Friday, October 31, 2008
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
- Skullcap or a balaclava (a.k.a. chickenhead) if it is really really really cold. $10.
- Clear glasses to keep your eyes from watering up. Clear because you'll be riding at night. You probably already have some of these.
- Breathable windproof top layer. Not insulated, it's just to cut the wind. Definitely breathable becuase you will be sweating.
- A long sleeve synthetic shirt or two. Zipper is nice - believe it or not you will find yourself occasionally unzipping the jacket/shirt while riding in order to shed excess heat.
- Gloves - windproof and you guessed it, breathable. Full finger for obvious reasons. $20
- Pants. You would be surprised how late we ride with shorts. Sebastian has been known to stay with shorts well into the 30s. But at some point you will want long pants - insulated, breathable, and windproof tights or baggy long pants. Either of these with a pair of synthetic long johns will get your through basically anything. I prefer the tights because they don't snag on bushes etc, but if you are homophobic or just don't see yourself in tights then baggies are great. $50. What DOESN"T work great is a fleshtone leotard. I am not going to mention any names (107 Gottier Drive, 484 228-8349), but most of you already know what I am talking about here...
- Neoprene shoe cover. This is critical because your feet are very exposed and cleated to frigid metal pedals, and if your toes get cold you will be miserable. $20. Old school alternative is duct tape around the front of the shoe. $0.05
Monday, October 27, 2008
Friday, October 24, 2008
Todd has tweaked the Nov 9 race course and marked some of it with very pretty pink ribbons. Today and Sunday will be great opportunities to check it out as he continues to dial in the course. This is called home field advantage and at our advanced age, we need to leverage it to the hilt.
Sunday ride will assume 9am departure as usual. I would like to push it back a few hours so things can dry out after the Saturday monsoon, but our neighborhood block party may be moved to Sunday in which case we'll need to finish before noon (so Dads can prep for the big-wheel-trike-race down Kaiser - as Sebastian so aptly said we have "lowered the bar yet again"). So most likely we'll stick with 9am but if it changes I will put out an email by 5pm on Saturday.
Finally I guarantee that today's happy hour ride will more intoxicating and less filling than whatever else you may have planned. We have a few already confirmed and will likely roll sometime between 4:00 and 5:00. Let me know if you can jump on and if so, any time constraints.
"Old age and trickery beats youth and speed"
Relive our (mis)adventures at mo7s.blogspot.com
Monday, October 20, 2008
Saturday, October 18, 2008
Friday, October 17, 2008
Monday, October 13, 2008
Nov 9 is shaping up with solid confirmations from 4 riders and 5 more who have voiced positive intentions. There are some veterans who have been uncharacteristically silent, my strong suspicion is that you just want to keep us in suspense and will signal your positive intentions shortly...
The 5-day forecast for this week looks good - dry with nigh time lows in the 50s - so we should have no problem getting a few rides in this week. Again we will employ the "flex" ride schedule - if you are interested in riding just chime in with any time preferences and we will nail it down via email by 5pm on ride day.
That's all for now.
"Don't look back. Something might be gaining on you"
Thursday, October 9, 2008
hop_devil61:“There was a group of three park rangers standing at the north end of the Struble trail on Wednesday evening, just before 6 p.m. I assume they were there to intercept mountain bikers headed toward the park, knowing many ride on Wednesday evening.
We parked in the township lot off Shellmire Road. We shot down Dorlan Mill Road and then entered the park via the usual gravel road. Doing this allowed us to escape any contact with the park officials at the bottom of the hill. We didn't see any of them for the rest of the ride.
Thought I would pass that along.”Todds:“Vic...
Are you sure they were mc rangers and not the county park rangers? County ranger gave group some shit last ride for not riding single file... Hopefully we will get it all worked out soon... I plan to meet with park guy next week when i am back in town...
Later…"Robinforsomething:“Not riding single file, that's awesome. Are walker's supposed to be single file too? What about dogs on a leash, should they be single file with their owners too? What was your response? I probably would have been speechless (and thought of a good comeback 20 minutes later).”
Never a dull moment...
- The double track road from the dam to the farm. We all know this stretch from the pre-lakeside-trail days. It sucked then and it sucks now too.
- On the climb up Blue from Sebastian's mudpit, we think the course zigs left up a new trail which I had not ridden until last night. It bypasses the rooty section on the bobsled run (that's good) but it grinds straight up to the top of the ridge (that's bad). It is the most miserable climb I have seen at MCSP but it is fairly short.
All of the uphill grinds are followed, eventually, by some flats or downhills which gives you an opportunity to rest. I know it's not exactly a flash of brilliant insight that all uphills eventually turn into downhills when riding a loop, but my point is that it is remarkably easy to rest while coasting so don't get freaked out by the non-stop aspect of this.
There are a couple of sketchy sections:
- Eddie trail descent (weight back, hold on) - I think most of you have done this one already anyway. And the stinging nettles have been removed.
- Left turn in the baby-head field from Entrail. Haven't figured out how to do this one yet, but heck it's just one turn.
Sunday, October 5, 2008
Thursday, October 2, 2008
The Marsh Creek Fall Classic race committee has a real treat in store for riders on November 9th (attached is the proposed course map). The first 3 years we were relegated to riding laps in a corner of the park. This year riders will spread their wings and experience more of what the park has to offer including a trip up the rocky climb (I feel a dismount coming), a trip through the tricky-double-bridge-rickety-causeway-mud-pit section on the way to the lakeside trail, a ride down the Sole trail, and some moderate grinds up the double track behind the dam and up the quarry trail. It's not all fun and games though as there are a fair number of flat sections interspersed for recovery and/or being passed by women in spandex and lilac perfume (there is no shame in that – otherwise I would have hung up my cleats by now.)
Following is a colorful narrative course description from the designer (Todd Strauss). I have added red text for clarity:
It will be clockwise…starts in the oval loop at the "top" of the park near chalfant follow "blue" thru the field heading toward the boat ramp, left towards chalfont lot then right onto the newer trail with the rad teeter… along the lake back up to the doubletrack behind the bathrooms, out to the grass thru the upper "boat" parking lot, out to the dam along the new trail – across the top of the dam, down the sole trail… back up the fire road, across the field, up the drive, thru the field at the corner of skyline and lyndel , up the nastiest climb in the park (the rocky climb, ouch!), down to the tracks (must be taking a left off the bobsled run somewhere), up again over the 4 little ladder bridges, climb staying right then head left to what I think is a newer trail, to a left on green then left down along the old stone house (eddie trail complete with singing nettles), down to the tracks, out to the quarry, climb the quarry along the fence, down a little, bang a left climb some more, back down to the field, thru the field, climb a little more (on the "entrail"), thru a tiny bit of field, down, hard left (very sketchy turn in the babyheads), climb, turn left around the double track… the end…
If you have ridden with us at MCSP more than once, then chances are you have already seen 90% of this course first hand. Remember it is not about the podium (those spots are reserved for the sand baggers), it's about the buzz and excitement of race day, the personal satisfaction you get from testing your comfort zone, and most of all having your kid(s) at the finish line cheering adoringly as if you just broke an Olympic record or something. So get off the fence (or climb on it and then jump off on this side) and go register yourself already.
I am doing the Marshalton Triathlon this Sunday with Ruth and Sara so you won't see me in MCSP on Sunday, but feel free to meet me at Marshalton after you read about or register for this totally family oriented ultra low key event. Last year they had a live band, corn maze, food, and free climbing wall. This year they are adding a tailgating section to the parking area. That should give you a sense of the "fun factor" for this event.
That's all for now...
Chris"A journey of 1000 miles must begin with a single crank-turn."