dang... those kids are fast in the woods with their skinny tire bikes...

last weekend's ride
I need to make some stuff happen this weekend
not sure what riding is planned
maybe ice skating with the kids after some cleaning up in the basement

Strava Data from two laps at Rosaryville

ah... I need to start planning ahead
all this last minute stuff 

yesterday/Saturday I woke not sure of what I should do
I knew I should ride... but where? what? with whom?

mountain bike was my top bid
mountain bike with the dog was my first choice
but I lacked motivation
I needed a little push
I needed a little pull

Neil Irvin had put a message on Facebook saying he was gathering a group to hit Rosaryville
I inquired the basic... who what where what time and what bikes?
I got a basic idea of the time and no else
when morning came I got more details...
we could car pool... but no room for the ever shedding dog

no dog?
no worries...

so.. I opted to drive out with the dog and the bike by myself
try to hit a lap such that I would arrive in the parking lot around the meet up time of Neil and his crew
but.. if I did not connect
no worries
I would still hit one lap with the mutt and one lap without

drop out in a little more traffic that usual... but nothing too bad
cars flowed past a series of accidents
mangled car on Rock Creek Parkway...
fender bender downtown...
another accident just as I got onto Suitland Parkway...
more rubber necking than anything else
my 45 minute drive took an hour

what do they call this?
grid lock block?
not sure

arrived at Roasaryville...
checked with some riders in the parking lot
all sorts of Bike Doctor kits stripping off extra winter gear before they hit the woods for a second lap
lots of horse trailers at the other lot which had me inquiring more about the horse presence on the trails than the trail conditions or the temps in the woods

"lots of bikers... no horses seen on the trails..."

so... I socialized... took a dump in the icy cold park bathrooms... then socialized
Didg ran around with another trail dog before we hit the single track

in the woods I was not feeling it
was not tired
just lacked a certain amount of intensity
was rolling pretty okay
but did not feel like I was attacking things quite how I should
just rolling a loop at a good pace with the dog chasing behind

knocked out the first lap...
gave the dog a pet
gave his paws a low five
gave him a biscuit and then as I was putting the dog in the car I saw Jason Budha

Jason was one of the riders in Neils group
I approached Jason and we exchanged greetings
tried to get an idea of their group eta and such
5 minutes?
figured I could wait 5 minutes to say hello even if our ride/intentions did not match up

neil arrived in some funky little van with three cyclocross bikes on the back
jason had a geared Redline... 1X10?

we caught up...
without much persuasion I had Neil, Jason, and "John Shack" agreeing to hit the trails with me
yell ha... 
Becca left off on her own to hit Rosaryville at her own pace
into the woods I followed Neil and Company
their pace was good... but their was that slight incompatibility of the single speed - gear mismatch rhythm
they were rocking the cross bikes... but the gears had them relaxing at the crest of each mini climb
which had me mashing the single speed on each little ascent
working harder than need be to get to the crest of each climb... needed that single speed momentum to get up and over instead of muscling each and every ascent at slow speed 

so... when we left the woods at the old parking lot I shifted up to the front
not so much to push the pace... but to give myself a chance to rock the single speed groove without letting these guys drop out of sight

well... these three hammer heads pushed the pace from the back
Jason was in my shadow 
so close that I was afraid my rear wheel and his front wheel were going to stick together like velcro
we hammered pretty good
Jason killing it on the Redline 29er
Neil and John Shack (not sure if that is his real name) were KILLING IT ON THE CROSS BIKES!

it was a good paced lap without too many stops
again... Neil and John rocking the cross bikes... pushing the pace... keeping me honest
forcing me to maintain focus
concentrating on not using the brakes
trusting the tires and arcing the turns

fingers locked out straight over the brake levers
fighting the urge to make contact with the levers

it was not a race... I was not trying to prove anything
in a race situation... if these guys are hammering this hard on a cyclocross bike
well... I think that they could log faster laps than me on my single speed
the same goes for Jason on his geared bike
I was their rabbit
they kept me honest and I kept them rocking
we had a great ride together

I had been unsure about the synergy between the single speed mountain bike and the skinny tire cyclocross bikes on the off road trail
and well... these guys set me straight on that
if they had left out the parking lot in front of me at their race pace I am not sure if I could have spun things fast enough to hang with them

good stuff... need to link up with these guys for more off road riding through the winter

hmmm... links... links?
Jason Neil John Becca and Cyclocross
and then


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