Old ride, new look.

Just three of us showed up to this ride, but we all had fun. And despite the somewhat grim forecast, we got rain — a quick shower — only as we were preparing to go.

Two women also showed up at the start. But they forgot their bikes! Apparently, they wanted to hike up the ski hill. How strange! We let our wheels do the walking.

Eric almost had to drop out early when one of his pedals decided to stop rotating, but Ben figured out how to access Eric’s inner pedal. With some proper lubrication, Eric quickly found good rotation and inner peace.

The ride up and across on the old power line to the old Nike missile site road was pleasant and fairly uneventful, though we got treated to a nice rainbow, which hovered over Eric like a halo.

We discussed Eric’s new MuckyNutz fender, which is really just a glorified piece of plastic attached with zip ties. Ben suggested a cut up plastic milk container would work just as well and be cheaper. Eric liked that idea, dubbing it MilkyNutz. Since he has high cholesterol, Eric decided he should use Soy MilkyNutz.

We screamed down the Nike missile site road and then screamed when, around a corner, we came face to face with a truck coming uphill. Fortunately, the truck did not get a new organic hood ornament and we continued down to Old Murphy Dome Road.

More descending followed, and we were all glad to have brought coats, as the night, though lacking in rain, was a bit chilly.

We got to the Rabbit Trail and this is when the old ride started having a new look. Someone had cleared the many downed trees along the trail, so we rode it in record time. Nonetheless, the trail is still challenging and getting more so. The duff between roots appears to be getting compressed, making the roots even more pronounced. Lots of places required full attention!

The trail clearer(s) left the challenging double-log rollover obstacle in place. Ben made it. Carl made it. Eric psyched himself out and didn’t try. Hmmm. Who gets the wimp award for the night? Eric vowed to do it…next year.

We got to the power line and the first creek crossing, which Ben tried to ride across. He failed, but he didn’t fall in, so we counted it a success. Carl discovered the crossing has a really deep spot, but fortunately he was pushing his bike.

The second creek crossing had a primitive bridge and then Ben found a fairly dry route around the swamp. In fact, our feet barely got damp this time. Another new look! However, Eric was disappointed to be avoiding all that delicious swamp!

Finally, we hit the rolling woods section at the end that always requires lights, if we haven’t turned them on already. But not this time! Starting the rides an hour earlier this year, minimal mechanicals, and a fast descent down the cleared Rabbit Trail all factored in. We finished the ride without need lights! Old ride, but definitely a new look!

Report by Eric.
Photos by Carl and Ben.

Next ride is the Eva Creek Evisceration, the last official ride of the season. (You may want your headlight on this ride.) Check the ride schedule here: https://www.fairbankscycleclub.org/rides/tuesday-night-mountain-bike-rides/