Saturday, June 4, 2016

A Bridge Too Far

The plan for today was to go for an end to end bridge ride. Was I ready? Who cares! Epic rides don't care about being ready. They are just awesome, and that is all...

After a long board meeting last night (that's why there was no beer review) it was decided that we would throw this ride out with the blogging happening while the ride was on. Hence.. Live blogging in a way.

We know what you are thinking. How is this possible? Could this blog be any awesomer than it already is?

Well.. Other than my Mom, I'm not too sure on the number of folks who like this lonebiker thing but here we go.

The ride is divided into segments, where some time was spent writing about the time in between with a picture taken where the writing was happening.

It starts out with breakfast in the morning! I know right! How Cool is that?
The ride did get squashed by an annoyingly loud bottom bracket that was creaking from the previous rain rides.

8:29 am. I am writing this as I eat my pre ride meal after just making the swift decision to switch out bikes. The rocky was the original plan but when I started to think about the end of this ride when fatigue is quite high. The thought of riding a 35+ pound behemoth up the final hills was a bit of a turn off. The Moots still needs to be cleaned but will be worth the extra time to get ready. 

7.55km. Capilano park restroom. I've never had to piss so bad and with the weather it would seem that all of Edmonton decided to go to the river valley.

The trails so far are stupid busy. Why do people come out in droves to walk the multi use below the water treatment plant? I can only think these are the same folks who go to Costco in the afternoon. These people are not quite right in the head. I'll be happy to leave them behind.

It would seem my bike had finally taken the brunt of all the wet weather and the bottom bracket is quite creaky. Awesome...

It started with the worst bridge in Edmonton. The yellowhead. After a dip into the lower Science Park where a running race was taking place. Opportunity to pee number 1 lost... 3 bridges so far and one right after this as a Capilano crossing is coming up.

17.4 km. Under the ..... Bridge. Thinking way too much about the length of the planned ride. I should take Kent's advice after a text exchange and not think of the big picture, it's hard not too.

Andres trail was ridden but I took the shortcut out to avoid the hills of caddy-shack. I rode off the trail into the trees as a nice girl in yoga pants walking her dog passed by and I rode into the trees after turning around to look. I deserved that. The trail is in good shape after all the teak with a few grease spots here and there.

It had a very Edmonton summer feel to it down here today. Busy trails with pasty white Guy's with backwards baseball hats out running.

Skyline and Old Timers are waiting. The next planned stop will be the Hawerlak area. Feeling good so far. Just have to stop thinking of the big picture. This is what always kills me in the mountains in the last couple years. My stupid brain.

30.9km. Hawerlak. Slight fatigue starting to set in. Skyline, Old Timers, and Gnome were all ridden. Four more bridges were crossed and a couple girl mountain bikers wanted me to show them how to do a log crossing. I crossed and yelled "JUST LIKE THAT!" and I am sure they will go to bed dreaming of that super cool guy they saw today.

A perfect opportunity if I was single or a cheating guy with a moustache. Thankfully I have a good head on my shoulders.

I avoided Six Shooter as the big ride is messing with my head. Laurier and shiny balls with a Fort Edmonton bridge crossing await. That will be my next check point. Terwillegar is really not that far off.

39.8km. Edmonton Country Club. I passed by Fort Edmonton bridge and rode Oliskew. Hunger pains made me stop, thinking I should really slow down the pace as I kept catching up to a guy on a cyclocross bike. Albeit he looked the part of a guy who a guy who rides once a couple a weeks.

Where I sit signs are everywhere saying the country club doesn't allow bikes. Several golf carts have driven by me all staring. I just smile and wave which I think calms them down. I'm waiting for one to stop and tell me to leave. I probably won't be very nice. I'm about to rode up the hill right into the centre of them all. I've done this before with not a whimper. Probably because I look so badass.

Fatigue is there as well as a sore ass. Terwillegar is in site. Crossing under the Henday will be awesome. And then to fondle Terwillegars new bolt ons...

50.7 km. Under the Henday bridge. A very loud bottom bracket creaking started right after the country club climb. That combined with getting lost in the residential on the way to Cameron Heights has made me quite miserable.

I've officially crossed every bridge spanning the river in Edmonton and am going to start heading back. With this bottom bracket noise it will make it hard not to throw in the towel and get a pick up.

I'm a little pissed...

The plan is to see how the bike handles Terwillegar's trails and formulate some sort of decision from there.

60.4km Fort Edmonton Bridge path. The bike handled Terwillegar quite well and the creaking was at minimal, than I got into the residential and back it came.

Odd how when your fatigued climbing paved or multi use sucks, but when on singletrack it just feels so right.

Patricia, and back to Hawerlak next. I've got to keep rolling.

At the 64km mark. It's game over. I've had enough of this creaking, that combined with high fatigue of course.

My rescuer is not available so I will press on. Hopefully will get a pick up in Hawerlak.

Game over. Waiting for pick up in Hawerlak. I did a bit of riding around like the rest of the chumps here who show off their nice bikes. I did it to hit the 70km mark. "Hey guys look at my Moots!" I was thinking. Only nobody gives a jack shit which demoralizes me to no end.

I am pretty sure I could have finished this ride. The fatigue is up there and all the climbs were done in the granny in the end.

Next time I will have beef jerky or something. The high amount of Clif bars, gels, and honey stingers in my stomach is just gross.

A respectable ride to end. If only the creaking would have gone away..

Basking in That Terwillegar Glow

A rather amazing after work ride on the wonderful Moots which carried its weight through the singletrack. I have started gaining power after...