Sunday, October 30, 2011

Mentally Sensitive

This afternoon I got the opportunity to ride with Dan, one of the guys from the mtnbikeriders.com race team.  First off let me say that Dan is a great guy and secondly that I was completely out of my league trying to keep up.  We rode Five Oaks to the fire road then to a trail that I think was Mathis, but I was not paying attention as I climbed (pushed my bike, what I call climbing) to the top.  At the top we made a left and headed over to a new trail called Mentally Sensitive.  This new addition to Aliso and Woods is great, it is tight and twisty and has some really steep sections.   The only problem is that it is still a little loose so there was lots of slipping and sliding through those tight turns.  I managed to clear all the hard stuff and then ate crap on the last turn at the bottom.  I set up with my weight back elbows wide, fully ready to make the turn at full speed when I accidentally squeezed my front brake which sent my body over the bars.  Now I would give my form in the crash an 8 out of 10 and I was able to roll right to my feet and grab the bike and head down the last 100' of trail, all in full view of Dan who was waiting with his camera (did I mention that this is the first time I have ever rode with him).  Besides mild embarrassment and a major realization that I need to get in better shape, this ride was one of the best I have had.  Dan's fitness and overall ability forced me to step up my game, while I did not even come close to keeping up I definitely feel that this ride made me just a little better.  Hopefully we can do it again.

Here is a picture that Dan got right after I crashed:

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Jacob Rides Again!!!!

It has been a few month since Jake wanted to go ride trails, and I thought that he was over it.  However, this morning when asked if he wanted to ride he said yes, and was even ready to go when I was (for anyone who does not know him, he is the slowest moving 11 year old in the world).  We headed down to Crystal Cove and rode Bommer to Fenceline, for a little single track action,

video

 then down Missing Link and back on to Bommer,  over to Old Emerald Trail for a little gravity riding.  Jake wanted to walk it first to see if he would attempt the downhill, he got to the first steep section and decided that today would not be the start of his downhill career so we went back up to bommer and rode the ridge for a couple more miles.

Here we are taking a little break before heading back.  Look at all that sweat.


We rode Bommer back out to Missing Link, took a break at the top and then came back down Fenceline where we even got a little rock action in (very little)

Jake takes the easy way out n this one
 video


Jacob also wanted to try his hand at cinematography so he filmed me going through a little rock garden
video

and someday I will get a real camera for some good video, but for now I use what I got.  When we got to Bommer we followed it back to the trail head and then loaded up the truck. 

This was a great little ride just for the fact that I got to ride with my son and he has decided that he likes riding again, can't wait for next weekend!!!!!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Riding With Old Friends

Today I got the chance to go for a ride with a friend of mine from high school.  We rode together all the time when we were younger and lived near Chino Hills State Park, but after high school I went to one college and he went to another so we lost touch.  Then on "Facebook" we found that we are both riding again, so this morning we hooked up for a ride through Crystal Cove State Park.

From the trail head at Ridge Park we rode down Bommer Ridge to Fenceline and rode the single track over to Missing Link, where we took a break to check out the view, but saw nothing but fog.  Next we came down Missing link to Moro Ridge and took it back to Bommer Ridge we rode up Bommer to Old Emerald trail, which is quickly becoming one of my favorite downhills.  Then after a short break at the bottom we rode back out to Bommer and then all the way back to Ridge park.
Jeremy taking a break.


Me taking a break.


The bikes with my ghetto fabulous tailgate pad.

This was a great ride this morning, mostly because I got to share it with an old friend.  Hopefully Jeremy will be seen regularly on Surfcycles, because hopefully we will be doing a lot more riding together.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Ryans first ride in the dirt

This morning I decided to take Jake riding since I could not find anyone my own age to play with.  He decided that he was too tired to go have fun so he stayed home and I took my 7 year old daughter instead.  At 8:00am we arrived at the trail head to Bommer Ridge in Crystal Cove State Park.  The total length of the ride was about 4 miles.  We rode down Bommer Ridge to Moro Ridge, then up Missing Link to the top where the survey monument is and took a break.
Next we rode back down missing link to Moro Ridge and out to Upper Moro Ridge Campground where we had to take another break. 
SNACK TIME!!!!
On the way to the campground Ryan discovered that when you ride a bike with pedal brakes, you need to keep your feet on the pedals or you have no brakes.  She crashed on a small hill and we had to assess the damage to body and bike.  The handle bars had to be realigned and she got her first mountain biking battle wound, all with no crying!
After our little rest and recovery it was time to head back.  We rode Moro Ridge back to Bommer Ridge and took Bommer Ridge back to the trail head.  The whole ride was went well even though she was a little tentative after her crash.  It really helped that everyone we passed told her what a great job she was doing, the guys at the top of Missing Link could not believe that she had rode up that single track.  The best part of all is that she can't wait to do it again!!

Friday, October 7, 2011

Rattlesnake

I'm talking about the trail, not the animal.  This was the first time I have been on this trail, and I will not do it again by myself.  It is 1.4 miles and most of it is not too bad, but there is about 300 yards of it that is really steep and super rocky.  You plow through one rock garden practically sitting on your back tire, you can see the end of it, then you come around the bushes and there is a second rock garden that is steeper and nastier than the first.  Pick your line through the second and you round the corner to the third, but this rock garden has a clear line avoiding the rocks or you can bomb straight down through them, either way you come out with some speed and right into the last rock section which is hidden from above by another bush and has some rocks that are big enough that you definitely have to go around them and pick out good lines.

I went into the first rock garden too slow, and got hung up several times.  I came around the corner and stopped before the second rock section to check out  the line I wanted.  I picked my line, visualized myself going down that line, then launched into it.  The first thing that went wrong was the 2' drop that I hadn't seen, I hit it wheel down and weight forward, this threw my whole plan out the window and I just muscled my way down.  The third section I took the line that avoided the rocks and got some good speed, in fact I got enough speed that I launched off the first rock in the fourth section and completely bottomed out my 6" of suspension which sent my ass into the rear tire causing it to stop and the rear end to slide out into the next rock.  Off this rock it bounced out the other way and somehow corrected itself with me still being on the bike and I was able to ride out cleanly.  Then I went down the fire road to Mach One and climbed back out of the canyon.

All in all it was a fun ride, but next time I will not do this trail alone and I would like to be on a downhill bike.