Friday, December 30, 2011

Pumpkincycle Year in Review-2011

Year started out great--good organized centuries, good organized doubles (hiccup on Alta Alpina but so unique it was still great), good self supported century rides with the Diablo Cyclist Bonus mile group.  Year quickly fizzled out on the September Cruella--where our group fell apart for the year.  Huge disabled list.  2012 can't come quick enough.

Best New Bike Invention

-Christine came up with a cheap pocket camera bag around the stem--perfect to keep drugs and sunscreen in there and frees up space in the pocket.   (I started putting suntan lotion in empty eyedrop bottles which fit inside nicely)

Mike returns to do the 200k Davis brevet--but big doubles group like 3-4 years ago never materializes.
-Replaced my 7 lb bike stereo with an under 150g MP3 mini power speaker that is attached to a tire and attaches to the top tube.

Best non-bike Discovery
-Stephen clued me in to Pandora Radio--where I've now heard more "new" songs that I like this year than in the last 20.

Lots of good rides out to Patterson Pass--most of the time real nice and calm. 
Lots of good photos with Ward and Christine always packing a camera.  My favorite riding photo when trying to figure out new section of Mt Tam double with Ward.  (Ward-o-photo)

Seems like this year we didn't have many riders for out of town rides--but we did have a few every time we went to Marin.
  Best photograph

I'm by lake frozen over at the top of Ebbets on Alta Alpina.  Meanwhile Dave and I disagree what is the better photo of him on the ride.

Mt Diablo Recap
Ward and I rode a businesslike pace up Mt. Diablo almost every Tuesday once daylight savings time hit, and then a balls out pace with the Diablo Cyclists on Wednesday.  Great 40 mile loop--the uphill was the EZ part--trying to stay on Ward's (or Cisco Dave's) wheel on the flats hurt.  Bad thing is that my climbing has gotten slower, but at least getting faster on the downhill whereas I don't lose sight of the group. 
2003-# times under 36 minutes to the Junction-3(Northgate); # times under 70 minutes to the Top-2

Best Unsupport Century
1) Sierra Century from Plymouth (the old way)--world's greatest ride--rumor it is being brought back next year
2) Tunitas Creek with Alpine Road bonus (w/ Ward, Christine, Dave, Jack, Todd)
3) Middle Section of Mt Tam Double going West to East (new way, w/ Ward, day after Tunitas Creek-Alpine Road Century)

People Didn't See Enough of
Rusty, Super Joe, Johnna, Christina, Ward (after Cruella), Colin (after Alta Alpina)

Good to See Again
California via Honolulu via Rverside back to Northern California Mike

And how many times did Ward and I wind up at teh Mt. Diablo Junction this year??
Best New Product
Lighter/ cheaper Time RXS Pedals replace Time Impact Pedals

Favorite Organized Ride
1) Mt. Tam Double--Course made for me-rollers all day.  Unfortunately now stupidass backwards course where you have to buck headwind to the ocean.
2) Alta Alpina Double-Though I suddenly fell apart on pass #5, what great support and route.

Least favorite Organized Ride
Sequoia Century--After being told how much i'd live this ride I finally signed up.  We were gonna have a big club turnout.  Alas, heavy rain where I lived that morning cancelled the ride.

Best Live Music
With Pandora I've gone "nuts" catching up on music from the last 20 years.  Seems each weeks bike ride had another high energy song stuck in my head.  Pandora leads to You Tube where one can usually catch a bunch of live performances which i usually like better--more energy, quicker pace.  Best 4 live performances on You Tube that I first saw this year: 

Haines &. Ivarsson, both much better than Sabrina Salerno who does get honorable mention for setting a record sticking out of more outfits in one video--her Vegas version of Erase and Rewind.

Metric-Dead Disco--The studio sessions from this group aren't anything special by Emily Haines becomes a manic organ player in concert, and the guitarists do a great job adding to the chaos.
The Chameleons-In Shreds--Song kinda peters out at the end--but most perfect 2/3'd of a song--Mark Burgess fronting two driving guitars..
The Sounds-Hope Your Happy Now--Don't know who has better stage moves, Emily Haines or the Sounds Maja Ivarsson--but Maja scares me.
James Brown and Luciano Pavoritti--Its A Man's World, --to incredibly opposite styles, two great artists showing great respect for each other, combined they do an fantastic job pulling this off.

Oh Henry Stories
-On real hot day (my specality) guy zoomed off at the base of Mt. Diablo.  I eventually caught and passed him--he was fixing a flat tire.  I'm setting a good pace but he soon zooms by me again.  Oh shit.  Turns out he is a pro mountain bike racer.

-Expecting inevitable collapse somewhere on Devil Mountain Double.  First time was up Mt. Hamilton (@130 miles in), second time I did the race was up on Mines Road (@95 miles in.)  NEVER HAPPENED--felt good all day.  Got to top of Palomaras in the dayight (both times before pulled into Sunol at dusk.)  Kept hopscotching with Grizzly Mark all day and we rode in together for a 66th place finish. (On same ride a racer doing Wente told Grizzly Mark/ I to get off his wheel--I fell off and laughed my ass of as Mark, in full yellow kit, help onto the guys wheel miles down the road.)

-On Knoxville, also involving Grizzly Mark--Jack/I rode with Grizzly Mark and his teammate the whole morning.  At lunch Jack and Grizzly Teammate took off--I followed.  Grizzly Teammate told us that Grizzly Mark was still at the lunch stop and was going to leave shortly.  Second half of Knoxville relatively flat and Grizzly Mark can fly over flat sections of road--so waiting for him to catch us.  No Mark...No Mark.....miles click away....No Mark.   When we pull in to ending meal....Mark waiting "what happened to you guys"--he had left lunch before us.

-On Mt. Tam Double kept a good pace all day and was planning tactical riding--sections to get into a paceline.  So--down the Coast--solo'd half the distance.    In run in to Marshall Climb passed by two big riders on climb???, and then I caught them on the downhill/ flats???   Last run in from Hicks Valley/ Marshall Wall--saw ONE whole rider (who passed me.)    Wasn't a race--was an f'n time trial.  Finished 44th.

-Flat--easy-Davis Double.  Non timed so rode easy.  Felt like crap at the end.

-Good boy on Alta Alpina Double--no digs--conserving energy.  Felt great after first 4 climbs.  Then surrounded by snow banks heart rate soared and my ride was quickly done.

Servais Knaven moment

I'm one of worst sprinters in the club and never expect to get a flat County Line.  On a very hot day after a long ride ride we're on Collier Canyon--flat rural road.  I launched with 2 miles to go to County line, Ward stayed in group and didn't help in chase, big guys were looking at each other to start chasing and it was to late when some of the locamotives finally left the pack.  Repeated a month later. 

We really wanted to go on the Merry Go Round and record the vital statistics on a Garmin--which almost everyone but me had by the end of the year.

What Was I Thinking
At Alta Alpina 4am start (that goes downhill immediately) was 37 degrees--and I'm a cold wuzz.  I had SEVEN layers over my chest.  What the fuck.  Now I did shed layers before the first big climb of the day and when we passed where I was staying--but still overdressed the whole day--which might have been a contributing factor to my meltdown later.  Months later we had a stretch of 29 degree mornings in Northern California and 4 layers did fine--thank you very much.

Best Food Item of the Year
No more microwave waffles the morning of a ride--got a waffle iron.   No wonder coudln't come close to 2010 weight.
2011 Miles 8,661.75
2011 Doubles Finished-4 (Davis, Devil Mountain, Mt Tam & Knoxville)
2011 Doubles Didn't Finish So Gotta Try Again in 2012-1 (Alta Alpina)
2011 Alcoholic Drinks-(2) Triple Rock Porter and Eiswein at Mark/ Amy's Holiday Party--quantity may be low but quality of drink very high.

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