Monday, October 13, 2014

A Fat Bike Rendezvous Ride

MG's gorgeous Singular Puffin- The Truck With No Name in the background
It had been far too long. I had even been considering calling, but you know, I think of these things at inappropriate times to actually call. The middle of the night, while working, and what not. That didn't make it an excuse not to call, but it seems to be how my mind operates. When I do get the time, I seem to think I have nothing at all to do.

Well, MG took care of that with a text last week. He seemed to be making a trip to see relatives near Cedar Rapids, and wanted to know if I could come down, maybe ride a fat bike with him. Of course, I said yes. The date was set for Saturday, and I decided I would tag along with my Snow Dog and MG would bring his Singular Cycles Puffin.

However; we are not savages, and coffee and a bit of breakfast would also be on tap for the day. I went down and met MG at our rendezvous point where I met a few of his relatives. Some again- some for the first time. It was great, and we had a nice chat before excusing ourselves to go in search of some morning grub. A fine little diner dubbed "Rise & Dine" turned out to be a pleasant surprise and we then headed back to the house to kit up and ride out to Beverly Park.

MG shredding some features at Beverly Park on his Puffin
We rolled the few miles over to Beverly Park to find the trail head from the West. The last time MG and I had done this it was the tail end of Winter and there was snow all over the trails. This time the trails were clear, but we couldn't find the trail head! Fortunately for us, a friendly local shouted at us and pointed out the way for us. We gave our thanks and dropped into the trails.

I led, mostly because I dropped in first, but also because I kind of had a handle on where to go first, since I had been there in July. We went out toward the highway where there is a swoopy, berm filled down hill trail and then it goes upward for a bit. The up hill section I hit as hard as I could, owing to the fact that MG is fast and I kind of felt like I was bottling him up a bit. We came out on a service road and I stopped to gain some semblance of a regular heartbeat and calmer air intake. MG then said I needn't waste myself on a race pace, since he was more about enjoying the ride these days. Whew! I was sure glad to hear that! Plus, I didn't know how I had even gone that hard in the first place. It was the first time since the incident at the GTDRI that I had pushed myself that hard.

So we made our way through to the "official" trail head where the kiosk is and the porta-jon resides. There were a few folks loading up bicycles after morning rides. We chatted up a younger fellow that had been out riding with his young son. (I didn't catch your name, but it was great to meet you!) Then MG and I decided to move onward with our riding.

MG had to session these features a few times before we moved on.
We finished up with another run on the bermed trail then we bailed out to a gravel road. MG spotted another entrance to the trails and just as he was about to dive in he stopped short and made an exclamation. I looked up to see a huge hawk with a squirrel dangling from its talons fly off right in front of MG to a higher perch in a neighboring tree. Needless to say, we were pretty shocked and in awe of that scene.

Right after MG recognized that this was the more technical section of the trail system there. We saw a bit of man-made structure and MG's eyes lit up. We headed off in the general direction of it which went steeply up and was all switchbacked. The ol' Snow Dog with its 1X9 set up got me up, (well, it was me and my legs, really), and then MG took to sessioning this sector as I snapped off a few images of him. A couple of nice ones came out of this. Finally we moved on and upward to the West. We were going to get back to the house and hopefully have time to go find some lunch.

We found out we didn't leave a lot of time, but we did end our time together with a nice bit of salad at a local restaurant and then MG had to take leave of me so he could join in his family's activities for the afternoon. (Thank you to Laura and the rest of MG's family for loaning him out for the morning!) I then made my way back home, spent but satisfied with how I rode and with the performance of the Snow Dog on the trails. It is definitely something I want to do again. 


MG said...

Thanks for coming to Cedar to ride & hang, my Brother! It was awesome and I have to say, you were riding GREAT! You have a fast, smooth style and I love following you into berms and twisties. You definitely had the Snow Dog flowin on those fatties Saturday!

Thanks again for the great times. It was cool to introduce you to the latest addition to our family! She's a little singletrack ripper too... I'm even considering a FATBIKE for her. I think it would be so cool to be able to go on great fatbike adventures with her. Seeing cycling through a kid's eyes has been an awesome experience for me, as I know it has for you & your boy.

Thanks again!!

Tyler Loewens said...

No Bluto on the Puffin these days?

MG said...

No. For fall & winter riding, it isn't necessary. I love it for summer though!