Thursday, October 23, 2008

The Crashing Continues

A friend of a friend was single a few years ago and was part of a group discussion of other single guys several years ago. As the discussion ended, he (I don't remember his name) gave one last bit of consolation: "Remember guys, no matter how hot a girl is there is somebody somewhere who is sick of her crap." And so it was with my Ibis. It was a beautiful bike - a creamy green with a fork to match. Shiny silver accessories including silver King Hubs and XTR components. Yet, as Mr. Flynn pointed out in the comments yesterday, my Ibis and I had a love/hate relationship - in that I loved to look at her and she loved to hurt me. As with any relationship, it wasn't entirely her fault. I was relatively new to single track. I was also riding with people whose descending abilities far outpaced my own. She was just too twitchy, too finicky for me. The summer of 1998 was a magical one. I worked at the shop and went to school. My buddy Red was also a student. We had just started exploring the trails up AF Canyon and the weather conditions were cooperating. It was a relative wet summer in that it often rained lightly in the evening and was cloudy during the day, making the trails tacky without being muddy. It also kept it from getting too hot while we rode. So, one day we parked at the summit trail head and started along the Ridge Trail. We climbed until we were tired and then turned to head back to the car. As we made our way along, the Pine Hollow cutoff trail/Timpanooke trail beckoned. Red wasn't the biggest fan of climbing, so it was only after I promised to climb back to get the car that he agreed to go down. We had no idea what the trail had to offer. Quickly, we were flowing through the curves and dips that those who've ridden this trail have come to be familiar with. The trail generally follows a smooth back and forth path as it winds along the hillside toward the road. I became too comfortable with the flow and went too hot into a corner. If you've ridden the trail, you may remember there used to be a smooth right-hander a few hundred yards from the road crossing toward Timpanooke Campground that opened up into what felt like should be a smooth left-hander. The only problem was a large hole where the line should have been so the trail went sharply left and then sharply right to get around the hole. As I came in hot, I realized there was no way I was going to make the corner, so I tried to bail off the back. The Ibis continued on into the hole - as did I. As the bike went down, my momentum carried me into the seatpost. The bike then planted on the far side of the hole. I was back on the bike - so to speak - as my crotch was crunched against the seatpost. As a result, I followed the bike over in an awkward nose-wheelie/endo type of endeavor. As I reached the far end of the hole, I was presented with two options - eat the stump with my mouth on the other side or lead with my head. I led with my head. Another broken helmet. This time though, I also had an aching shoulder as well as other aching bits. Oh, and another crash story. I never took that corner the same. Good times.


KanyonKris said...


Yes, I know that spot and it's claimed many a mountain biker. I've almost piled it up there a few times, but somehow escaped (more luck than skill, I assure you). Strangely, I was sad when I discovered it had been "fixed". It was a danger, but it was also a landmark - but now no more.

Sabrosa Cycles said...

I know the very spot. Tug and I nosed it into said abyss a few years ago. I managed to pull things together enough to ride a wheelie into it, but it still rocked me like a hurricane. I guess it has been a few (five?) years since I have ridden that trail. I am bummed that someone fixed it.

Aaron said...

I just had a small epiphany about the irony of mtb'ing. We reminisce about all of the pain we've suffered due to certain trail conditions, and then we complain about how said trail conditions have been "improved" to reduce the likelihood that said pain will repeat itself. And somehow, although I can't explain it, it all makes perfect sense to me. What a strange breed we are.