Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Then there were six!

Captain kindly provided shuttling service to nocar and me.  We saw B rolling his cross bike to the Pollywood lot.  Upon arriving NoSauce made a guest appearance and was riding.  Captn had his camera mounted on his helmet and took ride leadership.  The 6 of us dropped to the lake, rode to horse trail, up the switchbacks to MET, over towards the 8, dropped to lower Palin, made it back to the 8, CCW, up redneck rising, dropped left lip and back to the lot via lake loop clockwise.

B, at times was hauling a bit more speed that he could handle so his cross bike started to shake bolts loose.  He stopped to adjust his top cap bolt and as strong as he was, he blew apart his multi tool!  NoHandle and I searched for the missing parts but a bolt was nowhere to be found.  There was talk at the top of MET whether we should drop a new downhill trail but capn asked if it's worth not riding left lip and it was decided that it wasn't.  At this time, B noticed that his rear seat pack was left open and all the contents of it had fallen out somewhere between the mechanical on 8 to the top of MET.  We weren't climbing redneck again.  Trail conditions were exceptional:  just a bit tacky, no dust and relatively small amounts of mud.  Puddles of water still remain on the bottom of redneck rising.  I didn't have my GPS so no ride specs from me this time.  Overall it was a great ride!

Here is the video link, I could not get it to load properly... Cap'n

It was dark when I took this photo so I'm not sure what NoHandle and B were up to.   Feel free to add to or modify this post FT3ers.  Perhaps more photos from B and a video from Captn? 

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Spring is here. One!

As spring rolls forwards, more road bikes are seen out and about on the road.

The video above may have already been viewed here but it's fun to watch again!  Perhaps RG is rolling on his road bike in the famous mountains of Utah!  He is the RG after all (whether it be on a road or mountain bike). *Edit by B below* FTSki!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Feeling Testy

Last night's edition of FT3 began with a bit of confusion as there were some back channel communications regarding B's roll up and NoCar's request for a Valero pick to Xteric that were not communicated via blog to the larger group of participants. Thus the Mosquito lot departure was slightly delayed, no matter, Newb and I still were the first to arrive at the Knott Lot anyway (now that we have completed the housekeeping items, let's get on with some serious ride reporting). Mosquito lot departure was also delayed by a send off from our own Green Fro who was rocking the recently broken-frame-repaired-Masi-fixed-gear-with-the- hub-flipped-to- 'single speed freewheel' option, and an Unknown Local walk-by with the full fam.

Newb and I arrived and began a belated celebration of his recent 'coming of age' with a Guinness Draught just as the sprinkles of rain became consistent. Appropriately and consistent with new FT3 bylaws he was toting some extra 'weight' in his pack as well. Upon arrival of Xteric, NoCar, and a spirited Charlie dog we further distributed Guinness Draught and began mosh pitting to Wynona's Big Brown Beaver by Primus. It is notable here that this was the first time Newb had heard Primus, which means that New Mexico is not really part of the west coast because Primus is a west coast institution, either that or he is from South Africa. Speaking of 'wes coast', just then B rolled up and began pumping out 80's rap and set the tone for the evening. Charlie dog  took off and NoCar chased him. Once we had appropriately donned our foul weather attire, and Charlie took off and NoCar chased him again, he was finally put in the truck and we were cleared for departure. Oh, but whoops... NoCar forgot his helmet. He was provided with a knit cap and swore with honor to ride safely ...and we carefully departed the Knott lot. We headed out the back and across Sly Park Road and dropped the horse trail, lights off. We headed over the dam for a CCW lake loop. Newb launched an effort to take over ride leadership, but I would have none of it, in spite of his recent 'coming of age' I am still nearly 10 years his elder. Near the east end of the lake we took an extra loop near the Larz-back entrance, then began our long journey up Larz-back, which may need to be re-named Larz-come-back or Larz-gone, or Larz-has-awesome-arms, depending on what the group really thinks.

While climbing NoCar indicated that he thinks we should publicly sell FT3 kits, as he is of little hope that we would really actually sell a lot of them, and I suggested we should develop a spotter jersey with a simple FT3 logo and that we should create a blog where we would post photos of riders we see wearing that jersey. Alas I was chided for not blogging and thusly I am writing this ride report. Neither of these discussion items were tabled for further discussion, rather it was just banter to pass the time as the rain continued to fall and the trail began to get sloppy. Then, Gangsta's Paradise started thumpin on B's speaker and I started to announce that we were about to pass a location where NoHandle had previously crashed and a gangsta from a different gang threw a stick in my front wheel and I straight went over the handle bars and the stick straight jammed me straight in the groin area. I was straight cut off mid sentence and the stick barely missed the more important parts of my male anatomy. Once back up and  happy to be 'with jewels' I began to describe the location where the stick jammed me which is in the location where it is possible to 'tuck' the testy into a pocket of skin. This tucking is something the Shaolin Monks have mastered in years of training, view the vid below for a demonstration of their amazing skill. We continued to climb and climb and once to Park Creek the ground was fully saturated and mud was splattering and sticking to tires. We pressed on to the end of Park Creek, so we could drop the Powerline trail,  now nearly soaked to the core. A low fog was present, rain was coming down and the trails were wet and slick. All made it safely down and we headed toward the qualifier at which time NoCar, a.k.a. NoHelmet now became known as NoLight. The rest of the group, who are by this time soaked to the core and taking notice about how much the temperature had dropped, huddled around him so we could limp back to the Knott without having to stop in the cold rain to deal with transferring lights. After what seemed like the longest ride ever along the lake access road from the bottom of the qualifier to the Sly Park road we finally arrived at the Knott Lot at approximately 10:00pm. Peter was alive and well in the parking lot as each of the riders began remarking how cold they were and how cold their toes were was a good thing we were in the lot finishing the ride... but all will agreed we would gladly endure a hose down from a cold hose if it was present; because at that point it didn't matter anyway.

Once inside an attempt was made to thaw out by the Amish faux-fire but that really didn't work. The bridge was playing on the speakers and both the taco bitty's were in slightly grumpy form. We were chided for ordering 6 tacos each, all of "the rack only makes 4 & 8..." Nonetheless, we were provided with an amazing array of new sauces which we enjoyed thoroughly. Newb limped away at the end of the evening on a further damaged ankle, welcome to your thirties young man, time to let that thing heal properly...see you in May...


Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Keep Right

The new stencils on the EDT caused quite a debate at last week's taco table. No consensus was reached. Guess who made the following points:
a) Traffic on the EDT should adhere to European customs, like on the Autobahn,
b) The EDT is a lawless region of Mad Max style anarchy,
c) It doesn't matter, everybody is behaving the same way after the stencils went up as they did before.

Looks like it might get wet. Better pack your slicker.


Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Ride Light Savings Time

Basking in the late day sunlight, we made our ride preparations. Nearly ready to go, the FT3 fashion police unanimously told Safety that he couldn’t ride with us dressed as he was. After sifting through extra layers, Safety traded out his cotton t-shirt and winter parka for a synthetic long sleeve and vest. Nothing could be done to get him out of his cotton sweat pants, however. B was let loose as ride leader, a decision that left some with regrets. Dropping from the horse camp we encountered new improvements installed by the Pollywood mountain bike park builders. We followed that with a dam climb.

We dropped a marginal trail that turned into a fall-line brush crash. 

More climbing

At Fleming, we turned CW, then at some point turned around. 8A and 8B were dismissed by NH because he had a mechanical and by RG because he is RG. For an excuse he explained how big the eclairs were in France.

RideLeader B shrewdly compromised with a MET roll to left lip drop. He even assisted NH on his battle scarred Stumpy with a shove-up. Hand slings were not attempted, as we have seen how that turns out.

A fine taco session followed. We had to ask a couple to make room for us in the Knott dining room. They politely obliged and then marveled when staff brought out our private stash of sauces. Mother was not impressed by attempts to pay with monopoly money.

A kit order is going to be placed following next Tuesday's ride. Please let me know what you want. Look for a new email thread coming out today. Of course, Xt will receive a personal phone call since he neither reads the blog or email.   

Tuesday, March 12, 2013


FT3 shall work together as a team and hopefully we won't fail at any Hand Slings tonight!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Long live the short ride!

"Leave it to FT3 to complain when the winter weather turns mild". Such were the words uttered as we left the Skeeter lot, en route to another installation of our weekly program. Temps were balmy, most were overdressed, and Ol' Man Winter was toying with us. Cappy had agonized over his kit selection the night before He had packed and repacked his bag, and then decided to join despite Peter's last-minute scrabble invite. A wintry mix was brewing, but it would, as it has on many a Tuesday, hold off until well after the lights went out in Pollyhood. 

Despite threats of weather, short-riding, and short-tacoing, the night unfolded splendidly, with premium route choices, and even better conditions. The soil was compacted and tacky, with only a modicum of surface moisture. NewB regailed us with stories of doggy daycare at his house over the weekend. He hosted Booker and Charlie, and with Jackson running interference, it was a full on WWOOF Smackdown ©. NewB had also put out the early request for a loaner light, and it would prove a critical part of his ride experience. One light never worked, another only had an hour on it, and B and Cappy loaned further LED lamps, bringing NewB's total light count to 7 (or something like that). He looked like a Lorrie speeding through the Outback. 

Upon deciding (unilaterally) to have democratic ride-leadership, and securing guarantees of an efficient ride and timely departure, Cappy took us in the direction of Qualifier. From PC, we toured the slash pile, and then up to the power station. Here we were met with downed trees and veered right. Apparently, and only Xteric knew this, we were heading for 50. In his own special tone, he announced this as we descended the rough doubletrack; "Um, guys, you know, we're going to Hwy 50.." Upon this revelation, we reversed our route and returned to PC. From there it was a poweriline drop, then a Qualifier redux to a rarely visited and newly named Trail of Tears (or Nor'easter). Cappy remembered (and B instantly located) a twisty and fun drop to the back of the camp ground (Hazel Creek), and said it was the jumping off point for those who don't qualify. Well, this little gem qualified as a solid addition to an already superb mix of trails. A Ceagle's cry was heard in the distance, and all lamented the declining population in the People's Republic of Pollystan. From there, a CCW lake loop to Fleming and then a descent of Palin's. NewB led us on a quick drop and some final dam play, before returning to the Knott. 

Tacos were exquisite, with little shell decomposition, and to our astonishment, FRESH MEAT. That's right. Unlike our typical late night dining, scraping the bottom of the crockpot, we were treated to a fresh assemblage of ground, garlicky goodness. Fixins were plentiful, and Mother went deep into the walk-in to provide only the choicest sauces. Honey Bear even came out of her den to spread her sweet love. 

Turns out, our not-so-short ride ended with an efficient but timely taco session. Mother was pleased to see us, and promptly told of her impending birthday. When we offered to celebrate with her, she said, "have fun, I won't be here!!". Apparently she'll be somewhere warm and dry. Which is just what we felt after devouring our faire in front of the faux fire, and then gang-texting Nocar, letting him know how much we missed his presence. In keeping with the short and efficient theme of the evening, we quickly settled up. Someone paid with our new FT3 Black Card, and signed it accordingly (see below). In the end, and in the words of our auto-less amigo, "all were home and safely tucked in bed before 11".