Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Gorge Roubaix Round 2

Returning for our second year, Mighty Cycling went down to The Dalles in Oregon for the Gorge Roubaix. Warm weather was on the menu with a healthy side of gravel.

SSS making the 'muricans suffer

Note the mountain in the background, ignore
the foreground full of suffering






Here are a few moving pictures

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Lillooet Spring 2016

We had a good group out for the annual Spring (Winter?) training camp up in Lillooet.  Hills, wind and assholes have everybody ready for a great race season.

   
The heart of darkness.  This is the turnaround to the Damned Dam ride.

The 80kph descent from Pavillion.

Day 1.  No crying.  Yet.

The top of the dam at Carpenter Lake.

Jerks and assholes galore.

And ninjas.

Meat having a bad day.

 Working our way up the frozen canyon to the dam.

 Assholes post-ride chillin.

Pumping Iron with Lats.

Bridge River road.

Day 3 towards Lytton.

The lookout up the first big Duffey climb was pretty good for Feb.

Sun.  Mountains.  Good times.

Friday, January 29, 2016

meat grinding to virgin falls


As I write this, the rain pounding down outside the coffee shop in Duncan, BC, I am amazed at the good fortune we had this past weekend riding the ridges of the Tofino Inlet and Deer Bay. Weather is fickle, and that’s just fine (where else would we get such amazing green forests?) but it was certainly a pleasant surprise to have clear skies, incredible views and the luxury of dry clothes for two days during our bikepack up to Virgin Falls.



Clay (@stuckylife) first proposed the idea of a winter bikepacking trip in November, while the CX season was still finishing, and we were all looking forward to a bit of time off from racing and perhaps instead some long miles of logging roads and gravel – unstructured, and scenic.


It had been a plan to hit a winter bikepack for over a year; the unfortuntate collar-boner incident last year had dashed my hopes of doing a late winter/early spring trip in 2015 (though I had been sure to pack and plan like a compulsive).


This aside, Clay was the real driver of this adventure – he’s got the knowledge, and damn if he doesn’t have the will to get these kinds of trips done. He found that there was a small cabin/hut built by locals that we could use for our overnight, meaning we could keep out packing light, and sleep indoors in the outdoors. With a solid plan, riders opted in, and we had ourselves a crew of 5, Clay Webb, Terry McKall, Rob Parkin and Rory O’Connell who shreds with Performance Bicycles.


With Ranger Clay leading the charge on local knowledge, I made sure to pack the backups – our SPOT tracker, some backup friends in case of things, and the extra gear (read: lights) in case our planned cabin outing turned into a return mission in the dark.

Clay, Terry, Rob and myself hit Ucluelet the night before the venture, staying in the hostel in town. We were told there might be some Karaoke worth visiting, but apparently a surf town in the middle of winter means there are only 2 people at karaoke at 10pm – the bartender and the DJ. We kept it civil, despite the desire to cut loose, and were up bright and early on Saturday to begin the adventure.


We pulled the bikes and loaded our packs – I’d decided on the Brodie b-team Ti Romax as my weapon of choice with 40c WTB Nanos and an array of Porcelain Rocket bikepacking bags that I picked up for the Oregon Outback. Rob and myself were the two on CX bikes, while Clay, Terry and Rory rode their hardtail mtbs.


Sufficiently caffeinated we began the roll out of town. First a few KM of paved trail, but soon, we were on the West Main. We took a quick detour to see the infamous Kennedy River Bridge, the rainbow bridge that was home to protests in the 90’s. It’s a little worse for wear, but still leads directly to the most beautiful of places.


On the road again we shared the logging road with just a few trucks and pieces of heavy equipment. Our first 20km of the journey were undulating and well packed, just a few hard potholes.


As we diverted on to Deer Bay Main, the terrain got rougher, steeper and required a little hoofing. Loaded bikes make for an interesting experience on steep grades – especially on race gearing.

The spectacular views of the Tofino Inlet peaked out on every corner and we continued to cross bridge after bridge over creeks and falls. The sunlight filtered onto the path and broke through at each outcropping to bathe the rocks and the riders. So rad.



A deep washout in the road meant that we cyclists could pass, but it was unlikely we’d see any other people (especially the kind in vehicles).

The pitch during the final climbs to Virgin Falls were very, ah, challenging, and the increased grade, as well as loose rocks, meant lost traction and some walking.



53km in we hit the falls. Amazing. The bonus of visiting snow-fed water features in the winter are that they are huge. It was a sight, and we took many, many, dumb photos.

photo by Clay

The trek back to the cabin, which was on a spur about 3 KM back from the falls, was a it confusing – leave it to 4x4 drivers to give confusing distances and directions. We found the cabin, and though the vibe of the place was pretty murdery, we were happy to not have to do a quick nighttime retreat.

Campfire made, and whiskey drank, we crashed out in the hut. I was happy to have only one mouse try to sleep on my head all night, and we were sure to keep the snoring in check.

Coffee outside in the morning was well worth the questionable sleep. It’s always awesome to get the pot boiling and a few strong cups in before the ride.



The roll back was fast – I was the victim of my own hoon-ing at some point and slashed a sidewall, likely in our deep creek crossing. Booted with 2 pieces of duct tape and a $20 CAD ($14.17 USD) bill, we kept rolling. And ate candy.



All told we railed out two strong days in the saddle, 106KM, slept in a creepy shed, drank a bunch of coffee and had a rad time. Thanks guys, such a good two days.





Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Provincial Champion

Mighty's perennial strong man Quinn bridged up to the winning move and sprinted to a fine 2nd place overall in the Masters Provincial Championsips RR which was a separate race at the Whistler Gran Fondo.  This was enough to win his age group (40+) and cap another solid season where he was in the mix from the first Spring Series races and Barry's Roubaix right through into CX season.  Hard man.


Tuesday, September 1, 2015

mini tour

I had a few days I could take off work, and needed a good solo ride anyway, so figured I would try out a few things that had been on my list for a while.
First thing on the list to accomplish was riding a bunch of gravel roads that are near a lot of the rides we do anyway (particularly on the annual Lillooet trip.) I see a lot of these roads while we are out on our training rides, and I’ve ridden bits and pieces of them. It seemed like a good challenge to string these pieces into a route and do the whole thing in one shot.
The second was to try out some gear I've been meaning to check out for a while.  Notably, I was looing forward to riding the Salsa Warbird on more gravel, loaded with camping gear on the new Compass 38 extra light tires.  Forgoing the stove and other comforts I ended up with a fairly compact setup.

Bivy, Sleeping bag, pad, tools and spare bits, some extra clothes, snaaaacks
I was also hoping to give my Alpine hammock a go.  Practice run in the park:




Day 1



Day 1 was a typical route out of town.  A couple of required stops, including finally making it into Wentings in Mission to use up a gift certificate from a race around 4 years ago.

favourite water stop

used to be the dogwood..

And finally, dinner at Fat Jack's and sleep at The Mighty Fraser



Day 2

The second day was to be a bit more ambitious.  The original goal was to ride the west side of the Fraser, but early morning showers in Boston Bar and getting to the ferry in Lytton during a 1.5 hour coffee break put a stop to that.



The day ended up being hard enough without that extra gravel.  I continued passed Lillooet toward Carpenter Lake (one of the standard mighty training camp rides), intent on climbing and descending Mission Pass to Seton Portage.



jack ass..
carpenter lake dam


bc hydro infrastructure

mission pass

seton portage

I carried all my gear because I thought I would be camping in this section, but I pushed through the day to make it to Gates Lake and our friend's cabin, arriving just before sunset.  So, actually didn't get a chance to test out the bivy after all...

Day 3
rest day



 Day 4

And, of course, when you're in the area.




cayoosh pass, aka the duffy
Pics

Monday, July 20, 2015

Faces of Gastown

Progression and Contrast.  Our 'most pro' man Cory tackled his first Gastown GP last week as part of Stuporweek.  As the photos attest, it was happiness and agony all wrapped into one race.  Note the contrast with Sarah's calculated coolness (top left).  Cory is more along the lines of the wizard of hyper ventilation, Dave G (bottom right).  Regardless, he finished with the group which is something to brag about when almost half the race DNF's...

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Climbing Week

Summary

8 days
749 km
12855 m
9 summits
1 bottle irish cream
5 camps

Chinook and Cayuse Pass #1
Chinook and Cayuse Pass #2
Money Creek Camping

Stevens Pass



Morning Irish cream and coffee

Washington and Rainy Pass


Washington and Rainy Pass




Rest Day



Anarchist


Anarchist

Big White 

Apex

Silver Star

Summary

8 days
749 km
12855 m
9 summits
1 bottle irish cream
5 camps