Monday, April 21, 2014

Monday ride ...

... around the "hood"...

Don't think I was ever more than a 10-15 min spin away from my house but yet got an awesome 3 hr mtb ride while the truck got summer tires put on (second attempt)!
Love Bowness!

Happy Riding!

Keeping an eye on the Superfly while enjoying a mocha
South of COP - shortcut over to Valley Ridge - trails were nice and tacky early in the morning.

Craig popping out of "stoney bridge trails"
Back up to Tuscany - early morning tacky, late morning muddy!
non bike related: I don't particularly like feet but had to celebrate the 2014 first doggie walk in sandals!

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Happy Easter!

Nice Easter Sunday dinner, thanks Sarah, Meredith and Karen!
Easy to host when all you need to do is have the meat :)

Happy eating!
Did not capture dinner, but it was pretty and very tasteful. Desert hit the spot!

Toby agrees (note, this is not normally allowed!!)
mmmm... good stuff... and look, it's gelato. Healthy ice cream right??

Visiting the Nutbrown Haven...

... on a perfect day to be out on the bike!

Tired legs all day, hope it didn't slow the fast guys down too much. It was just too nice of a day to not be out there.

I'm so happy for Jon - he and his family found their "little" haven along one of the traditional bike routes just south of the city. So when riding south - a visit is in the plan! The family was out - kids having acres of land to explore and play, and Jon a lifetime of projects :) Hopefully he'll find time to join for a ride.

Started with a mocha at Cadence - they have "upgraded" their mochas to now use chocolate syrup which then I can ask for "extra chocolate please" - and look at the pattern! picking up their game - now I'm torn between Cochrane and Bowness for the best mocha ever.

We picked up Pat just before Weaselehead and road south - I need to study a map one day - but the map below show the route - I very much enjoyed it - and thanks again for them doing all the pulling. Great ride and probably one of the last long one before Portugal - next weekend hopefully trails will be somewhat ready and mtb can come out.

Thanks again to Pat and Craig for pulling me along....

Happy Riding!

With this to start the day - it can only go well!
A new route for me, but it went up and down on and beautiful scenery.
Great day, blue sky and just happy riding bike...
The shadow we haven't seen much of yet this year!
Snow covered mountains all around...
Jon's new house!! Right on our route - awesome property!

Saturday, April 19, 2014

A no bike...

... post.

Since trails are not ready as of yet, Toby is keeping busy with others things, while looking forward to mtb season. Enjoying a SQ sleepover and dog park visit. SQ with a after pond swim crazy bug :)


Happy Dog!
Happy and Wet dog...

Quality at last...

... and it hurt slightly (or a lot if I were to be totally honest).

Great day with blue sky as we headed out from Cadence. It was nice to see a whole bunch of Dead Goats also heading out, taking advantage of the weather!

As we rolled out we quickly discussed the plan for the day - I asked for 4-5 no stopping - they heard hammer for 5 hrs! or at least so it felt at times. A feeling I haven't had in a long time - thinking back to the first year or two riding with these guys when this feeling was most of the rides and I rarely made it through the full ride - turning around riding home spending double the time it took me to get to where ever I lost them. Learned that the best way improving is always reaching just above what you are capable with trying not to impact those who are also looking for a good ride - hence early days meant turning around by my self most rides. But the gains from those rides were as good as any race I could have done, and if done right, can only make you stronger. And done right you can't hammer every day! But on the flipside - stagnating in a comfortable place is not why I'm out here - feeling tested to your limit is great!
Today was awesome that way - Craig is feeling good and seem to enjoy going hard and knowing he can do it without cracking, Pat, well I don't think Pat ever cracks, he is just always a steady machine. So I had it made for me today - made for a hurt!

We road the traditional north back roads (gravel) out of town and then Craig led way wanting to show us the historic grocer he had come by last year or maybe before. We did mostly gravel and it was in pretty good shape (bike was necessary but not sluggish like Water Valley - besides maybe a couple of very short section.

Great loop! Only one section on a busy road, wild life (deer jumping fences right in front of us - impressed us with their athletic abilities, besides one who failed and ducked and went under, pretty impressive too, then a new born baby cow that Pat wanted to bring home as well as a couple of bunnies that he also wanted to have for dinner, learning to know a different side of Pat, and of course the Toby looking cat, maybe not wild, but cute). The stop at the Grocer is about half way through, and a good spot to have a drink. From there is mostly asphalt home, but some good climbs and stretches to work hard. Out of Cochrane I was the one bailing out of going through Glendale park - my legs didn't have much more left and we still had to make it home. The boys decided to stay with me - it was windy so I was happy.

Another one to add to one of my favorite loops! And a good Portugal prep ride. Bike is clean again and the morning will tell if I will make it south to visit Jon's new house, right on a great south loop.

Happy Sunny Riding!

Just north of the city limit
If you look really careful, you'll see the loaner Deer that lost all is friend, but then eventually took the leap and crossed the road in front of us... clearing the two wire fences!
A new section of road for me - mountains with fresh snow from yesterday looked pretty awesome with the blue sky.
Our Dutch friends stranded with a "drag", trouble shooted down to a done bottom bracket. And unfortunately in all the luggage they carried there was no tool or spare part - we called Bike Brothers and gave them direction. After the rest of our ride (3 hours later?) we stopped in and still no sign of them. Hopefully they made it there. They were enroute to Edmonton!
The historic grocer! Craig says people take pictures of it, so I did! :) Actually pretty neat though, so worth a stop!
I thought this guy looked so much like Toby, and as friendly as can be - no room on the bike though....

Friday, April 18, 2014

Coffees, snow, superstore, walmart, latex and ....

... new tools for Ryan....

A little bit more adventure than we planned but all in all a fun day after much debating of searching for sunshine or not. That said...  rumors has it the trails out in Invermere had been worth a trip for today, so Ryan will enjoy the rest of the weekend.

Been a while since I did the Fish Creek loop - the east side going back north is still not fully ridable. The plan was to cross bridge at the far south, but not fixed yet but possible a change to get over if you try, we did not try, but the next was not a change to use, so east path way along the river was the only option at that point. At a later point this option looked slim too. A lady construction watch wasn't too happy with us, but we were already through, the next section we anticipated another angry lady, but she was just wondering if we could make it through, so that she could do the same.

One of my favorite city loops, and sadly probably one of the most affected by last years flood. We will keep looking for better ways around while the pathways are being fixed up.

Other adventures included snow, wet snow, cold hands and latex gloves, coffee and search of a 10 mm tool for Ryan's crank - non of the fancy dealerships were open, kal tire closed, superstore no luck, and finally Walmart... a whole set including 10mm is now part of Ryan jersey pocket collection of stuff. My least favorite place saved his ride today....

The worst of the snow hit us just as we got to the city, so I'd say we were pretty lucky and all in all a good start on the long weekend. And my luck continued; Heather had time for a massage and Sarah fed my starving body an awesome dinner to end the day, thanks Heather and Sarah!

Happy Easter Riding!

First coffe stop, 5 min in!
Wet ride - by Stampede grounds
not much later - another coffee...
Latex or Gore-Tex?? as Ryan, I was happy with my Gore :)
assembling to head out again..
There was a nice break in weather through Fish Creek...
Craig and Ryan working the pathway... look, no snow!!
The start of less good pathway...
Thanks Sarah !!

Monday, April 14, 2014

The perfect ...

....Monday ride!

The Glenbow bike path switch backs
Poopstacles - Craig showing off his skills of avoidance...
Seemed longer than usual in Cochrane 
Pee break - and photo time... beautiful evening!
And then another goat joined the ride...

Sunday, April 06, 2014

Sunday ride...

.... after 2 long hard days turned out to be not too bad.

Legs were really tired but with three guys doing all the work it was just a matter of hanging on (which is easier said than done when Shawn does his thing). Put some clunky old road wheels on which sounded like they came from Walmart but they survived the gravel. A little tlc before the next ride will be required, if again....
We were lucky (or was it Shawns plan?) to really miss most of the real bad weather, though a little snow, heavy winds for most parts still made for a bit of typical hard ride.

This north loop includes a little less gravel than most of our rides and just perfect for roadies that like to explore just a bit.

Might get set up with these on my Stans cross for next Saturdays big Water Valley 220 ride....:

Great weekend in Calgary!

Happy Riding!

Great group out today - and lucky for me! We pretty much road in a circle (sort of) around the weather....

Saturday, April 05, 2014

Stop it....

...Just Stop it!! was my saying for the day - and it worked in this case!


FB borrowed image - nice illustration of life..
(and why I like mountain biking)
sucker for pain... and the unplanned...
Each and everyone of us have gone through some bumps in the road, whether it is a big life event, bad race, bad day at work and the list can go on and on, we get stuck in a hole. And during those times as friends we stick up for each other and try to support. And lets not forget that however "small" we might think the hole is, for the person stuck there, it's real. But in the end, no matter how much support you give, the only person that can actually do something about it is you stuck in the hole! So eventually, You need to stop it! Just stop it! :)
Today we finally agreed on a south ride - it's been since last year since I last rode south. I needed a break from peeing along side a road with not one tree to hide behind! We rode south on the city pathways, mostly great, but still some icy/water filled section after Glenmore.
Crossed highway 22 over to the gravel roads and a few sections of asphalt (coal mine road is really the only name I remember). Pat and Shawn pretty much had the same thought but in the opposite direction and on road bikes so stuck to asphalt routes I'm guessing. After a rather lengthy chat (boys talk a lot of bike even when we could be riding instead) we moved on and the wind really picked up. It took us almost 5 hours from the start at Cadence to lunch stop in Bragg!!  Time to start brining some more food. But it was nice ride - Craig rode very strong after a rough start and it was great to see and great for me... I was suffering!
After the best lunch ever (felt so at the time) we rode fast the shortest way back to Calgary - the wind was our friend this time!

If I can find the energy to work on the bike - road tires ride tomorrow?

Happy Spring Riding!
Great south ride with Craig - lots of trees and great gravel options!
Shawn and Pat had similar thoughts today - in deep bike conversation.....

Friday, April 04, 2014

Thats what I call...

...a great spring ride! (It is Calgary after all so even with blue sky and 10 degrees we got some flurries... Go figure - but it had no impact on a great ride this time around:)

And it's only Friday!

Happy Riding this weekend!!

ps! will update Nepal as well, got to the point of all the notes I took after stages - now I'll have to recap, which I will, with time....though might be a skewed story as I sort of remember pain/baby wipes/spider/suffocating trapped in a sleeping bag/never do it again etc.... but now it seems to come out of my mind as awesome/great/fun/Africa??? should have kept taking those notes....

Around here; any direction you choose end up being a great option! We chose straight today - can't go wrong.
Good riding company, Craig and Cesar.
Cesar showing off some of his tricks...
A shadow!! it must have been sunny...:)
No end of good riding in sight!
Boys will be boys - I was more interested in the pink sign - my retirement activity plan ....
And some more tricks from Cesar... quick fix
Some fuel for Cesar and I while Craig left us ....but missed us too much and returned; we credited him back to only a 50% as-hole at this time - he agreed, but added something about "stupid" when climbing up the second time :) Lesson learned the hard way - stay with your friends!
The collection out today....
Thought I had to add a little review of my new Bullet - long time in the plans to get my old Bullet replaced - this one; bigger and claimed to be better - it so far has been awesome!! it's 10 seconds if you make something that is rather liquidy (spinach, some frozen fruits, little hemp seeds, add a little yogurt and some water, and I'll add a scoop of my meal powder (wholefoods), and whoala... a great meal!!! Took me pretty much the first 98km today before next meal.