Well, looks like the heat wave is starting to break. By that I mean we'll have temperatures in the low 90s (F) instead of around 100. At this point though, I think most people will take any reduction in heat. Riding has not been too bad, even though there has been high humidity. Yesterday the radio reported temps of 100 with a heat index of 108 when I was gearing up to ride. I headed out solo at Patapsco, been a while since I've been there. Trails are dry, fast and loose. One thing I did notice, it seems the singletrack continues to grow wider. Is it my imagination? It's been a problem there for a while now, coupled with the fact that chump riders keep blowing through turns and creating easier lines. Can people not learn to ride the line? If you want it easier go somewhere else. The wuss lines have even started to crop up on a few trails at Gambrill and the Watershed but I've taken to my old tactics of shutting them down. This is a pain in the ass, so if you are guilty of creating braided trails just so you can go a 1/2 mile an hour faster through the turn, stop it now. Seriously. Get the skills to rail the existing trail. Keep the singletrack single. I know I'm preaching to the choir for the most part, so rant over.
Last week the temps were a few degrees cooler but I swear it felt hotter. Knocked out a great solo ride at the Shed on Wednesday, then hooked up with a group I usually don't ride with and hit Schaefer on Thursday. We hit Dogfish Head Ale House afterwards to refuel. Tasty stuff. I really have been feeling an extra dose of the post ride endorphin rush lately. Not sure why, but I'm not complaining.
Saturday was a farewell ride for one the local crew. The Trossinator is moving to Canby, MN to go learn about erecting wind mills that provide more sustainable energy than most of our current sources. That's him in the picture above, a vet cyclist who has been a great riding partner for about 8 years now. Any Minnesota readers who can provide trail info for the Canby region, shoot me an email so I can pass it along. Anyway, 4 of us headed back up to Michaux to finish searching for the trails that made up the Dark Hollow course. We were very successful this time and hit some spectacular singletrack. The stuff by the reservoir was fast and flowing and pretty flat, much different than most of the trail up there. From there we hit plenty of climbing and lots of golden singletrack including a section that seemed fairly freshly cut. Loamy soil, and nice and twisty, it reminded me of sections of the Salamander trail at the Shed. We made a few wrong turns here and there throughout the day but were able to correct things quickly. Since the race had been run the weekend prior I was hoping there may be a few markers still up. Looks like they cleaned the course pretty good, but they did miss a couple of signs and those things proved to be very useful for keeping us on course. Especially the big "W" that marked the wrong way. Overall it was a super fine day of riding and a great way to send Bill off to the Midwest.
Sunday I sacrificed ride time to spend the day brewing beer. It's been to long since the last batch and it was time to correct that. Twenty gallons of barley and hop goodness split equally between an Alt and a Kolsch, both German style ales. It was another scorcher of a day, especially when you are working outdoors with gas burners fired up for hours at a time. We did our best to stay hydrated by consuming large quantities of beer..
Another big ride at the Shed planned for tomorrow. Temps are only supposed to top 93, it's practically winter again.