Thursday, May 3

Another PMBAR, Another Chance to Fail

First and foremostly, registration for SSWC '18 Bend, OR is open.  $100 bucks or $60 (and some artistic effort).  Other information there as well, so this is the most ahead of the curve SSWC in the USA since... dunno.  Who cares?  Come bike party, idiots.

Why they need to know your weight, I dunno.  Mebbe they have weight divisions this year?


Every waking available moment has been reserved for PMBAR since I got back...

Well, sorta kinda.

I had a chance to ride the Vertigo Meatplow V.7 with the Santa Cruz 780 Flat Bars a few times before I left for Sedona... on the streets.  When I got back, I ran some bike errands after half-assedly fixing my backyard.  The only thing I knew for sure was that the 70mm stem seemed to make the bars a bit unwieldy.

Fortunately, I had a solution.

I had a 50mm stem from a past build that fit quite nice.  Take note that the compass I've owned for more than twenty years is seeing its fifteenth PMBAR of required gear use.  Also a computer that does nothing but tell time because Eric "PMBAR Honcho" Wever says I "need" one of those too.  Last year, the only purpose it served was to show me that we went from six minutes behind second place to over an hour between check points four and five... as if the befuddled stream of riders railing down Bennett watching us hike up wasn't enough of a clue that I had screwed up the route big time.

I got a ride in at DuPont this past Sunday that allowed me to dial in the angle of the dangle in proportion to the heat of the meat.  It took a bit of trail side finagling, but it feels reeeeeeallllly good.  Swapping between the 800s on the JaBronSSon and the V.7 should be much more buenos now.

This bike is ready to rally.


I've refined my Packless PMBAR™ even more for 2018, to the point that I don't even wanna share with the class anymore.  Everything is either strapped to the bike, in my water bottles, or my jersey pockets.  No bike purse attached to the top tube.  No bike luggage whatsoever.  Don't ask me how I did it.

Some of these things come with me, some don't. Some are in case Watts forgets to bring his share of shit.  Some are just there because my work bench is a mess.  Minor stoke to have the Topeak Whitelite™ Aero USB as my emergency light this year.  I'd been using an old Cateye unit for years that wasn't really designed for mountain biking.  It's fallen off more times than I can remember on rough descents.  I don't plan on being out after dark, but required gear is what it is.  I think I could actually get down Black Mountain alive with 110 lumens if I had to.

As far as the "me" part of me being ready?  I've still done zero extra riding.  I'm 7-8lbs heavier than I've been in any recent memory at the beginning of May.  I've spent zero minutes looking at the Pisgah map refreshing my thinky part and pondering the possibilities.  This is my third go at it with Watts as a partner.  Our first year, I blew everything taking the wrong route to our first checkpoint.  Last year, I threw away a chance at the SS win and mebbe a third overall on the way to our last check point.  I don't care how we do now this year, as long as we don't ride too long to do it.  I believe Watts' apathy matches mine this year, so perhaps I'll finally be able to give him a good experience... because his expectations couldn't be much lower than they are right now. 

That doesn't mean the PMBAR-related nightmares aren't still happening.  They are.

They're just much closer to the possible realities at this point.

Saturday is the day of the only race that matters to me in 2018... but it's not like I was gonna get "fit" or be "prepared" for just one race this "season."

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