Monday, June 8

The 2015 Pisgah Enduro™

Last night, as I was pulling off the shorts I had put on fifty hours ago, I inspected all my bug bites before I stepped into the shower and wondered if it would have been easier to race the Pisgah Enudro™ than to volunteer at it.

Back to when I first put them on...

Friday.  Ride home, beer, shower, family pizza, load Bill Nye's car, in the road by 6:20 or so.  Get to Camp Grier right around dark, pitch tents, get Bill Nye signed in, see no beer anywhere, go back to tent, get call from Nick "Dip n Spray" trying to rally me... without beer of his own as well. 

No.  I decide make an attempt at making good sleep in preparation for the day ahead. 

Wake up moist from the tent sleeping in the temperate rainforest that is Pisgah, coffee, head over to where the shuttle vehicles are loading.

Eric "PMBAR Honcho" Wever tells me that he needs a backup timer thing to get up to the start of the first stage at the top of Rattlesnake before the racers get there.  I'm dumbfounded.  They're already minutes from rolling out the first loaded buses.

"How far away is that?"

"Ten miles... you'll need a car."


Nick borrows Kürdt's truck and we feel our way through the spiderweb of roads inside Ridgecrest. I didn't want to tell Eric I didn't entirely know how to get there.  Let him have his false sense of confidence in us.  Nick tells me he's Frodo and I'm Samwise, and we have to get this thing to the top of Mordor using this sweet truck Gandalf gave us.  Nerd.  Find the trail head, unload the bikes and push/ride to the top of Rattlesnake, hand off the timing device, and head back down.

Discover two things as we descend down the mountain:

1.  It's a good thing I didn't race.  Bumpy left hand turns hit my pain spot pretty squarely.  There's no way I woulda made it through the day without a fair amount of pain.

2.  I'm really gonna have to get used to the prescription Oakleys... again.  The aberrations from looking through a wrapped prescription lens take some time for your eyes/brain to adapt to, and until then, the world warps around you as it goes by.  Hopefully soon...

Get back to camp, grab Stephanie, ride all the way outta back out to the road, through town, up Curtis Creek Road, up Jarrett Creek Road, all the way to our timing spot... which was also approachable from an incredibly short trail out of camp none of us ever knew about.  Doh.

Kill time with a machete waiting for racers, because...

this machete kills time...

and cans.

The first two racers come to us in a huge hurry.  The last segment before us was an untimed transfer, so we're confused.  They say they never saw the end of the last enduro.

Some panic.   Some phone calls.  Some texts.

They just never saw the timing thingy or the volunteers. Everything was perfect and in place.  Just two riders going head to head, full Enduro™, noses on the stem, bleeding out their ears.  A non-disaster.  All the timing was fine.  They just got a really good workout.

More riders come.

Ally (of Ally's Bar) and her posse.

Missy and Rich... who always looks at me like this (he's never seen someone so small named Rich before).

All the riders filter through... save the last two. And then one comes. A long wait. And then the last. Eric tells us about the trail back into camp and instead of being back with a half hour of pedaling, we're there in five minutes.

No shower, out to eat with the family and six friends, back at camp, bloated with sodium enhanced Mexican food, try to put beer on top of it, give up, go to bed/tent/sauna.

Wake up (and I use this terms loosely, as I have been in a moist semi-coma purgatory most of the night... need to look into ventilating this tent next time), coffee, say goodbye to the family, and watch the riders leave camp to head up Heartbreak Ridge.  Someone pulls up the World Cup downhill race on the big screen, and just as Greg Minaar ties some kinda record for most wins ever, it's time to head to the rock/root mess at the bottom of Star Gap to watch the carnage.

I take my camera, but Steve Barker of Icon Media Asheville is there, and he's going to take photos that will be seven hundred times better than what I can do, but I do try to document his possible ass-busting as he descends the gnar-gnar.

I take a bunch of photos anyways.  This is the only one that was any good:

This guy wrecks above the real gnar and almost spilled Nick's beer. He then lines up for the sickest way down which requires much speed to pull off while I sit there chanting, "No, no, no, no, no, no..."

He does not listen.

It does not end well.

Watch almost everyone come through.  Head back to camp.  Drink beer and wait for people to start coming in and share war stories.  Satisfied that there was little more that could be done here, Bill Nye and I toss our tents in the car and head home.

Yeth, I bummed that I didn't get to race, but I'm happy that I was able to go, camp, help, and get just enough time on the trail to remind me that I had no business racing.  Twice during the weekend, I was able to make my back hurt randomly tugging on the zipper of my tent and my small cooler.

Gonna avoid zippers the rest of the week.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Heal up son..........your ass is mine next year.
Wait, you don't have an ass.