Tuesday, January 4, 2011

New Year’s Day Hangover Ride….

Honestly, these New Year’s Day adventures used to provide stories that were much more entertaining to tell.
When I was younger and a runner, we would do a New Year’s Day Hangover run which usually included several runners that were either severely hung over or in some extreme cases still drunk having not yet been to sleep. As you can imagine, taking a group of moderately competitive, mostly out of shape, ego driven, hung over runners and forcing them to actually run provided very colorful stories…..and by colorful, I mean the color was green…..really, really green.

Lately though, as I’ve gotten older, most of my partners in crime have also aged and in many cases actually gained the good sense not to stay out late and get hammered on New Year’s Eve. The result is that our New Year’s Day events (mt bike rides in recent years) have mellowed to the point that the stories are not quite as entertaining and the memories focus more on the event itself and not on the antics of the attendees. (the only exception to this is when a completely sober attendee does something stupid and we can all make fun of them)

This year was similar to the recent ones except that it’s wetter this year than it has been in years past. We met up off Skyline Blvd early on a cold, drizzling, windy morning and plotted out our route. Muddy trail conditions would dictate which trails were and were not open. Turns out most were open.

It wasn’t long after we started that pretty much everyone had a brown stripe up their backs from the mud splattering up on them. Turns out the guys smart enough to actually put on fenders faired only slightly better than those without…

We started on fireroads, jumped off on singletrack, back to fireroads and so on as we worked our way down into the canyon. There were some good climbs, but for the most part, our trajectory was down…..which is great. But, in the back of my mind, I knew at some point during the day, I was going to end up paying a dear price for all this fun.
(One of the climbs, which is practically impossible when dry, was completely and totally impossible when wet.) 
Completely spent and with no fuel in the tank, my response to the question of who wants more, was of course….I do, I do….wait, who said that?
My legs said no, my lungs said no, even my back said no, but that damn mouth of mine chimed in as if it was ready to go all day…..the problem is, my ego is in cahoots with my mouth but not at all connected to my brain or the rest of my body…..

My mouth is always volunteering for stuff, or agreeing to stuff or even saying stuff, that every other part of my body realizes is a bad idea…..just like the time my mouth said “sure, one more lap down Tractor will be fun” and my poor arm took the brunt of the fall when my legs and my brain quit working halfway down the hill…

This time at least the only injury was suffered by my ego as he had to face up the group when my legs couldn’t push the rest of my body up the hill any faster and we made it to the top about 2 and half days after everyone else….
At the end of a wet muddy ride, I could think of nothing better than a hot shower and a nap….at least I couldn’t until Nick mentioned that he brought chili….Afterall, what could be better than a nice hot bowl of chili, some bread (yep, he brought that too) and something to drink. Of course this was all supplemented by the salami and cheese that Don brought, the fruit platter that Chris brought and whatever else was there.

I was so intent on keeping my mouth from committing to any more stupid ideas, that I was forced to keep shoving food into it to keep it quiet….all in all an awesome ride and a great way to start the new year….

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