Tag Archives: mountain bike

Leadville Flame Out

14 Aug

I’ve been drinking lots of Kool-Aid over the last few days and haven’t had time to cover my Leadville race. I’ve got lots to say about Kool-Aid and its effects on the body, mind and spirit and will post about that soon but first I need to catch up on some other things. I’ll start with Leadville.

I flamed out at mile 45 instead of mile 70 like I predicted. I went from feeling like a million dollars for the first 3 hours to feeling like a flaming sack of poo for the remaining 6 hours.

Last year 8:45, this year 9:21. I was a little disappointed but glad to have even made it. At mile 45 I bonked pretty good and never got my legs back. My race was over and I knew it. Thoughts of dropping out crossed my mind several times but the effort to get there was too great not to finish.

I blew out of town right after the race to get back to SLC and catch a plane the next morning. I missed seeing Bob finish and go to the hospital for an IV. Sorry, Bob.

Leadville isn’t about just racing 100 miles on your mountain bike but about slowing down and taking your time, hanging out with friends, making new friends and enjoying the slow pace of things as they unwind. You really need to experience it over several days. I did not do that this year and feel like I missed out on the best part of Leadville even though I was there.

But I’m stronger than I think I am and my well is deep. Next year will be different. Maybe gears and suspension. Well, at least a suspension fork. Yeah, rigid is dumb. I have to stop typing now my carpal tunnel is flaring up.

Park City Perfect 40

14 Jul

I turned the big 4-0 yesterday and to celebrate I signed Tasha and myself up for the Park City Perfect 10. It’s a 10 hour mountain bike race that follows a 7 mile loop in Deer Valley (time for a name change) with about 900 feet of climbing per lap and whoever does the most laps wins.

Here’s Troy Michaud from Maine in the ugliest jersey I’ve ever seen, ain’t it cool.  BTW, he can motor.  He came in 3rd overall even with 3 flats.  You heard it here first, remember the name.

Other than a flat tire on lap 5 and a broken pedal on lap 11 (turns out I can hike almost as fast as I can ride) the race went perfect for me. I lost the lead on lap 11 for about a half lap but got back and stayed there for the win.

The sportsman of the year award goes to Mick, who I just met at the start, he offered to sacrifice his race and give me his pedal when he passed me on the trail. He knew I was in the lead and just wanted to help, unbelievable! I declined but was really impressed with his attitude.

I definitely left everything on the mountain as I spent considerable time dry heaving after the race. As miserable as it was being curled up in the fetal position between bouts of heaving it was well worth it to know I gave everything and came out on top.

Dirt never felt so good.

I can’t think of a better way for a fortieth birthday to turn out.

Tasha hung in there and kept going the entire time in spite of multiple crashes and rode 50 miles of brutal single track. Way to go Tasha!

Congrats to team Holley for taking the co-ed duo win and Dave and Lynda for giving them some stiff competition. It was fun doing the last couple laps with the women’s overall winner, Jen Hanks and her significant other Shannon Bofelli who was just out riding support. Also, congrats to go Chucky and Woody for winning the men’s duo cat after Kenny and Tyson led most of the race on their single speeds.

The Vassago Jabberwocky continues to impress me with its versatility although, I think I may need to introduce a suspension fork into the mix as I’ve lost use of my right hand from that damn rigid fork. Any recommendations?

Beg, Borrow or Barter

21 May

I’ve decided theft is not a good thing for anybody so I’ve revised one of my resolutions for the year. Beg, borrow or steal becomes beg, borrow or barter. I’m getting pretty good at it maybe I’ll try for some groceries and gas next.

To that end I have a few mountain bike parts and pieces that I’d like to trade for a lightweight, disc compatible, tubeless (preferable) 29er wheelset for Tasha (her current rear wheel weighs 9 lbs, serious). I’m also willing to look at just a disc compatible rear hub (non-singlespeed).

What do you get for your goods? How about a very nice orange colored Walt Works 29er SS frame (24 inch effective TT and 18.75 in ST) with only 6 months of use. I also have a used pewter colored Chris King Classic (non-disc) hubset in fantastic shape. I’ll trade a hub for a hub or frame for wheelset or whatever we agree upon. I’m flexible.

Shoot me an e-mail at brad@gooseberrymesa.net if you have what I want and/or want what I have.

BTW, the Sundance race is canceled tonight. Bummer!

5 Mile Pass Race Report

5 May

Neither Tasha nor I were too excited about racing 5 Mile Pass on Saturday. Tasha pre-rode it a few days before and proclaimed it a terrible race course. It didn’t help that she and Whitney got lost and did a hike-a-bike that was twice as long and steeper than the one they’d be hiking on Saturday.

I was questioning the wisdom of doing a long, notoriously brutal XC race only a week after the RAWROD spectacular.

Of course, we went anyway.

Tasha and Dot battled back and forth for the lead most of the race and then Tasha flatted and lost a chain. I think she did great still pulling off a 5th place finish after all that. I also take full responsibility for her bike problems. I should have known better than to Stans her wheel the day before a race. Dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb!

It’s amazing how calm and relaxed you can feel right before the start of a race when you have no expectations. I also had a good excuse already formulated if I did poorly.

We had a pretty good group show up which lowered my expectations even further.

I knew it would be a long day so I tried to sit in but I tend towards impatience (imagine that) and decided to jump out front. That worked for a little while until we hit some downhill sections. That would set the tone for the rest of the day. Other than Fred who put a good gap on me on the first long downhill I yoyo’ed back and forth with Bob for 2nd and 3rd position most of the race.

Bob finally dropped off (thankfully, as he was really putting the hurt on me) on the 3rd lap but then I had to contend with Chris Bingham and Glenn Adams. They kept getting by me on the downhills and I couldn’t gap them far enough on the climbs. I ended up 4th.

I’m pretty happy with how I did as the flatter courses, which I struggle with, are now behind me for the season and I can look forward to the steeper, climby courses that are more my cup of tea.

BTW, Whitney Pogue who finally moved to Sport class promised before the race that if she won she would move up to Expert. She won by over 13 minutes, how bout just jumping right to the Pro class?

Dork Bike v2.0

4 Mar

The evolution of the dork bike is taking place at a rapid pace. No waiting around millions of years to barely notice any changes in the minutiae. No, the dork bike changes are happening quick and are macrutiaeous. Check it out. I’m pretty sure it will be the next big thing in mountain biking if it already isn’t.


I haven’t ridden it yet but it is beauuutiful. You know you want one. I think I’m into it maybe $200 tops (beg, borrow or steal) and half that is in tires cause I gotta have the tubeless. I’m just geeky that way.

Jon Hanson hooked me up, once again, with a Surly 1×1 fork that he customized to fit rim brakes on a 29 inch wheel. I owe him big time. Yes, I am now running a 69er bike or 96er depending on how you like it. 29 inches up front with a 26 in the back. Mismatched brakes and now mismatched wheels.

I was going to debut it at ICUP#1 in St.George but I got the flu. Looks like It’ll have to wait till the Cholla Challenge next month unless something else comes up.

Viva el Dork Bike!

p.s. yes, that is mud from Camp Lynda 2 months ago.

Rules To Dork By

5 Feb

Bike dork that is. I don’t want to discuss any other type of dork you might be into. Just your bike. As a matter of fact, just your mountain bike.

I’ve been losing my focus lately. After seeing Jamie’s new ride my inner bike geek has been fighting to get out and I will not allow it.

I got like a zillion e-mails, calls, texts and comments (OK, maybe 2) from people wanting advice and rules to help them in their quest to get their dork on. I was going to ask dug to write this post for me as pretty much everything I know about getting my dork on I learned from him. He is without peer.

It looks as if dug is breaking some of the dork rules in this picture but he borrowed that bike from someone just before the race.


Here they are, your top ten rules to dork by:

  1. Never buy anything. Beg, borrow or steal what you need.
  2. Your frame should be steel. Aluminum is OK in a pinch.
  3. Rim brakes only. V-brakes or canti’s, I don’t care. I’m no snob.
  4. No carbon fiber, titanium, ceramic, bamboo or other exotic material unless you made it yourself.
  5. Square taper bottom bracket. Your local shop gives ’em away.
  6. No suspension.
  7. Mismatched water bottle cages, skewers, tires, brake levers, etc. For God’s sake don’t mismatch your pedals or grips that would just be stupid.
  8. I forget what 8 was for.

I could only come up with 8, whatever. You might argue that my list is incomplete. I didn’t even mention gears, derailleurs or clipless pedals, that woulda been like 11 rules. Besides, like I said, I’m no snob and while it’s possible to be even dorkier than this list suggests I do not recommend it. If you take it upon yourself to implement more rules than the ones above you run the risk of being labeled a bike dork geek. You don’t want that. That would be bad.

Frozen Hog Race Report

2 Feb

I wasn’t going to go but I got out of bed this morning and thought if I didn’t go I’d just sit around the house all morning drinking coffee and eating waffles. Tempting, I know.

I went and had a good time. I decided I needed to go and help Racers Cycle Service defend the team trophy which they have had for the last several years. I didn’t help. We came in 2nd in the team category.


Yards from the finish line and just yards ahead of Racer.

The aftermath. I think this picture says it all. Racing in January hurts, I’m fighting to keep the vomit down as I was on the verge of hurl.


I’m not sure who gave Elden the microphone but he ran with it and raffled off a bike for the Lance Armstrong Foundation.


The first lap was great I only endoed once. You could actually ride the downhill section. By the 2nd lap the course was so chopped up from all the traffic that I ended up running the entire downhill section.

Thinking about riding my bike in the snow and the cold never sounds appealing but it’s always a good time.

Here’s a few random pics.