Friday, May 22, 2009

El Grande

The 29th of May is the slated time for the Grand Loop. Scott and I have been chatting on the phone to work out the carpool details. As Dave mentioned on the 2-epic blog, nobody has ever finished this race on a singlespeed. Another interesting fact about the route is the success rate: 40% of those that start the race finish. Tough statistics to beat, especially on a SS.

I will be tinkering with the singlespeed this weekend, checking and rechecking equipment that broke during the AZT 300. Lighting is going to be the one area that I am not very prepared for right now. Both of my lights broke during the AZT 300.

The chances of having another Spot Beacon are 50/50 right now, nothing will be guaranteed until a few days until the race begins. Check out the chatting going on here at about the race. 

Either way, it is going to be a good day on the bike and I encourage you to watch along. Also, Yuri will be doing a 5-day tour starting tomorrow on the AZT. It should yield another great show via the Spot. 

Edit: I did end up getting a loaner SPOT from Mike, you can watch the Grand Loop action at this link.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Casner Mountain and the CDC

This year's new route

With the Casner Mountain pre-ride in the bag, the new route for the Coconino Dirty Century has been finalized. The new route drops down Casner, before hitting the Sedona Big Friggin Loop route and dropping down after Teacup to Sedona, then later the climb to Schnebly Hill, Munds Wagon and the antenas at Hot Shot, before going back on Munds/Old Munds.

The new route is about 103 miles, about 30 miles of which is singletrack with 10k of climbing (that seems a tad bit high though,. the GPX is available here). I almost had the route continue on to Jim Thompson, Huckabee, then Munds, but I thought that would be a little too much. Any other suggestions for the route?

Sunday, May 10, 2009


This is the closest I have come to becoming a professional endurance athlete. I got this check in the mail, $75 from Epic Rides. I almost got back the price of admission ($125 solo entry).

Paying to race is highly over-rated. I will continue to only pay for one race a year, 24 HOP. I figure the money that I will save doing grassroots, underground racing will go to a new bike, a cylcocross or perhaps another road bike or even a 5-inch travel bike.

Saturday, May 09, 2009


There is an interesting article in the times about athlete vs equipment. It is a good read, slightly off-topic from the debate, I found a great quote about cyclocross. Here is a quote from the the founder of Ibis Cylces about cyclocross:

....the rules forbid disc brakes on bikes used in cyclocross, a rapidly-growing freakshow offshoot of road and mountain biking that is run in the winter, off road, frequently in muddy conditions. Not allowing disc brakes (which are much safer than rim brakes in wet conditions) on cyclocross bikes is akin to telling Formula One teams they still need to use drum brakes on their 200 mile-per-hour race cars.

Clyclocross, aside, I couldn't help but think if we had a stock of 12 similar bikes that we could all race on. Perhaps then I could beat Scott on Molino or Max on Sweetwater. Just kidding. The entire article reminded me of my Rocky Mountain Vertex and comments from friends, like you need a new bike. Which brings me to my next topic, my old-school '82 300 turbo diesel Mercedes Benz, also know to a few out there as Smokey Joe.

Cars have been in the news lately. Here is a good quote from Josh Holshouser:

I frankly don't want to hear about how Chevy by 2010 will have an electric car or any other innovations due out in the next few years from these Chevy or GM. They should already be here, and if GM and Chrysler were truly serious about being competitive they would have been here already.

The old Smokey Joe is slowly dying. The engine kill switch has broken for about a month, so I have been turning it off manually, popping the hood each time I need to turn it off. My mechanic gave me the final option over two months ago: trade for another Benz or rebuilt engine, each was about $2,000. I think the month of May might usher in a different car, hopefully very soon. Many adventures await pending a new car.

I just went over to Dave's blog and read his words about Anthony. Stunning and eloquent. Well said Dave.

Friday, May 08, 2009

Anthony Sloan

Words fail me know as they did when I heard the news that he passed. He was a great photographer, friend, and fellow mountain biker. I had the honor of meeting him several times, most notably when he volunteered to be our bike demo guy at the AZSF 2008.

Anthony and Yeti Co. picture from 50-year Trail, 2008

Thank you Anthony for inspiring so many to just get outside and see the world, be it on a bike, hiking, etc. You inspire me to this day when I see your pictures.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Weekly NW Tucson Rides

Tuesday-Urban Loop or Gasline-Sweetwater around 430pm. Check TucsonMTB for more information. Max and I rode the Foothills Urban Loop and the Finger Rock out-in-back to the wilderness, a very good overall ride.

Thursday-50 year Trail via Catalina State Park, meet at Starbucks at Ina/Oracle at 3:00 before heading north on Oracle to Catalina State Park. Lights suggested if you want to ride for the 2-4 hour ride. Once in the 50-year Trail system we will decide what we are going to ride. I'd like to ride some good technical stuff these days.

Saturday, May 02, 2009

Tucson Mountain Park

The route this weekend was a big loop around Tucson Mountain Park. Uhg.... wake up time was 4am.

First Dave, Max and I rode up to Saguaro National Park, looping by the Desert Museum and over to Brown Mountain. Some good shots of Max at the top of Brown Mountain:

Then over to Golden Gate, Yetman, Starr Pass, Resort Loop and exited out Camino de Oeste. Dave went up the road on Gates Pass to make his 9am appointment and Max and I continue on over Golden Gate.

There is a great connector (more new singletrack/doubletrack) that connects the Sweetwater trails to the Camino de Oeste Road. Additonally, I got some beta that there is even more singletrack that is outside the park, just east of the singletrack that is oustide the park (near the horse corrals, east end, near the green gate). I am hoping to try to connect both of them together to limit the amount of road between Starr Pass and Sweetwater.

I met the Cinco de Mayo TucsonMTB crew (seemed like about 40 people out there, huge group) for about 1.5 hours before going back to Brian's house for the BBQ. I had some lame picture moments during the group ride and the only visble picture was this one of Sarah.

Good times. Here is a quick view of the loop that we did (although we did not do Prospector, which is shown below).

About 5+ hours of riding, some 60 miles.... a great day on the bike.

Friday, May 01, 2009


The word DNF does not exist in his vocabulary. He enjoys awkward moments just to see how they feel. When he rides his bike, deer often run along side of him. It is rumored that he sells his beard shavings on Ebay to buy all of his Lenz Sport bikes. It is said that his reputation is expanding faster than the universe. He puts himself in precarious situations just to see if he can get out. He lives vicarously through himself. He once used a twinkie and paper clip to put air in his shock.

And now, he is attempting to do the AZT 300 again. Watch it here.


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