22 August 2008 - 15:36Road Trip II (Electric Boogaloo)
I don’t know exactly why, but I always give anything “II” the Electric Boogaloo tag. Maybe it is some sort of a mental issue I have. In my mind, anything named “II” lacks flavor, and needs some spicing up. If you think about it in movie terms, all the great sequels that are truly great have their own name, such as Empire Strikes Back, or Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, or more recently, The Dark Knight. Lame sequels would include Rocky II, Jaws II, Nightmare on Elm Street II, Episode II and to me wouldn’t even seem worthy of being seen unless it had a cooler title. The one exception I can think of would be Evil Dead II, which is clearly the best of that series, but it would still benefit from the Electric Boogaloo tag. I don’t even know what a Boogaloo is, but I bet it’s pretty cool, but an electric one? Hell, I’d need to see that!
Now that I have that out of my system, here is the continuing saga of our road trip.
We pulled in to the event venue well after dark, tired and a bit grumpy. We had brought a 12 pack of Harpoon with us all the way from VT, which we had the good sense to ice down at our last fuel stop. We found Namrita, co owner of 55nineperformance and race sponsor, got ourselves situated, and immediately destroyed the 12 pack.
Most of the racers had the good sense to go to bed early, but we ended up hanging out with the infamous Team Dicky for several beers. As it turns out, we had hung out once before at the 24hrs of Old Pueblo about 7 years ago, back when I worked at a bike company, and he rode for said bike company. There was much smack talk, which is always fun. We also met Mike Stanley of Wake-N-Bake Racing, and the infamous Bruce Dickman, the larger than life event annoucer. We stayed up way too late, and finally went to bed around 1am.
The race started at something like 6:30, which I slept through. I woke up at the crack of 8:30 to overcast skies, and went to set up the tent and start getting things ready for the festival part of the event. Thanks to my wonderful packing job and DA’s help we got the tent set up in no time at all. The new banners look awesome, thanks Dr Jones!
Because of the slow start we missed out on the group rides that headed out at 9, which left DA and I hanging out socializing with the Bruce and Mike. Wee eventually did get our act together and set out for a quick ride along part of the race course. We rode out along a forest road and turned off onto another road that was part of the course which let to a really awesome piece off single track. I got the holeshot and started cranking away. The terrain is so smooth and flowy! The Jet was again screaming though the trees, when the trail started rising up, I applied the power and it simply accelerated up the hill. Maybe I’m in just the right gear, and am going just the right speed for it to happen, but this is a unique feeling I only experience on the Jet. We stopped to take a picture at this pretty waterfall, and when we were getting ready to leave we saw Team Dicky cruise by. We cheered him on and finished up our ride.
We got back, and started the beer portion of the day. Kris and Misty from Vassago rolled in after experiencing thier very own trip to Dahlonega hell. Some of the 50 milers started to roll in and the area started to get busy. We were selling T-shirts, cogs and YAWYDs, and were making enough to help feed the Jeep for the trip home.
Later that afternoon, after several beers, we ended up leading a ride. I’m not sure how it happened, but I think Bruce threw us under the bus. Who in their right mind would follow two guys from VT on a ride where we’ve never been before? After several beers? Well, we rounded up quite a posse, and went for a 10 mile loop that had a ton of climbing. We left drunk, and came back sober. No one was hurt. In fact, a couple of the guys riding with us, from Addictive Cycles had just finished the 50!
It was time to get started all over again. Unfortunately, Kris and Misty couldnt stay long, so we did our best to dispose of as many beers as we could in the short amount of time we had.
Later on, it was time to hand out the special 29er awards we had arranged to give out.It was a ton of fun, there was much hazing. Team Dicky got the “sexiest 29er” award, the prize was this special B29 wifebeater. Most creative went to the owner of this super custom vintage Schwinn. 29er and fixed, this was a real labor of love.
As the night went on more racers crossed the line. It was about this time that we figured out that we were running out of beer, and that the food was already long gone. DA and I headed back to town to rustle up some dinner and replemnishements.
By the time we returned, the festival was dying down, so we headed to bed. We had big plans on riding in the am before we headed to our next destination, Harrisonburg VA.
The next day, the sun decided to come out. Bruce and a couple of the local crew took us out on some of the areas best trails. It’s right about this time that DA and I came to realize just how lucky we were to experience real southern hospitality first hand. These are a great bunch of guys, we were instantly friends, and they went well out of their way to show us a good time. We will ride again!
Once we got back, it was time to leave. 9 more hours in the Jeep!
The last installment of this exciting trilogy to follow!