Sunday, August 29, 2010

The curse of the camp.

I was lucky enough to ride the Reforestation Camp twice this week. The first time I quietly bowed out after 40 minutes of slow going pain due to a tweaked lower back from last week. The second time (this morning) I rode it like I owned the place, knowing vacation was over in a few hours I picked a steady pace. As I mounted up I saw a group of two guys and another pack of three that followed me off the highway but hit the gas station before hitting the trailhead. This would be the last time I see another human for about a hour and a half.

The first thing I noticed was my chain was ghost shifting or slipping slightly once in a while, its done this before and usually I trim out the rear derailer at some point and the problem goes away. Today I rode along thinking nothing of this minor annoyance on climbs and flat sections. After 10 miles and alot of dodging of small stumps I hit my final climb, it wasn't final because I was home free, it was final because my chain sheared off and took out my rear derailer breaking it off halfway through the hanger. So as I sit out in the middle of the woods 3-4 miles from the parking lot I think back to the last time this happend. The last time I was out here and broke something was about a year ago when I drilled my non-drive side crank arm on a small stump (anyone who's rode out here knows 99% of the small stumps are painted orange.) I hit with enough force to loosen the bolt holding the arm on and had to use my keys to tighten it enough to get back out of the woods.

I think these trails are cursed...

I did enjoy my hike to the parking lot and did see one other person gave me a friendly "hello" as he finished his ride. As I walked out I ended up going the wrong way and found myself downhill of the parking lot on the far side of the Zoo in with the maintenance vehicles.

Special thanks to Stadium Bike for fixing me up right after they openned, and for selling me the great Pearl Izumi jersey off the discount rack.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

No go for 9 mile the rack wouldnt fit

Monday, August 23, 2010

Training or the lack of.

I've been on one ride since the start of summer, we've also gotten 21" of rain in that time. This past week I've rocked some overnight shifts and gotten a solid ride in. Here's what I discovered on my ride at Baird Creek.

1. The Parks department doesn't care... Really they don't give a shit. They parked a earth moved across the Creek from the gravel abomination they're working on, and parked it on the back trail forcing you to ride around a heavy construction machine. They also think that putting a metal bridge up for said machine is OK for erosion. They forgot the silt fences, but they did put silt fences up in other areas 20 feet from the creek.

2. The Parks Department is a bunch of morons. A tree was down over the new crashed gravel trail, this forced people to make a new trail in the woods around it. If they're going to spend tax payer money to put tons of gravel in the woods they should at least clear the trail when its blocked.

3. If Velociraptors existed on Earth currently I'd have been killed. If anyone has seen the scene in Jurassic Park : The Lost World where the mercs are running through the tall grass and getting picked off by raptors, that's exactly how I felt.

4. 21 inches of rain means the creek is still swollen, and moving faster then I can cross, leaving me in the swamp to be eaten alive.

5. I saw two camp fires and one cast iron skillet. The camp fires looked old, but I'm not a homeless camp expert and they could have been from the prior night.

6. I'm out of shape but not nearly as bad as I thought.

Update on the 820, I've got the rear derailer nearly dialed in, its shifting ok but missing a few gear changes. The front derailer is a mess I'm going to have to read up on how to tune it, chances are I had it in the wrong position when I attached the cable. Still need new brakes but its V-Brake so I'm not too worried about cost.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Please don't kill me and the ride home.

Last night I rode the beast, the streak home from work. Roughly 5 miles down the busiest road in Green Bay where the speed limit is 35 and everyone goes 40-50. I took this ride at 12:30 after work and managed to ride in the road in my designated imaginary bike lane without getting killed. Of course there were a few chants of "please don't kill me" everytime I saw a car get behind me.

On the plus side, (almost wrote plus sized). I found a abandoned bike in the park. Before anyone questions the abandoned part I'll tell the story.

Near the Skate park lay a pretty lady she was silver and had some age to her. Sadly someone beat her and I planned to nurse her back to health. Someone broke her rear derailer off the hanger leaving only a screw and a nub. Some poor degenerate also trashed her wheels, trashed so much (or took home) that they didn't exist. Now this poor lady would have been ok until someone removed one of her front break pads. I suppose with no wheels why have brakes...

The best part is I found the seat and post impaled in the dirt 10 feet away.

So begins the birth of a project bike, I'm estimating a early 20xx Trek 820. Basically this is the bike I sold to fatty's brother.