Monday, October 25, 2010

It's Fixin Season (Again... Kinda...)

Even if it's just temporary, the weather in FC is changing. It feels like winter. We even got micro amounts of snow tonight. This past weekend was rainy and cold, which reminded me of the very first blog that I ever did for fcbikerant. Just because the trails are muddy, doesn't mean there isn't a ton of fun riding to do around here. The trails even dried up by Sunday and were in great shape.

This past Friday I opted for the early bed time so I could get up and try my luck at a loop that I've wondered for years if I could clean on my singlespeed. I also wanted to be back home and drunk before the NU vs OSU kickoff at 1:30. The idea was to head up Rist Canyon, then bomb back down and around Buckhorn Canyon through Masonville, then across the damn and back down by the stadium. I knew that I had the distance and vertical, but there is one section at the top of Rist with 4 relentless switchbacks that even my car has trouble keeping traction on. I've always wondered if cleaning this section was possible on my SS, the hardest part being that it's at the very top of a 3000 ft. climb. Turns out it was some work, but not too big of a deal.

The only thing that I've changed on my bike is the addition of the flip-flop hub (fixed/free). The reason for this is that I found out the hard way that anything over about 50 miles of riding fixed tends to tweak my knee a bit and freak me out. I love riding fixed a lot, but not so much when it's bad on the knees. It's still the funnest town bike I've ever had, but for these longer distance winter road rides, I decided a little bit of coasting isn't so bad (especially when bombing big hills).

Here are some photos that I took along the way. Almost all of them were taken while I was still moving in the saddle. What a beautiful day. Next time I'll probably do this one in reverse.

First stop at Vern's for eggs and coffee on a cold, gray day.

Gettin Started

It's a long way to the top from the Whale Rock

I thought I knew the canyon but I still experienced a lot of false summits when I thought the last climb was around the corner.

Then the opposite happened. I thought there were 2 more switchbacks on the final climb, but it turned out I was done. At the top. I was feelin pretty good about it too.

Mostly downhill after that. Here are photos of the Buckhorn Canyon descent. Jumpin cattle guards and rippin.

BTW. Watch out for cattle in the road. I blazed around the corner and almost drilled a few.

A view of Horsetooth Rock from the south side.

And of course I wouldn't do a loop that didn't end up at the bar. Plus, the Eagles won 14-0 that day. Coincidence?

At the end of my ride the skies started to clear up.

Right after I took this photo while cruisin across the damn, I noticed a spandex-carbon fiber-geared bike roadie about 250 yards ahead of me on what would be the last climb of my ride. I always love blowing by these dudes on my single speed so I put my head down and tried to beat him up the climb of which he had a substantial head start. I had 2 choices as I came up on his back wheel near the top of the climb 1) Get my camera out and get a photo of him or 2) Pass him and get on with my life. I chose the latter and enjoyed cranking right by him, but I missed the photo op. Luckily Google Images had a photo that looked pretty much just like him that I can share with you (except he wasn't smiling).

Rist-Buckhorn Trax

Rist-Buckhorn Profile

It's cool to know that even though winter is here and I won't be able to mtn bike as much, there are still concrete rides around here that are a lot of fun.
Keep kickin ass y'all. Thanks for checkin in.


Friday, October 22, 2010

The DEFINITIVE Chadron State Park Mountain Bike Post

For once this blog will serve a purpose other than to give data about trails everyone already has ridden 100 times anyways. This blog will actually contain information that is actually not available ANYWHERE ELSE ON THE INTERNET. Go ahead. Search around. I did. I searched for hours and found no useful information on what mountain biking was like at Chadron State Park in Chadron, Nebraska. So if you found this blog while searching Google and are wondering what the riding is like there, look no further, you just lucked out. This is it.

My little brother plays football for the Chadron State Eagles and I wanted to cruise up there to catch a home game. I heard that there was mountain biking in the area at Chadron State Park. Being from Nebraska, I was a little skeptical about the riding there and went to check the internet so see what it might be like. I searched MTBR, Google, and the Nebrasaka State Parks web pages and couldn't even find an up-to-date trail map, let alone any type of riding conditions. I looked everywhere for any pertinent data, but came up with nothing. I even started my own mtbr thread and didn't get any real help about what the trails were like there. I ran into so many information dead-ends that when I went to ride this park, I knew that I would have to serve a crucial role in the history of the world biking community and be the first person to put up any info on what it's like to mountain bike at CSP.

I decided that since it was Nebraska, that I would have more fun riding these trails on my fixie. I figured since I've ridden a decent amount of Colorado trails fixed (18 Road, Lory State Park, etc.) that choosing what bike to ride would be a no brainer. I loaded up my new shred rig (below) and hit the road.
It turns out that an XC rig with a couple of gears is perfect for this park. I was riding fixed rigid and had a bit of a hard time cleaning this loop. I suggest a 29er rigid or XC rig.
Time wise if you plan on riding CSP you can do the loop that I did in about an hour. There's really nothing to it. By most Colorado standards, it's just a short little ripper. If you're a beginner, this will really challenge you, but it's still totally do-able. You're gonna love it.

HERE is what I was looking for. The Holy Grail of Chadron State Park.... A Map. A god damn map. I swear that this information is NOT on the web. Well, it is now! Fuckin A! In pink is the loop that I did and suggested direction (clockwise).

This is what I saw when I started this loop and I almost shit. Their trail is seriously a lawn mower path cut through the grass. I couldn't believe that this was what they called "trail". I just laughed out loud and said "fuck it". Luckily, it got much better after this.

As I continued, the "trail" was still a lawn mower cut path, but it was getting better.

Finally when I started out to Lookout Point some rockier singletrack started to emerge.

Now we're gettin somewhere. This was one of the climbs that was a little too steep for the gearing of my fixie. Starting to get fun though.

The views of the canyons and bluffs were really cool and surprised me when I came up on them. Some of the cliffs were easily 100ft. You can see the trail in the foreground.

This is a view down the canyon from Lookout Point. This is probably the highest vertical point in the park and is enough of a pedal to get the blood flowing.

Another shot of Lookout Point.

Here's a shot of what Black Hills Overlook Trail is mostly like. It follows the flowy ridgeline and dips and curves. A real fast easy ripper and a lot of fun.

I came through at sunset and had a cool view of Fire in the Sky.

Panoramic view of Lookout Point. To the left, you can see the trail flowing off into the distance. Like I said, good times.

Bottom Line: If you are just passing by on Highway 385, stop and do this loop. It's fast, fun, and better than a rest-stop blow job. If you're staying in Chadron for a few days, stop and session these loops for a long afternoon, there's still a few spots that I didn't see and you could probably ride every square inch of this park in about 3 hours (4 if you like to fuck around).
If none of this appeals to you fucking purists out there and you don't think going to Nebraska to mountain bike is fun enough for you, Chadron State Park has you covered. Right at the bottom of the trails, if you think you've got the balls and you wanna get real nasty...

There's a fuckin TORNADO SLIDE! YEAH!!

There ya go. Nebraska Mountain Biking... Who knew? The camping and shredding at Chadron State Park could totally have potential be as good or better than 18 Road in Fruita with a little bit of thought and bike infrastructure (although that probably will never happen). As for now it's pretty basic.

Side Note: NUs got the Okie State Cowboys for the last time tomorrow and it could be a season deciding game. So...


Zness da Pness

OH SHIT!!! I almost forgot the two best stops on my trip through The Panhandle. FUCK!

How could I forget the majestic and historic Chimney Rock, which was a hopeful outpost for many early pioneers of The Great Western Migration of the 1800s and was a part of the Oregon and Mormon Trails???

Also, there is not more mysterious sight than that of Carhenge; just north of Alliance, NE. No one knows for sure how these strange automobiles came to be here and why. Although conservative christians believe that when the Earth was formed over 6000 years ago, the primeval people of that era used their domesticated dinosaurs to move and place these ancient automobiles in some sort of statement against birth control. Or at least that's what the brochure says....

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Old Skool 5

I spy. With my little eye.
1. Ryan Schure's $400 "Independant Bike Co." Frame
2. Loft with TV stand built-in by R.S., W.O., and B.M.
3. Johnny Walker display case.
4. Art Bell's "C-Crane Radio"
5. A Piece of Fine Sewn Artwork
6. Classic Authentic 1981 Arcade Machine w/ High Score by Zness da Pness

(the name of this post was "old skool". yup yup.)

Zness da Pness

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Teton Pass Pt. 2

Yep. Yessir. It's been a long goddamn time since I've blogged. I've been biking. A lot. It's great, and the shredding is only getting better as we're getting into fall. I feel kind of bad for not posting, but it's just fine considering I've been riding instead and no one reads this damn thing anyways. If you actually read this blog, I'm backed up about 7 or 8 posts that you will definitely dig when they're done. In the meantime, we took the Road34 company trip back up to Teton Pass Wyoming. I've already written about the sick DH that is up there (Lithium, Fuzzy Bunny, Jump Trail, etc...)

But this trip, the only 2 things I did was abuse the SHIT outta alcohol and ride XC.

In order to keep this blog somewhat informative, the XC ride recommendations that I've done are as follows.

1: Definitely hitchhike or pedal up to the "Arrow Trail-Phillips Canyon-Stagecoach Bar Loop" in Wilson, Wyo. You get tons of free vertical from the hitch hike and this is one of the rippingest XC rides I've ever been on (photos below). Unbelievably scenic and unbelievably down hill the whole way (if you hitch to the trailhead)

2: We did the "From Town-Putt Putt-Game Creek Loop" and had a fun. It's a ripper, but I DO NOT recommend it. The singletrack to dirt road ratio is just not good enough. Although the scenery is fucking INCREDIBLE (see below). Instead I recommend the "Snow King-Hagen Highway-Hagen Trail-Putt Putt Loop" for a fun and easy rip. OR the "Snow King-Ferrins-Westfork/GameCreek-Back to Putt Putt Loop" for a complete Dick In The Dirt XC Ride for Badasses Only Rip.

For a Topo Look, check THIS LINK.

All the rest of it was a fucking insane party that had a little to do with biking and a lot to do with fucking shit up. I can't tell you what happened (what happens in Jackson stays in Jackson!). Let's let the photos tell the story. Where do we begin? Hmmm.... Well let's just say we had a...



...ripping (Arrow)

...XCing (Arrow/Phillips Canyon) blasting (Phillips Canyon)

...fixed gear rippin (sink or swim trail) ride swimming (about 40 degrees) stool rodeoin

...2 steppin

...XC crankin

...moose huntin spottin

...Marlboro Red smokin

...drag racin, cowpokin, colorado kool-aid sippin

...backward chair sittin

...sluttin it all up

...mad huckin

...pal'n round

...longneck drinkin, shot poppin

...skizz skang sluttin


Grow a mustache and get in a fight you fucking dipshits.
Zness da Pness