Tuesday, November 16, 2010

MaKinG BiKe PeDaL

I saw it like a gleam of glass in the distant mountain range.

An Opportunity to go ride San Felasco with some of my Favorite Mountain Bikers, all in one place.

SO I seized it.

And thus it was on the First morning of the First Real Cold day in Florida, I met up with Rob Roberts, Mucaro MTB dot blogspot dot com and Afro Nipples.

Ya, I know I said I was breaking the War Machine.
(breaking it meaning, turning into a coastie single speed)
But I had "conveniently" not found the time to do it.

That day all I had is my fixie, who cares, its just a bike. I doubled up on my wool layers to combat the effects of the 37 degree chill. I was so happy to be hanging out with Robbee Rob, that I couldn't stop chatting, and talking.

Eventually, Mucaro MTB dot blog spot dot com shows up with Blond Afro.

As it seems to be the tradition of the clown like nature of Blond Afro. He took forever to get ready and I swear at one point he started installing brakes from scratch.

Not mechanical either,


Eventually, we were rolling only to hear B.A. comment on the needing of a nature break.

It was no real matter, I was happy to see them, and Blond Afro always makes me laugh so hard.
The pace was brisk right off the bat.
I was tired, man I had pulled one of my favorite moves and stayed up super late hanging out with a friend, barely slept and worked a LONG Hard Week. I was FEEEEEEEEEELING IT..( have I made enough excuses yet)
But I kept up. Spin spin spin, down down down, climb climb climb, pedal pedal pedal. Tech stuff, great switch backs, I was having a blast. I couldn't really keep their wheel, but I didn't care.
After more miles, I lost contact.
It was weird.
They kind of forgot, LMAO.
But I kept going.
Eventually passing the same exact sign 3 times.
I called Rob left him a voice mail.
I kept going, and then realized, I needed to start using my gps to figure out my navigational errors.

I did, it helped, I needed to kind of go NORTHWEST.

I saw off in the distance, that there was a neighborhood, that I could, worst case scenario, get into and use google maps to get back to Alachua.

Rob Called.
I told him I am pretty sure I could get back to the lot on my own. I still wanted to ride.

So I did, I came a cross a guy, never got his name, followed him till I recognized where I was, and then just hammered my way along turning on every sign that said parking lot.

I got to the lot ahead of the others.


It was freaking chilly, but my 3 hours of sleep dictated some sort of napping. So I did a little here and there.

The guys showed up, they found Conquistador, which I really wanted to ride.

25 miles for me, 33 for them. We all had a great time.

Take Care,


The NaKeD InDiaN

Sunday, November 14, 2010

The 3 FoResT TouR

The spice of life is challenging yourself.

And because I love to travel and I love to ride, I cooked up what I believed to be a reasonably doable challenge for Kailan and Edward. 80 or so miles, 3 forest crossings.

It seemed like a good plan, and I had been Eye balling the Lake George forest since before the TNGA had a route mapped and after some conversation with Edward we decided to go for it.

No hammocks were packed as we were sleeping one night. The night was to be cold and chilly, so sleeping bags were had, but as it is sleeping bag would not have been enough to sleep if the temps got really cold in the forest. So the Goal for day one was the Florida Trail Camping shelter at the edge of the Seminole forest.

As I was rolling out, I estimated the distance to the shelter to be 40 something miles. Of course my estimates were off. But at the time we did not know that, we were all packed up, I was all sherpad up and we were rolling on the highway.

The Mood was good, but I could already tell that Edward was starting to go through some growing pains. Granted, he has never even ridden 10 miles, let alone the distance we were planning to cover.

The Lake George forest was pristine, forest roads hard enough to ride a road bike on. With about three miles left the boys were already begging for a break and with some coercion and some encouragement, we made it to the first break spot at St Johns river and Astor Florida.

14 miles in and we had 10 miles to go before we could take our swim at Alexander Springs. Those 10 miles proved to be hard, as Kailan asked for the rope, and I watched as Edward drifted way off the back. I could see him reaching deep into the pain cave.

But, the sun was bright and the mood was great, I was enjoying every minute of every mile. The music going, the Ocala National Forest wide open; huge and intimidating as always with its gradual ascents and gradual descents.

Both Kai and I kept turning our heads seeing that Edward was now becoming a small dot on the horizon. With only 3 miles left I figured he may need some reprieve, so I unbuckled the rope off Kai's bars, rolled it into my Osprey pack and sent Kailan ahead as I waited for Ed to catch up.

He caught up, I offered the rope, but to my surprise, he refused. I was impressed by his determination, and I immediately set off chasing Kailan, who had taken off as if we were in a race.

As I caught up to him I offered the rope and we were able to engage the tow rope while we were riding, wow, we have gotten really good at this rope thing.

We cross the river and turn towards Alexander and I can see the Brown National forest park sign like a small stain in the distance, indicating that we were now within sight of the finish of goal 2. BUT ahead there was small climb, that seemed to be a steady grade for 1/4 of a mile. Kai and I got to the park gate and waited for Edward.

Not long after he emerged around the corner I could only imagine his mind state when he came around and saw that beastly gradual long climb that he had to do.

We got into the park, had a little food, and went swimming and sunning for a couple of hours on the banks of Alexander Spring. The water was gorgeous and I imagined my Native cousins in this land would of thought this to be as much of a paradise as I did.

The boys had cooked up this great idea that they wanted to camp here. But after telling them, I would consider it, I had NO intention of cutting the day short. I could tell that after 24 miles under our belt, the party had bitten off way more than we could chew. There was no way we were gonna make the Seminole shelter, so I wanted to complete the second forest crossing so we could at least wrap up the day with some pride.

We could take paisley road across, but a couple of weeks earlier during the race, it proved to be a tough 7 mile grind. I figured 11 miles of singletrack would be better. I was itching to see what was going on with the paisley mountain bike trail since they claimed that it was closed for some kind of forest project.

4 miles into it, as the suffering really started to set in for Edward, I could see that there was nothing going on with the trail at all. Which was a bummer, it would of made for a real big difference during the CFiTT. Any how, Kai requested the rope and we did it up, and we kept going, and at mile 8, I let Edward know that Paisley was the finish line, we were cutting the trip short.

A cycle set in, Kai and I would ride,
put a gap on Edward,
wait ten minutes,
then roll on.

Admittedly, Paisley MTB is challenging, with its long gradual inclines and declines. I still had the CFiTT route loaded and I could see Paisley Road. I figured at this rate, Edward was going to really have to suffer with 3 miles of singletrack left, so I opted to try and get to Paisley road and that would put us miles closer to the extraction point. After some bushwhacking, we found a forest road that was showing on my GPS. A bit sandy in spots, but Kai and I worked together and after a mile or more we made paisley road, a little more distance and we made the shopping mart on CR 42 to the expected pick up spot, 40 miles after starting the day.

I was proud of the both. Riding in the forest is no easy taskl, and for a kid who has never even done 11 miles, 40 forest miles was HUGE for him. AND he did it under his own power, incredible.

We got picked up, went back to De Leon, where LILr NI, went on to attend a Fall Festival party,
I went on to take a nice nap,
and Edward,
went to bed Early that night.

Take Care,


The NaKeD InDiaN

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Re YouNiON

20 years ago I graduated High school.

Somehow I missed my first reunion. But this year, I got on the ball, and because of magical things like Social Networking I was able to be aware of the event and I made it.

I was really interested and curious in seeing how everyone was doing.

I thought for sure that everyone was going to be a hot mess and that the years would not have been kind on them. Quite the Contrary as me and my wing man for the night arrived at Rt 46, everyone looked great. Amazingly great.

Sure there were a couple of folks in there that were a mess, but for the most part some people didn't look a day different since the graduation happened.

I drank, and drank, and chatted and danced, and had fun. Got to see some girls I had crushes on and was confessed about Crushes upon, who would of thunk.

As a teen I was obsessed with skateboarding and I had plenty of girlfriends, but none in my class, it was difficult. By the time we got to high school it seems that they had all chose to click up whilst I clicked solo with a few friends here and there. Interesting how even back then I kept it simple when it came to my associations.

That Saturday I mounted the road bike for the first time in months since I had to let my bladder heal, I could not attend the Catch 22.

I rode to Deleon Springs, beautiful ride, beautiful place, really enjoyed myself. Visited with a Friend and then rode back to meet up with the bus. I didn't want to over do it, since I was supposed to be recovering from the previous weekends 180 mile effort.

Life is funny, and I continue to try and figure out exactly wtf the great creator is trying to teach me. Believe me great creator my eyes are wide shut.

That night I went to a party and stuck around just to watch the drama. It was supposed to be an "80's" party, but hardly no one participated which I thought was lame. So I ate, drank and watched people interact and interacted myself.

Overall I was pleasantly surprised by what I saw and experienced. But remain even more curious about how all this plays into my current state in life. Without a doubt in the past year or so my life has changed a ton, and I continue to search for understanding amongst it all. I think I am getting close.

Take Care,


The NaKeD InDiaN