This past weekend, I rode the Powderhorn 24. This is the third time I’ve ridden this “community endurance event” in its four-year run. This year, instead of riding on a four-person relay team, we each decided to ride solo.
The 2014 rider t-shirt.
The weekend might be summed up thus: bikes, beer, tacos, humidity. More beers than laps, more laps than tacos, more humidity than anything else.
The decision to ride solo was definitely the right one. It allowed us to ride together, instead of having one person on the course and the other three hanging about in the bike-hobo camp that collects around the start finish–though we did our share of hanging out there too. And, it also allows for the freedom to choose when to ride (often, in 3-5 lap shifts), when to stop for a beer and a taco (even more often), and when to stop at bonus checkpoints (never).
It was so much fun, we’re already scheming for next year. Early preview: fat-bikes, an improved camp setup, and perhaps a couple more solo riders to join us.
Yesterday was our 18th wedding anniversary. We went for a ramble about town that included brunch and a serious bloody mary, some relaxation by the lake, a fine cup of pour over, and perhaps a little too much sun.
K and her breakfast margarita.
Rambling around town.
The glass-calm lake.
“Hmm…there’s no wind; flying the kite might be hard.”
A celebratory nip from the flask.
“Do you ever clean this thing? There’s rust…at least I hope that’s rust.”
Beard on a bench with bourbon.
Rust be damned.
We’d also wanted to fly our kite, but we seemed to have picked the one day in the last several months with no wind. Another time…
Having grown tired of moving the too-small collection of Brooks B17 saddles amongst our too-large fleet of bicycles, I bought a Brooks Cambium (C17) to fill one of the gaps (and yes, there are several…).
I mounted it on the Devil this weekend past and have been riding it now for a few days. Just initial impressions so far, but here are a couple of things I’ve noticed right off the bat:
- Unlike the B17, the C17 does not require a seatpost with setback to get it in the right place (though I do have it all the way back on a zero-setback Thomson Elite)
- The cloth cover is tougher than it appears, and dries very quickly.
- It’s slightly narrower, slightly longer, and shaped differently than a B17. When mounted so that the bars are basically level with the saddle, my inner thighs will rub on a B17, but not with the C17.
- The rivets look cool.
That’s about all I can say for now. I’ll write more after a few thousand miles and a couple of bike changes.
There are some days when there’s nothing but a long ride to set things right. And sometimes, long isn’t enough. For those times, there’s long and fat.
Nate and I left early, both rolling fat, and picked up his friend Kep as we left town for some add-day riding that included sandwiches at Brennan’s in Monroe, horseshit-dodging in Illinois, several cold-water head dousings, cold cans of beer after 85 miles, and a post-ride steak with pitchers of beer at Alchemy.
This also represents the single longest ride I’ve done on the fat-bike (I’d ridden a fat-bike century a while back, but this one was slightly longer). I look forward to doing it again–perhaps going all the way to Freeport, IL next time–but not until it’s a little cooler.
And not until I’ve sorted out why my cranks (Surly Mr. Whirly) keep loosening themselves up.
Rolling toward the Stewart Tunnel (photo by Nate Vergin)
Going toward the light (Photo by Nate Vergin)
Into Illinois (Photo by Nate Vergin)
Orangeville, IL (Photo by Nate Vergin)
The new BST shelter in Monroe (Photo by Nate Vergin)
Examining the wonky BB, again (Photo by Nate Vergin)
Break time in Belleville (Photo by Nate Vergin)
Living the high life.
Stats: 105.7 miles at 14.9 mph average. Seven bottles of water + nuun, two sandwiches, two bags of chips, one Clif bar, and three Miller High Life tallboys.