Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Horse's !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Mine was Coco!!!!!! He was cool, we got along fine.....

You like the angle I got of him. I sat on him for 3 hours, we walked and talked and had a great time! Although it was pretty one sided conversation. He would snort once in awhile and seemed the happiest when I let him break the rules!

That's right he was a rebel!

They told us they prefer you don't let them eat as we ride because they tend to loose focus and could trip or stumble. Then you might fall off! Well I figured as tight as I was gonna hold on he would have to buck pretty hard for me to fall off! He liked the red leaf stuff!

Hell, I even pointed out a few red leafs for him. We got along just fine.

our train!!!
Emma rode Durango and he seemed like a good guy too. We stayed in the back the whole time and chatted away.

Cody had Spot..... Name seemed to fit..... Not the best picture but you can see some spots on his ass in this picture........

Chase has Blaze, he was supposed to be the calmest one but ironically he was the only horse to get spooked. A dog whose owner did not have him under control ran up on us and Chase's horse started jumping around! Scared the shit out of me, but Chase didn't even flinch! He had him under control fast! I was impressed!!!!

With him riding behind Karen and in front of one of the guides I didn't get to talk to him much. But he had fun... He had to wear a helmet because of his age.

I think we crossed about 5 streams.. It was a blast!!!!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012


OK, so maybe I should have swept the steps before I took the picture...

The big concrete steps are at the elementary school, they have 3 buses!

For some reason the kids got a big kick out of that! They also liked this sign! When we went riding we meet the guide at a old country music hall up in the mountains. From there they take you up to the area where you actually ride. If they tried to give you directions to the trail head you would never find it!

Yep, the kids really laughed at that sign!!!! So did I.....I love the mountains............

Monday, October 29, 2012

A Few Shots.....................

You can't go to the mountains without stairs...............


Yea I had said I would let everybody in on my super secret surprise for the wife Friday. Then I forgot, I started talking about my night ride and never said a word.

Well it was a surprise horse ride in the Pisgah National Forest! Karen had a horse when she was a kid and loves them! She hadn't ridden in awhile and I have no use fo4r a horse. The only time I have ever ridden I got chunked off the back, so I prefer to be in control!

In other words horses scare the shit out of me. To damn big and have a mind of there own! Nuf' said....

So for me to plan this and show up and ride is a pretty big deal!!!

Friday night we meet up and had dinner, that is when we told her what the plan was.

No, we had nothing packed and she knew we were going out of town to Saluda but she didn't know we were leaving after dinner! She was waiting to pack until we told her what we where doing!

So home we went, packed and out the door by 9pm!

Not bad! 11:15 we where there and unloading the car! I would show pictures of that but it was dark!!!!!!

Tomorrow the horse ride...

Friday, October 26, 2012

That's The Way it Works !!!!!!!!!!!!

The night before I had no mojo! Last night I had all my mojo! All is well in the universe of cycling!

At least in my universe!

Charles and I met at 7pm for a night ride at Beatty and we rocked! 3 laps and the weather was perfect. Of course a night ride in a public park you never know what's gonna happen.

First off we get there and there is a group getting ready to roll, no big deal the more the merrier! Only problem, I guess they didn't want to roll with us. I saw the thread on the Trailblazers website yesterday and figured we would run into them. But I never thought I might not be invited...... It was kinda weird.

We are parked right beside them and there are like 12 people getting ready to ride and not one of them said hi or are you gonna ride with us or anything. So we got ready and went into the woods about 5 minutes behind them. Of course we caught almost all of them before they stopped for a break.

So we pass them and head around straight into the woods for lap 2, as we approach the end of lap 2 we find a beer can sitting on the rail of a bridge. That wasn't there the first lap. At the end of lap 2 we look and all those guys who came rode 1 lap and loaded up and left! What the hell! One lap at Beatty is only like 6 miles.

Why bother!

Then lap 3 we have some kids try to scare us! As we are coming down a hill they start yelling and hooting like an owl! It was kinda funny! Last we stop and get the beer can of the railing and take it back to the trash. Ride over.

I got there at 6:45 and left at 8:45, got 3 laps in and had a great time. Picked up trash and had some kids try to scare me...... I love bicycles............

Yea never know what you'll find in the woods...........

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Sometimes It just Ain't happening............

So I rode all weekend and had a ball, it felt like I could go as fast as I wanted to and it didn't hurt. That's when a ride is fun! Then yesterday I had all my stuff and headed to the trail.

I knew before I made it a mile into the woods that this wasn't gonna work! I had the legs and felt fine, just no heart. I don't know where it went but I packed everything but the heart!

Just wasn't into it! I went ahead and rode the whole loop for the hell of it but I didn't even try to go fast. I saw nobody and that was just fine.

I did see the white squirrel again! He was hanging out, hauling nuts. I guess he's getting ready for the winter. I even stopped and watched him for a minute.

I can't tell you the last time I stopped and watched an animal. That ought to tell ya where my head and heart was. I wished I had packed my camera, I want a shot of the squirrel!

So tonight I will try again. I am meeting a few friends for a night ride and I am actually looking forward to it...........

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

The Other 2 Wheels.....And A Kid............

Here lately I have been riding my motorcycles a lot more. Every chance I get I ride them to work, saving gas! The only problem with that is it means I have to plan out my rides a little better.

I can't carry my mtn bike on a motorcycle!

Of course it's that time of year again. If you notice in the evening the sun sets so low in the sky that it makes it rather dangerous to ride the road bike. Well it's no lower than it usually is, it's just low at 5 when everybody is heading home from work! This is the only time of the year I really don't feel safe riding after work. So I do all my riding in the woods.

Again I have to plan it a little better. I have riden the street bike for the last 2 days and last night I announce my plan to ride after work today and my son speaks up and says "uh your out of gas". He's been driving my car everyday.

So for me to ride today I had to go get gas in my car and his. Of course he's driving mine because he's out of gas. The guy at the gas station thought that was funny, me going in and having him turn on 2 pumps!

Then we get home and he needs to get all "his" stuff out of "my" car. He drove it for 2 days and moved in. The kid is a trip!!

I haven't even left the house to ride and somehow I spent 60 bucks !!!!!!!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Gonna Go By Fast...................

I just have that feeling. This week is gonna be a fast one. You blink an eye and it's over.

That's my favorite kind!

Yesterday was over before I could even get to the blog, I came to work and got going and all of a sudden it was time to go. I did have a good weekend, I rode Sherman so many times I started to get dizzy. Saturday everybody no showed on me so I ended up riding by myself.

Sunday I couldn't make it on time to ride with the guys so I ended up riding alone again. When the sun set Sunday I had ridin 3 full loops and 2 main loops. All at speed! I was tired but it was fun. Sometimes I like to ride by myself.

Plus it's always fun to catch and pass people! That's what I did all weekend! You see somebody out in front of you and the race is on! It's funny the way people will try to stay out in front of you, they will kick it and do all they can, then all of a sudden just pull off to the side and stop!

So anyhow we have the big weekend coming up Saturday so it's gonna be fun. The wife still has no clue what we have planned. Friday I will tell everybody what we are gonna do, I can get away with it then. We are all going out to eat Friday night and that's when we are gonna tell her.

So you just have to wait too........

Friday, October 19, 2012

For The Hell Of It............

Do you ever do anything "For The Hell Of it".......... I do and it's usually fun.. Yesterday I came home and knew my legs where fried and had nothing in them.


Sometimes it's fun to push yourself to the point you feel like your gonna drop. Into that zone where your kinda dizzy! Then other times I ride "For The Hell Of It". Last night was the later of the two.

I mowed the yard and watched it get dark, then I strapped my lights on the road bike for a short night ride. First time this year I went out on the road bike at night! 17 miles later and I was at the house.

No hurry, just a nice evening ride..... Sometimes that's all you need for a little stress relief.......

Lately it seems I need a little more relief than usual. Nothing out of the ordinary, it's just been hectic at work..........

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Stay'in Home.............

This weekend! No camp trip nothing!

I can't wait!

Next weekend we will be out of town for the wife's birthday so that will be nice. I have a surprise lined up so it's gonna be cool! I think I am just as excited as she will be.

She would never in a million years guess what I have planned! Hell I wish it was time now! I promise I will take plenty of pictures on this trip.

OK so back too this weekend, ride ride ride, baby. The same thing I have done all week. I am on a roll! I have been every night this week.

Including last weekend that makes 5 straight days! No wonder when I went last night I had no energy! Zero, I was dragging bad!!!!!!!!

BUTTTTTTTT I can't wait to go tonight!!!!!!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

That Was Cool.....

Two things, first my son Cody meet me at the trail. Sherman was our choice, and yes he is getting fast. The kid has been off the bike for the better part of a year and just now getting going and he's rolling.

It's amazing how a 16 year old can recover! I would have taken 2 years to recover from what he's been through. His speed is pretty much spot on. I actually thought that when he started to ride again I would be waiting on him. NOT..... It won't be long before we are back to him waiting on me!

Second, I had heard about it and Ive seen a picture of it. But never seen it! What you ask? The white squirrel of Sherman Branch. Yes he lives! Stone white no dark on him at all. We were flying along and came upon a friend of ours stopped in the trail. She says "look check it out". Sure enough, there he was!!!

He must be from Brevard..................

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Other Peoples Stuff..............

If you get a chance you need to follow the link.....The guy does some incredible photography and paintings........ Not counting the adventures he gets into...........

I Can see Clearly Now !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

What a difference a day can make! Yesterday it rained and was all cloudy, today it's nice and pretty out. Sherman is the destination for the afternoon. Temp is gonna be around 70 and I can't wait. I rode all weekend and it still feels like I haven't ridin in a week.

All I did was bike maintenance last night. Cody came out and helped till his girlfriend came over and then I was on my own. I serviced the Epic 26 so it's my weapon of choice. I like that bike and put a lot of time on it. Although lately I find myself eyeing the new stuff a lot. My wallet says not yet!

So I wait!

I keep telling my self the longer I wait the more I can justify a larger purchase!

Monday, October 15, 2012

It's All Good ...................

If you have been reading this any length of time you know how I like to use every available minute of a weekend. Leaving myself slam worn out and needing a rest day. I have talked about the fact we need 3 day weekends and 4 day work weeks.


The reality of those statements is the fact that I would just wear myself out for an extra day. I would still need the rest day, it would just be at the end of 3 days instead of 2. I slept like a baby last night and still got up and walked into the bathroom wall! The same wall that's been there for years.

I was to lazy to bring the camera today so all you get is my words of wisdom. We went to Lake Norman State Park and spent the weekend. Friday night we damn near froze to death! Apparently a marine battery won't last forever if it isn't charged very often. So first thing Saturday morning I had to hit Autozone for a new battery. Once I had it the heat worked just fine.

Saturday night we slept great!

So Saturday we rode the trails and went hiking. Cody flatted and had to walk back to the camp site while Chase and I had a good ride. Chase really makes me proud! He Hadn't ridden his bike in a few weeks and went out and put in a good solid ride on the Laurel Loop. It's about 12 miles total!

For not riding much he really did good. He seemed to have a good time and wants to go back this coming weekend. I told him we could always go to Uhwarrie and set the camper up for a night. So we will see, it might workout.

Anyway we had good company good wine and cheap beer. It made for a good weekend. Glen and his wife Sally had the spot next to us so it was cool. Once we got home yesterday I loaded up and hit Sherman for a lap. Once I found out the rain was coming I had no choice! I figured I might as well get in a good ride and sit around on Monday.

Life sucks.......NOT.......

Friday, October 12, 2012

Now I need A welder !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

OK, I think I found my calling! I need to build custom bicycle frames. Or better yet I need to build custom bicycle frames and SELL them! that would be the ticket...

I stole these stats from a frame builder and fellow blogger. "Waltworks bicycle frames". He originally posted these stats and talked about frame builders.

Here is a link to his blog. He's in Salt Lake City.

So if you read this correctly, I need to get too where I can produce at least 2 frames a month at $2000 or 4 frames at 7 or 8 hundred. Or 1 a week....

According to the one graph I only need to make one frame before I start selling them!

Want to buy a bike!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Walkin' In Circles..................

So yesterday when we had the guest I had to drive my truck. Yea the truck I let the kid drive everyday. The truck I haven't even driven in about 3 or 4 months.

I let the kid drive it for 2 reasons.

One it's the biggest thing I have in the driveway and if he has a wreck I want him in the biggest vehicle. Two it only gets about 15 miles to the gallon, that way he ain't riding the roads very much!

No job means limited gas money! As long as I am giving him money I know how much riding he is doing!

OK back to the fact I haven't driven it in a long time. I get in it the other night and I only get down the road a few miles before I realize this thing needs brakes! How can I tell? From the noise the brakes are making when you hit them!

So I ask Cody about it and he says "huh", like he has no clue! Guess what, he don't, no clue what so ever!


I guess I need to start driving it once and awhile! Well I stopped at Autozone on the way home and got new brake shoes, then headed to the house. So I have to get my tools together.

I get the truck jacked up. I change one side no problem, side two.... What the hell! I have the air ratchet and remove 5 out of 6 lug nuts. Number 6 ain't budging! Well shit, now what.

Now we start "Walking In Circles", I look for the 4 way lug wrench can't find it. As I am hunting it I start thinking maybe I ought to take a picture for the blog. I haven't done that lately. So then I can't find the camera.

Now I am side tracked, I spend the next 20 minutes hunting my camera. Once I find it I discover the batteries are dead! After about 10 more minutes looking for a battery that has a charge I finally give up! I need to finish the truck. No, I still have no lug wrench! 

Although I find it pretty quick once I get back to looking for it. Alright problem solved! Nope! It takes me about 2 tries before I manage to break it! Damn it.. Yes I am starting to get mad! And kinda concerned! The damn thing is that tight how the hell am I going to get it loose?

So I go back to "Walking In Circles". Looking, thinking! Of all the tools I have what can I use to get it loose?

One thing I have going for me is the fact that my dad could do it all, and he had the tools to do it with! My brother is the computer whiz and not that mechanically inclined. I am! No, I hate the computers. When we lost dad Mike was happy with the computer items he kept and I was really happy with the tools I kept.

Heck if you ask me I got the better end of the deal! You ask him he probably thinks the other way!

Anyhow dad came through! As I am looking and thinking I spot my big box of 1in drive ratchet and sockets! It don't get any bigger than that! 5 minutes later lug nut is off and I am about done! Total time spent 5 minutes one side and an hour and a half the other.

Although all that walking I feel like I got in some exercise!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Another Passes Through....................

Another cyclist! Yep we had a couple who are touring through the area stop by and stay last night. They are 21 and 23. A young couple, they are from Arlington Va. and started in Wilmington. From his mom's house.

They drove down and started there, they are heading to Memphis and then to New Orleans. From there they plan to head back to Wilmington get the car and head home. She is unemployed so it wasn't that big of deal for her and he works at a bike shop. He hadn't taken any time off in awhile so they let him have the time.

Seemed like a really nice couple, they made it to Wadesboro yesterday about 6pm and I went and picked them up. From my house in Monroe that's only about a 30 minute drive. We came home and had a nice dinner drank a few beers and went to bed.

This morning I gave them a ride down to Fort Mill and sent them on their way! That saved them the nightmare of trying to get through Charlotte and gave them a good head start for the day. We have been members of the website Warmshowers for about a year now and this makes the second time someone has made it through our area.

I have been contacted a few other times that just didn't workout, one time we where out of town and one time I didn't really seem to hit it off with the person who wanted to stop. I made up an excuse and they made other arrangements. It's totally up to you who you allow to stop by so it's pretty cool!

So after having 2 visitors I have a few observations I want to share.

First, you really don't need a high tech bike and equipment to do a bike tour. Pete (our first guess) had a bike he bought of Craigslist and Ortlieb panniers (bags).

John and Stephanie, they were riding old bikes, they even had the shift levers on the stem. Guess what, John bought his bike off Craigslist!

The one common thing these cyclist had has been the Ortlieb panniers. Both of them commented on how nice they are and how you don't want your stuff to get wet! John, even working at a bike shop said he wanted to have more money on the trip, that was a lot more important than getting a new bike at cost. So he plowed through Craigslist until he found what he wanted and then got it!

So if you want to tour spend your money on the important stuff and you will be a lot happier. Skip the fancy high end bike and get the nice bags and a light weight tent.

Second, be very flexible. Both times our visitors seem to be totally relaxed and flowing with the changes. No worries, they haven't been stressing over the route, just dealing with the changes. It seems as though they move at a different pace than "the rest of us" do!

Bikes will do that.......

One last observation, both of them made the comment that they seem to keep a 14mph pace....... Sounds like fun to me.........

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

It Might Be Time................

It might be time! Yep, I need to go to school. Camera school! I have a really nice camera, a Nikon D50. It's bad ass!

Why do I have a camera of that quality? Because it was a gift, I would never buy one this nice. The reason I wouldn't, because I can barely use a point and shoot!

Much less one that requires me to use my head.

Yes it will take some amazing shots and like I said it's way above my ability but I would like to be able to use it..... Better....

The reason for all this rambling would be the fact that I missed a shot I wanted yesterday.


The other night I was playing with the camera and changed some settings, when I had the chance to get my shot I didn't realize I had not changed things back, so I ended up with crap......

Yea, that's what I got!! It should be a beautiful picture of the white deer that lives in downtown Matthews. She was behind our warehouse yesterday and I was no more than a 100 feet from her.....


Monday, October 8, 2012

The Normal................

So I guess that was as close to normal as my weekends ever get. I road Saturday with Kelly and Scott.

We killed Sherman Branch!

Then I went home and did yard work. Once that was done I hung around the house and worked on bikes and dirt bikes! I am still trying to sell that damn KTM 50 but so far I haven't had much luck.

I guess I am going to have to take it to The Corral and let them sell it! The kids want a 4-wheeler and that ain't gonna happen till we sell something! I don't really want to pay commission but I ain't having any luck, which sucks...

Then Sunday came around and the weather turned cold and rainy. We had church which came with a cookout, we then came home. After a 20 minute nap I hit the door and headed to Beatty. It drains well enough that it doesn't get to muddy. After about 4 laps, I was getting bored so I loaded up and headed home.

Dinner a little football and the day was complete. My legs are a little tired right now so I need a few days break. Since last Monday I have ridden Tue,Wed,Thurs. Followed by Saturday and Sunday!

So 5 of the last 7 days!!!

Besides this weekend we are going to Lake Norman State Park for a few days. I am gonna get some serious miles in! The weather is looking good and the trails are sweet!

Friday, October 5, 2012

That Works ........

Those were my last words when I talked to Kelly. The plan, to ride after work Thursday.

I get home and get out the door. He and Scott are already on the road. I get a text "meet us at 218 and Love Mill Rd". I just pulled out of the driveway!

That's about 10 miles, I head that way.

Next text " where the hell are you"? My computer shows I have been gone for 5 miles.

"I am on the way"

"OK we'll head your way" Damn, I haven't even made it to Love Mill yet! So now I need to kick it or they are gonna know how slow I have been going.

Next text, "It's a slow ride" I read this and laugh. Bullshit! Scott is just fast and Kelly likes to see me suffer.....

I know better!

Now I am on Love Mill, I got the wind to my back and I am rolling. Finally I pop over a hill and there they are, damn they turn around! I want to stay on my side of 218! Kelly's side sucks, to many climbs!

So I catch up,  "hey lets go the other way"

"why"  Because I always end up 15 miles from the house when you say "let's go my way" and I do!

It seems like we always end up 2 miles from his house and he will head home. Then I am stuck heading home!

15 miles from the house........

We keep going! "damn you I know how this is gonna work"

Sure enough I get stuck 15 from the house! I get home right before dark!

I guess I am gonna have to start carrying lights for road rides with Kelly..

Oh yea, it was fun, and I ended up with 34 miles on a week night and got to climb a bunch of hills......

Thursday, October 4, 2012

It"s Thursday...........

What a great title! I have now made this an informative piece of fine literature! Worth the time you are spending reading this.

My favorite part of the week, the first 3 days are just time fillers. Then you have Thursday and you are thinking about the weekend, what you might do. Friday is always cool, just cause it's Friday. You get paid and it's like a weekend day.

Well at least you get paid if you get paid weekly, some people only get paid once a month. If you ask me they are getting screwed! They only get the "real Friday " feeling once a month. That's gotta suck! 

Then some people get paid weekly, very weekly! But at least they are getting paid!

How could I not write this post about getting paid, and the Friday feeling without putting the "week pay" joke in somewhere.  I swear I am a genius!!!!!

So what are you thinking about doing this weekend???

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Nice Surprise !!!!!!!!!!!

Yesterday I am sitting here at the office and right about lunch I start getting questions.

"What are all the bikes doing in Matthews"

My reply, "Hell if I know"!

After some investigation I came to find out it was the "Mountains to The Sea" ride. They had 1100 people doing it this year and all of them stayed in downtown Matthews last night. That's about 2 blocks from where I work!

So after work yesterday I went by the camp area and checked it out. They had food and showers set up for them and the whole works! Not to bad! So now I want to do the spring ride. That's got to be fun.

They started in Brevard and end up in Carolina Beach. 430 miles and 7 days. Got to be a good time..... Tomorrow I get Cody's bike back, ready for the White Water Center...

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

No Rush, Not When It Comes To Kids..........

Sunday night Cody and I really had a good time riding. I don't know if staying out late on a school night had anything to do with it or not but he really enjoyed it. So did I! We rode and talked, he likes Charles so it was cool.

Once we dropped him off we still had about 20 minutes to drive home so it was kinda neat, I let him do the driving all night so he likes that. As I told the wife as long as he is on the A,B honor roll we can play all we want! How many other kids where out till midnight riding their bikes in the woods with their dad, on a school night!

If more dad's had any sense they all would be out with their kids doing stuff totally out of the ordinary on a school night. Stuff like that will help a father and son bond!

So anyhow this morning Karen had to be at work at 6:30am, they had a case starting early so she had to be there. Because of this our usual schedule was changed up. I usually head out of the house about 6:30, I don't have to be at work till 8 but I usually get there about 7. So today I was keeping everything in line. Well we end up ready early and sitting on the couch chatting.

Chase isn't the biggest bike rider in the world but he goes sometimes. I told him he needs to go with us on the next night ride. He's thinking about it! Well Cody decides he wants to go this Thursday, White Water Center at 7:30. I like this plan, it means another midnight trip with my son. Now I am sitting around hoping the weather will get right so we can!

Life is good!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, October 1, 2012

And That Was It ..............

The best thing about my weekend was the fact that it ended with a night ride with my son! Yes I ended up staying in town and hitting Poplar Tent as many times as possible. I ended up riding there 4 times in the last week. Tuesday Scott and I rode right after work. Thursday Scott Cody and I rode after dark.

Cody tried to ride that day but flatted so that made last night even better. Last night Cody Charles and I where the last people to ever ride Poplar Tent! We got there about 7:30 and left about 9 pm. When we left there was no one in the lot. So unless they came later than that we were the last to ride it.

As I said last week I started riding there before I even had a wife much less kids so it was really neat to share that experience with my son. I think he even understood it was kinda special, Charles enjoyed it too. I know I did!

I did go by myself Saturday and took my time so I could get as many pictures as possible. Hell I even left the house Saturday and drove for about 20 minutes before I realized I had forgotten my shoes. Usually that would kill the ride for me but not this time! I turned around and went home got them and headed right back out the door. I was determined to get my solo lap in! I did and I got pictures.

So I am gonna leave you with them. Long live Poplar Tent. I really will miss riding there.......
Bottom of the Gravity Cavity
sad sign!!!!!!!!