Monday, August 22, 2011

Squeezing it all in since summer is finally here!!! August 19-21, 2010

Weather over 90 degrees has been unheard of thus far this summer, but it finally happened. We had our first day over 90. Lucky for me, I was at a bit higher elevation and avoided it for the most part. I like 80 degrees max. Friday we headed out of town early and I was drinking Sangria on the deck, reading my book by 4 p.m.  Tim had to go run, our friends Tom and Terri were nowhere to be found. I drank alone. But not for long. Lovely evening at mountain shadows. And an even lovelier Saturday. Mike Jones joined Tim and I for one of our favorite mountain bike rides. We did most of it a few weekends back, but had to cut it short (see Sundays' story a few weeks ago.) Finally we did the whole enchilada on Saturday. Adding one of my absolute favorites, extending it by a bit. 4 hours, 5000 ft. of climbing and 30 miles of some of my favorite trails on Mt. Hood. Not a bad day.

Tim and Jonesy at Boulder lakes.

My favorite crossing. Although washed out and sort of repaired.

Cooper came for the BBQ too.

Reluctantly, we headed back to Portland on Saturday after our ride. I had promised Ryan Trebon (our house guest even when we were at the cabin) that I would make him dinner after the hellish Rapha Gentleman's Ride on Saturday. He was even later than expected, but we had a nice bbq with Coach K and Melissa in the summer heat. Ryan had leftovers. It was nice to sleep in a bit longer on Sunday and not have to rush back to Portland (at least for Tim) before racing in the Giro di Portland. And I got to take a spin in morning with the always recognizable tall guy. And bring him to the airport. I'm a really good friend.
At this point in the season, I usually avoid crits to preserve my collar bone for CX season. I realize they are great for training, but sometimes they are great for crashing. I don't want to crash. However, Steve Beardsley was promoting this race and it was equal pay for men and women. As a rule, I try to support this. It is how it should be. I understand that usually womens fields are smaller and blah, blah, blah, but damnit, we don't get discounts on entries, travel and we train just as hard. Ask any female cyclist. I am sure you will get an earful. Plus, I knew this crit would be fast, b/c Jade Wilcoxson was going to show from southern Oregon. She has had a super successful year on the road and I really hadn't raced against her, except Cascade. It would be fun. Guaranteed. Despite the crash which I heard behind me mid-pack on lap 2 that stopped our race for 15 minutes and gave us only 30 remaining minutes to race, it was great. At some point in the abbreviated race, I missed a break and ended up almost single handedly having to chase it down. I know, it would have been easier just to have made the break. Hindsight is 20/20. About 6 or 7 of us lapped the rest of the field, so we were moving. After closing the gap alone, it came back together. And then on the final corner, Jade jumped. I missed her wheel. Wrong position, wrong gear, wrong reaction. It's a learned skill, I am told. But somehow I managed to hang on to a really solid 2nd. (Race report here) I was still thrilled. It was a great race. Lessons learned. Fitnessed gained. Mission accomplished. Granted, I could have mountain biked all day, but the payout was great and afforded me one more plane ticket for some CX racing. Oh yeah!

Tim looking strong (doing too much work).
Apparently a family tradition: sitting on the front.

Not even close...
2nd on the day was still something to smile about. Great race!

Monday, August 15, 2011

OBRA State MTB Championships: Alsea Falls, OR, August 14, 2011

In the luscious forest at Alsea Falls. Enjoying the pain.

And with the end of mountain bike season starts the cyclocross season. Yesterday I book-ended my abbreviated mtb season with another OBRA state championship, besting Alice by a few minutes. I was actually pleasantly surprised, given my lack of training while recovering from this darn cold/sinus infection and being on antibiotics. I guess that bodes well for the upcoming cx season. I actually had fun. Feeling better was a total bonus and I guess this means my coach is going to stop taking it easy on me. Tim also had a good race, placing 2nd. He opted not to race his age category, but just the cat 1 race with all ages combined. And although there is more single-track riding to be done, my next race on dirt will be cyclocross.

 And for those curious about the CX update, I have most things in order, with the return of some and some new amazing sponsors. I currently have: Ridley, SRAM, TRP, WickWerks, Castelli and of course River City Bicycles. It has been a rough go to find a title sponsor or a new team, with the demise of Hudz-Subaru at the end of last season. There were a ton of promising prospects early, but it turns out I will be pioneering on my own with the support of my sponsors. I am still waiting to hear back from a few prospects, so stay tuned and if you have interest in sponsoring, just let me know!!! Here's to a great 2011-2012 season!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Our anniversary, bike riding, guests, a wedding, & more bike riding...

As summer finally heated up, things did not slow down. It seems as the weather gets nicer, things get busier. Throw in a cold and sinus infection, heck, blogging takes the back seat. Time to catch up!
August 28, 2011 Tim and I celebrated 10 years of marriage! It has been a great adventure. One we plan to continue for another 10, 20, heck maybe 50 years! Indecisive of what to do, I surprised Tim with a picnic on Mt. Tabor (the sight of our nuptials & proposal) with a picnic of the same fine cuisine we had 10 years ago, Busters BBQ. It was well received. Then a cupcake and bottle of wine on the roof to follow. Sometimes it's the little things...

Cheers to 10 great years!

Tim loves his BBQ
And I love him.
A great way to end the evening!

That weekend we headed to the cabin. Friday was the calm before the storm. Saturday we rode 15-mile creek and then returned to the invasion at the cabin. It was a fun night with friends. Sunday a ride with the Hagens and Erin Ford. Unfortunately I was starting to feel under the weather. I should have quit while I was ahead.

A great ride with Tim on Saturday.
The Hagens and Erin Ford joined us on Sunday.
I got to hang out with Cooper over the weekend too! (Kendra & Melissa's new puppy)

Monday night we raced the last short track. Despite my declining health, I had to race. I had only done one this summer. I took a win and then raced the relay with the ladies of S&M. Thanks for having me ladies!!! The week was filled with guests and for me, a runny nose and stuffy head and no riding. I was miserable. the nicest weather of the summer and I felt like a truck had hit me. I suffered through it, perhaps did too much, but rested up for the weekend so I could hope to return to the bike and the dirt. We had Scott Belcher from Ohio & his friend Heather from NC visiting, so we had to show them a good time. Saturday we took a road ride on some of the great forest roads around the cabin, spending some time on the gravel, rushing home to get ready for a wedding. Tim and I attended the most spectacular wedding of Ellee Thalheimer and Joe Partridge at the Mt. Hood Organic Farm. What a spectacular event and venue. It was truly a privilege to have shared in that experience.

See, sometimes we wear something other than spandex.

Awesome views of Mt. Hood.

Sunday we headed out to see if some of our favorite, yet unridden trails were open. We had to cut it a bit short due to my little debacle of losing my skewer nut and having to go back to the cabin to find an extra. Quite a delay with the darn detour of Cooper Spur road right now. But we forged on and got in a great ride, climbing up through pocket creek, dropping down to Boulder lakes (3-4 trees down) and climbing out and then heading on Gunsight (4-5 trees down) and descending Gumjawic (also 4-5 trees down). Always one of my favorites. We didn't see one other biker all day. Crazy.
Tim & I at Boulder Lake, back in our spandex.
Scott & Tim on Gunsight with the amazing views.

And just when I thought the fun was over for the weekend, Pam and Seth were heading to Bend and were going to come spend the night at the cabin. It wasn't hard to convince Scott and Heather to stay too, so poor Tim went home and we all remained in paradise for one more day. A great visit with Pam, however short and another sunny morning on the deck. Needless to say, it was a bit sad to come home to clouds and some cooler temps. But summer will return. I am sure of it. There is more fun to be had. And hopefully I will kick this cold/sinus infection without drugs. I am hopeful.

Kirin and Evie loved the sky chair.

Always good to catch up with good friends. Too short of a visit with Pam.