4 May 2009 - 0:26A Serious Case of the Sundays
I mean, really.
So many places to ride, so little time. This is my one day away from the shop, and I have to choose my recreation wisely, because there is still the litany of things to do around the house that never gets done because I am working or riding.
There was a serious conflict of things to do, places to ride today. There was trail maintenance at 10. Or, I could go with Aaron (our newest personnel addition at Bike29) into the nether regions of the Mad River Valley. Seeing as how I have already gotten 3-4 hours of trail work under my belt this season, I didn’t feel too bad about skipping out to get my first glimpse of the famed MRV trails.
There is an outrageous amount of climbing. far more climbing than I had the energy for in fact. Here in Waterbury, we are used to the trails being a certain way, buff, well drained and few sustained climbs. Well, this was a ride that harkened back to the old school days of riding. Lots of steep fall line up, mud, roots galore, rocks, you name it. I spent most of the way up trying to keep my breakfast down.
Once at the top though, the riding was phenomenal. There was a lot of “rollie goodness”, with still yet more climbing, but the rewarding sort. You know, the kind when you get to roll down something, but have to work to get up the other side of… Whenever we got to a clearing, we were rewarded of some pretty spectacular views of Sugarbush, and the surrounding peaks.
I’ve said it many times before, MRV may as well be on the moon it is so different. While geographically, we are separated only by a few ridge lines, both the terrain and mindset of the locals is very different. The trails are rugged and hard, yet once you get to know them, reward you with an experience that is like no other. Kinda like riding with one of the locals…
We rode today what was described to me as the “stock run”. Holy crap! I have a lot more training to do if I can call this a stock run.
The downhill portions (the last half of the ride) were just as awesome as I imagined. On the way up I spied several lines, wondering if this was some sort of rookie initiation ride. I mean really, why were we riding up all this? It’s steep! I’m about to hurl! We should be going the other way! Little did I know that we were on an out and back, and I was greatly rewarded for my efforts.
Here is the A-Man rolling one of the drops. Actually, it’s more of a series of drops, none of them huge or even dangerous by Perry Hill standards. The trick is, that you can’t see the roll off until you’re on top of it. They mess with you. If you take the side route, you feel like a fool. It’s all rideable… if’n you know what you are doing…
Here I am on the same line but a different perspective. Aaron shot for the sequence, so you can sort of see that first you had to roll off a blind log pile, square up and roll the big drop. It was super fun, and by then I had won the battle to keep my breakfast, so I was feeling up to task.
I had my eyes opened a little wider today. I got to peek into a whole ‘nuther world of mountain biking, barely one town over from the shop. I’ll be going back…