Seemed like a great idea at first. Celebrate the failure of doomsayers concerning the ending of the Mayan calender. Ride bikes down to the Cumming Tap and back. Carry "survival" stuff on the bike. I was going to carry my axe. The weather had been phenomenal all December. Drought conditions and warm for this time of year. One last hurrah before Christmas and the end of 2012. The Tap invested into this ride. Charbuff Grill created aptly named sauces for the event. Looked like real fun.
But are overhyped media decided to name weather systems this winter and one called Draco showed up to shit on the party. One bad ass system to flip The Switch and bury drought suffering Des Moines, Iowa, with a foot of wet heavy snow the day before the ride.
Thursday was a bitch to move around unless one had a snowmobile or Panzer. The only people that should have ventured out of their homes were doctors delivering babies and people who run snowplows. Everyone else STAY THE FUCK INSIDE UNTIL THE ROADS HAVE BEEN CLEARED. But the advent of front wheel drive cars and the proliferation of 4WD SUVs makes even the shittiest driver think they are God. And then their are cunts like me that wait all year for a day like like this to ride a bicycle to work just to show all the cagers that I can do it better. So my commutes on Thursday and Friday were a bit tiring, battling snow and ice and cold.
Mary agreed to go. Dora would be spending the night at Shelby's and the others are old enough to fend for themselves. After I got home from work and the bank we prepped. Mary wears 10X as much as I do for cold winter rides. I merely changed my top layers, still dressed from the home bound commute. Changed my boots as well. I wanted warmer boots. She rode her old black Cannondale MTB and me my blue Trek 920 shod with studded tires.
The half mile to the trail was on good streets. Nice and clear. The trail was plowed but the remnant snow was best for fat bikes not bikes with 26" wheels. Some places drug the rear wheels down a bit and created resistance. But tomorrow would bring the Sun's love to remedy this. There were 3 joggers on the trail and the only bike tracks were the ones I left on my ride home.
No one was at Orlando's, the official start of the ride. That is to say no bike riders were there. We ordered a large pizza and beer. I was starving and it was "date night."
Craig Lein texted before we left. Said he would be 45 behind us. He wanted to test his new cross bike. "He won't make it," I said, "they haven't cleared his section of the trail."
"Yes they have. They always do," Mary retorted. She would know since that is her commuting route.
"Nope. Too much too soon. The city aint dug out yet. The Suburbs are still digging out. Trails are not high on the priority list. Second class citizens. Need basic services done first before focusing on life quality enhancers."
The mobile made its noise again. "Ended up in Valley Junction. Robb is driving and I'm catching a ride with him. Wanna ride?" Craig made it 63rd and Railroad. It would have been an easy ride from there to us even if the trail was still unuseable. Take 63rd to Park and hand a left. BUT 63rd is cager hell at that moment. Hundreds of vehicles driving very fast on an icy road going home for Christmas break. Death Ride 2012. Any bicycle on that road at that time would truly see its last day at that moment. Mary and I know this, we roade the shoulder once at this time of night.
"Yes, we do."
Fuck it. We made it to the official start. No one here. Eating a large order of food and pumping ourselves with beer 16oz a guzzle. Worked 8 hours and already have 20 miles ridden in shit winter conditions. Why not? Lock the bikes here and SAG to the Tap. Get a ride back and then ride the 5 miles back home. 25 miles for the day. More than 99% of riders today. Besides, I have never ridden to Cumming off trail. Polk County refuses to plow the trail citing "cross country skiers" but the real reason is $$. Second Class citizens we bikers are.
Instead of getting there quickly we took the route we would have ridden. This involved wrong turns and the use of Google Maps on mobile phones. We did see a group of 2 or 3 bikes and later one biker solo.
Bob Moural was leaving when we pulled up. Something about someone not finding a key. At least we got to see him albeit briefly. Linda was doing a great job without him. The Young brothers, Hammerhead and Jimi Davis who skiied were there. Touring bikes. I almost felt ashamed for the SAG but then again it may have killed us. Idiots Out Wandering Around in freezing temps.
|The only other AB product I will purchase other than Busch Light. A guilty pleasure but their Belgium is great. This was alright. Turn your monitor upside down for proper viewing.|
We purchased shirts, got the free beer coozies, drank the Shock Top, ate the wings with Mayan Death Sauce. Yeah, level 1, I prefer to enjoy food, not suffer it.
Robb dropped us at Orlando's. He and Craig seemed Ingersoll bound or Charlies. Mary and rode home stopping at Mullets for a Blue Moon and warm up. Funny how great Blue Moon tastes after the End of the World. Just like it did before!
|This what the poster looks like Down Under!|