Sunday, July 29, 2012

Racing Against the Rain.

 I made a friend at work, let's start with that.
We're naming him Li'l Stinky.
We're going to make friends with him and make him our perimeter defense guard.

Friday... I didn't go to work! *jazz hands*  So, I teamed up with Su...
 ...and we played with Henry. I'd been thinking about putting a 29er wheel on the Big Dummy for quite some time, but was too lazy to try it, since just trying it would require pulling the front fender, front rack, and possibly even the front brake. But, after deciding that I wanted to build a Porteur rack for Henry, those things had to come off anyways, so why not give it a shot? So I pulled everything apart, and popped Tri's front wheel on Henry's front end.
Henry's front wheel is the little one in front. What a difference!
 After a few spins around the neighborhood, and hopping several curbs, I can say that I like the way Henry rides with a big wheel up front. Very little handling change, no toe-verlap issues, and pops up over obstacles much easier than before. And with as much offroading as I've been doing with Henry lately, that's a good thing. The only thing I'm not sure of is how well a front fender will fit. A 29x2.25 tire clears the crown of the Big Dummy fork by a little over a quarter of an inch, which doesn't leave much room for a fender. I'll worry about that later, though.

As for the porteur rack, I designed it around the 29er wheel, so it will clear just fine. I finished the framework for it, and the deck has been shaped, sanded, burned and drilled, and is only waiting to be finished. I'll take pictures of the finished product. I think it will look nice, though.

Saturday was Loop Trail Day. We had a good turnout, and after giving some attention to the tread we built in May, we connected to Forest Road 301D, effectively completing the entire southern section of the Loop!
This was a cool view.

Of course, Henry got to lay the first tracks, again.
 We then rode the Loop Trail all the way to within a mile of home. That was a great feeling, and a great ride.

Today was race day.

What race?

The I'm Going to Ride up Elden and Down Little Bear Trail Before it Rains Because I've Been Trying to Since the Trail Officially Opened But it Keeps Raining Classic.

It's quite the popular race, and I met several people along the way.
I made it to the top before the rain...
 I'd never ridden The Catwalk and Hobbit Forest when the trail was damp and tacky from rain, and the skies looked decent, so I passed up Red Onion and headed up to Sunset Trail.
This is why The Catwalk is scary.
 I survived, and more than that, had fun, and found myself at the top of Little Bear.
The Trail Closed sign is gone! IT'S OPEN!
 And then, for the second time ever, and the first time in three or four years, I rode Little Bear.

Downhill was had.
Some of the views have changed.
 Largely, the trail is still on the original alignment. Most of the fun stuff is still there, and it's just as scary and fun as I remember it being. But some things are different... The views and lack of trees in some sections, and the massive drains to control erosion and give the trail a bench to ride on in some of the drainage.
One of the amazing drains that had to be built to keep the trail in place.
 At the bottom, I turned right and headed around the eastern side of Elden, instead of climbing up and over Schultz Pass. I think it paid off, because when I rounded the side of the mountain, I saw this:
That's where home is!
I must be good at riding in between storms, because by the time I got downtown, it was only sprinkling, and I got wet more from the tire spray than the actual rain.

But... Didn't matter. Rode Little Bear.

Mileage: 34.6

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