Remember Rob's immortal words: "Pain is temporary, glory is forever."
Well I think we put that to the test Sunday and Monday. In the pain department, we clearly succeeded. No doubt DC is doubling up on the Advil this week, having earned frequent flyer (over the handlebar) gold status. The ground last night at 20 degrees F was not very forgiving. I for one will be shopping for a new helmet and memorializing the old one for saving me a trip to the ER. In the end, everyone landed a shoulder or chest dab on the ice at some point, so we clearly have the pain part pretty well nailed.
Now for the glory part...
Jim and Mike bombing the lower field by Chalfont, approaching the tree line at high rate of speed, with little braking ability, simultaneously laying their bikes down in a perfectly choreographed double-wide-wipe-out, tangled in the bikes and coming to a stop perhaps 3 bike lengths from certain spectacular disaster. Absolutely brilliant!!
Traffic congestion on the white trail with perhaps 20 mountain bikers, head lamps glowing, traversing numerous creeks, laying their own individual singletrack, and grinning ear to ear all the way to Little Conestoga. The impromptu gathering at the end of the white trail was one of many high points.
Careening down the narrow winding quarry trail (basically a luge with wheels), licking our wounds at the bottom, and then grinding right back to the top for more punishment. The quarry exit usually begins the dash for home, so this was clear indication that the group was completely intoxicated, but this time on something other than rum.
And Sebastian, riding the last 45 minutes with no light (battery died), inspiring the rest of us to cross the upper field in stealth mode (lights extinguished), and capping it off with a first-ever-in-competition slow-motion sideways exit from the Struble bypass which had everyone cheering (and Kirk scratching his head).
After 2 hours of this madness, man and machine were beginning to show wear so we bagged it around 9:30pm.
Sunday's early morning ride was memorable as well with a mad dash across the lake, a high speed traverse of the sole trail, an assortment of trips over the handlebars, and a run-in with a deer that was having a VERY bad day.
All in all it was the perfect way to finish a 9 month string of weekday rides. With the warm weather and the melting snow this week, the Marsh Creek trails will be virtually unrideable so it looks like a little time off to revel in the pain and bask in the hard earned glory.
TBD if we'll ride on Sunday, open to suggestions. Don't forget class at Downingtown Bikes this Sunday. If you have any questions on the class, please contact Sebastian.
Oh, and tighten those friggin' chinstraps!