Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Mtn Biking and other stuff

So I don't know what happened to my last post, must have been lost in the magical internet void.

I was able to do some great mountain bike riding this last week I have not been mountain biking for over 2 years. Well thats not totally true, I did do some down hill mountain bike riding this last summer in Sundance Utah, So I should say it's my first time doing cross country mountain bike riding. And it was awesome! I don't have a bike to do the job so I borrowed one from the best bike shop in the city, Mesa Cycles.Chris from Mesa took me over to the Lost Valley trail another trail down the Katy Trail. Lost Valley is supposed to be a beginner trail. It is about a 5 mile loop I think, with some great single track and a good amount of fire road. I think the the single track in Lost Valley was really fast and had some really great technical points especially at high speed. After a loop there we traveled about 4 miles down the Katy Trail to another great spot called Matson. This set of trails were much more difficult with a lot of elevation change, huge rocks to traverse, and trees so close to the trail I was sure I was going to be taken out a few times.There was a very large steep hill that we had to climb to get to Matson, and I swear it had to be over 20% grade.
I was just amazed at the condition of these trails, the people that spend a lot of the free time working on them do a great job. I really should find some time at some point to help them out. I have always wondered how these guys and gals go about creating these trails. The lines that they take through the woods are just amazing. One of the areas we went though at lost valley was like the trail was just hanging onto the side of a steep hill. It would have been quite a chore to create that part of the trail.

I also took my wife Katie to ride at Castlewood on Sunday. We did about 10 miles and she was a trooper. Her bike is not really made for real off road riding but as long as we go slow it works fine. It is just heavy and more set up as a gravel path mtn bike than the one I was riding. She had a few tough spills and was a little upset at certain points, but she made it all the way to the end. I was really proud of her. She has been working really hard to try new things and be really involved in my cycling. After we were done we started a fire in one of the pick nick areas in the park. We brought some things to make smores, hung out for a while, and had a really nice time.

Castlewood is a nice ride but I think I liked the newness of the new locations. I also just don't think I am into mtn bike riding as I used to be. Don't get me wrong, it was really fun, but I think riding on the road takes the cake for me still. Just the speed, the easy of being able to walk out the door and ride, and everything else about the culture.

Life otherwise is going well, I just turned 30 a few days ago. My wife says I am now old, joke is she turns 30 in just a couple months too. It's funny how young I still think I am though. Most of the time I still think I am a teenager or a young college student. I still look pretty much the same as well. More facial hair now but that is about it. It's my goal to be 90 and look like I am a 50 year old. That is if I live that long, I have a history of long living people in my family as well as cancer though soooo it's a crap shoot. One day I hope to be good enough on the bike and old enough to start competing for masters nationals and maybe even worlds some day.

One thing that I don't get about riding a mtn bike is why the position? It is very un-aerodynamic. Maybe it was just the bike that I was on, as it was a demo bike from Specialized. I guess they are set up for the average joe instead of more of a racer. I also don't understand the super wide handle bars though. When I was a kid we would cut our bars down to something like 20". The idea was you could get though more narrow areas. From what I can gather the bars are wider now for leverage. But with the gearing on the bikes I don't know why you need to torque on the bars so hard. Whatever, if I ever buy a mountain bike again I will make it more my own like I do with all my bikes. The one new thing I really like, which isn't really new at all, just new to me, is the rear suspension. Wow does that make a big difference. More traction, more comfort, more everything good. Maybe it does add a little weight that not having it wouldn't but the smoothing out of your ride which then would save you energy could more than make up for that.

Got to leave for work now, coaching is going really well for the most part. This is the doldrums of the season for gymnastics. No more working new skills, working a lot of routines, which is really hard, but not competing yet. This makes everyone a little crabby some times. Most every day though I am really excited about getting into the gym and working with my kids. The kids have really come a long way and it is great to see them grow.

1 comment:

  1. Nick, I really enjoy reading your blog posts! I think that it's great to hear that Katie is joining you on your biking journeys! I think it only makes a marriage stronger when the other person gets involved in the others interests. Keep pushing through these doldrum days of winter, I know you have it in you! Look forward to the holiday season then after that look towards Spring then Summer is right around the corner! These years have been flying by so fast there is always something new! Bob and I look forward to seeing you & Katie soon! Tell then, take care!