Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Sensitivity Training

If you missed Cappy’s excellent call-out yesterday, then you suck. In spite of the quality of the post, the HCF failed to tally the riders, and carpool coordination required numerous last minute back channels. When asked what it was that made them too sensitive to comment on the blog, Noobie explained that he had just moved back to the ‘90s and had to go to a public library to access the internet; Taco Spawn pointed out that he isn’t part of the carpool so his input is unimportant; Unknown Local mumbled something about how he prefers to show up at the last possible minute; and Xteric admitted that he thinks the blog’s constant display of men in tight clothes is borderline pornographic.

In due time all were ready, and Noobie impatiently burst from the Lot. We rode out the back, past the clubhouse to B’s chin, up the dam horse trail, to Fleming CW. We regrouped midway up the climb and admired the sunset. A pack of riders (dads and kids) descended through our loitering group. One stopped and asked, mystified, “Are you going up this?” We continued to 8A. On the climb out Taco Spawn busted his chain. B’s commentary on the incident: “A 9-speed chain on a single speed, you may as well run your drivetrain with a limp spaghetti noodle.” We backtracked to Redneck and just after crossing MET Unknown Local broke his chain -must have been all the dust. We finished the ride, uneventfully, by dropping the left lip taking the first Horse Trail CCW and around the Lake. We stopped for a swim, and what do you know? someone left a dock our for us.

Councilman joined us for tacos, which all agreed were of the finest quality.  

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups

One might say FT3 "in general" can be unhealthy for sensitive groups. Today, in addition to the standard risks posed by an FT3 outing, we have poor air quality. Nevermind the tired legs, dust inhalation, hot sauce burn on lips and tongue, potential for excessive PBR's, red hot Wednesday, and possible side effects of a standard FT3. Those are typically overcome by even the most sensitive FT3 rider. However, the current air quality may pose risks well beyond those of a standard FT3 outing. Please see the map below for current Particulate Matter 2.5 pollutants in our area. Orange is "Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups" and Red is straight up "Unhealthy."

Selected Image

PM2.5 AQI Chart
I know that it is unlikely that there is a qualified FT3'er around who would like to be considered part of the sensitive group, so that means tonight's ride will go down, regardless of poor air quality. I can update the map later today. I think there is a chance the air quality will improve by the end of the day, but there is also a chance it may hold right where it is presently. In the event that the air quality worsens to unhealthy, there may be some real concerns. I suppose we will just have to keep an eye on the situation and make our own choices about whether or not we are part of the sensitive group. It is notable that the air quality is considerably better 'down the hill' but the idea of changing FT3 to another location usually doesn't play out all that well. I have this evening free to ride, and that is what I hope to do, even if I have to go down the hill to find improved air quality...


Monday, August 19, 2013

Another notch in the Strawberry-Kirkwood bedpost

With nary a warning, Cap’n abandoned his ship and left the remaining Long Riders to scrap together a new plan. We decided to meet on the Strawberry Creek Road to depart at 6:30. Departing on-time (with neither McDonalds nor toilet stops required) we skipped the first steep, sandy slog by staying on asphalt a little longer. Spawn and B were so exuberant that they decided to face-off in a Chicken match.

I watched both of them grunt up the technical climbs that I walked, comforting myself by saying that I would be stronger at the end. Sadly, this wasn’t true and I only fell further and further off the back as the day progressed. Suffice to say, Mr. Spawn can turn over a pedal.

The descent into Caples was chock full of “All Mountain!” And after the brutal climb (hike) to Martin Meadows we stopped for some refreshing Burgies. 
After topping out on the Thunder Mountain ridge, and then bombing singletrack down the ski hill, we sidled up to the bar at the Kirkwood Inn. The staff was less than enthusiastic to receive us, but they indulged our every request. B, had many, and they mostly involved liquor.

As we made the final descent, it was clear that we had shattered all previous S-KW records. Many hypotheses were considered, one being that the time savings was from B spending considerably less time fumbling with his cockpit.

Though I Petered on adding the Lover’s Leap loop to our ride, we did stop at the Strawberry Lodge on principle. 

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Return of the Taco Spawn and HTFU KWalifier Callout

Yesterday's lack of blog HCF explosion helped prove the blog's extreme value as the participating members were uncoordinated, untimely, and in a general state of disarray. I was trying to launch a mutiny and roll up on my CX bike, XTeric was running late, then word on the street came in (albeit not through the blog) that the one and only Taco Spawn and the other one and only Unknown Local, were planning to ride. Alas my plan to mutiny and extra ride/cross ride up was derailed when B showed up at my house with his vehicle ready to drive me up the hill "for a change." I had the opportunity to experience the wobbling wheel or something which had kept both B and Bambi in the garage working on the "stupid car" for two nights, to no avail.

And upon our late-ish arrival at the Knott Lot we demonstrated to a ready to ride Taco Spawn just how unorganized we can be - on occasion - as we looked for lights, fumbled with low tires, and broken helmets. To our great pleasure the young spawn didn't bring a light, so he too seemed unprepared (although B didn't tell him we ride well into the night), and when we finally rolled out, for the first time ever, we rolled through the Knott RV camp and over to Spawns house to dig out a light for him and a helmet for UL. Alas we were off to ride and I durfed my route planning, ultimately for the better, because instead of riding up the Power Line we were able to ride down it and sweep XTeric on the qualifier. We headed back up the qualifier, all the while informing the spawn of all the growing pains he missed in his years absent from FT3. We dropped the chopping block, rode back up to Park Creek and down it to BarnesBack. After dropping that we rode back to the Knott around the lake counter clockwise. We arrived at the Knott Lot at 9:45 fearing for our tacos. Turns our Taco Spawn is a great equalizer. We were welcomed warmly into an empty Knott and served up tacos with fresh lettuce. Spawn received his tacos first. He threatened to go for the record, but I asked if his mom would let him, she didn't say no; but rather said "would your mom let you?" We all laughed, but XTeric laughed the hardest.

Turn out Taco Spawn is a hardcore MTB and cross racer, holding two crosser's, one SS and one geared, without cages. He will make a splash on the Sacramento Cross scene this year no doubt, in the 35+ A category, given his racing experience and results in the Utah area. Needless to say I am glad to have him back because there will be more than one FT3'er going to cross races this year. I am not happy that he will likely steal a position in front of me at every race.

And, when B and I crafted the crazy HTFU Callout for a time-crunched dawn patrol KWalifier this Saturday morning, he was all over it. This is how it is anticipated to go down:

Depart Pville for Strawberry Friday Eve around 8pm, maybe earlier
Camp at Strawberry KWalifier Start Finish Area
Sleep very few hours
Awake at 4:00am, have coffee and pre packaged food
Depart for KWood at 4:30am
Enjoy Sunrise on a mountain ridge
Have an early lunch at the K Wood Inn, which opens at 7:00am
Return to Strawberry by 1:00pm

Indeed we are planning to set a record time out there, so keep that in mind when signing on for this one.

The count holds at three presently: B, Spawn and I

Who's in?


Tuesday, August 13, 2013

What is a Tuesday without a Callout or HCF Explosion?

I don't know, but it was close. I suppose if it went much longer, I would be depressed, similar to the kind of depression experienced by Strava cyclists who live in the vicinity of the fellow depicted in this viddy:

ONE! But my plan is to ride up on my CX bike and then do a Fleming Loop or find the group; but the way things look I MAY be THE group???

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Aug. SSFT3 Call Out

Hoping that C'Man puts up a RR from FLLFT3 last week.
Short of that, the call out is short and to the point.

PS: Feel free to override my post w/real content.