Saturday, September 29, 2007

Weaving the Golden Ribbon

My routine lately on Saturday morning has been to rise early, load the bike on the truck and get to the build.

Today was no different. Well only that I didn't rise all that early.

9:30am and I was still the first one there. On the hardtail I climbed a up into the woods trying to escape the light rain that was falling from the autumn clouds that were enveloping the mountains.

I climbed directly to Snakes and Ladders today. No ride for me just building. I made it to the trail head in good time, geared up and started my ride down to the building spot. On the way I hit the regular jumps and stuff on the trail and wouldn't ya know it......I had virtually no front brakes. I found this out after the root gap jump; I blew through the left hand berm and wiped out. That'll teach me!!

On my way down I paid close attention to any missing/broken rung and any wet spots/puddles along the way. There are a few spots that will need a bit of work, but for now I am happy with the other words they can wait. Once at the building spot I parked my bike and got out the camera to take some before shots. I always find it amazing to see what the land looked like before we shape it into our little roller coaster ride down the mountain.

The goal today was simple for me. Build as much of the line at the top as possible. I worked my ass off today and got a lot done. We are close. Very close to having this line opened.

A before and after shot of a classic benched section. After clearing the top organic layer and other material the benched section came together well

Another before and after. While cutting this section of the line I knew it was going to be so much fun to rip. It's a golden ribbon of single track.

So once my time was expired I packed up the tools (shovel, axe, mattock and a rake) and rode down the new line and out the bottom of the trail. From the looks of it, a few people have been riding the extension. A lot of debris was cleared near the landing of the hit that we built.

Anyway, I pedaled to Shotgun and began my usual descent. I hit everything as normal at the top of the trail and set up for the jump near the top. I hit it with good speed but landed a tad nose heavy and then I heard a clank and a bang.........did my wheel explode? Did I break my frame? I make the motion to pedal, but there is no resistance. Broken chain? Nope, none of the above. The freaking B-bolt that holds the rear derailleur to the frame snapped. A few righteous words later and I was on my way down the hill..........coasting.

By not applying your virtually non existing brakes you can actually make it most of the way down Shotgun without any pedaling.

Once at the parking area there were a ton of vehicles and people mulling about getting ready to ride. I was feeling a little bitter with a broken bike but Rob from a local bike shop drove past and said howdy. He asked how things were and what not and then I mentioned the issue I had with my derailleur. I asked if he had any broken derailleurs of my flavor in the shop and if I might be able to pillage the bolt I need. Being the good guy he is he said he would have a look when he got to work in a few hours. Well guess what....he called me at home and told me he has what I need. The guys at Experience Cycling in Maple Ridge know how to take care of their customers. Later in the day I stopped in the shop and Rob gave me the bolt I needed. Outstanding!!! Good shop and great customer service!!!

So overall a great day of building and an okay ride with a partly broken bike. I was happy with the work I was able to get done and it'll be so nice to ride the new line all buffed up, we are close, so very close.

No comments: