easy to access and pretty tame. I thought it would be most useful to him, and I could get an idea of his competence/attitude/compatibility. Hey. The guy built armies. Who knows which way he jumps.
He jumps pretty sensibly, I think. Being a self-professored student of history meself, his views seem level-headed, if a little sharp-edged. This is not a place I care to engage in heated discussion of anything other than bikes, but I do feel it worth mentioning that this country seems to be heading (quickly) toward the edges, and I wish my children to have the skills needed to thrive. Less will be more.
Anyhow, today was Intro to Fort Ord. Mountain biking 101. It was a little dull. M___ is not a fast guy, or a techy guy, and has a crap bike. But (the most important but) he is willing. It was very like riding with the kids; a lot of slowing, waiting, calling turns, and picking smoother trails. I'll do it again. The conversation was worthwhile. Hopefully he picks up the hammer and starts swinging it himself, though, because I only have so much daylight to burn.
Sussing out new people is weird. Mostly, there's some filters already passed before you ride together; i.e. other folks' introductions, meetings on hard trails, etc.
NSFW audio, and poor video, but it's the only copy of this relevant recording of Louis CK (super comic- you should watch his show) I could pull up...
P.S. Astute readers who really pay attention have noticed the Paul's Thumbies I run (on 2 bikes) and have inquired as to their badassness. I reply: they are pretty bad ass. BUT (the 2nd most important but) you have to keep your housing clean if you expect them to index well with 9 speed. Haven't tried a 10 set-up. Yet. And, if you are too lazy to do this (keeping it clean) then don't expect real crisp friction shifts, either. Since the 9 (and presumably more so, the 10. Eff the 11) speed cassette cogs are so closely spaced, it is easy to misshift. Full stop.
21 August 2011
I'd rather have the Orville Crouch original, but it's nowheres on the interwebs I can find. Anyhow, anyway, if you can turn your nose up at this Buck Owens interpretation (HeeHaw was formative for me, and I admit it) then you're just feelin mean.
Lay before me another section of duff covered, intermittently bermed, occasionally rooted, perfectly paced singletrack. For it is the best in the land. I'll take my turn on the climb, and find that old peace of mind.
Dirt commutes are worthwhile. Ideally it would be swoopy downhill both ways, but we all know how it goes: up and down, up and down. Climbing on pavement is easier and makes time. Descending on pavement is easier and makes time. After work, it is some time to spend climbing on dirt, enjoying the lullingly painful climbs that put you out of your head, and the flats that allow you to return, and (but mostly?) the downhills- which require you to be right there and only there.
16 August 2011
Deputies arrest three in late-night Fort Ord stop
Sheriff's deputies said they arrested three 18-year-old men after stopping their vehicle late Sunday near a closed road on Fort Ord.
Deputies said they made a traffic stop about midnight as the suspect's vehicle made its way among abandoned buildings.
One man was on felony probation, and a vehicle search turned up a police scanner, glass cutter, three sets of gloves and other burglary tools, deputies said.
The traffic stop occurred near Imjin Parkway and 3rd Avenue.
The suspects were identified as Alex E. Marinelli and Jose Rios, both of Salinas, and Miguel S. Perez of Hollister.
Huh..."other burglary tools" sounds funny. Funny haha. Like masks and sacks with $ printed on them.
FYI, the enforcement out there is handled by the Presidio Police. So if you're riding the mean streets of the Ord, watch out for the popo. Especially if you have burglary tools. They have a military mindset and little excitement, so they will pull across 4 lanes and screech to a halt blocking the bike path to enforce the law/check to see if you have your mandated head & tail lights.
Speaking of mandates, school has sprung here on the central coast, and J has a mother mandated extra length ride to school in the mornings. This in an attempt to calm him down at school.
We are now riding up the hill some (nice view) and taking Mission Trail down. Dirt commute?
15 August 2011
After 2 nights chasing the moon (sol0! You losers don't even care if a mountain lion eats me) I am dragging.
Dragging my arse up the hills of Toro Park. I have to get those trails wired at some point if I have designs on poaching the to-be-annexed 672 acres off the East end for camping and such.
This is a picture of poor product placement. I hit a dip, my rear wheel hit the koozied beer and kicked it sideways. Who has 2 thumbs and forgets a shock pump?
Lucky it didn't burst.
Trail riding in Toro is confusing. There are the usual intersecting trails to who knows, but several of what are clearly heavily ridden thoroughfares are signed as "No bikes".
I assume these signs are in error.
I took the likely singletrack (Gilson?) to the West side of the main road and ended up climbing Olasson until I found myself at the saddle. Airplane Trail seemed the good line from there, and it kind of was. Badly hoofed up (the cattle are so pesty there- terracing countless trails across the fall line and shitting everywhere) but shaded and somebody is maintenancing it. There's even a nicely placed slat bridge. Dumped out at the old homestead to climb a little more Ollason until I made the mistake of getting involved with Redtail Canyon. whoa. Lots of little ring grinding hoping the next corner would top out. You get in so far you have to keep going? I do. Cougar Ridge wound me down. Bumpy. Sandy. Hottt.
I will return, but it was a bummer driving 20 minutes to go for a ride. These trails may be worth hitting via cross bike this winter, when it's smoothed out some, but.
Hey, Texas in the 1980s, I remember you.
14 August 2011
None of this will make any sense at all at all unless you are hearing Ali Farka Toure...
It is a rare event that the Full Moon is clear here on the central coast. I'm sorry: I buggged you repeatedly/ you were "on Maui"/ 12 times a year (only, and, if you're lucky) is no reason for exciting involvement/ etc. Bottom line? Too bad you blew it.
When visibility is so crisp, contrast so sharp, you almost lose control from the sheer immediacy of moonlight...that's a ride worth taking. Sanitized Local Loop- allowing for time constraints and low level fitness- rounds out 29.6 miles, but it feels more like 29.8. All aboard? Solo night ride.
Who put the Tecate under the caprock? Who left the Hamm's? Baw bawbubaw. De dong de dong ding dang...
10 August 2011
09 August 2011
Like to what Gus told Call.
So. This and that can get in the way of bike rides. I have found meself slipping into soft (sit a)roundness...Time to snap to; turn some pedals.
Remedied by taking some yout' dem out to Fort Ord a ride bikes, mon.
School starts on Wednesday!?! J______ and I rallied the grommet (that's insider code for "youth interested in bikes and willing to do ish work") and his buddy inna MTB style.
Those guys are 14ish, so the pace was a little bit rushy for J, but we worked it out.
The 2 knuckleheads were fun to ride with as they strained at the leash like pea-brained spaniels (I hates a bird dog) only to stack it up in the corners whenever they were turned loose. J and I brought up the rear to find one or both of them in a heap several times. They are not my kids, but it was a good Dad-type feeling to see them find their level and give each other ish.
I tried to find a line between Coach Knowitall and laissez faire- warned them at the top of 68 about that dangerously placed wooden barrier at the bottom, but otherwise let them make their own beds. We gave them plenty of rope on Mudhen Express (also made sure they know the proper and respectful name for that fine trail) and they hung themselves nicely; coming into the whoopdedoos waaaay too hot, and blowing by the overlook to, predictably, lose control in the sandy mess at the bottom there. I could hear (grommet friend) S___'s curses and lamentations about his ankle and a mazanita bush. This especially amused me as he had been very quiet in the presence of a strange adult thus far.
Foreground Rockhopper= grommet bike. Not a bad way to spend your summer earnings... Poopy Trek was too small for grommet friend, but he run what he brung with a smile. J's and my bikes fit and twerked perfectly.
I have replaced the creaky pop squeak squeak 952 cranks with the Surly Mr. Whirly. It is a crazy versatile crank. The spider can be switched to several different BCDs. Worth a look at Surly. If you're into that kind of thing. Heavy but seemingly durable. I'll let you know in 14 years how they have rated.
We called the hounds back up to the Caprock to show them 50 and give them their assignment- to ride down it and climb back up it while J and I, uh, waited.
Look at them GO!
I used the time constructively; i.e. checking the beer cave while the yout' dem were not around. I am many things, but stupid enough to show 2 (not my own) teens where I keep booze in the woods I am not. Anywho, the situation is grim under there. I suppose I have my mission.
The yout' dem were very well behaved and thanked me politely (several times) for taking them. Next time I'm gonna show them those trails in Pebble Beach so they have some access they can get to without having to bum a auto ride. Learn the boys up right, in the ways of riding your bike from and to your door and trail.
04 August 2011
02 August 2011
We got fire we can't put out.
N___ brought a friend. Hard to top willing, not that y'all didn't know that already.
My Spy Boys full of fire.
Me Big Chief, I'm feelin good!
My Flag Boy, he just went by.
Me Big Chief, me got em tribe.
...so much steeper/hotter than it looks.
Me whole tribe am havin fun.
We gonna [sit around the campfire and sleep in tents] till the morning come.
The last glider. Full(ish) of holes. I'm sorry to report that the vision of flaming Ghost Planes did not manifest as well as hoped for, but next time we'll soak them in bourbon and then light em up. Live and learn.
Not stoked to (do anything) take beers to the creek to cool.
Ride bikes, jump in creeks, repeat.