Defending my rep. on the bike.
Things are tough in the big city. Watch your back!
This week sees me slowly getting back into riding a bike more than 5 miles at a time, as my next race is now in less than a month! And it’s 160 miles – I should at least, I dunno, try to finish it. It’s also been a week of stressful work demands I put on myself (as I am self-employed), so all the rides actually were after dark, and also just the same stretch of road. Not that the stretch ain’t good – basically living on a street with a nice hill climb is just another spoil of living in Boulder. Coupla times at the bouldering gym, but no roped climbing for me. Fingers hurt, but I’m getting ever so slowly better. Up to twelve pullups in a row! Woo.
3/4/2014 – Midnight Flagstaff Ride
I promised myself a ride after work and, “after work” just happened to be at 10:00 pm (big work day!). It also happened to be snowing fairly heavily once I was free. I thought it about for just a little bit but decided to go for the ride – a promise is a promise! Roads were snowy enough to make it hard to get a purchase on the road in some places. Got the police called on me while going up, although when they finally came to check things out, they were pretty cool about things. Brakes totally went out coming down. Replacing the pads the next day, I found I had gone through the entire pad, and was braking using the bolt of the brake pad itself: metal on metal. Whoops. Terrifyingly cold by the time I got back home – my waterproof pants aren’t, and my actual good waterproof pants have gone missing, most likely they didn’t make the move.
3/6/2014 – Midnight Flagstaff Ride #2
Same ride as a few days before, and strangely, similarly the same time at night, but even more strangely the weather was so mild that I didn’t even have a coat on. Good time I guess getting up on my heavy bike carrying a load on some awkward legs that seem to have something still to ’em.
3/8/2014 – Green Mountain x3
My ridiculous idea for this run/slog was to see how many times I could summit Green Mountain, by as many different routes as possible (descending a cross country route).
Wanting this day to do some actual running (a rarity for me), I started up Gregory, a stiff route, but still mostly runnable. Made a nice time, given the conditions of a few inches of very quickly melting snow – happy with myself. Was chased by a group of much-faster runners than I, but somehow held them off. One dude had hiking sticks, how Euro. I’m sure the only reason they didn’t overtake me, is that they were waiting patiently for slower members of their group.
The next summit was via Green Bear, a much easier hill climb, but much longer, as you have to run three quarters around the damn hill to reach the summit. Legs were pretty tired as I tried to run as much as possible, but I promised to hike the next summit, which was via Saddle. Saddle is actually closed, but I wanted to check it out, as I’ve heard things like a, “15 foot impassable head wall” keeping the trail closed since the flood, and that’s pretty hard to believe.
The trail was closed exactly where I thought it would be, and the social trail workaround was about 50 feet before the major damage. Nice to be, I dunno, away from everyone. I don’t really suggest people make it too much of a habit of doing the trail (as I’ll try not as well), although I do hope I’m on the correct email lists, etc. to be notified come time when crews of volunteers can help out with rebuilding the trail. No idea where they are in the process, I’m sure there’s a lot to it (surveying, etc).
That was about all my legs could do, and the sun was setting, so I called it a day – was hoping for one more summit, but my legs were doing the buckling on themselves thing, so I called it quits. Got some tasty beer (good pain reliever!) at the Mosaic Cycles open house before NAHMBS and it was nice to be a little social and check out some pretty sweet bikes.
3/9/2014 – Flagstaff
I had much loftier plans for Sunday – basically repeating the day before – but this time on Bear Peak, but my legs were laughing at me for that one, so I just decided to get a jump on the workweek and take another after work romp up Flagstaff, this time all the way till I hit dirt, which more than doubles your elevation gain, which is a nice thing. Traffic from dudes in jeeps yelling stupid shit at you is tiring, but a weird, bearded dude is an easy target for such abuse. Just another thing to practice keeping under control (my anger).
A goal I’ve wanted to accomplish is to ride to the Longs Peak TH via a bike, and summit Longs Peak solo, and ride back, in one big push. In Winter. Yeah, it’s a lofty goal and full of complications. It takes me about 5 1/2 hours to ride 45 miles to the TH (the elevation total is around 4,000 feet gained – it’s a good bump!), which means to be realistic and as safe as possible, I have to leave very early in the morning, or even start the night before.
My biggest threat is winter is almost over, which means my goal has a deadline, that I may not be able to meet. Until the next break in the weather, all my training is to essentially meet this goal, and to do it as fast as possible. Praying that the next coupla days gives me a good weather window to give it a go. If it’s not the wind, it’s now starting to be the precip. that’s falling on the massif – March is a very wet month in Colorado.
Looking forward to the more-near future, as the snow stabilizes much higher up, and the playground just up the hill (again) called The Indian Peaks opens up with all of its snow climbing goodness. To get the earliest starts to climbing, I’m guessing I’m going to ride up the night before, bivvy, and start the approach at sunup – most likely be back in town by early afternoon. I get goosebumps just thinking of all the fun to be had.
Week total on my feet: 17.2 miles, 8,032
Week total on the bike: 51.6 miles, 6,836 feet