Friday, 25 November 2011

Turkey Ride

I've been riding in the states for almost 3 years now. Traditions have started to form. This Thursday it was time to honor one of those traditions : The Thanksgiving Turkey Ride (or "Turkey Trot," or "Appetite Seminar" depending on how and where you hear about it.) Essentially a few hundred of the areas mountain bike enthusiasts descend upon Pine Mountain to grind up steep, rocky fireroads - congregate, drink booze and then rip down more fireroads back to Fairfax. Excellent fun!

The weather forecast for the morning's fun was dire. We braced ourselves for a punishing wet ride in hideous rain. I didn't mind too much. It gave me a rare chance to sport my nice, new Gortex waterproof costume. Last year's ride was bitterly cold, so we layered up in anticipation of that too. However, as we hit the java hut rendezvous, we were pleasantly suprised to be gearing up in crisp, foggy but mild and dry conditions.

After the initial road climb we hit the Pine Mountain trailhead. The first few climbs are fairly brutal at the best of times. Plenty of rain and a few hundred bike tires before us ensured these weren't the best of times. Thick mud snaked up and ahead for miles as we wheezed and cursed our way to the top. I didn't have much faith in the descents being great either, given how sloppy it was. But thankfully I was wrong. The mud kept speeds in check somewhat, but the conditions made for challenging, and grin inducing riding.  Great stuff. I'd forgotten how satisfying it is to have the bike slip and slide underneath you but somehow stay upright enough to hit the massive puddles and drift - moto style - through them!

Repack was closed for action. Probably just as well.... I saw Rosson caught in a mud slide one one descent. Hilarious, but on the super steep Repack, we'd all be sliding into oblivion and it would've been carnage. After 20 odd miles and almost 3000 ft of climbing we hit Porcupine all the way back to Fairfax. Plastered with mud, grinning like fools and ready for an afternoon of self indulgence and self loathing ;o)

No comments:

Post a Comment