27 April 2010

An explosion of pictures and some nonsense words from the past two weeks...

Mountain biking in the National Forest is my favorite.

Some recent saw work - ride on through!

Burchy rocking... literally...

Yes, that is Bear crap...

Under the parkway through the dark, watery tunnel...yesss

Do not mess with me, I will bite the sh%& out of you...no seriously, go away.

Chris rolling with the saw. 

Yo Yo Misty!

Sue enjoying the Elliot's/Crawford trail clearing day!

Howdy there Lizzard Dog...

Can you spot the Osprey in this photo?? He was fishing with me...

I love contour views

I also like to take pictures of benchmarks like this one. Someday I'll print them out and put them all together as a celebration of my dorkitude.

WTF are these things? I see them all over right now.

Balcony Falls

And here is the poorly-written, sleep-deprived, actual "body" of this post.

Tooootally digging my job. 
Loving being outside doing something different all the time. 
Putting in lots of good hours, hard work, riding, trail working, officing it up. 
Tired often, feeling fit, stronger, hungry all the time, meeting tons of people, learning, learning, and learning more. Wow. Want-to-ride-bike....
Got some time with the folks back in Lynchburg. Did some fishing, some eating, some card playing, aaaand some bike riding.

This weekend I took out two tours on the Southern Traverse of the Shenandoah Mountain Trail. Awwesome rides each day, and enjoyed meeting the guys out for the ride. Really liking doing that, great to meet new folks and take them somewhere new.

Check out this link to the Virginia Mountain Bicycle Council out before you go!

Oh, and since I haven't done tunes in a while. This one is one permanent repeat in my car. 

"Anything we can mess up, we can fix up"

15 April 2010

Spring-Time Adventures

There's been quite a lot going on in my world these days.

Spent my birthday weekend rocking out in New Castle for our first mountain bike race of the season, "Dragon's Tale," which went really well. I was stationed on the mountain marshaling and making sure the racers were cheered on properly and then helping sweep the course after. Long busy days, but a great way to be outside and enjoy the mountains.

The awesome ride of Dragon's Tale on 

Got in a quick ride in Roanoke at Carvin's Cove with Ben Brown on our way to Damascus for a bit last week to do some recon for SMT's Iron Mountain 100K. Got to ride a 15 mile section of the Iron Mountain Trail from just before Skull's Gap all the way to Dennett Dwyer's pad right off the Creeper Trail in D-Town.

Carvin's Cove is smooth and riding well!

Lots of trees down, plenty of work to be done along the Iron Mountain Trail. The wind and snow from the winter was not kind!

Luke came to visit this past weekend and we put in some monster time on the bikes. Took him out on a big mountain bike ride Saturday up to Elliot's Knob on North Mountain outside of Deerfield and rode the ridge all the way out to Crawford Mountain and down Chimney Hollow trail. All in all it was about 30 miles and a long day as we also tried to clear up a bit of brush down from the harsh winter.

Woaaah BIG ride!

Luke rolling the rocky sections!

So much to see.

The on Sunday we got on the road bikes and went out for the Harris-Roubaix. A celebration of gravel road riding done in Harrisonburg each year on the same day as the Paris Roubaix. So the group (100+ riders) left from town and rode out to the start of the event. It is a great mix of riders of all levels and an event surrounded by the idea of just enjoying being on the bike. 3 laps of a set 14 mile loop was the plan for the day, with options to do however many laps you wanted. Some turn it in to a race, and most ride socially. The club also provided some food, water, and even wine at the start/finish/lap area set up on a farm owned by some very generous folks. It was an awesome day, the weather was perfect, and the loop was challenging and fun. In the end, riding from home to downtown to the start, and 3 loops Luke, Jason, and I got in about 70 miles Sunday. Yessss.

A very dusty post ride bike - feeling accomplished.

Tuesday got in some great clean up work on the Southern Traverse of the Shenandoah Mountain Trail with Matt Smith and Chris Scott. Good bit of trees down, but thanks to Chris' work Saturday and our work Tuesday its coming together nicely. Still a little bit to hit, but as the season progresses and more and more folks are out riding it will ride in well!

See, now you can ride through here!

North Mountain - where Luke and I were on Saturday. Its 4,447 feet at Elliot's Knob!

And yesterday afternoon I got in a sick adventurous exploration ride with Kyle Lawrence on Great North Mountain bordering Virginia and West Virginia. Rode up a steep singletrack trail that was pretty grown in and difficult to ride at times. 

Once on the ridge, the left direction (South) is marked on the map, but there are NO blazes for a LONG time and is often difficult to follow. Going right (North) yields some wonderful scenery on a very narrow ridge top. The trail there is blazed well, but is not on the map at all? What/?? The map also shows the trail heading down off the mountain just before you hit Church Rock. However, we were not able to find this trail. After bushwacking our way down the side of the mountain we did find a recent, machine-built trail, and then markings for a new trail. It appears there is work going on in this area but it is very difficult to navigate currently. I'd like to get back there sometime and see what its like after some of the work is finished. After making our way back to the car we headed to Baker, WV to sit in on a Forest Service planning meeting to listen to comments and get in some of our own. 

This is the new trail we came upon on our way down??

Kyle is a great and very passionate bicycling advocate, and it was a great way for me to begin getting more involved, learning, and understanding more about how the Forest Service operates. It was a very beneficial trip for me.

Ok, that's all for now. So much more to explore!