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Archive for the ‘Sunday’ Category

John ‘Impy’ Imperial has posted some funny pictures on facebook. His wife allegedly left him in charge of decorating the Christmas tree, so he went to town adding his own touch to the style of the ornaments:

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I’m wondering how his wife like the decorations…. I think he would have had better luck with something like this:

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Went over to Elkins, and hung out with the Millers, and Joey/Mandi of Joey’s Bike Shop this past Sunday.  I attended their semi-regular Shingletree Shuffle group ride, and may I tell you, it was possibly one of the best ‘cold rides’ I have ever done with a bunch of other people. I’m starting to believe that Elkins, and its surrounding area has some of the best riding territory, bar none.

By the way, here’s some footage; sorry for the shake, I was holding the camera in my hand:

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This weekend was a blast; it consisted of some mountain biking, cyclocamping, and going out to Philippi to ride Thad’s Singletrack again. (You know, the WVMBA #6 race I covered)

Laura’s roomate, Amanda, bought a mountain bike over the summer; (probably peer pressure from Laura) and is riding occasionally now. We also had a few other pals come along who rarely ever ride or haven’t ridden in a long time. This has taught me that going fast is easy, but staying back with the pack, and reassuring them on how to control their bikes is difficult, or at least taxing. It is sometimes easy to forget what parts of a trail you had issues with, or how you learned all of those little techniques that allow you to bomb through the singletrack.

Being able to convey those things to other people in layman’s terms without scaring them by saying something like “But don’t go into a really deep, dry rut, since if you oversteer you will crash” will have your bordering on a very thin line… You just can’t say those kinds of things. Yes, they are going to happen, but you don’t want to scare them, yet you want them to develop the skills to still ride with you, and keep the collegiate cycling lineage going. We ended up doing six miles in like an hour and a half. I kept telling myself:

“Stay calm and friendly, don’t scare off the newbs.”

Later that evening, after gathering some supplies and camping gear, Jeff, Laura, and I went back of the woods for a nice little cyclocamping trip. Grant Peterson would have been proud of me, since I came in normal clothes, didn’t wear my cleated-shoes; just my boat shoes, and brought a wool sweater to sleep in. I’m sure his heart would feel warm if he ever read this. Oh, I also decided to bring my cyclocross bike, since I knew I could do all the trails on it, and I could latch on my rear rack to strap all of my camping gear to it. It rocked. I felt like a BA being on a cross bike, going over roots, and hills, and being able to hang with the MTB’s 90% of the time. Good stuff.

We set up camp pretty quickly, and right after that, it became cold. Really cold. Colder than that one ex that cheated on you, then told you about it straight to your-face-cold. What else did you expect us to do other than to sit around a fire, and throw stuff into it while hanging out and talking for a few hours? Check the footage to see the rip-roaring fire~ :D

Once again, the Wenzel tent used was comfy cozy warm, and did its job well. When I woke up in the morning, I tried to make instant pancakes, but the little optimus pan kept sticking so bad it wasn’t funny. I gave up and ate the rest of the trail mix I had brought. I was really missing the conveinances of a teflon pan right about then. Later that morning, we all hopped out of the woods, went on our way and planned on meeting back on Sunday.

After church, we all met up at Gene’s shop to load our bikes and gear. I brought an icebox full of water bottles, and towels; planning to jump in the Tygart River after the ride. I knew the course was going to be intense with Gene coming with us, but I never expected a pentagenarian, let alone someone a little older than that to slay us… without noticing it! His Gary Fisher HiFi Full suspension devoured the terrain, and left us in his dust.

Almost makes me want to get a full suspension… *suppress such thoughts, be a man!* Maybe I should just HTFU and learn how to ride and control my bike.

See how the tables turn? Friday, Kicking ass. Sunday, Ass = kicked.

Gene did help us out a ton on descents, switchbacks, and the rock gardens that I call Indian burial grounds; they’re mounds and piles of rocks built up in order to ruin your pedals when you climb up them. Video below.

Mouth of the Buckhannon River as it issues int...

Wonderful Scenery

Our trip was a success, and we ended up reinforcing our tradition of jumping in the river. It was much colder than it was

on Thursday (Did a reconnaissance ride with Laura), and I can only imagine it will get colder and colder until it is unbearably frigid, and we all get hypothermia walking back to the vehicle. Jeff on the other hand is a competitive swimmer holding records for the state of WV, and whatnot decided to swim across the river, back, and then all the way out again. He is not human; must investigate further.

All in all, this was a jam-packed weekend that really shows that WV is the place to be to have tons of outdoor activities in your backyard. While the scenery and environment was great, going out and doing things with your friends is better. Building camaraderie, and testing each other’s legs through little camping trips or race courses is a blast.

I hope all of you readers get a jeep full of people out this next weekend and plan something great. I’m sure you deserve it!

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I rarely do promotion of products here, but I saw a video of this on BikeCommuters, and was pretty stoked about it. Why you ask? Because I hate wearing something on my back while out on the trails; I have avoided a Camelbak just for that reason. This tote looks kind of burly for me (weightweenie?), yet I could see many people using this as a great trail riding or commuter pack in WV:

http://pcych.com/

Edit: Think how great this would be on a bike camping jaunt??!!!

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New bar tape is a sign of the new season. Winter trainer hours are cutting down, showing off your bike(s) is about to happen again. If you didn’t buy a new steed over winter, just roll a new set of bar tape on it. Clean up the bike to not only make the bike look new(er)… but the new tape will bring some added excitement to the bike and possibly even motivate you to get out there more often.

new bar tape

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WV’ers as you know, we are being bombarded by snow, day after day after day. You’re becoming jittery, no? Waking up in the mornings and putting on your bib shorts only to remember that there is a foot of snow out there and just crawling onto the rollers instead? Is anyone else worrying that their cycling tan-lines are going to be non-existant in the next few weeks if there isn’t a break in the weather?

Yeah. Me too. :( Take a look at how much snow there is around the house after shoveling:

cycling news

bicycle parts

west virginia road conditions

I think I removed the bike tire chains off the MTB too early..

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