Monday, December 18, 2006


That’s about the only way to put it when you are gone from your house for a week in a far away land.

Friday’s conversation at the airport goes a little something like this:

Me: “My flight has been canceled.”
Counter Lady: “You have been re-booked for Sunday at 7:45.”
Counter Lady: “I can put you on Standby for the 7:45 flight to Greenville this evening.”
Me: “Ok, Please check Columbia SC.”
Counter Lady: “You are on the 3:15 flight to Columbia SC.”
Me: “Sweeeeeeeeeeeet.”

So I phoned home to Kristin and let her know the change of plans and after two delays I was in Columbia around 7:00 in the evening.

Last Thursday I received my new Walt Works fork in the mail. I was pretty happy except for the fact that the wrong color was shipped. Saturday morning I went to pick up both my bikes from the LBS (local bike shop and not the local beer store) and low and behold four billion road bikers were getting ready to do “the loop.”

I took the Drunken Monkey donned in it’s new attire out for a “urban assault” to see what I could see about the WW fork. I knew it was lighter than my Surly but man it seemed (there’s about 3 miles of trail DT) as though the WW was really eating the bumps up.

Sunday Morning SingleTrack Pig, Broussard, Andrew and I all went for a ride in the North Mills area of Pisgah. Our Route:

FS 1206 --> FS 5000 --> ??? --> Bear Branch --> FS 5000 --> Spencer ??? or ?????? (that’s either gap or branch) --> Trace Ridge --> Neverending Road --> Fletcher --> Lower Trace --> ??? --> back to the cars.

While we were doing this Meghan, Kristin and two pups went to find Slate Rock. Rendezvous in 3 ½ hours.

It was a sweet loop around 25 miles and we burned it in 3 ½ hours. I can tell you that sitting around doing nothing for a week and a half has really helped my fitness.

I took the lead coming down Bear Branch and it was a blast. The leaves have been battered around/down enough that you can pick some really clean lines out in Pisgah again. We flew over the berms and dips and back out to FS 5000.

I was chatting to Andrew about the fact that I haven’t cleaned the singletrack climb to trace before on the SS. There is a super-steep section that pitches up over some eroded double track and continues to be steep through a field and then slightly tapers off for another good 150 yards. Nobody made it. Not even the geared machine. I did however make it further than I had before.

At the top of the climb, we decided to ride Trace Ridge. I hadn’t ridden it in a long time and I am not quite sure why. It was a BLAST! I forgot how fast that bad boy is. The WW fork was eating it up like a madman hopped up on PCP. Seriously, I looked down a couple times and expected to see moving parts on the Fork. Nope, still rigid. Trace is so fast and long that I wondered if the fun might last forever. It wasn’t a dream world and it eventually ended but the adrenaline rush stayed around for the climb up neverending road.

In a direct blow to it’s name Neverending road actually ends. For us, it ended at the Fletcher Creek trailhead. We blasted down and up Fletcher for a fun ride. I had only ridden Fletcher once long ago and it was a blast too! I really like the section that blasts from the woods into a field for about ¼ mile and then it pops you right back into the woods. Neat effect.

Wow, it was a really beautiful day, temps in the 70’s and beautiful vistas all around on the trails. I am back in the zone now.

We got done with the ride and no girls were to be found. We drank all of our beer and no girls were to be found. We drove to the Slate Rock/Pilot Cove loop and found the car but no girls. Andrew wondered if his dog had eaten the girls. Luckily this was not the case and they had taken some “detours” but were safe and happy so all was well.

A great day in the woods!

Ride at Paris tomorrow, Dupont Wednesday.


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