Wednesday, June 22, 2011

FT3 Grew, B Blew.

Last night saw many firsts, not the least of which was our newest rider Trevor 1 or T1 (insert taco handle here). He slaughtered the qualifier, and managed to avoid getting lost or hit by any moving objects. Chapeau. But I should back up a bit, so you get the full and somewhat messy details.

The mosquito gathering was light, with only Safety, RG, and Councilman present. Cap'n made a late call stating he had a pre-ride, pre-rollup, mechanical. He misplaced some odd brake part for the 9er, and was frantically swapping pedals around. The Kish got the nod, and after a late retrieval, we made haste for the Knott. In attendance were a slew of familiar faces; Xteric, B (after a P'town rollup on a loaner Wilier), No Sauce, No Handle, and our newest No Name, T1. After a "shut up and get ready" mandate was laid out, Cap'n and I quickly assembled our gear and joined our comrades.

Cap'n took the reins as ride leader, and with newby T1 (insert taco handle here) in attendance we headed for the qualifier. A quick check of the bylaws confirmed B's suspicion that, as a survivor of a "lights out" incident in pursuit of our craft, yours truly had to re-qualify. Soooo, off we went in our usual ascent to the qualifer from the park entrance. Not 20 yards up the first bit of singletrack and this politician busted his chain, shearing off a cleat bolt in the process. T1 was at the ready with a spare master link, and after straightening out the cleat, and regrouping, we were off again.

It just so happens this is the same stretch of road where we first met our good friend Bobby. It would prove cathartic and somewhat creepy with No Handle's spot on impersonation of the bossman. After some dispute, the actual scene of the crime was identified, and we paused for a moment of reflection. To be honest, it didn't look very familiar to me, but then again I got my bell rung, and I've managed to repress the rest of it.

At the top, we veered right and headed down for the XP drop to the river. It was a lightening fast descent, with top speed records shattered by many. After a short break at the old bridge, we started what would be a long and steady climb out. We looped under the freeway, over to Freshpond, and on up to Park Creek. From there, we attempted to find the wedding march, but it was Fugly. B led the bushwacking charge, and eventually we found our trail. We followed it down, ducking the headaches, stayed right at the switchback and made our way back to the Knott lot on buffed trails.

Tacos were busy but efficient affair. The bar was crowded, and some Frenchies took over our usual bike parking area (aka horseshoe pit). After orders were placed, and mood lighting set, we were treated to a top shelf, boutique sauce offering from Mother. Replete with it's own decorative wooden storage box, and explicit instructions for safe use, it definitely peaked our interest. Cappy was the first to sauce his tacos, and with a healthy dose of both courage and Jolokia pepper, he dove in. The usual hickups ensued, but we were assured it was no where near as hot as Possible Side Effects. Your truly dropped a few tears of terror on one taco, after neatly staging the rest with Vidalia, Pepper Plant and others. Our resident hot sauce hedonist, B, took the next plunge. Despite the package's warning of "only apply by small drops", B pounded on the bottom of the bottle and emptied a catchup like amount of sauce on his taco. As usual, he expressed little concern and proceeded to devour the entire taco (and a 3rd of the bottle of sauce) in 1 or 2 bites. Some slight gasping was detected, maybe a drop or 2 of sweat, but nothing unusual. We went about our discussions, and after several minutes B simply disappeared.

RG, in search of an It's It, soon found B in front of the Knott, doubled over and voiding himself of all stomach contents. Shortly thereafter, Mother, who had to convince a family who was fueling up the minivan that "it's not alcohol, it's hot sauce!", promptly handed B a mop and a bucket of water.

After a thorough cleanup, and inspection by the Knott Health Dept, we were dismissed. We went in different directions, back to our respective homes, all warmed by the glow on B's forehead and the knowledge that we wouldn't suffer as much in the next 6 months as he did with one taco.

As long nights go, SS*FT3 was stellar. Our ranks grew by one, and our reputations were cemented with B's resurfacing of the Knott front driveway. Can't wait till the next Solstice!!

*legal disclaimer - author has mild brain trauma and an otherwise poor sense of direction. Not responsible for any misquotes, or other errors in geographical reference.


  1. Very solid and enjoyable write up C'Man - thanks for taking the pull.
    I had missed the part about the family w/the min-van.

  2. It is an honor to wear the stripes and the battle scars. What do we get after being taken out by Cap'n on a techy downhill?

  3. Bring it. Looks like another 2-man HCF blow-up.

  4. I'm off next Friday. Any dirt options, suitable for 'crosser, or is this better served on a roadbike?

  5. Wow the post ride write up changed from "grew and b-blew" to an extravagant follow up. Nice work councilman! I would enjoy a road ride with B but if it's on a Friday, count me out.

    On an aside note, I rode some fire roads last night and sure enough as if RG knew exactly what would happen, my rear "The Captain" tubeless tire blew off the rim and Stans sealant shot out everywhere until it went flat. The rear tire was at a respectable 35psi when this happened and I was going on less technical terrain than a typical FT3 ride. Perhaps it's time for another 2Bliss tire... any recommendations?

  6. I guess I would have to ask a couple of q's:

    What hoops do you have?

    Did you use tape and a valve stem or a rim strip?

    Did you soap the sides during install, and get a good seal?

    Was it holding at 35psi, or had you just pumped it up before the ride?

    Tires are like shoes, lots of personal preference. Tread design, intended use, weight, rolling resistance are a few considerations.

  7. Thanks for the response. Primarily the bike is all stock except for "The Captain" 29 tires. According to the specialized website, the rims are: Custom DT Swiss X450SL, alloy 29", 24mm w/ eyelets, 32h

    Tape and a valve stem are installed.

    Install was performed by that bike shop in Auburn, Victory Velo I believe by the prior owner.

    Hopefully the shop got a good seal and used soap and water. There was plenty of Stans sealant inside the tire after I took it off. I'm pretty sure it was holding 35 psi and not leaking any air. Any dependable tubeless tire for FT3 rides should do.