Monday, October 19, 2009

and A Mustached Cowboy at that....

I did ask out loud as I pedaled up towards Clawhammer, "Does the cowboy high five?" 3 hours and forty something minutes earlier I had left on the super early train engineered by Rich from Charlotte. Skiddaladophy was on board and we were headed up to meet Eric, Rob C., Blair and Tim K. in South Mills. The first part of the mission was to watch the 0800hrs start of Stage 3 in the Pisgah Mountain Bike Stage Race. We were there with spare minutes to see the riders off. Next we drove down to the horse stables, geared up and waited for the rest of our party to arrive. Temps in the high singles Celsius and various shades of gray skies were being blown about by a strong westerly wind. Almost 2 hours later through the woods our group which was back together made it to N. Mills and the base of Pilot. In the beginning hundred meters of pushing up Pilot the first racer coming descending towards me was Jeremiah Bishop looking down the steep terrain over the top of his glasses and the end of his nose. He was flying. Onwards up to the Humvee section where a little party had gathered to cheer the on coming riders who were approaching from over the top of Laurel and down Pilot. A fire was built, the cowbells came out and the heckling commenced. Snow fell from the sky and was apparently accumulating on the upper slopes. Downward riding racing folks and some non-racers out on Pilot talked about the beauty of the white covering the green just above us. We pushed up to the big exposed rock switch on Pilot and altho the snow pellets were falling we never saw the snow line which must have been over the top on the immediate Laurel side. I was making a bad choice to continue on. I wanted to ignore that we were parked in South Mills and continue to play in North Mills. My friend answered the question honestly. Plenty of business still ahead of us as soon as we turned around and descended Pilot. The drive train on my fixed gear started acting poorly on the down slope of Avery. The chain kept throwing every few meters. I got off and had to adjust the EBB and mess with it which was holding up my friends down below. Up until that final descent the fixy had been a positive transfer. Alone in the back, just powering down the trail quietly with the gray scale wind. The feeling of the trail coming right back inward to me through the transfer of the revolution on the dirt and rocks. I was not planning on holding up my friends to fix the fixy, I appreciate their patience and support. Back to the car at 1620hrs in fine spirits.

The start of Stage 3 I took this picture of Dicky taking a picture of Harlan taking a picture.
Racer coming through the lower Humvee section on Pilot.
The Winning Captain Jason Morgan racing while living up to Single Speed expectations!
Skiddaladophy enjoying his Pastoral experience.
The non-racing Pisgah Princess cleaned the Humvee section just like the racing Sue Haywood and I did. I was of course not racing either.
#46 entering the first switch above the Humvee.
So far so good.
Perfect form,
a little wide but he is holding it together.
Oh no, a dab that caused him to fall on the floor.
A few seconds later #46 was welcomed by the fire.
The view from up higher on Pilot.
The first turn around spot, until Eric showed up.
Creek side near Pinkbeds and Pinkbeds.
I stole this map from Eric's blog,
as well this ride profile.

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