Wednesday, October 30, 2013

What's for Dinner?

The mood was businesslike, "are you wearing a base layer and a vest?" as we kitted up in the knott lot. Spawn was hardened from winters commuting in Salt Lake City, and was comfortable in knickers and a long sleeve jersey. Xteric tried out the new clear jacket. All assembled, Lars allowed as how he had a few new trails in mind to explore, and we relaxed into following our Dear Ride Leader.

Quick down to the Lake, then right to MET, maneuvering to the stealthy trail between the equestrian parking lot and Ferrari Mill. Fleming CW, sneaking left on a hand cut fire line to Blue Gouge Mine Rd, continue CW to the next new trail which dropped precipitously, briefly and then was a steep and long hike up. Continuing CW, the pace furious towards the Fleming high point. (Later Newb guessed the fast pace was a consequence of RG's pressure on the Ride Leader. RG explained his energy was the old NoHandle trick of coming over-rested then blowing out his legs with no concern for tomorrow.) After Lars demonstrated a balletic no-speed crash, we launched into the long descent to the base of the second dam. After climbing back to MET, the remainder of the ride was thrown into the air. Lars abandoned (or made a display of abandoning, at least) Ride Leadership. RG asked the time, and it was only 8 o'clock. Newb and Xteric petitioned a climb out B's Chin. But, ignoring Newb's howls, we turn towards tacos.

There was some surprise at the Knott hole when we arrived. Chickenbake even had to warn us that she had made Chickenbake, thinking we would especially enjoy it after a cold evening of riding, but we were so early it was still in the oven. No one minded having to wait. Meanwhile Xteric made a sauce offering. He assumed it would be a sweet sauce as the ingredient list started with apple sauce. But, it contained chili extract, not chilis, and its eruptive heat pushed a few outside of their sauce comfort zones. We attacked the Chickenbake with relish. Although we didn't quite finish the pan.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

FT3 first winter ride??

The rain gods have sent FT3 a blessing of precipitation. And although Peter might be a little upset about it, I'm sure there are a few FT3 riders feeling like children on Christmas morning. Time to bust out the fetish items such as tights and nickers, maybe a hat and a base layer, and kick up some not dust. Seeing as I haven't ridden in almost a month, all my cycling gear is clean and ready. Is yours? ONE

Friday, October 25, 2013

Hangtown Halloween is for Hippies HoBo Ride

While some FT3 rider's may be getting their "fest" on, others will be partaking in another great ride from the lore of FT3. A HoBo ride is going down on the El Dorado Trail tonight. Departure time is 5:30pm at the Mosquito Park and Ride lot, this is an out and back on the EDT with a mandatory HoBo stop in Shingle Springs. We will go as far as the collective group wants to go. Bring money and charged lights. Happy Friday!

The count holds at three presently with Cap'n, NoHandle and Xteric IN.

Who else is in??

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Buttons, Staples and Stitches?

Amid laughter and the snapping of spandex, a hearty seven primped, primed and otherwise quaffed themselves for the main event. With Xteric's late (and unannounced?) arrival, we again had as many riders as cars in the Knott lot. Properly lubricated and hydrated, Buttons stepped up to lead us into the wildnerness.

We departed out the back door, crossed Sly Park and wound our way down the scree to the spillway. From here it was MET to the (official) pay parking lot, up Rufus by way of long sought connections to lower DH. Here we enjoyed a beverage/flat tire repair stop.  Then on up to the newly redesigned upper skid row, and to the dismay of some, a full descent of skid row in lieu of the ever tasty left lip.

From here it was a long slog up the EQ trails (including Orphans flesh offering to the gods), then down to the lake and, with a silent transfer of power, out through the campgrounds to yet another of Spawn's white gates. He then led us up another long climb to god knows where, ending up at the bottom of wedding march. It was a quick drop, with a few diversions, bushwhacking, several spills (the honors going to Nocar for best dismount), and then CCW back to the Knott. All in all, a solid early effort by Buttons , and a splendid job of shared ride leadership.

Tacos were served up hot and fresh, and we bantered about sauce combos while watching PC literally sweat out his choices. We were ragailed with "staple" jokes from our friendly local engineer/professor/inventor dude (insert nic-handle).  We offered courtesy laughs, though it would well after bedtime before some of us got the punchlines. Nocar , Spawn and I lingered over our lasts beverages, an ice cream, and a discussion of the joys and sorrows of working with emotionally disturbed youth.

Notables: more free pre-ride Mojo dispensed. The Fargo made it's inaugural appearance, and PC deftly maneuvered this rigid, fat-tire beast through the cover of dark and dust. I got to see the inside of Orphan's knee through a bullet sized hole. I'm bringing a stitch kit next time! And lastly, when not chasing the elusive "record", Spawn prefers upper-crust beers. First RG, then Spawn, who's next to abandon our "staple" beverage?

Stay tuned for the next installment!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Could we be a dirty dozen tonight?

Placemarker, until someone at a desk can put up some race results or other.

1! Will update taco status later!

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Barely Legal

Partial Rollup
An early arrival home from meetings in Sacramento provided me with a rare opportunity to execute the elusive "roll up" typically conducted by those with less children and more flexible schedules than mine. Ignoring the clock's ticking and maintaining my optimism, I sat down for a quick bowel movement and began calling B. After multiple attempts to answer his phone we finally connected. His rollup was underway, he was just beyond Mosquito, I indicated that I could be ready in 7 minutes, and he reluctantly became part of my optimism. While he was rolling back I determined that my light wasn't charged and my rear tire was flat. Alas, the minutes ticked by and the elusive rollup became once again more elusive to me. I placated a noticeably frustrated B with a couple warm PBR's while I repaired the flat and charged my light. We convinced XTeric to bring his extra rack and pick us up at Valero with NoCar and began our journey up the El Dorado Trail to execute the "partial rollup."

"I Just saw a cat, I shit you not"
As we approached the hill just beyond Jacquier an extremely excited helmetless man on a mountain bike came roaring down the hill yelling "I JUST SAW A CAT I SHIT YOU NOT." B and I, aware of recent mountain lion sightings in the area, and judging by his reckless abandon, assumed he was referring to a mountain lion type of feline. Moments later we passed a woman who had also been informed of this feline sighting, she was terrified and thought it best to remain paralyzed on the trail bench to avoid being this cat's dinner.  Without an ounce of fear, we continued on our quest to complete the "partial rollup." B was convinced we would not be attacked as we were both looking splendid in our FT3 kits while rolling atop single speed mountain bikes. We pondered the potential of this man being judgement-impaired due to drug or alcohol ingestion, but since he continued on his quest to inform the masses in a "bring out your dead" or "the British are coming" manner we were unable to obtain additional details about whether or not this was a house cat, bobcat, or mountain lion that he was 'shitting us not' about.

FT3 sucks at carpooling
B and I completed our rollup in good time, just as XTeric arrived to Valero, we loaded up and began a spirited discussion about whether or not FT3 should encourage or disallow the participation of riders under the age of 18. Our carpool arrived at the Knott to join a ridiculous number of single occupant vehicles. FT3 needs to take a look at it's carbon footprint, it's bad enough that each of his will foul the air on red hot Wednesday, the least we could do is attempt a little emission reduction with the carpool on Tuesdays. Just as we started to look at one another to determine if we were collectively ready to roll, Unknown Local arrived in his multi-seated single occupant vehicle. Councilman's Pre-BR's were dwindling as the last minute repair was completed on UL's rig. The ELEVENSTRONG count off was executed in the parking lot amid grumblings from the pack, lights were on, and Spawn desperately wanted to ride lead.

Barely Legal
And ride lead he did. His calls for count offs at intersections were splendid and he treated the pack to multiple sections of new trail. The new section he took us on was 'barely legal' and stands to be named as such, it took at least one rider out while the remainder of the group whoopped and hollered in it's glory. As we re-grouped our group of eleven provided a good sounding board for the discussion of less than legal (18 years and younger) riders participating in FT3. Within the context of the aptly-named trail I thought it fitting to roll out my strong opinion on the matter. Seems several riders agree; and our adult conversations later in the evening (and every Tuesday) solidified, that FT3 is an occasion fitting for an adult. There indeed remains some differing options on the matter, so the discussion will continue, could this be the first occasion for a formal vote? Do we need to call upon our Counsel?

!&c%ing Bu$shwacking
It is notable the discussion was held to three minutes our less, and our ELEVENSTRONG group of Spawn, Cappy, XTeric, B, Councilman, NoHandle, NoCar, Partial Credit, Buttons, Orphan and Unknown Local charged on. We rode up some fireroad that only the Spawn knows how to locate then began our search for some wildlife trails which quickly turned to bushwacking.  Our ride leader was unflappable, he deftly maneuvered through the bush and remained steadfast in his leadership of the ELEVENSTRONG group that pleasantly accepted his route choice. Suddenly the bush and trees opened and we began circling the picnic tables and took off for a clockwise lake loop. Since we had hardly climbed by this point in the ride it was necessary to take the horse trail and the extra steep bonus "insert foul name unfit for the ears of a minor here" section up to the powerline and after a quick regroup climbed Rufus Rage. NoCar clamored for a pavement decent of MET and didn't get what he desired as we dropped Redneck Rising. UL fell into the "tank trap" and lived to tell about it, XTeric went all mountain and rolled his tubeless tire. After failed attempts to re-seat a tire with very little Stan's in it, the ELEVENSTRONG group learned that "If you flat it then you better put a tube in it."

15-10 and Surrend
We rolled down Fleming, back out to MET and back to the Knott via the boat launch trails. Councilman bailed, the table was set for ten and Taco Spawn announced that he was going to make an attempt for the taco/beer record (notably, this is yet another occurrence unfit for a minor). As the Spawn dug into his tacos and Coors light's the group pondered how a football team could score a single point. Must be Canadian, some said. Those guys are corn fed, others said. After a curious departure from the table and the Knott hole to outside, some confusion about how many baskets of tacos the spawn had had, "you better check with your taco people" and just after he began slurring his speech, he decided to throw in the towel. The remaining six tacos were devoured by the rest of the group, NoCar put one in his pocket to enjoy while he reads this masterpiece, and the rest of us got up to pay our bills.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

10/9 -Bike Messenger Appreciation Day

Six riders were kitting up in the Knott Lot when RG, B, and I arrived. Obviously all of them except for the to-be-qualified rider and Taco Spawn live in the dark ages and are unable to enter a comment on a blog. Or they consider their lives too important to participate in the pre-ride chatter. While we waited for Councilman, Spawn hoisted the PBR flag.

When the question of Ride Leader was poised, RG feared that Spawn would probably claim it and take us out for another long-mile training ride.  So he took the front and started us on a mandatory Qualifier climb. The new rider had no difficulty hanging with the group. From there we dropped the wedding march -which has been mounded with tank traps, to the Rock Garden, CW lake loop, up right lip, down left lip, continue around the lake, then over to Ferrari Mill Road for Lower Fleming to Palins (complete) then back around for a second Palins (top half), to the Knott Lot. No mechanicals, short breaks, and a hard charging Ride Leader got us back to the Knott a little early. After bidding adieu to Partial Credit, and saying salut to Xteric (who had ridden up lower qualifier to powerline, park creek to barnes back then up and down right lip) we headed in for tacos.

The bar was crowded with contractors working on an EID flume repair. Buttons was visibly distressed by having to shove his way through the sausage party. 
Mother Rye and Chickenbake were informed of our need for special catering on the night of March 4th and the following morning. Besides commenting that they like to sleep in late on Wednesdays (who doesn’t?), they said they would get back to us on some menu ideas. 

Thursday, October 3, 2013

First October Tuesday

B and I pedaled into the Knot Lot to find several riders who had not participated in the HCF Count Off. Also, there were pre-BRs, since it was that time of the month. One third of the pack was SS compliant. Taco Spawn claimed Ride Leader without contest. We started towards the Qualifier and BAM! B dropped his chain. As Newb expertly adjusted the tension, I fished the last PBR out of my jersey pocket, still cold, and passed it around. Up the Qualifier to, uh, somewhere, where we took a little-used forest road to some other little-used forest road that looks like all the other forest roads. Eventually we re-emerged at the big intersection on Park Creek Rd. We rolled the road for a bit and then turned up (“grumble, grumble, what time is it? Grumble, grumble,” said RG) towards Cappy’s Knob. Honestly, I wasn’t paying much attention to the route, but focused on not getting dropped. Eventually we returned to the familiar intersection on Park Creek Road and dropped towards the lake. In a cooking downhill we blazed through numerous unfamiliar intersections. The pack was well aware that Cappy was off the back, but figured he wouldn’t want us to interrupt the thrilling descent. At the bottom we retraced back to Cap and B, who were shivering after having been abandoned in the cold. Most importantly, since I rode back, that bumped my total Tuesday miles a few feet over B’s total. The tight pack raced round the lake to screaming cheers from Spotters in the campground. The Knot Hole was emptied when we bustled in for tacos. New member Cutter got to use his freshly anointed handle, which had been debated for much of the ride.


One subject that was slated for the Taco Table, but never came up, is the use of strava on FT3 rides. Apparently Spawn stravaed a ride in the Silver Lake area that included secret trails. Within days, the buzz about the new trails had spread from Folsom to Tahoe. Every FT3er may have a different opinion about the good or ill that may come from greater exposure. However, I would recommend that, as with all important decisions, authority rests with the Ride Leader. If B was Ride Leading and he didn’t want the trails stravaed then they shouldn’t have been. If Spawn stravaed Tuesday’s ride while he was Ride Leader that’s his decision to make. If Xteric wants to strava anything then he’ll have to learn how to use a computer. If I want to strava then I will have to upgrade from my dumb phone AND participate in Ride Leading (ain’t gonna happen).