Thursday, December 25, 2014

Rear View 2014: Part 3

Leaving for the last time? I thought so here as I left T.I.V10
Well, as I forewarned, and as I have done about every year end now, here is my series on a look back over at 2014 before it is gone. Rear View Part 2 can be seen HERE

Going into May I was being slowly convinced by several e-mails and by my own inner thoughts that there would indeed be a T.I.V11. As tired as I was after T.I.V10 I didn't think it would be possible to think about doing anymore, and after all, I had decided to quit years ago after T.I.V10's completion. Well, that thought slowly died during May!

Trans Iowa thoughts continued in the form of getting things set up for the Trans Iowa Master's Program route/challenge. I also continued on with the discussion of gravel road riding and bicycles in light of many pundits negative articles about the genre. Seems that getting "hits" was more important than actually looking into the deal. I have a standing invite to any poo-pooers of gravel road riding to come out and do Trans Iowa this April.


If any pundits that have published "negative nancy" articles on gravel riding in 2014 want to check out the real deal, I'm all for it. Then we'll talk.

Anyway, back to the Rear View here..... It finally warmed up and I was on the road to getting ready for another crack at Odin's Revenge. I was going to ride the Ti Mukluk with 29"er wheels, but knee pain issues forced me to go with the Fargo Gen I and I also had an unusual Cirrus Cycles titanium suspension seat post to check out along with that. Meanwhile, the first two to finish the TIMP were Scott Sumpter and Andy Zeiner who had a pretty epic adventure with rain, mud, and late night visions all wrapped into one big ride of 380 miles.

Slick, muddy roads and big hills deep sixed my '14 Odin's attempt
My own muddy adventure to Odin's Revenge was marked by a failure to be on pace to reach the checkpoint on time, so I bailed after CP#1 and rode back to the start. It was by far the hardest 40+ miles I have ever ridden in years. Maybe the first time I did Triple D was tougher, but that only lasted 20-ish miles and then there was relief. This was non-stop tough riding in wet, mushy gravel and slick-as-snot Minimum Maintenance road mud. It was all good though as I had an awesome time with Mike, Mike, and Amy along with the other Odin's Revengers.

I went to a couple of NASCAR events with my son, which was a good time except for the epic thunderstorm we rode out in our tent at Rock Creek State Park. I never want to have to do that again! Speaking of my son, he "graduated" from elementary school and we walked home together from school for the last time ever. A big milestone, I'd say. I'll miss walking those two kids of mine to school and back! Glad I decided to commit to that up front. July brought heat and we still were having really windy days which was a theme since Spring.

Next on the menu was the Guitar Ted Death Ride invitational and I was busy getting the route dialled in for that and trying to prepare for the ride as well. I got a new camera, the Olympus Tough TG-3, which replaced the battered and beaten Fuji I busted at the Gents Race back in April. Rides happened and one of them was a fun ride at Volga Recreation Area on a Borealis Echo I was testing/reviewing. That was a great day on the bike!

The GTDRI ended with this view for me.
A not so great end of a day on the bike, but everything leading up to that end was good- The GTDRI unfortunately ended in calamity as an impaired driver veered into our group standing alongside the road and sent me sailing into the ditch at Mile 95 of our ride. I got carted to a hospital, and checked over, but no serious injuries were detected. All is well, right? Not so fast......

The crash effects were subtle, but they were definitely noticed throughout the Fall. I had messed up GI tract functions, inflammation that caused numbness in my extremities off and on throughout the following months, and every time I see a late model GMC or Chevy truck in white, I get a strange ache in my right kidney area. I may not have communicated that I found it rather difficult to even look at my Tamland Two- the bike I rode on GTDRI- for a good month and a half. I forced myself to use it for the Geezer Ride in October, which was maybe the second or third day I'd ridden it since getting hit. Oh, by the way, I got deathly ill right after the crash as well. I think I was off the bike most of September.

Speaking of September I'll get to that in my next installment.


Patrick Dowd said...

Soooooo can I write a negative article right now and back my way into the TI 11? Yes!!!

Guitar Ted said...

@Patrick Dowd: Hmm....Okay, if I were really going to take your comment seriously, then.....

Here's what I wrote....."
If any pundits that have published "negative nancy" articles on gravel riding in 2014..."

So....."have" in this case refers to a time past already. Maybe you have a time machine?

Good luck, Sir!

Patrick Dowd said...

You really shouldn't take that comment serious. You should not do TI 12, it sounds stressful and a bunch of jerks are making you stress over doing it. I say set a route (maybe your favorite from TI's past?) set the course, a date, and let as many people show up show up. Similar to what is going on with the Oregon Outback this year. I just wouldn't call it TI, let that name die with this special race you put together. Sad to say I never did it, but them's the cards!