Thursday, May 6, 2021

Ten Kms Deserves an Ovation

This should have been a beer review as the ride wasn't worth much other than a small victory in getting outside. With work ending yesterday I woke up quite tired and did force my way outside  on a bike thinking that would trigger the amaze that is riding and it didn't. Oddly, that usually works but sometimes it does nothing. Pushing two full sacks of flower aka my legs through about 10 km of paved and multi use territory on a short loop from Emily Murphy to Hawerlak and across the bridge and back via Mackinnon. 

I stayed on paved in Mackinnon the whole time...

Ya, I know..

I hate rides like this. Tired and unmotivated. The Emily Murphy to Hawerlak multi use took me out and I sat by the Hawerlak bridge linking up Karenville for about ten minutes trying to plan a proper course of direction. I crossed and started to head back with plans on riding the Boardwalk climb out to the top instead of the hard one.

I chose the hard climb out to try and earn some respect back for myself and luckily conquered it. I even got an ovation from a family of hikers halfway up. 

Oh the inspiration!

Wednesday, April 28, 2021

No Leg Up

To end this set off a short ride from Mill Creek's velodrome up to Blue Man and out for a dip on Dirty Mattress and Old Timers. 

The ride started with my legs being quite strong and the climbs were handled with no issues. That changed about halfway through this one and they were soon jelly. I wanted to man up and ride singletrack on the return trip starting with the Trap and I had nothing to give. So it was nothing but multi use and then soon paved and I daydreamed the whole time about gravel bikes.


A very uneventful but decent short ride. Not sure if I even hit 11km's. 

Back to work tomorrow. 



Tuesday, April 27, 2021

"Well I Guess I'll Finish on Selkirk Knights"

What makes a perfect bike ride? 

I would say Spring or Fall with an overcast day with cool temperatures and obviously dry trail conditions. 

The cool weather today gave me lots of fodder for a great ride, the trails are still not a hundred percent although most are open. There are sections of mud in all the usual spots with heavy ruts from people rolling through them. 

With cold weather you get an empty valley which is my kind of Heaven. 

The ride started near End of the World and I went direct to Six Shooter and Silver Fox and turned back westward where I soon found Raven. Oh Raven... My Lord that is a cool area. I plan on being in Winston Churchill square with a desk and sign that reads "Raven trail has got to be the most photogenic area in Edmonton for mountain biking. Change my mind."

That whole area really is amaze. 

I took paved paths to the Quesnell and rode streets as part of the destined plan. Purgatory from the backside was the top of the order for the day for some reason. 

After riding Purgatory down after hunting it down via an urban paradise I sat in the area of the bottom pic for a few moments and was really quite beside myself as I realized that area is a real great spot for trails. The original plan after coming down Purgatory and the new and very enjoyable Clamland was up into Bedsprings and all that fun Wolf Willow singletrack but decided against it given the mud on Purgatory. 

My other option was Oliskew which had it's entrance a stones throw away from me, again I decided against it cause of a good possibility of mud (but I betcha people are still riding it). Plus the area does have a very high number of fifteen year olds doing sessions on Flat Pete for their YouTube channels. 

Guys.. Seriously, where the hell was Youtube when I was that age!

The last option came and I immediately said it out loud (this is the part when the blog title comes into play) "Well I guess I'll finish on Selkirk Knights" as a couple was walking by. Pretty sure they heard and walked faster away from me. 'I'm on a bike you fools' I thought to myself. I blamed the headphones for my lack of situational awareness and started my journey that way. 

Selkirk destroyed my big ego that I had developed last Sunday, You see? Told you it wouldn't last long. Lot's of foot downs on the power climbs and a very awkward weird wipe out after climbing up one and I fell down an embankment a little bit. Selkirk ended and the ride was pretty much over as I just had to get past the stable and climb out of the valley to the Jeepers. 

people are still riding this, guys... i mean guys.. 

you would never know it but this is right in the middle of trails galore, don't believe me? i'll have a 
sign at winston churchill square tomorrow for another reason but you can 
come argue about this


Sunday, April 25, 2021

Unicorn Socks for the Altitude

The Rocky Mountain made its 2021 debut on some East side trails so I donned the classic unicorn socks for a roll through Hustler and Gold Digger making my way westward. It was an absolute beaut of a day which sadly brought out what seemed like the entire city to the trail network which I find a tad infuriating. 

I mean guys... The crowds! 

Oh what am I doing, you all go down there. You know. 

Luckily, well somewhat luckily most don't lurk on the singletrack but the singletrack traffic is up considerably with bikers and walkers and the odd trail runner. Yes I am coming off as an elitist douche a bit for not enjoying all the company down there, it's just I simply don't enjoy all the people down there. A side to the pandemic that I would have never thought of to happen. To be clear I am nice to them despite being annoyed as you have to pass by some people every 20 feet or so.

The trails are fine for the most part. There are the usual problem spots on Gold Digger and Andre's trail. Some sections should not be ridden and in the time I took the bottom pictures people were coming and rolling through. Some had on club jerseys from a certain popular shop and you would think they would know better, but nope. 

I don't know why, maybe getting older is making me more crazy because that shit drives me insane. I see myself in my sixties hanging out with a cane in those areas ready to whip people and yell at for riding through mud. I'll be camped out on a little stool smoking some sort of pipe patiently waiting just like that old psychotic white man sits in his open garage so he can yell at you for letting your dog walk on his lawn.

A real top notch ride which makes two in a row. Cool weather was here again but it was nothing like last Friday and I was down to a t-shirt and shorts by the end, although the bridge crossings were rough. A weird case of the jitters was my only complaint which never materialized into a full fledged bonk. 

Lots of hard climbs were conquered today which inflated the ego quite a bit. Oh don't you worry, that will all come crashing down on the next shit ride dramatically so let me stew in this high ego mountain bike moment. 

I made Dawson bridge my turn around point after the north river singletrack had my full attention. The ride ended on Hustler which ended me. Those endless power climbs were the death of me on another awesome rip through the valley. 

And welcome back Altitude. Again, for yet another season.

the best of times are usually spent here

mud damage on golddigger

mud damage on andre's

Saturday, April 24, 2021

Beer Friday. Collective Arts Brewing, Life in the Clouds

 Collective Arts have been on here for a few of these. Yes, the brewery with the cool cans where artists can submit their work to be chosen to be placed on a can. That's how that works right? Oh shit, well here comes some Google searches.. 

Well yes.. That's how that works. They pay the artists as well and the piece of art belongs to the artist unlike what some douchy corporation would do and buy the artist, somehow bankrupt the artist and then take over all his possessions right after they have a satanic ritual and drink the blood of a virgin midget. Cause corporations.

Whoa.. I'm getting into some deep dark Q anloon shit right here. Is that what Q amron is? Don't world leaders and corporate executives do this on weekends? Is that what Trump did? Did he eat kids? Or is that the other one.. Biden?

Meh... I mean come on.. 

Enough of this weirdness, lets pour!

We poured this New England IPA into our trusty Park Tools mug and got right down to business. Very pleasant smells emanated from the can as it was being poured. Once ready I settled in for a good sniff and was rewarded with fruits and honey, I keep thinking starfruit for some reason but will go with pineapple just to be safe. A short and determined one fingered head lingered for a bit and now sits a cloudy layered top, like Cirrus clouds on a beauty of a July day. 

This one was top notch right out of the can, we sipped and knew we would be happy and guess what?

We were.

Wow.. You see that shit? That's some creative writing right there. I bet you held your breath when that ended and you had to look down. The sips were rewarding at first, this was a fruity blend of citrus with grapefruit but the strong tastes of pineapple, starfruit (yes, I said starfruit again.) and some sort of melon. The citrus does hit you more at the end as you get a bit of some IPA love via a bitter aftertaste. You know, like a true IPA should be. 

This beer gets 4 suds out of 5. 

Friday, April 23, 2021

Friday Night Chills, Thrills and No Spills

A ride with Kent to kick off some days off? Hell yeah, I'm in for that homie (sorry to white people everywhere for that.) 

It was a cool day. Well no. It was cold. Damn cold and I was not prepared as I had on a t shirt with arm warmer, yes the arm warmers helped but the shirt sucked any warmth away quickly. 

The cold did not damper the ride one bit and things warmed up on the singletrack as we started in the old school Mill Creek spot. That is the very end of Mill Creek around 67 avenue where I parked on almost literally every bike ride back in the days before the blog. 

It was a great scamper through the ravine as we rolled through Earthshaker the lower pool singletrack and up into the Trap area which was all pretty much one hundred percent ready. We had plans on heading east but turned around after the Queen singletrack and made tracks for my girl Victoria. Things have been a bit on ice lately once she found out about my weird plastic model fetish and thinks it's dorky."Well you fuck homeless guys!" was my loud retort and we haven't spoken since. 

Yes.. So anyways. Victoria Secret and the Groat Road Rollercoaster (Lovers Lane) took us up into some classy older Edmonton neighbourhoods where we decided to hit Mackinnon and ride Root Canal and Backbreaker. It was there where we perched for a coffee break on top of the hill at the throat of the ravine and watched humanity. 

It was around that moment a group of cyclists came out of the trees and the most twenty-twenty-one moment happened for me in the month. The group of mountain bikers were filing out of the trees when some guy (we assumed with them) was riding... Oh man. I don't even know what it was.

It wasn't a unicycle, yet one wheel and it was powered. The guy riding it had on a full face helmet and it was that moment I lost my shit for a good solid five minutes. Oh 2021. You are special. 

I mean, come on guys.. It's 2021. Are we not a little disappointed? We should have the option to live on the Moon. Drive flying cars. Cut toast with our lazer beam eyes. 

But no... We ain't got shit. 

I mean, the phones are cool I guess and oh look... electric cars!


But every now and then 2021 reminds us what year we are in and to the dude who was riding that gets a standing ovation from everyone here at Lonebiker headquarters. 

The company was top notch as per usual. Kent who is on a mission to ride every day this year and I believe is above his goal right now. Watching him tackle the steep climbs and rooty singletrack on his single speed hardtail had me feeling a tad inferior as a human. 

After the perch overlook break we were frozen for a good chunk of the ride back. Blue Man group took us down after Old Timers where I ran completely out of gas and we paved it back. 

Kent Steeves photo credit #1, #3, #5, #6

Ten Kms Deserves an Ovation

This should have been a beer review as the ride wasn't worth much other than a small victory in getting outside. With work ending yester...