Sunday, January 25, 2009

Stanley Gap Group Ride

Stanley Gap. A nice, slower group paced ride over some really serious terrain. The 22 and a quarter mile ride length totally don't do it justice. The sustained 2-3 mile single track climbs are what it's about. Some of it quite technical. The descents are what make the suffering worth it.

Activity Type: Mountain Biking
Event Type: Recreation
Total Time: 05:12:28
Moving Time: 04:36:34
Average Speed: 4.3 mph
Max Speed: 30.5 mph
Distance: 22.35 mi
Elevation Gain/Loss: 4,743 ft / 4,780 ft
Min/Max Elevation: 1,813 ft / 3,371 ft
Average: 142 bpm
Max: 188 bpm

GPS Track Link:

I took loads of photos on the climbs while I waited for my HR to recover. Can't really take it easy on the climbs with a single speed since your limited to standing up and hammering with the one gear. Here are a few photos:

Rolling out. Nice 0.9 mile FS road climb to the trail head.

My current climbing setup. New since the Snake: 32x22 and Fox F29 suspension fork.

Taking a break before attacking the next section of climbing.

At the top! Well, one of the tops.

Regrouping at the bottom of "Flat" Creek. Nothing out there is actually flat.

Some nasty stuff that I had to push up. It was sure a blast coming down this though. Love my new fork.

Recovery beer!

More photos here:

Up coming changes to my mountain bike:
  • Front and rear Maxxis Ardent tires (2.25). Already ordered. Should be a little faster then my current Rampages (2.35) but shouldn't be giving up much comfort and traction should still be awesome. Also, right now, my rear tire is a bit worn.
  • 185mm Avid Elixir CR hydraulic disk brakes for the front and rear. My 160mm Avid BB7 mechanical disk brakes suck. I need to use two fingers to control them. I'm thinking with the bigger more powerful Elixirs, I'll only need one finger, leaving more for my handle bars.
  • Also ordered a 18t rear cog for the in town trails. Now I'll have 18, 20 and 22 to pick from before a ride.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Snake Creek Gap Time Trial #1

Finished the first run of the Snake Creek Gap Time Trial (of three). Did the 34 mile option. Mud, rocks and fog! The race is along part of the Pinhoti Trail. This is real north Georgia mountain biking.

Activity Type: Mountain Biking
Event Type: Race
Start: Sat, Jan 3 '09 10:14 AM Eastern Time
Total Time: 05:29:40
Moving Time: 05:05:41
Average Speed: 5.8 mph
Max Speed: 34.2 mph
Distance: 31.93 mi
Elevation Gain/Loss: 4,544 ft / 3,891 ft
Min/Max Elevation: 838 ft / 1,841 ft
Heart Rate Average: 151 bpm
Heart Rate Max: 189 bpm

GPS track link:

Official website:

Finish was at the red arrow.



Sweet swag. Love the pint glass.

Race start. They let six or seven people go at a time.

Race started out with a decent forest service road warm up.

Single track! Most of it was muddy. Very muddy.

Muddy. Glasses quickly became totally useless. My front brake also got hosed up and stopped working. Fortunately the rear was solid and stayed that way.

One of the many creek crossings.

Climbing in the fog.

Mud and blood! This photo is from the rest area at the half way point.

About 2/3 of the way into the race, it starts getting rocky. Was warn out so I began taking more photos.

Mud, rocks and fog! I didn't even attempt that little climb. Just pushed my bike right up it.

Looking back at a climb I cleaned. This next photo is the rest of the climb... that I walked:

Yeah. Damn rocks take full focus and are a lot of extra work.

Scott Hodge of Addictive Cycles! He was in a real nasty motorcycle accident back in October. Fractured vertebrae and whatnot. Talk about a fast recovery!

Cleared the section in this photo plus some. Was then wiped out and had to walk for a while.

Finished! Tired and happy.

Chili, beer and fire!

Closing thoughs: I had a great time. Absolutely love riding in the fog like that, especially when it's that warm. Very well run and well organized race. I'm a sucker for pint glasses.

However, it took me forever to finish. 5:28 where the fast racer types where coming in well over an hour faster then that. Think I was running too hard of a gear. 32x20. Which, was fine when it was dry, but the mud on the first section took a lot out of me. Was worn out by the time I got to the rocks. All the rocks proceeded to beat the shit out of me. Lot of people I talked to where running 32x22.

Felt fine, nothing hurt. Just had no power. Ended up simply taking my sweet time. Stopped and took photos. Stopped too long at the SAGs.

Fenders for the mud would have also been nice.

Next time I will be using the bad boy pictured below and my goal will be to knock 30 min off my time.

Got the Fox F29 fork in on Friday but didn't feel comfortible just tossing it on my bike and then going for a five plus hour race. Needed time to test and dial it in.

Next two time trials are:
  • February 7, 2009
  • March 7, 2009