Monday, January 08, 2007

unfavorable conditions

Photo 12
Originally uploaded by cbnystrom.
This photo from our Fall 2003 trip to Fruita is an illustration of good mountain biking conditions. You've got your sun, scenery, rocks, singletrack, and a good taco stand in town. Another trip out West to do a Fruita/Moab combo is on the to-do list for sometime in the future. I don't know when, but it'll happen.

Current conditions here in central Maryland are not favorable for mountain biking. We've had rain, followed by rain, and more rain. The trails are a mess.

After 'cross season I like to get out on the mtb a lot to make up for all the primo Fall rides I missed out on during the season. That hasn't happened this year.

Instead I've been torturing my legs riding the fixie around the Ellicott City hills. Yesterday I tried to hang on a group ride on my undergeared, overweight 'cross pit bike.

~MY~ road rides usually involve a stop at the Old Mill Bakery for coffee and pastry...just the fuel for a climb out of the valley. Fun stuff, but my legs feel like they do after the first run of the year. I guess I'm using my leg muscles differently?

What's next?

No 'cross worlds for me. I'd really like to go back, but it's just not going to work out this year. I know that everyone going over will have a blast. I'll be drinking a beer as I follow the coverage online.

My adventures for the coming months will be local, hopefully getting reacquainted with the local trails (if they either dry or freeze). Since I haven't been able to ride the trails I've been doing some maintenance on the piece of singletrack that leads from my neighborhood into the trail system. It's got a couple of low spots that hold water and widen as people ride around the muck. I've made some progress, but I still need to haul in a bunch more rock and gravel to shore things up.

I'm riding a 29er SS these days...yeah, I jumped the bandwagon. She's a Bianchi Rita and I'm in love. Initially the 32x18 gearing was a bit stiff on the steepest climbs. They were doable, but I always felt like I was going to get a hernia trying to muscle my way up.

I've got a 20T cog on there now, but I haven't been able to put it to the test. I think it'll be just right and make the Hilton/Hilltop area much more enjoyable.

Until things dry out I've got to find a way to get my mtb skills back. Maybe some urban assault at the local middle school? Use it or lose it.

1 comment:

Jim said...

Man, tough times. Jon Seibold helped me build up an old Kona Cinder Cone into an SS MTB, took me down to Rosaryville New Year's Eve with some boys from your neighborhood, now I'm remembering why I bought the Kona all those years ago and wishing I could get out on it a bit more. There's something nice about an MTB. Like you say, the SS is a bit of a legbreaker on the hills, worse than my SS cross bike was. I guess the strength workout is going to help in crits this summer but right now it feels like I've done squats for two days after any given ride... Not bad, just different.