Anyways....a long weekend this past weekend...meant an opportunity for two riot rides, one Sunday, one holiday Monday.
But first was Saturday...the BicycleWorks morning group ride (every Saturday at 8am). This is an expert level group ride...which means this ride is always a challenge for me. I am fit enough to keep up...mostly; but these folks are very experienced skilled technical riders, and compared to them my skills are mediocre. So I often get dropped on the more technical trails...which there are plenty of here. The group often gets a kick out of the fact that I call the trails they choose 'the murder trails'....cuz that's what they do to me. If you want to challenge yourself to get better....this is the ride to join...if you dare.
Then Sunday, was the riot ride (yeah, I know, modestly named after myself...sorry.). A very talented group showed up to make the day...Oggie, NewfieSteve, Jonathan, Giant, PowerPaul...and not so little (I am a tad above my ideal fighting weight) old me. So we headed into the Waterdown/Rockcliffe trails...looking for the technical, climby trails to help me even things out and allow me to keep up to this group while giving them a challenge. Plus....trails were either icy...or soft snow....so a great workout; 3+ hours and almost 700m of climbing. Often quietly urged by Giant to continue to make the ride as long and challenging as possible. Giant is machine...determined, tough, stubborn, and sports a true love for mountain biking. And rumour was....we actually had Oggie complaining about the difficulty.
Kinda like this guy...
Kinda like this guy...
Actually, I think this guy has the Oggie look down pat...
OK some real pics...
Actually, Oggie is as tough as they come (almost as tough as Giant!), and he is always stone-faced...so never know if he is kidding or serious. So...a little afraid, and unsure of my safety I just continued on...until Mother Nature (the real tough one!) made the decision. The warming temps had the trails getting soft enough it was time to head back before we did damage to the trails. Unfortunately cutting the ride a little shorter than I planned, and missing a fun, very challenging finishing loop. Ah well, a challenge left for the next ride!!
Then, the post ride Lois feast (yeah, I know, modestly named after Lois...sorry.). And post ride social gathering...where we reviewed the ride, Jonathan schooled us on motor vehicle engine details, and Oggie regaled us with very pertinent tales of Olympic bobsledding. All in all...another awesome ride.
With another one planned for the holiday Monday.
This time a road/gravel ride. Road because the trails were mushy. However, it was only +2 degrees...and rain was in the forecast. Every one bailed...either because of family day commitments...or the weather. Except Jonathan. Jonathan convinced me we had to go. We had to get into road shape for the Good Friday planned Riot ride to support the Tilsonburn and Freedom Bike. Plus I really need the road rides to help me drop some weight...I am a tad (a lot) heavier than I should be (I feel your pain TeamColin!!)...and the road rides have always been an effective way for me to burn off the excess calories.
Yup....those could be me...but I'm workin' on it. So...off we went.
And as the ride gods would have it...it started to rain just as we pulled away to start the ride. Well if we were going to go in this weather I figured we had better make it worthy. No little 50km ride. So...cold and rainy at around the 60km mark Jonathan started to look pretty rough. So we stopped at 97 General Store to refuel and rewater.
So, I figured we should make our way back home. Turned out to be an 80km ride. And Lois had home made hot red lentil soup waiting for us at home. 'Twas a good initial prep (of many needed!) for 'Tilsonburn'.
If you are not sure what Tilsonburn is....check out my previous post here for details. It's an epically epic early season ride in support of a truly worthy cause but really...read the previous post if you are not familiar. I will be hosting a Riot ride on Good Friday...hopefully worthy of the Tilsonburn...to help support FreedomBike and provide a bike for a deserving young person.
Perhaps you can make it out?? Do you dare??