Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Not one of your best ideas Rich

That’s what I heard from my buddy Tracy last Sunday morning as we waited for the start of the First Ever Harvey Bear Mt Bike Race…..(actually I think what he said to me was phrased a little differently, but this being a family friendly blog, I’ve cleaned it up a bit)

I’m actually a pretty smart guy sometimes and I have really been known to come up with some great ideas. The day last winter when a bunch of us decided to blow off work and go skiing….that WAS a great idea. The time I brought my mt bike with me to Tahoe before our friend’s daughter’s wedding and had a fantastic ride….another great idea…

But, standing in the parking lot in Gilroy at 8:30 in the morning when it was already in the high 80s and preparing to ride a route that included lots of hills and almost zero shade….in a race…..ok, so maybe this isn’t one of my better ideas.

This thought recurred to me several times as we headed up the first hill…2 miles of loose, dusty, hot, climbing…..this was followed by some fast, but still loose and still hot, and since I wasn’t in the front, still definitely dusty single track downhill. The downhill, as it always is, was followed by more uphill...this went on for the entire 13 mile loop. I saw many of the same people over and over again, passing and being passed depending on how each of us were feeling at that particular point...eventually I just quit trying to keep track and tried to motor on through...

I’m not sure what geological phenomenon is responsible for creating this park, but a large portion of the trail is black, lava-rock like loose gravel…Who would have thought I would be almost as slow on some of the down hill portions as I was on the uphill? My tires repeatedly slipped and slid and several times I thought for sure I was going down only to recover miraculously at the last minute.

Now granted, I’m not the most proficient downhiller, and growing up my coordination was repeatedly called into question to the point that my nickname was whoops. (evidently that was my common response when tripping or stumbling over something any normal kid would have noticed and stepped over gingerly)

All in all though, it was a pretty fun morning. I’ve never been in a race before and I learned several things. One – I’m not nearly as fast in reality as I am in my own mind and Two – it’s better to start at the front of the pack and try hard not to get passed than to start at the back and try to work your way forward….especially if it’s dusty and there’s a lot of singletrack...

Next time I’ll know better…..wait, did I just say next time? Hmm…maybe it wasn’t such a bad idea afterall…..


Struggling with Duality said...

"I'm actually a pretty smart guy - sometimes" is almost a contradition. Sort of like saying "I promise, It probably won't happen again" (one of my most common reponses to my lovely wife).
Granted, you are a well ground, confident, level headed individual that has the ability to exercise common sense - in this case, you threw caution (and common sense) to the wind.
It was a great experience - we just don't need to repeat it anytime soon. !! .

OldNSlo said...

yeah, sometimes I do first then think later....did I mention I signed you up for another race????