Thursday, April 28, 2011

Mother Nature Can Kiss My Fat Ass

Fuck you Mother Nature.  Fuck you.  You suck.  Rain, rain, and more fucking rain.  I haven't ridden my bike since Sunday.  Top it off you throw in wind - 90 km/hr wind gusts today and knock down a tree almost hitting my house and car.  Fuck you.  Worst-Spring-Ever. 

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Monday, April 25, 2011

Easter Almonte-Calabogie Loop

Ride began in Almonte, to Calabogie and back to Almonte.  Total = 120 km, Average spd = 29 km/hr
Cloudy and gray at the rapids in Almonte at 9:30 AM.
Crossing over the mighty, mighty Madawaska River and bluer skies.
Just three of us - Scott, Glen and myself.
Water re-fill in Pakenham.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Good Good Friday Ride

105 km's or so for the day.  Ottawa-Cantley-Cascade-Wakefield-Gatineau Park-Ottawa Loop. Curvy and I met up with Scott coming back from a loop in the park and he decided to join us making a big day for him as he rode from home in Kanata - his total was 170 kms.
Photo credit: Curvy Bum

We rode the dirt on Cross Loop Rd on the eastern reaches of the park.  If you've happened to pick up the most recent issue of Canadian Cycling Magazine you might recognize this bridge from an article on Gatineau Park and you might recognize some of the Green Bastards in that photo too.
Besides Sunday the week is looking fugging glorious . . . . . Worst-Spring-Ever.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

April 19th Road-Gravel Ride

Rapids along the bike path heading towards the Alymer marina.
Top of Chemin des Boulders near the 148 in Alymer.
Long gravel roads - Chemin Terry Fox.
Only a bit of snow on the way up to Champlain - totally passable with no need to dismount.
Champlain Lookoff
Fortune Parkway - descending down from Champlain you hit snow/ice relatively quickly.  Seems to go on for a way - didn't bother to portage it.  Fortune faces north and is in shadows for a lot of the day.  It'll be a while before it melts away.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

NC Photo Wrap Up

I can't be bothered to spend more time recounting the NC trip.  I've got so much video to go through and piece together that's taking forever.  I'm using iMovie - it's got some cool features but is horribly slow to upload.  Anyone have any better options?  So, I'm taking the inspiration from The Goat's recent trip and pictorial blog post of his trip to Moab to finish this off. 
The ALC diSSent - I didn't know if I was going to like it or not.  It's hard to make the comparison to the Fe since I haven't ridden it since last November.  I did like it - alot.  It was super responsive and not overly stiff.  BUT, it wasn't pink.  I'm intrigued by the new tubing and possibility of running a belt drive.  More to come.
One flat/mechanical the entire trip.

Jeeze La-Wheeze would you look at that gut.  I'm going to need more than seven days of riding to get rid of that monster.
View from Black Mtn.
My favourite traihead in all of the Pisgah Forest.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Gatineau Parkway Update

I got out for a road ride today, only my second time on the bike after returning from North Carolina on Sunday and my first attempt into the park since I was last on skis.  I've been watching Charles' Parkway Ice/Snow Watch with interest and wanted to check it out for myself. 
Little bit of snow heading down towards the Kingsmere Rd overpass.  No need to get off the bike.
Big patch of ice under the overpass.  In the sunlight, if you didn't know better, you might think that it was just wet.  You need to dismount!
The little climb after the overpass heading up to Penguin there is a washout on your righthand side - reminiscent of last years damage on the road in the same area.
North Loop (P8 Parking lot) is taped off due to another washout.  I didn't bother heading past it, but I am guessing that the North Loop is completely snow/ice free - it usually goes first.
I turned back after reaching P8 and rode back to the Champlain turn-off.  Here's as far as I got as the snow before Lac Bourgeois is thick:
photo credit to Gatineau Guide
Pink Lake still frozen over but shows signs of breaking up.

**Back to the NC Road Trip report on Monday.**

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Blue Ridge & Bent - Day 4, NC 2011

Last Friday we took a rest day after five rides in four days - nothing to report, nothing to show. I guess I could have taken photos of laying around the sleazy motel room watching TV on a vibrating bed and cleaning bikes. So instead I'll skip to last Thursday, day four of NC 2011.

Last year you might remember that Curvy and I were able to get a tour of the Industry 9 factory, thanks to Dicky hooking us up.  Over the past couple of years we've been slowly discovering how influential to the cycling industry/world that North Carolina, particularly Asheville, is.  It was going to be a difficult task topping I9, so when asked to hook us up again Dicky did not let us down.  So many instrumental companies, riders and developers have come from or worked from this area of the country and it was our good fortune that we got to tour another big player in the cycling world - Cane Creek.  

So last Thursday morning we rose out of bed, grabbed a coffee and headed out into the rolling, green countryside just outside of Asheville to meet up with Eric Smith who would lead us through the world of Cane Creek.   Curvy is much better with putting together technical, wordy, descriptive blog posts - so once he has completed it and posted it here, I'll poach and post it on the OBR blog.  Stay tuned because it was a very cool three hour tour that we were on getting to know Cane Creek, it's products and kindly folk who work there.

Climb and climb and climb . . . it's the Blue Ridge.
 After our wickedly awesome tour we grabbed a bite of food, headed back to the squeazy, sleazy hotel, got our road bikes and headed out for a ride west bound on the Blue Ridge Parkway.  Eric and Jim at Cane Creek were nice enough to invite us out to their regular Thursday night group ride at Bent Creek which we were very stoked to go on.  So, we thought a short ride to loosen the legs would be in order in the warm 27+ degree early afternoon.

It probably would have made sense to ride something flat'ish considering we would be out hammering with the Cane Creek crowd later that evening.  However, you'd have more luck finding a hair on Peter's head than finding a flat route around Asheville.  Meh.  We only rode for about an hour and a half before we had to head back to the hotel to get the mtn bikes ready for the evening group ride.

Beauty views, rolling hills, and smoother than a babies bottom road surfaces.  I want to move to Asheville.  Unbelievable riding there.

Later that day we hooked up with the crowd from Cane Creek and rode for about two hours in Bent Creek.  They took us on an ubber fun, super fast route that had these two out of shape, pasty white Canucks working hard to stay on their wheels.  Afterward we headed to Papas and Beers for Mexican and drinks.  Eric, Kelly, Jim, Josh, Chad, their significant others and those who I can't remember were super friendly, made us feel like home and were a hoot to ride and hang out with.  Can't wait to hook up with them next year. 

*Note to self: when going to a Mexican restaurant, don't sit next to skinny cyclists who only order only one soft shelled taco and go on about how big they are.  "Oh, they're huge?!?  Wicked. I'll have one as well."  "Big" to a skinny assed fast cyclist and "BIG" to a heavy set, big boned, bone head are two very different things.  Always go with the LARGER option.

Blinky lights needed.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

It was a wonderful day in Dicky's neighbourhood

I'm going to have to work backwards on the NC trip . . . Curvy Butt has all my video and photos, except our last ride with Dicky, Big Worm and Josh on Saturday.

'The Plan' was for Dicky to come down to Pisgah to meet up with us on the last weekend that we would be in and around the Asheville area of North Carolina.  However, a Daddy Daughter Dance and some sort of marriage-anniversary-date listening to a barber shop quartet at a mall took precedent over our annual trip to the south.  So instead of Dicky coming to us, and after a generous offer to sleep on his floor, we came to Dicky.   

The drive to Charlotte is only about two hours away from Asheville, but put us one hour closer to home.  Win, win!  After an evening getting to know The Pie and The Fajitia we headed to a local watering hole, which more importantly served greasy pizza to fuel the engine for Saturday's ride at Charlotte's finest single track.  Whether it was the greasy pizza or sleeping with the many adoptable dogs on the chesterfield (that's Canadian for couch), I didn't sleep so well and awoke to the hustle and bustle of Dicky swapping out stems, measuring bottom bracket drops and the Vegan Vagabond snooping into his big blue bins. 

What three locals could not ride, three Canucks rode with confidence, panache, grace and style.
We rode two trail systems (can't remember the names) in/around Charlotte - both super fun and very different from Pisgah.  The trails were super buff, twisty, bermy, tighty fun with very little elevation gain with the odd technical feature thrown in to keep you on your toes.  My legs were thankful for the break from all the climbing that we did in Pisgah and relished (mmmmmmm, relish) the smooth, fast trails.     
Double chin?  Pffft, it's April.  You should see my gut
Dicky assured us this was the most rad'est, hardest, technical feature on all the trails in and around Charlotte.  Seemed he had difficulty with most everything Saturday, even putting his bike on his rack properly (can you spot the problem?).
Big Worm (a.k.a. Bill) rolls over the same rocky pile with ease.

Whooopty Doooo . . . . diddy doo.

Me soo hungry.  Me eat long time.  (Post ride Asian meal . . . pfffft, who eats Asian after a ride?!?!)
Visiting with Dicky, meeting his family and riding in Charlotte was well worth the trip from Asheville and was an awesome way to end our road trip.  Cheers Dicky for being such a good host!
Every year I look forward and love my trip south, but as it draws to a close I look forward even more to returning home to my little family.  This was a nice surprise when I walked through the door early Sunday evening.

Monday, April 11, 2011

It's coming . . .

 Back last night from North Carolina.  A week's worth of stuff at home to catch up on and a road trip to report.  Give me a day or two to get photos and video sorted. I promise, it's interesting stuff . . . 16 hour drive, sleazy hotel, big climbs and epic rides, more Mexican food than one digestive system can digest, my gut, puppies, sleeping on Dicky's couch and excited admirals.