Monday, May 19, 2008

Laurel, Pilot, Slate, BONK!!

My mental fortitude has been a little off lately. My body and mind are warring parties and I am no mediator. A small bowl of cheerios is plenty of food for a 20 mile ride right?

Zach and I had planned for a later start than normal on Saturday. I rolled up to N. Mills River to see that Zach was already sweating. What the hell? What do you mean you rode Trace Ridge? You think you want to get in shape? Jerk.

After some lulling around and me pretending to wait for our lost long compadre SingleTrack Pig, I got ready to roll. Just as we were ready to head off, Chris shows up out of nowhere from Columbia, “Hey man, you got a bike with you? Cool, let’s ride.”

Off we go up 1206 with me lagging behind almost the entire way to the gap. I took the lead on the short descent to Laurel, I love ripping down the gravel for a nitrous boost into the woods. The initial bit of trail just sets itself up for a nice right hand ripper onto the single track. Just as I was negotiating a car that was parked at the trail head while making the turn I hear “TOMATOOOO!” I turned to see all the Homers but couldn’t figure out which one knew me. Finally I saw Mike R. standing in the masses, shouted our route and he said theirs was one in the same. So I figured our paths would cross again. I know Mike R. and I figured he would be chasing a carrot in the form of a Tomato.

I led for a bit headed up Laurel until we came to some of the steeper pitches that I often walk. I pulled over to let Zach and Chris by as my heart was about to bounce out of my mouth and surely off the side of the trail if I wasn’t careful. It would seem as though I could never catch my breath or legs for the rest of the day.

The day was gorgeous and I just couldn’t imagine being anywhere else but in the woods. While lumbering though my bonk, I arrived at one of the gaps to see Zach and Chris waiting. Soon thereafter Mike came rolling up, he pronounced his carrot catching abilities and we chatted for a bit.

HIKE A BIKE. For me it was CRAWL with a BIKE.

We made it to the switchbacks on Pilot where we picnic’d and goofed around on the switch backs. I for one, had never made all of the switchbacks on Pilot and even though I was having an off day climbing, I was feeling good about my downhill prowess. We had time to goof off and change a flat so I rode the upper section of switchbacks three times and then was having so much fun I just kept popping them off, one right after another.

It had been so long since I had ridden Pilot I forgot about the huge Rock Garden after the switchbacks and somehow pounded my way down this section with only a minor dab as well.


A nice view from Slate where we talked about how much Pisgah sucks and then a short descent and some gravel grinding back to the car. Thanks for waiting up guys.

Pictures in this post are a mix of Clem’s and mine.

Wait till tomorrow, when I tell you about how I tried to chop a large stump in half with my chest to show Meghan and Kristin that its not always how you ride your bike but sometimes it is how you fall off of it.

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