Thursday, March 27, 2014

Brush don't Hose; Dab don't Wipe

Substantial lore circulates amongst the FT3ers about how to perform proper cleaning. Obviously, parameters like water hardness and toilet paper shear strength should be measured by a certified testing laboratory before use. Fortunately, the bicycles didn’t get too dirty on Tuesday as it wasn’t so much muddy as plain old wet.

The back gate was locked, and we soon learned that Taco Spawn had gotten tickets to see Peter singing in an all-boys choir. That also meant that Mother Rye would be slinging tacos that evening. RG immediately responded that we should get back early. Shortly before departure, criticism of the Call out’s prediction for rain dried up. Skies that were clear a moment ago turned darker than Button’s new bike. Everyone grabbed another layer.

No sooner than THTH jumped Newb for RideLeader it started raining. By the time we reached the end of the Backdoor trail, everyone donned rain jackets. There were some sporty tumbles on B’s chin, and slick rocks tossed riders off of easy climbs. RideLeader chose a classic cross country uphill from the horse parking lot to the downhiller trail. We de-layering after the climb, and the additional moisture that evaporated off the riders caused it to start raining again. By the time RG blew a tire while crushing the skid trail, we were mostly soaked through. We picked up the horse trails CCW around the lake. It was wet and cold and wet. Definitely Legit FT3 riding conditions.

After pulling dry layers onto soggy skin we scurried into the Knot Hole. A bottle of Rye was nearly finished as we tried to warm back up. It was tough not to notice how the tacos had been reduced from a hefty three fingers of meat down to a mere pinky’s worth. But, Mother Rye called me Nocar, so I wasn’t going to complain.   

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Springy Mix

As some of our loyal crew had to be absent last week, accepting Nobel Peace Prizes and such, I will recap.

While riding up with Newb, B detected a loose brake disc. Tightening required a cassette tool. The nearest available tool was at the Taco Family Estate. So, after we finished inspecting Button's demo and Bambi finished explaining how long he had been off his mountain bike, we made the unprecedented ride start through the Knott Lott, past the RV park, down the swale to cross Sly Park. A countoff revealed Rock God was missing. After circling at the gate, waiting, a search party was dispatched and found RG hanging out in front of the gas pump chatting with some of his super-cool SUP friends. We cajoled him to join us and sped to Taco Estate for trials riding on the landscaping while B repaired. Out through the backyard, past the burn pile, and onto the Pollywood trails.

Then we did a bunch of mountain biking. The awesome kind. Though I do recall a waft of dust on some of the trails.

Tonight's forecast boasts a tenth of an inch through ride time and temps in the high fourties. Looks like there won't be any snowflake merit badges awarded this winter, at least we finally have a Tuesday rain. Several new frames in the collective quiver need a good muddin'.

While Cappy isn't raising the FT3 banner over the podium, coaching fledgling cyclists, and building up bikes for long lost riders, he is producing long rides. Hobo outing departs the Mosq lot at 3pm on April 5. Be ready for a late night and panhandling in front of the El Dorado Hills Nugget.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

This is a booty call . . .

Just to extend the sensual reference from C-Wing's report of last week's ride, allow me to be the first to say that I am eager to get it on with the trail tonight. Get some dirt between my knobs. Slip into something skin-tight and tango with the trees, pulse racing, sweat dripping, grundle chafing. No funny business -- just some good clean man-fun. You in?


Thursday, March 13, 2014


Say what you will about daylight savings time, but it creates a singularly dramatic FT3 each spring. A mighty six pack presented at the Knott Lot to seize the Tuesday.

Mother Rye, concerned about the legality of PreBRs, requested that the distance from store to consumption point be measured. NoHandle conducted the measurement and confirmed that the distance was 20% greater than that required by law.  

An easy consensus formed behind Spawn's RideLeadership and we were out the back to the horse camp drop and back up to MET. We crossed the dam to see a big moon tinted the same sunset color as the snowy peaks. After a teaser start of the lake we made the sudden turn up to the parking lot and climbed the downhiller trail. And did FT3 crush that trail? Yes, FT3 did crush that trail. As we felt the rush of gravity the darkness grew too thick and each flicked on their lights.

The soil gripped tighter than a long lost lover, and the descents were furiously fast. I demurred to the Safety position. We bombed the skid trails, rounded to climb right lip, and just as the throttle got dropped to climb the steep bit, we instead turned off on the sweet new trail??? Back at the lake, we continued CCW until RideLeader turned uphill cross country. My recollection is fuzzy, but I think we ended up on the Qualifier and then turned down Nap time towards tacos.

We arrived at the Knott a little too early. We weren't short ridden, or maybe we were just short rode a little bit, but at slightly past 9 the front parking area was crowded with cars. In the Knott Hole the bar was near full. An attempt at the taco record was being conducted. Pollock Pinesians were strewn all over the dining area. As taco service started, a near panic broke out amongst FT3. Taking control of the situation, Mother Rye marched into the dining room and repeatedly commanded "Stand Up!" to two dudes who weighed almost as much as the FT3 contingency combined.

The giants lumbered off and we claimed a taco table. Others still shared the dining room and became animated when we received our private sauce box. I offered them slightly stoopid and vicious viper with fair warning. Out of the corner of my eye I watched them sweat uncomfortably.

The record attempt was close, but unsuccessful. Much talk centered around how the record should reflect the complex interaction between the proper ordering constituents: tacos, PBR bottles, and shots of rye.  

It's almost Tuesday again. I can't wait.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Ride Tonight & Cool MTB Race Report

Any takers? Should be mighty fine conditions, again.


Cool Mountain Bike Race Report

A circumstantial run in with Rock God at the Spoke on Friday was awarded with the mighty fine gift of some under-used Maxxis Cross Mark tires. I was unable to grab them on friday night due to a bathroom sink that would not drain, and instead of prepping my bike, I attempted to snake the sink. In doing so, I broke my own personal and necessary rule that is as follows "Never work on your bike the day before a race." On Saturday, I did just that, setting up the Cross Mark tires tubeless. A shakedown cruise with the children demonstrated to me that the tires were set up well and that my legs were ridiculously sore from spending hours cramped under my sink Friday night. My efforts to snake the drain were fruitless, rather they made the clog worse, and my legs sore. So life goes on and I had a race to do.

The next morning, I found myself lined up with the pro/expert group, who were all starting together. This year I decided to race "expert" with a personal challenge of racing in the "geared class" with one gear. The race started with a quick pace, everyone was shifting around me, I was hanging at the tail end of the first group that formed up until the end of lap 1. At that point, after several creek crossings, my rear tire started going flat. I nursed it for a while then had to run/walk for a while until some nice SS racer guy loaned me his pump (I was so stupid in departure, I forgot to grab my quick fill out of the seat pack on my road bike before I left home).

I made it to the start-finish, grabbed a floor pump, put a tube in and went on my way. I never really considered dropping out with any seriousness, although the option was ever-present, and I knew I had no chance of placing- so the goal was to finish with dignity. On the third lap I had a chat with another rider as I passed him. While we were hanging out waiting for the raffle, to my surprise, I saw the guy I chatted with (and passed) on the third lap get called up as a second place finisher. Surprise, surprise, I won my class!! Not a personal record but the first time I have completed three consecutive race-pace laps out there on a single speed (this is not so easy... insert mad respect for Newb here). I am not sure if a bunch of people dropped out or if we were the only ones in our class, looking forward to seeing the results. I got a bottle of wine and a beer glass out of the deal, so I’ll take it... When I got home I was greeted by my X-Navy plumber friend (some will recall the crazy reunion meet up at NoCar's house) was there with his hi torque plumbing tools, and with tired legs I provided the assist that got the drain flowing like a river. Not a bad day all together.

"I don't always when.... but when I do it's on a single speed in the geared class... and I get a flat tire first."

Gen 2 Report: Cap'n junior was able to take home the second spot on the podium in the 3.5 mile kids MTB race. He was able to pick off a few fumbling riders and secure his #2 spot with a safe distance of any podium contenders.

Solvang Report?

Sunday, March 9, 2014

The Ride That Almost Didn't Happen...

Last Tuesdays ride, well, it seemed in jeopardy from the beginning.  As the blog sat idle, perhaps resting from such amazing blog blow outs from previous weeks, there were a few riders who didn't want to give up that easily.  With some texting and late blogging, the numbers seemed to be growing to four.  But then RG pulled quite the move and opted to hang with Peter to watch a season of Dr Quinn Medicine Women.  As I raced to pick up No Car, I was thinking we'd be a three pack for sure.  How surprised I was to see Buttons and Spawn!!! The stage was set.

As it was Fat Tuesday, and since Wing had an extended beer meeting in P Ville that left us without Hurricanes, we had to get some pre b r's.  And with diminished numbers, there were ample ride beers to join us.  As we kitted up, we were wondering what peter was doing with the rest of the group, and also got a firsthand report of the carnage that ensued at Sierra the previous weekend.  Finally it was time to get along the sweet dirt trails of Polly Wood.

I took to the rains and headed out the backdoor, past the cheering fire house, and over to B's chin.  The group was strong and staying together nicely.  As we worked our way across the second dam, we had to pause a moment to lighten our packs.  All that down time yielded an unplanned dam play attack, taking us to a reverse 8 loop climb to Flemming Medows parking lot, up MET to the yellow gate, and down the very awesome Up Skid and Skid Row trails.  It should be noted that it was very foggy at this point, and FT3 countered with another pack lightening session.  After a quick regroup, we continued over towards park creek via the lake loop and up through the campgrounds (thanks Spawn).  Then it was an especially great decent down Nap Time and the extension back to the beloved Knott Hole and tacos.

The taco bitties had lots to say, mostly negative and pertaining to our lack of planning regarding Hurricanes.  However, they showed mercy and shared some of theirs.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014



update: looks like the hurricane may landfall at Peter's house

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Weekend Update

The winter of best ever rides continued its unbroken string last Tuesday.

This guy pedaled up.

This guy was ride leader.

The pace? Spirited. The soil? Mega-gription. Trail maintenance requiring nine men on the log? Check!

Lots of chatter on the back channel lately.
If you prefer your road rides to resemble the eggs in your Benedict, then the Pardee Party and the America's Most Beautiful Ride have been calendared with interested riders. If you prefer your road rides to be dirty, then Cappy is planning the full extended hobo remix.

This weekend looks great for riding, though I was one of many who opted to slide.

Peter has invited anyone interested to his house on Tuesday. He plans on getting people together to play solitaire on their phones. As Peter said, "The only lonely part of solitaire is when you win and no one is around to share in your victory. This way we can have all the thrill of a good solitaire game, but won't have to celebrate alone."
Should be a good time for anyone who misses FT3.