Monday, April 25, 2011

Humbled by the home turf

Mutiple times this weekend I was reminded of how lucky I am to live in a place where I can ride hundreds of miles of epic trails and fireroads practically from my house.  More importantly, they humble and remind me how much work I need to do to be a better, smoother, faster racer.

On Saturday myself, Rich and Race d.o.g. went to meet Bob and Pete (Trail Quest as I like to call him now!) to pre-ride Stage 2 of Trans Epic.  I have ridden bits of this stage in Stoopid 50 and W101, but never linked it together the way Kuhn has planned for the race.  The weather was awesomely foggy, the rocks were wet, my feet were cold and it was SO much fun!

 Bob and Pete (and Race) in the foggy weather

We had decided that since we all have some big races next weekend we would try and take it somewhat easy, but I didn't really see that happening with them all riding SS.  Anyway, I tried to take it easy (that or I just culdn't keep up!).  Those guys are riding great just now, fun to be out with, and I can always rely on Pete to pre-ride courses as he loves to know race trails inside out (hence the name trail quest).

As I was picking my way throught the relentless rock gardens I kept thinking how riding these trails will build you to be able to ride anything.  I really respect all the people in town who are new to mountain biking and take on these trails. Seriously, they batter you to pieces even if you have been riding for years.  It makes racing other places seem like a breeze.

Lots of time for photos this weekend, benefits of not rushing around preping for a race!

I love these photos as Race is alwasy right there chasing me or in the stream!  Bless him.

Bob and Pete were impressed by Race.  He is such a fit dog, and so good on the trails, though he was a wee bit tired when we got home!

On Sunday Rich wanted to do his favorite, Tussey Ridge-John Wert (ahhhhhh THE WERT it always eats me up!).  Mike K came with us too.  The weather was lovely and warm, it rained a bit so the rocks were wet, but hey what's new.

Rich and Mike on the Ridge.  You see why it humbles me to ride here?

Things were going well in Wert until we stopped, and you can't stop in that trail because once you gets you, and I was gotten.  Banged knees and sliced shins are back on my legs.

Mike doing a great job in wert (With me hiding behind a tree hoping Rich has forgotten and wouldn't insist on taking pictures!).  Mike said at the end of the ride, you never really appreciate living here til you move away and come back.  I haven't moved away yet...

So yes, it's the week leading up to Cohuuta! I don't have a light race bike, so what the heck I will race the heavy Rig, what can I do?!  I will have something lighter for the latter races (2 options I am considering).  I am looking forward to my massage with Kate on Wed (who is also my sports psychologist and all round amazing friend).  The weather looks like it might be ok on Sat, hopefully not too hot, thunderstorms due the following day (I secretely hope they come early!!).

There is minimal trail in this race, but monsterous fireroad climbs.  Pacing is key because you just keep climbing.  We are hoping to stay in Asheville NC on the way down, always a nice stop with good food. 

The rest of the week I will be trying to stay fresh with a little bit of intensity.  Mike Kuhn is here so a bit more of Trans Epic pre-riding is likely to go down.  Hopefully I'll get some pics up before I leave for TN. 

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