Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Busy Easter Weekend

Well the extended weekend came and went in a hurry. Good thing I've got this desk job to allow my rapidly aging body to recover during the week.

On Saturday, Jill & I headed up for the swan song on our ski season. With the warm conditions and lack of moisture we expected yet another spring ski day where we would be stripping off layers by noon. However we were quite surprised to see about 4" of powder on the slopes with more falling when we arrived. The Mary Jane parking lot was a party atmosphere, with lots of grills, dogs and people. We hit the slopes for a while, stopped and had one last hot chocolate (sans Baileys sadly), and skied some final runs for the year. We called it quits early as a layer of freezing mist and fog rolled in and made visibility a real problem. I couldn't ski more than about 20ft in front of Jill without losing site of her in the fog.

Saturday night we had BK, Amy & Ty swing back through town briefly. They stopped in long enough to meet up and have some dinner in Boulder and then they headed off to an Easter party then back towards Oklahoma. Ty had a big time chasing our dogs around, and became especially fond of Molly. He kept finding Molly sacked out on the floor and laying down beside her mimicking her position on the floor.

Sunday I decided to get up early and hitch a ride with John & Amy Perry along with the Blue Sky Cycling guys down to Buffalo Creek near Pine, CO. I've been wanting to ride this trail since moving here, and even though the timing wasn't right I decided this was an opportunity that I just didn't want to miss. Buffalo Creek has miles and miles of tight, twisty singletrack that you dream of and the maze of trails could be hard to navigate if you didn't have a guide.

The ride was a mixed bag of skills and endurance levels, but everyone kept together pretty well. Off the front of the pack was Abrahm (I'm sure I just butchered that spelling) on a singlespeed hardtail with Rob from Blue Sky close in tow. John & I held down the middle of the pack. I was very pleased with being able to hold John's wheel through about 1/2 of the ride on the climbs as he typically drops me after about a mile. Amy, Noel & Tim held a steady pace on the back of the pack, which was impressive considering Noel was riding a Maverick ML8 and it was Amy & Tim's first ride of the season.

After about 10 miles the group split, sending Amy, Tim & Noel back to the car on the shortest distance. Abrahm, Rob, John & I headed out for mileage and a whole lot more climbing. I really started to bonk on the extended ride, which I think was mainly due to not eating enough & needing more water, but I mustered up the will to keep turning the cranks. The downhills & flats were a blast and I dug deep to find something to keep going on the climbs. I was just thrilled to have been in the "fast" group for a big ride, which tells me all the riding at lunch and after work is starting to pay off. I need to keep hammering out climbs, but at this point in the season I'm very pleased with how quickly my fitness is progressing. I'm not out to win any races, I'm not even close to that kind of shape, but I want to be able to pound out some long rides with big climbs this summer so this was a great start.

Totals for the ride were 3 hours saddle time, 25 miles and somewhere around 3500 feet of climbing. Forgot my camera, so no pics but I'll see what John's pics look like and maybe post one of those up soon.

Big rides are good for the soul.

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