Big life, big bike- Bubba style

I joke about attending the Church of Two Wheels on Sunday mornings.  But it’s no joke.
Riding with my long-time friends from the Midcoast Maine never ceases to amaze me.  Week after week, the bikes don’t break, we don’t crash (much), and we experience the pure joy of playing around in the woods, challenging ourselves on repeated sections of terrain.  This has been going on close to 20 years, all year round!  This past winter was a great one for riding these same trails when they are covered with packed snow and ice.  Today, my fat-tire Pugsley stayed home and my full suspension Santa Cruz Tallboy was resurrected  back into action.  The bumpy ledges and long  downhill from the top was kinder to my deteriorating shoulders than the rigid framed Pugs.
A bunch of The Bubbas have downloaded the Strava app on our phones or via our GPS  devices.  We encourage each other and share rides that we’ve completed with the rest of the the guys (and gals now) !  We now have maps!
 Pleasant map

Pleasant map

We get elevation profiles, like this one from Sunday’s ride on Mt. Pleasant !

screenshot

Here’s me jumping on the Tallboy, and following Rigger’s line for the ride down from ” the Blueberry field” to the ” Three way”.

photo by John Anders

photo by John Anders

3 minute video of me descending Mt. Pleasant <<– Click to view three minutes of pure joy, complete with me chuckling as The Hawk and I jockey for the right side into the singletrack.  Thanks to The Hawk for sending me his clip, and The Bubbas for being there for me, week after week.
Sanctuary.

Fat tire bike hits the Bog

Way to go 2012 !
Woke up this morning to a snow-free landscape where the outdoor temperature come up to 50 degrees. I headed over to join the ever-ready-for-outdoor-action Bubbas in Rockland for a three hour fun-festival featuring the newest member of the group- my brand new Pugsley snow bike.

The Pug

I’m immensely pleased with the bike’s initial performance.
This bike is a heavy one, weighing in at some 35 pounds, primarily due to the huge footprint of the highly aggressive Nate knobbie tires that are mounted to 4″ wide rims. I learned how much air these tires need from Ian, who has a Salsa Mukluk. It’s not necessary to obsess with tire gauge. Ian told me to just squeeze the thing- should be sort of squishy. That was it.
The first test of the day was the road climb up to the trail head, which was no problem at all. As soon as I entered the mostly frozen, rutted trail, the rigid-framed bike settled into a comfortable pattern- churning ahead, sliding into the low spots, and sticking to the sloped sideways and the up and down ledges that we encounter here in coastal Maine.

Andre, Ian and the ice

Once this thing is rolling, it seems to keep rolling, and there wasn’t much out there today to stop it. Back in the parking lot some of the other Bubbas remarked that I appeared to be faster today. I cleared sections of this ride that I have been struggling with for what, fifteen years? I’m no fitter so far in 2012, so could it be the fat heavy bike that came to the front today, in conditions that had nothing to do with snow?
Check out a map of this ride, with statistics:
Rockland Bog 1/1/12 on Strava.com. It turned out to be a 7.4 mi ride that I did today, January 1, 2012.