Thursday, April 14, 2011

WNR # 4

Attendance: Myself, Sarah, Cheryl, Jess, Sherri, Karin, Benson, Secret Steve, A/C, Kevin, New Chris, and Tricky Nicky. I feel like I'm forgetting someone, but I don't know. Sorry Sarge, we forgot to take a group photo for you. Maybe next week.

Weather: A bit chilly, probably around 50 degrees with a stiff north breeze.

Tail Conditions: For the most part the trail was in excellent shape. Boyne has continued logging past the pines, and I don't recommend attempting to go much past Benson's trail.

I was feeling a little antsy after two days off the bike, so I set out on my own just after 5:00 for a warmup. My route was up Secret Steve's trail/South Peak/North Peak/Bridges/Pines/Hike a bike through logging operation:(/back to the field directly. Our WNR group headed back up the same route; but when we got to the pines we headed back down for the traditional Sarge Loop. The past couple of years I've been doing Sarge's via the Dump Run and a bit easier uphill. Last night we rocked it old school, and it hurt just as much as it ever has. But it sure is a nice downhill finish right back to the cars and beer. Sarah was thrilled with the girl ride as well. I don't know if we've ever had such a strong and consistent female showing at the WNR over the years. Anywho, I think we're going Larks Lake NCT next week for the WNR, right? If not, correct me. If so, hope to see another strong showing next week.

Also, before I add on to the new trail out at HQ I was hoping for some feedback. My intentions so far have been to make it technically challenging and twisty, but at the same time also make it mostly rideable for all skill levels. I think I'm heading in the right direction since Sarah rides it without complaint, but I'm open to suggestions as well.

So my pity post about Sunday's challenges netted way more comments than usual, like three or four I think (total). In response to what I normally carry, I emptied out my pack before I started my ride yesterday so you could see. I'm currently carrying some food, a tube wrapped in saran wrap to avoid small punctures while kicking around in my pack for months on end, a shell (the same one that saved my a** in both ski marathons this winter), a pump, inside that plastic bag: multi-tool/tire levers/chain tool/9 sp magic link/5 mm wrench with some duct tape wrapped around it, money, emergency headlamp, and emergency blanket. I also carry a blinky rear light, but it's taped to the pack so it doesn't bounce off. For a race or long adventure, I would probably also throw in another tube, some CO2, and a fix a flat tubeless inflator.

These last two pictures are my first attempts at developing my bikepacking setup. Matt and I are planning an overnighter on the High Country Pathway for Easter Sunday, so I'm definitely going to be dialing it in over the next week or so. I'm planning on a night sleeping out behind the house next week as a final test.


Sarah said...

You forgot Doug. And can GiGi sleep under there too for the night!

SARGE said...

You should do a test run up to Wilderness State Park via the NCT, camp out for the night and return the next morning.

Lots of good stuff on this site:

WPG said...

Sorry Doug, I probably forgot you because you shot off the front and were out of sight when we got to Sarge's Section, you just couldn't resist attacking in April :)

Sarge, I've been thinking the same thing. I've been asking around on the web, and it sounds like we'd be about a week or two ahead of the first clean up of the HCP this spring. One person commented that we could expect to be off our bikes between four and five hundred times before the end of the two days. Also, several people have commented that we would probably only be able to average 6 or maybe 7 mph due to spring trail conditions.