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Trail smiles  //   Tuesday - May 2, 2006

Got in 4 dirt rides this week, 2 of them being solo which hasn't happened in a while. The Monday solo ride was the highlight as I hooked up a new loop that includes a geography feature I've knicknamed "the gash". It's a piece of the blue trail that crosses the dividing line of the Frederick Watershed and Gambrill State Park.

According to my topo it's official name is Clifford Hollow. Heading south from Hamburg road it is a steep rocky descent that tests the technical skills and goes on and on and on downhill, leaving the forearms throbbing and a huge grin on your face when it's all finally over - provided you don't stack it on any of the gnarly rocks, tight trees, crazy switchbacks or narrow off-camber trail. When you finally arrive at the bottom you traverse a stream and then it's pay back time. Heavan and Hell. Now you get to climb rocky, rooty, steep, tough trail to get you out of the "holler". It's both painful and satisfying and if I ever clean this monster without a dab from top to bottom I'll be telling everyone I know. But don't expect that news anytime soon, it's a nasty nut to crack and a hell of a long climb. The rest of the ride has plenty more smiles and a bit of pain to make it all worth while. Knocking it out solo with no stops as the sun is setting just made it even better.

Correction: looks like I buggered that earlier link I posted for the Kinetic Sculpture race this weekend, try this one instead.

- riderx

News round up  //   Tuesday - May 2, 2006

A bunch of things have been piling up in the inbox, so here they are, consolidated for your reading pleasure.

The SSWC06 web site is updated. Thanks to John G for the tip.

Breast Cancer raffle at Speedgoat. Last year it was a pink Surly, this year it's a Moots. That's Hot.

Free bikes if you've got a good story. B-more is on the list. Bike Town is the name of the game.

The government wants to sell off more land, Crested Butte is just one of the areas that may be in danger. Take Action.

And speaking of Colorado: the Colorado State Single Speed Championship happens 7/1 and 2 at Eldora ski resort in Nederland Colorado. Details

Final comments are being taken on the Baltimore Cycling Master plan. From the horse's mouth:

The Baltimore City Bicycle Master Plan will be presented to
the Baltimore City Planning Commission for Commission Adoption on
Thursday, May 4, 2006 at 1:30 PM in the Pheobe B. Stanton Boardroom at
417 E Fayette St, 8th Floor, Baltimore, MD.

This is the action that will make the Master Plan official city policy.
Final Baltimore City Bicycle Master Plan documents and maps are available
on the Comprehensive Master Plan website.

Individuals are welcome and encouraged to attend this meeting and have
the opportunity to offer testimony. Written comments can be submitted to:

Mr. Otis Rolley, III, Director
Department of Planning
417 E. Fayette Street, 8th Floor
Baltimore, MD 21202

Please note that security procedures in the Benton Building require that
you bring photo- identification with you.

If you require special accommodations to attend or participate in the
Planning Commission hearing, please provide information about your
requirements at least five business days in advance of this event.
The building and hearing room are wheelchair accessible.

If you have any questions, please contact Carley Francis
at 410-396-8360 or by email at .

The folks at Van Dessel wanted you to know that they've got track, fixed gear and 29er SS rides in their line up. Now you do.

The weather has been great here: warm weather, dry trails. Go ride.

- riderx


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