Wednesday, October 18

The '17 Bicycle Times Adventure Fist: Part Three

The night before, we had come up with a plan to shuttle to the top of Reddish Knob and ride down Timber and Wolf.  We were hoping that if we got to it early enough, we'd have time for more riding later in the day.

Let me preface the following tale with the fact(s) that:

This was mostly my idea.

I hate shuttles.

It's not that I am one of those "earn your turns" kinda guys.  I get that sometimes a shuttle can make a certain ride much more possible without making it an all day affair... which is what we were trying to accomplish.

The thing I don't like is all the planning.  X number of riders in Y number of cars with Z number of racks to get from points A and B and who drives and who rides and who sits in a parking lot and waits an amount of time that borders on being a total waste... etc.

I'd rather just ride.

But yet, I said, "Hey, we should totally shuttle from Reddish tomorrow."

So that's what we were going to do.

Wake up in the garage, shuffle up the hill to camp, find some people awake and going about their day.  Others are still in a prone position, tucked away in their portable sleeping chambers.  I decide to start putting on riding clothes because the best way to get people moving is to create an environment that makes them that they are behind in their preparations.  Scott texts me and tells me that the Bicycle Times ride (which has usurped our shuttle plan) is getting ready to leave if we wanna jump in on it.

I scan the area.  We're at least 45 minutes from a state of readiness.  Thanks and sorry.

Finally, six people jump in three cars with six bikes and head to the lower Wolf lot.  Drop the Honda Fit of Rage and six people and two cars head up to Reddish.  By the time we get there, it's 11:00AM.

Get ready and we all stare at the steps at the top.  Zac makes a few roll-ups, Bill Nye dives in, the rest of get tired of waiting, Zac cleans it, and the ride (which starts as a walk for the other four of us) begins.

Sorry.  Don't know if I'll ever come to terms with stair #3 enough to do this.

Everything's going great... until we get around the first corner (within earshot of the stairs), and Bill Nye is messing with a slow leak already.  Meh.  We roll on and get to the scree field and then... snap.  My seat busts clean off the post.

That's a problem.

Mebbe I can ride it out as is?

I hop on, wiggle my butt around the proximity of the remaining front rails to see if it will snag my shorts... and rip a hole in the ass.  The shorts that I just made out of a pair of $7.48 pair of Target pants a week ago.  Meh.

Deciding that it's probably not the best idea to ride the rest of the way down the mountain with an ass-ripping exposed saddle rail, I remove my tube from the seat (which I tucked into my belt for safe keeping), and use my Race Strap to keep it in place on the exposed rails... in a place it wasn't designed to work... because.  I start down the hill wondering if an errant movement of my leg might dislodge my load.  I unerrantly move my leg and knock the tube loose, watching it bound down the trail between my legs.  Meh.

Go back up the hill, retrieve my tube, strap it back on, break out the Gorilla Tape. 

A much more permanent temporary solution, me thinks.

Get rolling again and play catch up only to roll up on Lee and Bill Nye standing in the trail. Bill Nye is on flat number two. Meh. They say they've got it handled, so I continue on to hopefully find the others to update them on what's going on, as if I can wrap my head around it.

Catch up to Zac, Colin and Tod.  Get them up to speed.  Lee shows up.  Bill Nye is going back to the car.  Zac is on a borrowed bike from Bill Nye.  He deliberates for a second or two as to whether or not he should give up the bike.  He heads back, can't find Bill Nye... we roll on.

Descending Timber and Wolf without a saddle is not something I'd recommend.  Riding that long down a mountain on your tip toes is quite exhausting.  Not having the saddle to help control the rear end of a hardtail bouncing all over the trail is quite exciting tho.  Regardless, I plan on keeping a saddle on my bike in the future.

Five of us make it the rest of the way to the bottom unscathed where Bill Nye just arrived with one of the up top cars.  What followed was some head scratching.  To get Bill Nye a chance at glory, Zac and Colin would go up with Tod and Bill Nye so the latter could ride back down (BN on the Zac borrow bike) and Colin and Zac could drive the up top cars back down while I stole a saddle from the dead bike to make my bike undead so Lee and I could ride the seven or so miles back to camp and Colin's bike would be stuffed in the back of my car with the dead bike left on the rack and whatever stuff I might need out of the back of my car shoved in a string backpack since I didn't know how long it was going to be before I saw it again...

Did I mention I hate shuttles?

Once I get back to "camp," I decide to crack a beer, tear down my unused tent, and fully commit to the act of couch squatting for the last night.   I could ride my bike some more, mebbe demo a bike... do something useful with my time.

But I do none of that.

I spend the rest of the night just hanging out and talking and having fun until it's time to schlep my way back down to the couch to end my night, and essentially, my Dirt Fist experience.

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