Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Next Year ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

Yep, I know I am way behind and we have been busy! It looks like it will be "next year" before I can catch up. Seeing how today is New Years Eve it will be next year! Anyhow we are about to head home and then I am gone to PA over the weekend.

We move Cody to PA over the weekend and I will be back on Tuesday.. Have a good evening and be safe.

                                     See Ya Next Year,,,,,

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Still Here ,,,,,,,,,,,,,

Had a great Christmas with the family and been pedaling steady! Just short of help her at work and been busy! We aren't allowed to carry over days here so everybody is trying to get their time in.

Hopefully I can find time to post tomorrow, thanks for checking back in though!

Monday, December 22, 2014

It's Weird ,,,,,,,,,,

Usually Christmas is my favorite time of the year, and it still is this year. But with us taking the kid to PA next Friday it just seems weird this year. We have all our shopping done and we are ready, the plans are made as far as seeing the family and all but it's just weird. I know everybody who sends a kid to college goes through the same thing but it doesn't make me like it anymore.

Yes if you read this blog very often I am well aware I have whined about this several times! But it's what's on my mind so I keep going back to it.

I did ride this weekend, I did a short road ride Saturday. The cold limited my time, I just couldn't get comfortable so I went home. I finished putting my tires and brakes on the mountain bike and decided to take it out. I went done to Ann Springs and had a good ride. It was a little slick but not to bad. Plus I hadn't been down there in quite a while so it was nice to get back. They are really sweet trails.

It's just far enough away that I always tend to think it's to far to go. But it's really closer than you would think. If I go through the country I can be there at 31 miles. That's only 6 miles further than Steve's. I need to go there more often.

Now it's raining again and supposed to for the next 2 days. So it will be the road bike the rest of the week. Life is good and Christmas is here!

Friday, December 19, 2014

Glad It's Almost Over,,,,

Today, the week all of the above! Cody is feeling better, I feel bad and Karen feels good. Chase is good to go so I guess it's all good. The weekend is supposed to be nice so I am riding as much as I can.

Yes we have Christmas next week and the countdown is getting tight as far as Cody going to school. For the first time in my life I wish Christmas was still a month away! Have a good weekend, I am done for this week.

                                        Have a good weekend,,,,,,,,

Thursday, December 18, 2014

The Hump !!!!!!!!!

Not sure what my problem is but I am having a tough time adjusting to the cold this year. I can't seem to decide if I am sick or not! The last two weeks have consisted of 4 bike rides and that's been about it. All of them coming in the middle of the day.

I usually don't mind the cold and will make plans to go no matter what the temps are, but this year has been different. I went on a few cold rides and then it's like my body said, "not this year"! I so much as walk outside with the thought of riding and the cold hits me and it's over! I would rather take the dog and go to the golf course and walk for 5 miles. I may not break a big sweat but I come home and I can feel it.

It might not be riding but it's still exercise! I enjoy riding the road bike more when it's cold but right now it ain't happen either. Maybe it will change but for now I am in a rut and can't see over the side! Cold sucks and that's all there is to it!

The rest of the story, Cody is still hurting! He's had a rough week! He is finally eating but it hurts, he's decided now that if had known how bad this was gonna hurt he would have never had it done! It sucks watching your kid go through this, you wish you could make it all better but it is what it is. Another week and he will be back to somewhat normal. Plus we are on the 2 week count down before we take him north.

I guess things are good, real good actually but damn it's gonna be tough leaving him in PA.........

Monday, December 15, 2014

And It Was !!!!!!!!!

To be honest the wife is the one who took care of the kid all weekend but it still affected me. They both slept on the couch and I had the bed all to myself but I just don't sleep as well when I am by myself. Plus every time she was up and moving I woke up too.

I am not used to hearing movement in the kitchen at night. He had a rough night Friday night and then he over did it Saturday so Saturday night was even worse! Last night he did sleep up stairs but then she had to set her alarm to give him his pain meds, that sucked! The alarm went off at 12:30 and then 3:30.

I get up at 5:30! So 3 times I woke up last night. I think I slept better when she was on the couch! But hopefully the worst is over. I know he's ready to be done with it. He can't really eat yet so he's hungry, hungry and grumpy!

I did get out on my road bike both days. Saturday was a quick short ride, somebody had to stay with the kid all day so I had a very little window. Yesterday was better I slipped out for a couple of hours and had a good ride. Now I need to make a point of getting out this week and all will be well.

Friday, December 12, 2014

I Hate It ,,,,,,,,,,,

"I Hate It", for my kid! This has been coming but it still sucks. We originally had this planned for the week of Christmas but since he is heading to PA the week after Christmas we had it moved up. That way he will be better by the time he goes to school.

                      Cody is 19 and had his tonsils removed this morning!

Even the doctor said it's a lot rougher for an adult to have it done than it is for a little baby. When he walked in the room this morning the first thing he said was he had already done 3 kids that morning but Cody was the one he would be thinking about this weekend.

He said the little kids have little tonsils, like a small grape, where as adults have them the size of golf balls! In other words, a lot bigger cut! He even told us to keep him full of meds! Yes he is already home and hating life. It only took about thirty minutes to have it done but that was the easy part.

As I said, "I Hate It" the kid has a long weekend ahead of him.........

Thursday, December 11, 2014

One of Those Rides,,,,

Not sure if it's the weather or what, but I just wasn't feeling it! I left here yesterday and went straight to the trail. I changed clothes and headed in the woods, I knew before I had been a mile it wasn't gonna be a fast ride.

By the time I cleared the "roller coaster" I damn near headed for the parking lot. I rode the middle section telling myself the hardest part is over. I didn't last much longer and headed to the truck. I got a whole 40 minute ride in and then I went to the truck.

                     Somedays your the wheel, somedays your the dirt under the wheel.....

                                                         I just felt like the dirt........

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

I Am Here ,,,,,,,,,,,,

I just haven't done anything worth talking about. I am still kinda in my local trail funk mood and the blah blah blah, ho hum weather has me dragging. I went home yesterday and made myself load the dog up and head to the golf course.

We walked till way past dark and still made it home by 6:30. Supper was made and I was asleep on the couch at 7:45. I woke up and watched basketball for a short period of time and went to bed at 9:30. Not the most exciting night. I don't really see how I need so much sleep right now but I seem to be getting more than usual.

Plus I am still loaded for a ride and the sun is shinning! My plan is to hit the trail after work today. But that was my plan yesterday too. I hope the vitamin "D" will help...

One last thing, Sunday when I was in the woods at Uhwarrie, way back in the woods! I came across this weird guy walking all by himself in the middle of the woods. He asked me to stop and he wanted to know about more trails in the area. Then he wants to know if he is headed back toward the parking lot and I tell him no he is going the long way to get there. He still had a good 7 miles the way he was going and he could have turned around and went back 2 miles to get there.

He is telling me he wants shorter trails to walk but when I told him which way to go he said no, he wanted to go the long route. It was really weird and he was putting off the "really weird I am a stalker kinda vibe". He didn't look like a hiker or trail walker at all. Yet he wanted to know where people go to walk in the area.

Now if you know the Uhwarrie mountain bike trail system you know it's a loop type trail. Not very many cut through. He was the reason I did my second lap backwards. I wanted to see where he had gotten to. Yet I never met him again,,,,, It was weird. He was scouting for something but what I don't know......

Sometimes you just get a vibe from someone and he was one of those people......

Monday, December 8, 2014

I Had Fun !!!!!!!

Saturday was a rain day, I stayed at the house as long as I could take it and then I got my umbrella and headed to the golf course. It was raining, I figured it would be empty and the dog and I could walk the whole 18 holes on the cart path.

NOT! Golfers are crazier than bicyclist! I couldn't believe how many people were there and golfing in the rain. It was crazy. We had to walk the nature trail. No big deal but I got a kick out of it. It just made me realize how crazy I used to be when I had the golfing bug. At one point in time I used to golf at least 3 days a week and the weekend.

Rain didn't stop me either, I guess I should have known it was gonna be  busy. I still got my walk in and didn't really get to wet so it was a good day. I came home and layed around the house the rest of the day and then Sunday came.

Sunday was a great day! The sun was out and the temps where great. Because of the rain all day Saturday I went to Uhwarrie and cut a few laps. I love that place! I wish it was closer to the house but it is what it is. 45 miles one way but at least it's all through the country. You just have to allow for the drive time.

It's the closest thing to riding in the mountains we have around here, at least without the drive to the mountains. The only draw back is the fact it makes me want to go to the mountains now... I need a day trip........

Friday, December 5, 2014

Maybe, Maybe Not !!!!!

You might call it a waste but I call it a good week. No rides happened but I walked a lot. I hardly drank any beer and I feel good. It's Friday and the weekend is here. I don't really have any big plans this weekend and I am fine with that. We have been busy getting things ready for the kid to head off and that has taken time.

We are now on the count down! We will be heading north on Jan. 2nd and he will be checked in for the next nine months. Am I ready for it? Nope! But it's gonna happen, weather I like it or not. Not that I don't "like it", I just know how much I am gonna miss my kid! I will see him several times over the next 9 months but I still know the kid I send up there is gonna come home a lot more mature.

This will be his first time living anywhere but home. He's gonna have to learn how to do it all for himself! Laundry, cooking the whole deal! It should be interesting! So was the week wasted?

                                                  "Maybe, Maybe Not"............

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Don't Blink ,,,,,,,,,,

If you do it will be gone before you know it! I am referring to the week. My last post on Monday I said it was time for a night ride. Well now it's Thursday and the week is almost over and I haven't ridden yet. "Don"t Blink".....

I have walked every night, the dog and I are best buds'. But that's been the extent of my exercise. I can't really put a finger on why but every once in awhile I just loose my motivation. It's like I get in this lull where I don't want to drive to ride and the road just isn't working out. Might be the weather might be the darkness. Sometimes I just get off the bike and take a few days to find my way back.

I still feel like I am being productive but just in a different way. My legs are sore right now just in a different way. Besides It's really peaceful to slow down and walk a nice quite golf course. This time of year it gets dark so early nobody is there golfing. We have it all to ourselves!

Yes it gets dark......  But I have my dog to protect me!!!!!!

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Round One ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

We ate we had company, it's over now we move on to the next round. The holidays started and my favorite part is the extra time off. I tried to take advantage of the extra play as best as I could. Of course we had family day Thursday and then woke up to freezing cold Friday.

I could have easily called it a loss but I knew I would regret it later. I had planned to do a road ride with Kelly but hadn't heard from him so I proceeded to get ready. I didn't bother trying to find him cause I knew if I met him and we rode I would be in it for the long haul. If I went by myself and I stayed close to the house I could at least bail and say I tried.

About the time I was ready damn if he didn't call. We decided to meet and see what happened. By the time it was done we had knocked out 40 miles and didn't freeze. I learned a few more things about dressing for the cold and it worked out. It may have been the coldest day of the year, at least in our area. But we where out and about and had a good ride.

Saturday I went down to SC and rode Cheraw State Park and then finished the 4 day weekend with a road ride. A road ride that was in the worst wind I think I have ever ridden in! I ended a 38 mile ride with an average speed just barely over 15 and I was beat! The temps were perfect and it was a beautiful day so I had a hard time complaining but it was tough!

                                          Now for a night ride this week....

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

We Made It ,,,,,,,,,,

Last night we met at 4:30 and rode till 6:30. About a mile after I left the rain started drizzling. I woke up this morning and it is still raining! Both sides of my driveway are standing with water. It's supposed to stop shortly and then clear out. I looked at the weather briefly this morning and I think it's gonna clear for the next several days.

The woods probably won't be ready to ride till Friday but the road will still work. I even found myself thinking about a road ride last night while I was in the woods mountain biking. This time of year is about as good as it gets weather wise. I need to take advantage of that.

Last night the woods were awesome! It was slick in just a few places but overall it was perfect. Rocky River seems to be the go to trail these days, it has everything. Plenty of climbing and technical trail. Plus it's a little over 12 miles long. That makes for a good ride.

Anyhow tomorrow is Thanksgiving and we are closed Friday. It's now the official start to the Holiday's. In a way I am glad and in a way I hate it. I like the ideal of Christmas and Thanksgiving but the reality is not what "ideal" is. We had originally planned to go to the beach but with Karen being sick that plan didn't workout.

                           I really hate the fact that didn't workout.

But! I still get a good meal! Enjoy your holiday and remember to play nice and smile, even if you don't mean it!

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

So Far So Good ...............

I have been here for one hour and 15 minutes and my computer hasn't crashed yet! I have my fingers crossed, hopefully I can make a full day with no hick ups! The last few days have definitely been an adventure.

As I said the other day I rode Saturday and spent Sunday walking in the rain. I came home yesterday and had plans to walk the country club but the rain came and that squashed that. Instead I came home and did the dishes and that was about it. The excitement was raining down!

I made myself stay up for the first quarter of the football game and then it was bed time. I did find time to load up all my stuff to ride today. I don't know if that will happen or not but I am ready. I thought the rain was gonna be here Sunday and that was it. Yesterday was a surprise and then today we have about 55 percent chance of rain again.

Right now it shows we will have a clear day Thursday and then rain again on Friday. Of course the clear day will be when I am expected to see all the family and play nice. I would rather it rained all day Thursday and then I had a great day on my day off!

Monday, November 24, 2014

Here We Go Again !!!!!!!!!

I am typing this on the desk beside my desk, what does that tell you! I came in this morning and my "new" computer is completely locked up! The computer guru, our I-t guy can't get here till after lunch. What a way to start the week! At least it's a short week so it will be over soon. The guy beside me is on vacation this week so at least I have a desk to work from. No email, but at least a desk! Somebody will call shortly mad about me not returning a request but it is what it is! So I rode Saturday and walked Sunday. We got rain by the buckets yesterday and I just didn't feel like driving 50 miles to ride. Of course I got wet but what the hell. I had fun and the dog enjoyed it. Got to go computer guy is here.........

Friday, November 21, 2014

One Of Those Days ,,,,,,,,,,,,

So it's one of those days,,,, computer trouble all day.. Have a good weekend

Thursday, November 20, 2014

I Hope It's Over ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

OK for the last few days we have had really cold weather! For Charlotte it's been cold! But today it's getting back to normal. The bike is coming back out! Today we ride again, I start in the daylight and head to the darkness. I am still working on my night-fright!

The only TV I have watched so far the last few days is sporting events so no scary shows! I should be good to go!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Here We Go !!!!!!!!!!

OK, I have kinda dreaded writing this post and in a way hoped I wouldn't have too. Nothing is wrong, everything is actually really good except for Karen still being under the weather. She is getting better but that a whole nuther' blog post in it's self!

The reason I have "dread" would be my kid is going to go off to school. Yes he is 19 and yes he is a good kid and yes most parents went through these emotions back in August. But now it's my kid and my emotions! Cody finished up high school and he really didn't have any interest in going off to college. To pretty much appease us he went to CPCC here in Charlotte for the first semester. He went for us not really because he wanted to.

Well now it's time to get ready for second semester and we are going in a different direction. Hence the reason we drove to Blairsville PA and back over the weekend. Cody has decided he wants to learn diesel mechanics. At Wyo-tech school in PA. That's 9 hours from here!

The kid is really good with his mechanical ability and it definitely fits him. I just wish it was a lot closer! We went ahead and reserved him a small apartment and he starts right after Christmas, nine months later he will be done and back home. I just wish he was closer! Yea I know I said that already!

Believe me, if you were around me you would have heard me say that several times already! Not just twice! Now you know what we have been up too. My kid is growing up and I don't really like it. I accept it, and I am glad we did a good enough job that we can send him that far away and know he will be able to take care of himself. I did my part but it just seems to happen so fast.

Before I blink Chase is gonna be finished with high school.......... I need a drink............

Monday, November 17, 2014

Were Back ,,,,,,,,

First things first! As I have stated before, I drove a truck for 5 years. I still have my full CDL license, I can pull tankers, I can pull doubles, haul hazardous materials. You name it! I am still legal to drive it! Guess what I learned this weekend!

We left Friday morning and drove all day to Pittsburgh, actually we went to Blairsville PA. WE left at 9:30am and got there at 7pm. I was beat! We then did our deal Saturday and then came home yesterday. Total driving in 3 days, 19 hours and 1075 total miles! I am still tired!

Now I know! I will never ever ever ever ever ever!!!!! Drive a damn tractor trailer again!! As long as Bojangles needs "Master Biscuit Makers" I will have a back up plan! How I used to do that job for days on end I have no ideal. For some reason I remember most of it as a fun job. At least the first 2-3 years, from then on my memories aren't as good. I enjoyed going all the places and seeing all the sights. Until I realized I was seeing them at 65 miles an hour and not getting to "see" them.

                                                               There is a difference!

For the last 14 years I have always kept my CDL license current. They are just so hard to get that I felt I should. Well when they expire in 2016 I will have a standard class C just like every other person! I will no longer waste the money to keep them. I don't want to drive and I am not going to drive! So, "so long, to the trucking world I will wave"...

                                                                 The time has come,,,,,,,

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Until Next Week !!!

Looks like today is it for me, I have to head north for a few days and won't be here tomorrow. Cody and I are heading to Pittsburgh PA for the weekend. There is a reason behind this trip and bicycles have nothing to do with it. I hate to go ahead and tell the whole story now, I want to make sure it's gonna happen before I start talking about everything.

If all goes as planned we have changes coming! BUT, I want him to make the decision. This is way over my head..

Anyhow with his birthday taking up the first couple of days this week I finally slipped out for a ride yesterday. With leaving tomorrow morning I have a few things I need to do so I needed to make it a quick ride. Sherman Branch, my closest local trail got my time and I got in a lap before dark. I used to really try to avoid the place, I was just tired of it. But here lately I have found I am really enjoying the place.

It might be one of the easier trails but it rolls by fast and you can go fast! Nuff' said.....

I'll be back Monday, have a good weekend......

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

A Differnt Kind Of Scary !!!!!!!!!!

Saturday I had a plan to meet a few friends and show them around Rocky River Trail. They all live in Waxhaw and for them that's like an hour ride to get to the trail. When you figure in an hour ride each direction plus the ride a short ride on a Saturday morning turns into a half day ordeal! That's about the only draw back about riding a mountain bike. You have to drive to the trails.

So anyhow we all met and headed into the woods. This is where my ride got kinda scary. At Rocky River you have an awesome downhill to start the ride. The first mile and a half is all downhill, then you have a half mile climb to where the trail starts rolling across the hillside.

Now I might suck at climbing but I can damn sure go downhill! So I am bombing down the hill and all of a sudden "pow", it sounded like a gun went off! In the next 2 tenths of a second I think I have snapped the frame and then realize I snapped the seat post! NOT GOOD!

I am on a step downhill section and need to have all my weight to the back as I am working my way down the hill. The only problem! I now have a jagged broken off 31.8 millimeter metal pipe sticking straight up between my legs! Once the seat and mount brackets are gone that's what your left with!

I figured all of that out in the total sum of 4 tenths of a second! It's amazing how fast you can figure out problems when you know what the concequences are. Only option, over the bars and get away from the spear that was aimed at my ass! So as I am flying through the air with my out stretched arms I am already thinking about how this hillside has a lot of rocks on it and it could hurt once I hit the ground.

The tree's are a second thought, but none where in my direct flight path so I am more worried about the rocks. I do the old tuck and roll routine and jump up! That's when you take another split second to take inventory of all body parts! No blood and no terrible pain any where.

As everybody is pulling up I am standing in the middle of the trail. But I am happy! I find my seat and quickly figure out I can't fix it so the ride is over. I lower the seat as far as I can and try to ride back to the truck. I end up walking about halfway and riding half way.

                                   I go home fix everything get ready for the Sunday ride!!

Monday, November 10, 2014

TV Sucks!!!!!!

I swear I need to cancel the cable and turn off the TV! All the "night time by myself" progress I made over the last 6 months all went out the door! I came home from work Friday afternoon and ended up on the couch watching TV with the wife and then she did it to me.

She turned on one of those damn Dateline shows about a nice peaceful town and murder. It happened in Pendleton Oregon and apparently it's like the last place on earth you would ever worry about a murder happening. Much less a random murder and one that took almost 2 years and a second attack to solve.

By the time I had to go outside and put the damn dog up it was way dark and really scary! I swear I was sure somebody was hiding between the sheds, just waiting for me to turn my back! I put the dog up and hooked up her light and feed her in record time! Believe it or not I actually ran across the yard once I had everything done.

                                                                 What a puss !!!!!!!

It took me the rest of the weekend to get over it! Last night when the kids, yea the kids! Turned on the "Walking Dead", I went to the bedroom! No shit, if I had watched that last night after "Dateline" on Friday I would have never went outside again after dark! I am a total wuss.........

I did ride both days and we'll get to that tomorrow, I am busy and I got a meeting today I need to prepare for. See ya tomorrow....

Plus no night ride tonight my kid has his birthday today. Cody is 19 years old today! We have cake ice cream and Chinese food planned. He picked out the food,,,,,,,,,,,

                                                       Happy Birthday Cody !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

It's Fall ,,,,,,,,,,

I love fall! Although this year it seemed to come really fast! I swear the older I get the shorter the seasons get. I think my mid-life crises is about to hit! I never understood what that meant till this year. I always wondered how could a grown man in his mid 40's could just all of a sudden snap and go buy a Corvette.

I may not want the Vette but I am beginning to start to understand the reason behind it. Mid forties you start to realize your on the back side of the hill. Over the top that type of thing! In my 30's I never gave that any thought! In my 40's I do!

I think I might retire and blow all my money then go back to work at 60. I would rather be broke at 60 than save all my money and do nothing now. I am still young enough I could have a ball now and worry about it later. It seems to work for rednecks. We all know, or work with people who have no direction in life and live pay check to pay check. They seem to be happy and end up making it through life without too many worries.

                         Where as I worry about having money and saving, what the hell is wrong with me.....

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

I Made It ,,,,,,

Last night I left the house at 5:45. It was dark! I never bothered to call anyone else so I was on my own. I Have been planning on going by myself for a awhile and just never really made it happen. I always found a partner. Weather I want to admit it or not, the woods are dark!

Not that I am scared of the dark, it's what's in the dark that you can't see that you "think" is gonna get you? That's what I am scared of !! From the reactions I get from people when they find out we ride at night, let's me know I am not the only person who feels this way. I am just willing to admit it!

Anyhow I don't  seem to ride by myself as much in the winter. I have been trying to work on being more courageous but it's been a process. I started this summer with my golf course walks. I would go later in the evening and time it so I would be at the farthest point from the parking lot when it was getting dark. That way I would have to walk back to the car at least a mile in the dark.

Then I started working my way back to the car using the really dark nature trails. I had the dog with me so I figured she would hear the "evil" or sense "it" before "it" could get to us! My plan was to run really fast!

If your not laughing yet you need to read between the lines. I am a 46 year old man and I have a 46 pound dog walking with me in the dark woods all under the pretense that she is gonna hear the Boogie Man before I do. So we can run really fast! The funny thing is growing up I had a paper route and I went out every Saturday and Sunday before the sun came up and delivered news papers.

                                                        All in the city!!

Yet now I am out in the country and I am scared of the dark. You would think you would be safer in the dark out in the country woods than cutting through the back side of a shopping center at 5am! As a kid I used to love being out so early and watching things start up. I didn't even use a light I swear my eyes were used to the dark. Plus I had street lights to help.

Anyhow the thing I noticed back during the summer was the fact the dog never acted any different! Of course she being a dog she could see better than I could but she didn't act any different. She never acted like any thing was any different, if it was dark or still daylight. She acted the same and we always made it back alive.

So far I have ridden with my buddies a few times and I have went a few times by myself. The first time I went solo I did one lap and chickened out on a second lap! I was at one of our shorter trails so I was never to far from the lot. The other night I went and timed it so I was about halfway done and had to finish in the dark. I was at Rocky River Trail that time.

It's way down in the country and very dark! But I made it! Well last night I went and rode a lap at Rocky River all by myself! As I said in the very first paragraph I didn't leave the house till 5:45, it was already dark when I left. I got there and parked, got ready and headed in the woods. I knew I could at least ride the first section down by the river and if I got scared I could just go back to the parking lot.

I made it and for some reason felt really "calm", not sure why but that is about the best word I can think of to describe how I felt. I finally excepted the fact it was dark and I have ridden that trail a hundred times by myself in the daylight and nothing ever happened. "Dark" was not gonna be any different!

I slid across the field and started the second section and that's when it kinda hit  me, I was riding at night in the dark and I had a smile on my face. I had just ridden the section down by the river where you are right along the bank and nothing had come over the bank and got me!

I ended up riding the whole trail and only got spooked one time. I startled something in a bush and the noise "whatever it" made scared me. But only for a second, then  I realized I had probably scared "it" as bad as "it" scared me. I had a great ride and it was a great night.

                                          I am gonna win the battle of the darkness!!

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

5:45 ,,,,,,,,,,

It's now dark in the woods at "5:45". Time change sucks! The only saving grace, lights! Tonight I ride, so far by myself. Kelly is out of town and I haven't really bothered to call anyone else.....

I bet I ride really fast........... The Boogie Man,,, notice I capitalize his name out of respect! He might get me,,,,, no choice but to pedal fast!!

Monday, November 3, 2014

No Regrets' ,,,,,,,,

Nope, no sign up! I got up Saturday morning and decided I was content to let it go. I didn't check but I know it sold out, it does every year! Like I said before, I know pretty much where I stand in the pecking order. I ride with people who finish and ride in the top 10 of just about every race in the area. So for now I am happy!

I just can't seem to find the race fever anymore. Plus I got to race yesterday! Well not officially, But they never caught me! Saturday was a wash with all the rain and cold, I really never got up and got moving all day. It was just one of those days. Yesterday I went to Rocky River trail and got a good lap in.

I left my phone at work on Friday so I had no contact with the outside world. I had no ideal who was riding where or when so I was on my own. Plus with the invention of cell phones who remembers phone numbers! I don't know a single friends phone number. I just look up their name and hit call. Just like everyone else, so I missed the group rides. I got to work this morning and found out about everything. Just a little late though...

Since I was on my own to ride I decided to take the 26in full suspension bike. I figured I would take my time and enjoy the woods, at least that was the plan. But things change real quick and yesterday it changed within about 2 seconds! I get there and I am unloading and I guess it being such a wonderful day the place was packed.

Well as I am about to go in the woods I hear these two guys who were parked across from me make a comment. He tells his buddy "don't worry, we'll catch him in no time". My first thought was, "damn that wasn't to nice". But then my second thought was "bullshit" I'll blow up before that happens! The race was on!!

So if you ride the same trails all the time you know where the bailout points are and where someone "is" just by looking through the woods and seeing them. You know how far they are behind type thing. So now I am wishing I had brought my 29in bike just so I would be even faster. It turned out I didn't need the extra speed but I sure had to work for it. A 26in bike is just harder to ride! I am finally convinced the 29ers are faster!

Back to the ride! I am pushing it and I see them through the woods, they seem to be rolling but are doing a lot of talking. Hence they must not realize I considered this ride a race! I decide to let them in on things! We finally are at a point when I know they can hear me, I let them know they better pick it up if they think they are gonna catch me. He laughs and says "were on the way".

They get close but never catch me! Again the 26in bike liked to killed me but I was kicking it as hard as I could go! I ended up riding a lap of one hour and 15 minutes! A new record for me! When we finally got to the parking lot we all had a good laugh, they didn't realize I had heard them when we started, and sure didn't realize I was gonna make them work so hard. The one guy said he gave up on the notion of passing me a long time before, he just wanted to finish close enough to me to feel like he had done something!

That was a good ride!!!

Friday, October 31, 2014

It's Already Started !!!!!!

My worrying over weather or not I want to do any races next year! The reason for this is every year I hear about how great the 6hr Warrior Creek is and this weekend is the sign ups. You have about 15 minutes to sign up and then it's sold out! No kidding it sells out that fast!

It's November and I don't even know which bike I want to ride tomorrow, much less if I want to race a race in April! Tomorrow morning will come and go and then I will walk around feeling like I missed out for a few days and then I will move on. Every year I go through this and then every spring I wish I had signed up.

Maybe tomorrow will be different, doubtful but maybe.

Anyhow I rode Monday with the kid right after work and I haven't touched the bike sense. I have everything ready to go I just haven't made a trip. Maybe today I will go out but if I don't no worries. They claim we are gonna have crappy weather tomorrow but I just don't see that happening.

Tomorrow I plan to do a road ride, the first one of fall! Hopefully the sun will be shining, but if it isn't no sweat I will be out anyway. If we have rain I will be heading to Cheraw to ride the sandy single track! Raining is the best time to ride there so either way I am gonna have a great day!

                                     Now do I want to race or not!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

8'oclock,,,,,,,,,, and Over Dressed,,,,,,,,,,

Let's start with the "8'oclock". The other day I was talking to my buddy and he was about to mow his yard, nothing special about that except it was 7pm. I asked if he had lights on his mower, he said no. He was gonna wear his bicycle helmet with his light attached! Made since to me!

So last night I got home and it being a rest day I did a few things around the house. I ran a few errands and then came home. We stood outside and waited for the rocket to launch also. If you don't know what I am talking about NASA was launching a rocket last night and if you stood outside and looked to the northeast you were gonna be able to see it. Well it blew up and we didn't get to see it!

                  The only good thing about that story is that it was an unmanned rocket so no one was hurt...

By the time I got around to mowing my yard it was well past dark. I came in the house wearing my bicycle helmet with the light strapped on and the wife thought I was crazy! It worked out perfect! Why hadn't I thought of that! Those lights are good for many things, just because it's dark outside doesn't mean the day is done! Hell I was having so much fun being outside with the weather being so nice and mild I went ahead and washed one of the cars and rinsed off the other one.

I stirred up a bunch of dust mowing! I was having fun! The neighbors where probably wondering what I was doing but hell it's my world....

Now for the "Over Dressed" part. After a good nights sleep, I was worn out from being outside so late. I got up this morning and decided to ride the motorcycle to work. They are predicting a 55 percent chance of rain today but what the hell I still have a 45 percent chance it doesn't rain at all. I rolled the dice, I like the odds. I like to use the baseball batting average comparison.

If I played baseball and I had a life time batting average of 45 percent they would rename the hall of fame after me! So those odds make sense to me! Ride Baby!! BUT,,,, this morning I "Overdressed". It was 60 degrees out and I still dressed like it was 40. Why, I don't know but I was toasty warm. On the really cold mornings and I am cold I always think back to the "Over Dressed" days.

                                         It makes me feel warm!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, October 27, 2014

Still Rollin ''''''''''

In the woods! Yep, I haven't been on a road bike in almost a month. Not even once in the month of October! It's been the woods and trails the whole time. I am pretty much on my 4 days a week ride schedule and today will be the 3rd day in a row. I haven't done a 3 in a row in a long time.

Cody is meeting me today after work and we are gonna ride Sherman. Of course I am looking for a break! After my weekend of riding with a couple of my buddies I am pretty much beat! Plus I managed to go over the bars pretty hard Saturday and booth of my legs are kinda sore.

Anyhow, it's been crazy here at work today and believe it or not I started writing this at 9o'clock this morning...

Friday, October 24, 2014

Schedule ,,,,,,,,,

As I said, I seem to be on a 4 ride a week schedule. Last night was the 4 night, It all starts over on Saturday. My life my rules, even though it could start any day of the week and end at the same time and count the same. Saturday is the day!

OK, I had a point when I started talking so back to my point. I rode with my buddy last night and we had a ball. First ride of the year that required arm warmers. Anyhow we were rolling! It made for a great ride and I look forward to more night rides. Only one problem..

I don't trust my lights! Out of 3 night rides I have done so far this year twice I have had my "head" light stop working. That's not what I want to happen when were flying down the trail and I need to see. The first ride I did it burned out and I limped back to the truck with only a bar light. The next ride it did good again.

Last night I made it to the very end of my ride when it went out again. Luckily Kelly was in front so I just used his lights to see further up the trail. BUT, when we started our ride last night I didn't trust them. So I took an extra battery for both lights! That sucks, I had 5 pounds of batteries in my back pocket and they rode along for the whole trip. That's way to much weight to carry just for backup.

I guess I am gonna have to ask for lights for Christmas. I don't plan to carry extra batteries all winter long. Some guys get hours out of there lights. So far all I get are minutes.......

Thursday, October 23, 2014


It came first the last few days. Windows doors, interior exterior, patio screened in porch you name it I have been involved in it the last few days. Not all to my liking but I do get paid to like it so I guess I like it. Makes sense right! Maybe, maybe not.

Point is I still have a job and for that I am grateful. Besides, it's a whole lot easier than driving a damn truck. I have plenty of play time so that's cool. Plus I am now on what I would call my fall riding schedule. The road bike has found it's way back on a hook in the garage and the mountain bike has worked it's way back to the front of the garage.

I am on a 4 ride a week plan and I am enjoying it. Saturday, Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday. A few miles each ride and I am happy! I haven't turned on Strava in over a month and I am enjoying that. No record no track no trace! If I don't talk about it nobody even knows I rode. Every fall I kinda revert back to my old "I just want to ride" self. For fun!

I only did one race all year and a whole bunch of riding. I pushed myself hard for the sake of pushing I guess. I thought about racing a few different things but never committed. Now that fall has arrived I don't see anything that calls my name. Just riding for the hell of it!

The other night I took a friend to ride Steve's trail (aka Rocky River Trail) for his first time. His pace was about a half an hour slower than my usual pace and I honestly had a good time and felt great when I was done. No worries! Tonight will be the same......

Monday, October 20, 2014

A New Habit ????????????

Yes "A New Habit" that I don't really like! So I got my bike back Friday and had grand plans in my head for the weekend. Saturday AM came and I did a few things around the house and then out the door I went. Uhwarrie was gonna get my attention. One hour later and I was there!

I unloaded and hit the woods, I haven't been over there in several months and was looking forward to it. Uhwarrie is the closest thing to the mountains we have around here. It has quit a bit of climbing and it really is remote. Two things I was looking forward too. Plus last time I was there I walked out from about the farthest point you could get from the truck. As I pedaled by the spot that I snapped the chain last time I thought about it.

After walking out of the woods twice the other evening I was glad I wasn't walking this time. I ended up riding everything and heading to the truck. I originally planned to ride 2 laps but I knew I didn't have the energy to do it Saturday morning.  I already had a good ride in and I didn't want to ruin it by wearing myself completely out.

Then yesterday I had a small window available and I headed to Sherman. Guess what? I get to the lake loop and boom, I snap the chain! Back to walking again! That makes the 3rd walk in the last 3 rides. Granted I walked twice in one ride but that's not a good average. I am glad it didn't happen while I was at Uhwarrie the day before. That's a long walk!

I haven't walked 3 times in the last 2 years but now I have walked 3 times in 3 rides. I don't need a new "Habit"..... I need a new chain! Maybe I will get back to riding the road bike. I never have snapped a chain on that bike. Only on a mountain bike have I done that...

Friday, October 17, 2014

I Went For A Ride and Had A Nice Walk !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Twice I got to walk! First time that's ever happened. I turned my 26in bike back over to a tubeless tire set up the other day. I had to put a new tire on and for some reason I decided it would be a good ideal to go back tubeless. I guess since my Cannondale has been in the shop it seemed like a good ideal.

Anyhow I had to change a broken spoke and then changed the tire. I knew the first ride would be a "bug detector type session" Although it's been holding air just fine in the garage I knew once I hit the trail it could lose a little air the first ride or two.

Sure enough, I went to Steve's last night right after work and by the time I had done the lower river section my tire was going flat! 2 miles in and I was walking. No big deal I knew how far the truck was. BUT I ran into another rider and he wanted to help. I appreciate that for sure and all riders should do that. But I told him it's ok and he kinda insisted. He was pulling his pack off and already digging for his pump.

When I am in the mountains and a long way from the truck that's one thing. But when I am local and not to far from a good pump I would just as soon walk! Well I didn't want to be mean so I stopped and excepted his help. Guess what, his pump was a first class piece of junk! After about 980 strokes I still had hardly any pressure! I tried to play it off and said I believe I have enough air to ride out.

That's when it went to hell really quick! As I was trying to remove his pump from my valve stem it was stuck and then it pulled the core out of my valve! Just like that I had no air at all and no way to pump it up! He was like "damn it did that to me the other day", I looked at him like your "kidding right". If it wasn't working correctly why would you even give it to me to try!

Anyhow I went back to walking and went to the truck. I fixed it and took off again. This time I made it to the finish of the Valley Loop and it was low again! To low to climb the big hill out of the valley so back to walking I went. By now it's after 5 and I decided to pack it in and head to the truck.

                      Total for the day, one hour and a half of combined walking and riding! Total mileage 6......

                         I did come home and fix it so now were good............ Plus I get my 29er back today....

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Closer Than Yesterday !!!!!!!!!

Closer to having a full garage again! The phone rang and bike number 1 is fixed, now I have to go pick it up and then wait for the phone to ring again. I am still riding my old 26in bike for now, not my first choice but it damn sure beats riding nothing at all. Plus Cody's bike is fixed so I will at least have a riding partner this weekend.

I still plan to hit Cheraw again, it might be a drive but it's my car and my time! I can waste both in whatever way I feel is necessary. The place was kickin and I plan to kick around it again. The only thing they need is camping or a cheap motel close by. Preferably a cheap motel with a continental breakfast! I like free breakfast!

I plan to slip out today if the rain holds off. I think it's gone for now but we'll see. So far the rain has messed me up this week. I came to work ready to ride twice already and then things fell apart. Some days are like that, but today will be different!

Besides, I bought new tires for the 26!!!!!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

I Hate Bike Shops !!!!!!!!!!!!!

I really don't, that would be like my dream job. What I really hate is all the fancy stuff that I drool over every time I go in one! As I mentioned yesterday we hit Bike Source Saturday to drop off Cody's bike, we checked out clothes and that was about it. I didn't really look around at all the new bikes and I didn't for a reason.

Of course the old golden rule "snowball effect" or "when it rains it pours". Both of those statements can apply. We drop of his bike Saturday and then Sunday the fork fails on my Cannondale. Back to the shop again yesterday to drop it off. A different shop! I went at lunch to drop it off and of course I forget to get a few things so I went to another shop after work yesterday. Total of 3 different shops in 3 days.

I finally gave in at the last shop last night and started looking around! That's not good! I fought the urge for 2 shops and then I started looking. Damnit! The last new bike I bought was in 2010, 4 years ago. Almost 5 but not for another few months, it's my story so now I say it's been 5 years! Well truthfully I did get a new road bike a little over a year ago. If I give it enough thought I could probably say it's been almost 2 years.

But I haven't had a mountain bike in awhile! Plus the last one I got was not a top of the line bike, it was a low end. The way that breaks down is as follows: top end bike 4000 plus, middle of the road 2500, low end 1500 or less. That was when I decided to try a 29er, I didn't want to spend to much and not like it so I bought a low end bike. Most people don't understand how the price of a bike can be so high but then again they don't ride bikes like we do!

Anyhow right now with the kid in school I don't see a low end bike in the near future but damn I like to dream! I know I am only 46 and it's way to soon to talk about buying my very last high end bike but I sure would like to have one!!!! Life is short!!!

Plus I don't want to wait till I am 60 to finally buy a high end bike and then I can't even ride it to it's full potential. I know I will still be kicking ass and riding bikes at 60 but I am smart enough to know I probably won't be as fast as I am now.. Maybe if I sell a kidney or something.........

Monday, October 13, 2014

More Like That !!!!!!!!!!!

Or all like that! The weekend, it worked out to be one of the best I can remember in awhile. The reason of course was the kid decided to come out and play. As I mentioned last week he has ridden a few times lately and we had plans for Saturday. We took his bike to Bike Source to get the rear end rebuilt and then we headed to the infamous Backyard Trails!

He hung in there for the first 5-6 miles and then he started to fall off a little bit but he had fun. I know I did! We chatted and talked and over all had a great ride. We even stopped in some outdoor provisions company that was over near the bike store. We hung out there for awhile.

We even talked about doing a kayak trip together. We only have one kayak so another will need to be purchased but it can happen! Now I need to get Chase out and about with us! I know he would like the kayak trips so now I need to start watching Craigslist, somebody has got to have 2 kayaks for sale!

Overall we had a good day, it was hot and we rode. Plus hung out together, I'll take that anytime. Sunday he got up early and went and rode with one of his buddies, I of course didn't want to go so early so I stayed home, I stayed home just long enough it started to rain! That cancelled any rides close to the house so I had to rethink my ride.

After a little thought I decided to go and see what they had done down in Cheraw SC. They finally opened the trails back up and I had been looking for a reason to go that way. I just hadn't made it a priority. Now that I finally went I can't wait to go again! Someone spent a ton of time redoing the trails! They were in awesome shape!

Smooth sweet sandy single track! Plus with the rain all day the trail was firm and fast! That's the best part about the trails down south the rain just soaks right in, with sand a light steady rain is the best you could get! I now have my winter riding trail selected!

Friday, October 10, 2014

Again and Again ,,,,,,,,,

I looked at my ride chart last might and damn if all my rides here of late have all been in the woods! I haven't been on the road bike in over a week. What am I thinking! I even looked forward to driving to a trail last night. I went home and loaded up and out the door I went.

I drove to Sherman and rode a lap, a lap on the 26in full suspension no less! We are taking Cody's bike to the shop tomorrow to get all new bushings in the rear triangle and we plan to ride after we drop it off. To make that plan work he will be riding then 29er so that will put me on the 26. All that info explains why I decided to take it last night.

It was nice to have the squish under my butt, but the wheels sucked! I used to say I couldn't make the 29er roll and now I make the same claim about the 26. It just seems to take to much effort to ride the 26. I finally got used to the 29er and now I can't go back. I crossed over to the dark side!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

That Was A Little Weird ,,,,,,,

OK, I finally made a night ride last night. Nobody went along just me. I didn't really even try to find a partner, I usually like to go by myself the first time of the year. Kinda shake things down in a sense. Plus I went to Beatty Park and your never to far from the parking lot if things don't workout the first time.

Guess what! I had problems! I didn't make it a half a lap when boom the lights went out. So I turned my handlebar light down to low so I could make it back to the parking lot and then I waited. I waited for a weird experience!

Here's how my ride went. I get there and I am getting my stuff together, right beside me another guy is doing the same. I speak to him and he's seems nice. I don't ask him to ride or anything, we have never met before anyway. I just make casual conversation. Plus he's about ready to go and I am not. He takes off and I wonder if I will catch him.

I may be 46 years old but I can still crank out a pretty decent pace. It's not very often I get caught and I seem to catch a lot of people so I know where I stand in the local food chain. Believe me, I seem to ride with several people who I know when I get out of the truck I am in over my head. I just hang on and deal with it. I have been dropped before and I have blown up just trying to stay where I had no business being to begin with.

Back to my ride! The dude leaves and I get ready and head out. I catch him within in the first mile. My first thought was "hell he looked faster than that". Well now the games begin! He takes off, I figure good I have someone to ride with. I try to say hi but he never responds. We are now rolling along at a clip I know I can maintain for a couple of laps if need be. Even though he seems to not be interested in talking.

I also give thought to the fact that he might not be able to talk at this speed. He might be going so hard he can't. I soon get my answer, he pulls over and doesn't say a thing he just lets me go by. Again I try to talk to him with no response. Oh well, I am now on my own. So I think, next thing I know he's dead on my wheel! Like so close and not talking that I wonder if I made him mad.

Now I figure if he doesn't want to talk and I some how made him mad by catching him I might as well push it and see what he's got! Race is on! For a few anyway, I leave him sitting and I get on with my stroll through the woods. I get near the end of the black diamond section and damn if he ain't trying to catch up! I can see him through the woods and he's getting closer. I stand on it again and it's over.

I am way out in front of him and enjoying my ride when all of a sudden my lights go out. I lost my head lamp, I still have my handlebar light but no head lamp. It's hard to go fast when you don't have a head lamp to shine around the corners and such. I slow down and then I decide to stop and wait on the guy, that's right I need a new friend!

Well he catches me and does ask if I am alright. Of course I am and then I ask if he minds I follow him since I only have the one light. He says sure, and then proceeds to try and drop me for the next several miles! I am riding with one weak ass handlebar light and trying to look ahead through him with his light and now he decides to hammer it!

I am like what the hell! But I be damn if he's gonna drop me! So I stay on his back wheel so close if he even so much as makes a bobble I am gonna run over him! He try's to drop me but it ain't happening. We finally come out of the woods right at the one road section and then he just pulls over and stops. I stop to and say good ride and he tells me I don't need his light to go ahead. I thought he was kinda joking or something so I just chuckle and am waiting for him to go again when he turns and says.

"NO" I meant it! He then goes up the road and doesn't say a word. I am standing there in the middle of the road thinking what the hell! I was nice to him, I tried several times to talk to him. I don't know what I did wrong. I guess he just didn't want to ride with anyone! I turned and took my weak ass light and went back in the woods. Lap 2 I did all by myself, I never passed or saw anyone else......

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Things Change ,,,,,,

So my sidekick was running a little late, way late actually and for some reason I just made a right off hwy 485 and went to the house. A short nap later and the dog and I headed to the country club. Walked till dark and then came home. Day over!

                                                        "Things Change"

Enough said, try again today. I wasn't to upset I was kinda tired anyway. Hence the reason I took the nap. This time of year seems to kick my ass every year. Once we get through October and time changes I seem to snap out of it. Every year is like this. Why? I have no ideal..

It is what it is,,,,,, I hung out with the kid for awhile and called it a night. He seems to be interested in riding again and not just talking about it. We worked on his bike last night and he is out riding mine right now! Hard to believe but he called and wanted to borrow my bike. Of course I said yes.

Maybe I'll have a partner soon.........

Monday, October 6, 2014

Again and Again ,,,,,,,,,,,

Yep I rode Steve's last week on Thursday and then again on Saturday. I am loaded ready to go again today! I spent the summer on the road bike and now I am right back to my roots. I even went to Cane Creek and rode a lap yesterday. That makes 3 mountain bike rides in the last 5 days.

Now my road bike feels lonely! I have been enough times now that even Cody has noticed, he hasn't even thought about riding for about a year and now he wants me to get his bike back in shape. That makes me smile! I need a riding partner and I can't think of any better option. I told him if he would get back to riding we would start planning a few mountain trips.

DuPont and Pisgah, are calling our name! I like road trips and I like traveling and spending time with my kids. Maybe we are gonna be back in business. If he starts riding hopefully his brother will take an interest in it again too! All I can do is hope!

Anyway I hit Steve's Saturday and it was empty once again! The first full most beautiful fall day we have had yet and nobody was there. For me, it tickles the shit out of me! I hate it for Steve though, that man has put in more time than I can even imagine! He has built an awesome play ground it's just a tough trail. I guess Charlotte area riders would rather ride easy trails than the hard ones.

For me though I love going and having the whole place to myself. Maybe today will be the same.... I got all my stuff and that is my destination!

Thursday, October 2, 2014

I Remember ,,,,,,,,,

My mountain biking has been limited to my trips to the mountains this year. I have been on the road bike all year, except for 1 or 2 trips I just haven't ridden it. Last night was the first in a long time! But! I had a great time! I went and road Steve's trail, aka Rocky River Trail.

The number one hardest trail in the Charlotte area! White Water Center ain't got nothing on Steve's! For proof of that statement all you need to go do is go ride it. Lets just say I went straight from work to the trail and rode right by Sherman Branch, Sherman happens to be the most popular trail in Charlotte. The parking lot was packed! I get to Steve's and have the place to myself.

Not a soul there! People go there one time and you either love it or shake your head and go once in awhile. The hard core crowd goes there all the time but not the average rider doesn't. I got out of the car with a smile on my face, I wanted the challenge! Hour and a half later I was back at the car and done. I rode everything, all the options. You end up with right at 12 miles, that's a 7.9 average speed.

I go to Sherman and it's 12 miles and I can do it in 50 minutes. That's how much harder it is! I rode the new sections, all of it and had a ball. I will be going back, it's been way to long. The woods are calling my name.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

It Could Have Been Further ,,,,,,,,,,

But it wasn't! I talked it up yesterday and I had the plans but somehow lost the motivation! Kelly was gonna be a while and I didn't really want to wait or do anything to be honest. Not sure what changed my attitude but I guess it happens. I ended up going to the car wash and washing the mtn. bike.

Then I came home and got it ready to ride. After dinner I ended up turning on the lights and riding the 2 miles to the local store. That was my night! The only thing accomplished, a clean bike and the car loaded. Loaded for today! It might be a slow ride or I might try to kick it. I won't know till I get there.

Karen has been sick and I think I might have caught a touch of what she has, what ever it is I just haven't been myself!

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Night Ride ,,,,,,,,,,,,

Last night, no! Tonight yes! Of course it rained all day yesterday and the trails where wet, Rocky River was open but that was about it. I just couldn't get my shit together for that so I worked on the road bike. I now have it lite up like a Christmas tree!

Tonight will be my first annual fall night road ride! By myself! Kelly is out of town and I can't seem to find anyone else. Tonight I ride!! It's always a sign of fall when you have to break out the lights. I like that, plus it was nice and cool on the motorcycle coming in this morning. Yep, we are back on the bike again!

                                      As long as the weather holds the bike will roll!!!!

Monday, September 29, 2014

12 Weeks-5 Days ,,,,,,,,,,,,

Yep I checked this morning! That's how long we have till Christmas. I like to be ready and prepared, I started my shopping all ready. So far I have one gift bought and hidden! By the time everybody else starts going nuts with their shopping I will so be done!

Now for the here and now. The weekend came and I got out Saturday for a couple of hours then the same Sunday. The wife went to Kinston to see her brother and she came home yesterday afternoon. It was the kids and I all weekend so not much happened. A lot of house work and a little yard work. I knew she didn't want to come home to a disaster Sunday so I tried to stay on top of things.

Saturday I did my usual lap out toward Pageland and back, except I did it backwards. Nothing special just different, I came through Wingate while they were having a football game and that got me to thinking. I live 8 miles from the campus but I never even think of the entertainment value it could provide. We need to go to a game and check things out.

One funny thing happened while I was out, I was about 3 miles from the house when I came up to a stop sign. I just happened to look up and I saw a rider coming toward me. Where I live in Unionville you hardly ever see anyone riding, and when you do it's usually someone you know. So I waited! Well the came came up to sign across from me and never even acknowledged me!

He turned and took off. I said hi and he just looked at me and kept going! At first I just stood there and thought what a jerk! He was on one of those high end time trail bikes, the ones you are all hunched over on. I guess I was about to "ruin" his training ride. So I just shook my head and started pedaling. So as I pedaled along I could see him just up the road and he was in his "training" position.

I was just gonna let him go when I had a change of heart! He was killing it trying to go as fast as he could on the downhill and I was just cruising along. I knew I only had about 3 miles to go and who knows where he was heading. I put my head down and started riding as hard as I could! We had one climb on that road and it was coming quick. At the stop sign about a mile ahead he had two option as far as which way to go. I liked both ways!

I almost had him by the time we got to the sign and he turned left. I was hoping for that! We now had the wind to our backs and a long straight road ahead! It was on! I caught him about a half mile later, I went by at 28 miles an hour. He was probably cruising at 20! I knew he would be turning on the next road to the right so I did too. I stood up and crushed the first climb and over the second I finally let up and looked back. He was just coming over the first one at that point so I let up and went on home.

I did say hi went I went by him but I didn't say bye, I got a kick out it the whole scenario. Usually about this time of year I tend to kick back a little and try to enjoy the rides more for the time of year than just for the shear benefit of "training". Since I don't really have anything to train for anyway it's nice to slow down and see the signs of fall.

I doubt he even thought he was being rude but I took it that way. It doesn't hurt to say hi once in awhile, especially out in the middle of nowhere.........

Friday, September 26, 2014

I Guess I Needed A Break .............

I must have needed one because that's what I got! The weather has been shitty all week so no riding at all. I had plans and the weatherman kept saying tomorrow, tomorrow, but he's been wrong all week. Plus I may have talked it up but when it's time to suit up and head out of the garage. I just can't seem to make myself do it.

It's one thing to get caught in the rain or be at work and need to suit up to get home, but to suit up and head to work! That's a little harder to do. Especially when you have a perfectly good car sitting 10 feet away. This week has turned out to be a bust!

Plus I had plans to head south to ride some really sweet trails I have never been to and then that fell apart. My brother in law is sick and the wife is going to see him. How dare him! Although I do hope he gets better soon, he's had a rough week!

So life moves on..............

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

The Other 2 Wheels,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

With the arrival of the cooler weather and the first official day of fall I started riding the motorcycle this week. I like this time of year just because. If you own a motorcycle you always look forward to fall. Plus it's always an adventure! Even though I have a stereo system I tend to ride without ever turning it on. About the only time the radio gets used is when the wife rides along. I like to hear and see all the sights and sounds. The radio is a distraction, but it's nice to have when the wife is along.

Well today is only Wednesday and the adventure has started already! Keep in mind I have pretty much ridden all summer long but it's been hit or miss. If the weather has been hot I haven't ridden, if they where calling for afternoon showers I didn't ride. But with fall I kinda start my daily riding. So Monday I rolled out the bike and got ready to head out the door.

As I stood there closing the garage door the right head light burned out! Literally, it burned out as I was looking at it. What are the odds of that happening. The bike is 10 years old and has 23000 miles on it and I just happened to be looking at it when the light quit working. So I hit up the local Honda dealer on the way home, $21 bucks later and I had a new light. I changed it and was ready to roll with full lights again.

Then yesterday I rode to work and the weather was calling for cool and clear. Guess what it started raining about noon and it was really raining when I left work at 4! I had to break out the rain suit! I haven't ridden in the rain in years. Yes I have gotten caught a few times here and there but that's the first time I needed a rain suit in years. As I stood under the side building getting ready to leave work I had to chuckle.

Then as I was rolling along at 70 miles an hour on 485 I was smiling, I was snug as the old bug in a rug! I had forgotten how comfortable the suit was. I was warm and dry and it was raining, I was riding my motorcycle in the rain! I wasn't stuck in a car and I wasn't worried about my hair! The rain was coming down and people where looking at me like they felt sorry for me.

Truth is, I felt sorry for them! I was warm and dry and in my own little world. It might have been raining and I might have looked like I was getting wet and the truth is my rain suit was getting wet but I wasn't! I got home and pulled in the garage, I took off my suit and was as dry as I had been all day. The only reason I didn't ride in today (in the rain) was the fact I went ahead and re-treated my rain suit with Scotch Guard last night. It has to hang dry for at least 24 hours to get the full effects.

                                             It's gonna be a fun fall....................

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Now What ,,,,,,,,,,,,,

I need a plan! Over the last 2 months we have been to the beach for a week and then 3 different weekends. Followed by my mountain trip. Now we have nothing to do for the next few weeks. Last Friday I was kinda dreading going to the beach, I thought I wanted a break!

Now this weekend is here and I have nothing to do and now I want something to do. I just thought I wanted a break! The thought of going nowhere this weekend scares me! I might half to hit Uhwarrie, I haven't been over there in several months.

Besides it's only 45 miles away and the mountains are like 150......... Plus Uhwarrie has a lot of climbing so I might as well head east.......... I want to ride the mountain bike for some reason.......

Monday, September 22, 2014

Go Figure ,,,,,,,,,,

That was the exact words out of my mouth yesterday afternoon. We went down to the beach for the weekend and knew we needed to come back early Sunday. Just so we could get the kids and everything ready for the first of the week. It was a quick trip, nothing fancy.

It didn't really even go as planned. We had planned to enjoy a day on the beach Saturday and then get up and come home. We got down there Friday night at 9pm and hit the bed shortly after. Saturday morning we got up to an overcast and grey day with a lot of wind. The weather forecast called for the clouds to break so we got ready and headed for the beach.

After a nice stroll we returned to our spot in the sand and proceeded to wrap up in towels and try to stay warm! It was on the chilly side! I took a good nap and Karen read for awhile, after about an hour and a half we decided to call it a day and head to the pier. The pier has a bar/restaurant!

A few drinks and an early dinner, we called it a day. Back to the room fairly early and that was the day. We got up early yesterday and where home by noon. Funny thing is it was beautiful when we left! But it is what it is, we struck out this time. But at least I got to spend the weekend at the beach.

Since we got home so early I had time for a bike ride. The only problem was the wind was kicking! I mean it was really blowing! But I wanted to ride and I didn't feel like loading the mountain bike up and going anywhere so I decided to tough it out.

Now for the "Go Figure" part, I knew it was gonna be a slow ride and I just really wanted to put in a few miles. So I left the house planning to ride in the little front ring and just enjoy it for what it was. Of course I didn't make it a mile and the battery died on my computer. Usually that would have mad me made but I figured it didn't really matter since I wasn't planning to worry about my speed or time. I didn't even plan on a long ride just a lap around the Unionville area.

Well I did my lap and I did have the clock on the computer, it was working so I knew how long I had been gone. I got home and I had almost one hour. I checked my phone to see what my stats on Strava where and low and behold I had my usual 16.5 miles an hour! I did a 16 mile loop and averaged the same thing I seem to always average! I spun the whole time and never really even tried to work hard.

I never attacked any of the hills and didn't even try to kick it on the down hills. I even coasted on several of the down hills, and still had my usual pace. Lesson learned.......

                                                  "Go Figure"

Saturday, September 20, 2014


So this is a first . I am posting this from my phone...... Not to easy...

Thursday, September 18, 2014

On The Money !!!!!!!!!!!!

Without killing myself I can go out and my hourly pace will be a tad over 15 miles an hour. I get in 2 hours and I will have 33 or 34 miles. "On The Money", every time! The only problem I am running into now is the daylight. The fading! Last night it was damn near dark when I was the last 4 miles.

Granted I got a late start, I needed a break before I headed out. AKA I took a nap! So I hit the road at a little after 5, I got in 34 miles and it was about dark. I guess I need lights! To me that's a sign of fall, I like that. Every year I get a little giddy when the weather starts to cool down and you see a pumpkin or two at the store.

Yep, I saw my first pumpkin over the weekend! Halloween is right around the corner, followed by the holidays. Of course I will be just like everybody else when spring comes, ready for winter to be over. But when the seasons change it's always neat. It reminds me of growing up, I always liked fall. With school starting and football, everything in general is just cool about fall.

I look forward to the cool nights and getting to use a fire pit! Cody even came home with a trailer full of wood last might. He dropped a dead tree over at my mother in laws and split it, loaded it and brought it back to the house. We have a pile ready for the pit!

                                                                     Change is cool.....

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Looking Ahead ,,,,,,,,,,

That's what I am doing today! I didn't ride Sunday, with getting home and all the unpacking. Then Monday rolled around and I got the yard caught up. We have friends in town and that covered last night. We also have the weather that's been a mess the last few days so riding has been out! Although I am ready and willing to hit the road!

After the weekend and how strong I felt I am ready to get back out! It kinda renews your interest when you put in a good ride, you want to get back at it. Heck I am already looking into when I can get back up to the mountains for a few days. I have never been to DuPont State Forest and I want change that.

They have like a hundred miles of trails up there but a lot of them are short. In other words there are a lot of intersections, and trail names. That will make it kinda confusing the first few rides but I will figure it out. Usually after a few rides I can get around a trail system rather well. I just need a few rides.

                                            It's time to start figuring it out! I like new challenges!

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Now I Need New Mountain Friends ,,,,,,,,,,,,

Maybe I should start trolling on Craigslist, that might be a good place to find new "mountain friends". Or at least I know I will find weird people! All B-S aside I do need to make friends up in the Asheville area, preferably friends with a house and a shower. Or at least a yard to sleep in, that would work half the year.

Point is I want to do more riding in the mountains and I don't want to pay for a hotel every time I go. Plus camping can kinda be a pain. I don't mind camping but it sucks when the rain comes down. Plus as I said it's gonna get cold before long and I am not and never have been a fan of the cold.

                                           But for 22.00 dollars it's the best deal. I like deals!

Monday, September 15, 2014

Oops '''''''''''''

Sorry, that's the longest between posts I have ever gone. Even when I am on vacation I do a better job! Last week was busy here at work and I was off on Friday so before I even realized we are on a new week. My bad I will get back on track!

So to catch up, I spent the majority of my week last week getting ready for my mountain bike trip. The annual fall guys trip. Probably the last one I will make! We'll get back to that shortly though. I only got one ride in all last week and then I had to tend to the yard. Not much to talk about. Regular life stuff!

Now for the trip, the good part was all the riding I have been doing really paid off! I was strong all weekend, I got in 5 hours of riding on Friday and then about the same on Saturday. We had 2 guys who came up for the day Saturday who where really strong so I had someone to ride with all day. Friday I was on my own but still managed to get about 30 miles in.

             All the fire road climbing and straight up trails, I was killing it! That made me want to go back.

Now for the bad part! As I said this is and was our "annual" fall trip. In other words I have been before. No I am not the ring leader or the organizer, nor am I one of the originals. I have even taken my oldest son Cody along before and we had a great time. Last year I missed the trip because of inventory at work and some how the dynamics changed.

Yes things change and people change but for the most part this group has stayed pretty much the same. When I started going there where 5 of us and they were really good guys. Now It has changed. One guy doesn't ride anymore and one moved away. Some how there 2 spots got filled with 3 other guys who must not get to come out and play very often.

The mellow group that I enjoyed and even brought my son along with has changed! I wouldn't want my kid around the group that came this weekend for anything. Even the mellow guys who still came seemed to get a little noisy and rowdy. I have always gotten a separate camp site anyway just because I was the last to join the group and all the sleeping arrangements where already squared away.

This year I was REALLY glad I did. Before it's always been ride during the day and then have a few beers around the fire at night. With good conversation and fun times. This year was way to much loud music and the conversations where on the college frat house level. I disappeared about 8 Friday night and it wasn't much later than that Saturday night.

I woke up ready to ride and feeling great on Saturday morning and then had to wait on a bunch of dumb ass's who drank to much. I would have enjoyed it more if I had just taken the wife and went up for a quite weekend with a few rides thrown in. Thank goodness the other 2 guys came or I wouldn't have had anyone to ride with.

The rest of the crowd would ride for 30 minutes then stand around for 20 talking about how bad they felt. Not my style....

                    To sum things up and leave you with a laugh, take a minute to think about this.....

One guy stood around all weekend talking about how he was a vegetarian and how he quit smoking 3 years ago! He smoked 3 packs of cigarettes in 2 days and ate hamburgers and hot dogs all weekend......

                                 I bet when he got home he told the wife a different story............

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Damascus Va.,,,,, Trail Town USA ..............

As I said, I could hang out there about every weekend! Sunday I only spent about 30 minutes there and meet 2 very interesting people. I could only imagine who you would run into if you hung out for any amount of time. Everybody that walked by said hi and seemed to be in a good mood. It seemed to be a very relaxed place to be.

First person: The Appalachian Trail comes right down main street and as I stood there at the intersection of main and Hwy 58, they have a nice information kiosk there, a lady in her seventies came walking up. She had a backpack on that was damn near as tall as she was! That's right she was walking the Appalachian Trail!! At seventy two years old!

She was headed to a hostel there in town and planned to take a few days rest. We chatted for about 10 minutes and she was a delight to talk to. Of course she was retired and decided she wanted a challenge. She had been sick back in the spring and had gotten a late start this year, she knew she wouldn't be able to walk it all in one year anyway so she went ahead and started late.

She planned to hike as far as the weather would allow this year and then spend the winter at her sisters house in Maryland. Then in the spring she was gonna start again and hopefully finish next year! That's one BAS-ASS grandma!!! I hope and pray I have her motivation at 72 years old. She was A hoot to talk too..

Then as I went to head back to Abington I had a fellow biker flag me down. I had already pedaled about 4 miles back up the trail, I had seen him taking a nap on a bench on my way down so I didn't bother him then. But he was awake and had been following about an hour behind me when we meet. He wanted to know how far it was to Damascus.

He was riding a fully loaded Surly touring bike and had a heavy accent. He was from England and had been on the road for a full 5 years! He was on a full world tour, the final leg! He planned to be in Nova Scotia Canada in about 3 more months and then he was going home. Said his mom missed him and was ready to go. It had been a wonderful adventure and he loved every minute of it.

He had been in the states for 7 months came from South America. He had been through the Middle East, Southeast Asia the African Continent, New Zealand, Australia Mexico everywhere!!!! We chatted for about 30 minutes.

Again, I was envious!! That man had done more and seen more than probably anyone I have ever met! I can only imagine the memories he has.

                                                      Damascus is the bomb!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, September 8, 2014

It's A Myth !!!!!!!!!!!

I found out yesterday the Virginia Department of Tourism is kinda telling a story! My wife had something she needed to tend to yesterday (a funeral) and I tagged along. It just happened to be in Marion Virginia and that's about 27 miles north of Abington Virginia.

The start or finish of the Virginia Creeper Trail. I have heard about this trail for years and always wanted to check it out. From what I understood it's supposed to be all down hill. It ain't! Now I didn't do that much checking before I went except for finding which exit she could dump me off at and where the trail started in Abington. Turns out it starts only about a mile off the interstate so that worked out great. We stopped at a gas station at exit 17 on I81 and I pedaled from there to the start.

The plan was to pedal up to Damascus and back to Abington. I knew I would be going uphill to Damascus but I didn't plan to be going uphill halfway back to Abington. Guess what, that's what you do! I hung out in Damascus for awhile killing time and then headed back to meet the wife. While I was there I learned that the half of trail I was doing is in deed kinda of bowl shaped. If you really want to do the all down hill section you take a shuttle from Damascus up to the top and then that 17 mile section is all down hill back to Damascus.

Even though it's slightly uphill it's still not hard, you only have about a 1% grade so it's easy. I ended up with a 34 mile trail ride and a couple of town miles. It was really neat to see all the old railroad trestles and to be back in the woods. I was kinda surprised at the amount of people I passed. All shapes and sizes, people where out in full force enjoying the day.

Every trail head parking lot was pretty much full! If you have never been it's worth the trip at least once. It can be ridden on pretty much any type bike. A road bike with skinny tires would suck but any thing else will work. there are sections you are literally riding through some ones backyard or a field full of cows. They have gates that you open and close on those sections but it's really cool that so many land owners have allowed the trail to come across their property.

I doubt you could ever make that happen in the Charlotte area. People around here just wouldn't do it. It works there though. I even passed a couple of properties you could actually see in the house! They are that close to the trail. There where even a few properties for sale. That would be pretty neat to own a house with that in your backyard!

Plus when you go through the little community of Alvarado there is a store and restaurant that sells beer and wine. That was neat, you could stop and have lunch and enjoy a beer if you like. Then you have the town of Damascus, Trail Town USA. That is the nickname for it, the Appalachian Trail and the Virginia Creeper Trail plus the Trans-America bicycle route come through town. Hence the nickname!

Tomorrow I will tell ya about it!!!!! I could hang out there every weekend people watching.....

Friday, September 5, 2014

Got It !!!!!!!!

With the weather here lately I try to get a ride in when I have the opportunity. Night before last it didn't workout, last night it did. I could see a storm back toward the west and it was even sprinkling when I left work. When I got home 18 miles from here and to the east. It was sunny and no rain.

You could still see the storms the other direction but it looked safe. I figured what's the worst that could happen, I get caught in the rain. So out the door I went! I ended the evening with 37 miles and a good ride, I even found a few wet roads from rain but I never found the rain.

That was a good ride. Now I have the weekend and a few rides planned. I might even tackle the Morrow mountain ride out of Locust tomorrow. My buddy Sonny called last night and asked if I wanted to try it tomorrow. He has done it a few times and this is the last scheduled ride of the summer. I have wanted to do it for a while so I am running out of excuses. Round trip it's 55 miles so I know I can do it, I just don't want embarrass myself.

If they have 60 people show up I sure don't want to finish last! Sonny seems to think I would be fine so it looks like that will start my day. Then a recovery ride Sunday and I will be back at 170 miles a week. Right now I have 73.8 so far this week.

                                                                      I'm on a roll.......

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Hate That !!!!!!!!

Yesterday just went down as a day that just sucked! Work was a zoo all day and I skipped riding the motorcycle to work because they where calling for rain. Then it never came, I could have riden but didn't. I washed the bike and then it sat in the garage.

I came home and figured at least I will be able to ride. I then went in the house and got ready to ride. When I came out guess what it was raining! I was already suited up and ready to ride, shoes and all. So then I hit the couch and figured it would quit shortly and I would be able to ride. Almost 2 hours later I gave up and went to the bedroom to change again!

Plus I now needed a shower, I didn't ride but I still needed a shower. That sucked too, the reason was because of course I put on chamois cream! So after sitting there for 2 hours and watching it rain I had to take a shower. What a great ride!!

Oh well, Karen fixed dinner and I got in a good nap. Maybe things where meant to be, you never know. On the plus side, I have all my stuff ready for today. If the rain will hold off!

I did ride the motorcycle though, and I brought the rain suit..................

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Let's Do It Again !!!!!!!!!!!

Do what you say? Well last Friday evening the wife and I where sitting on the couch and she said: "why not go to the beach tomorrow". My reply, "why not"! So we got up at 5am and were out the door by 6am. On the beach at 9 and there we stayed the rest of the day.

About 6 we headed to a public parking area, one with a shower and got cleaned up. 7pm we where on the road and heading home, 10pm we arrived and that was the day. I can't even remember the last time we did a day beach trip but we will be doing it again! We had a ball, I don't mind driving back and forth in the same day. We had lunch and dinner and spent the day playing in the sand.

Then I spent the rest of the weekend riding my bike and that was about it. Now we are heading for the holidays! Yep I said it! It won't be long before Thanksgiving is here..........

Friday, August 29, 2014

That Was Fun !!!!!!!!!!!

As you know, I have talked about it all summer. I just haven't had the urge to ride my mountain bike since early May. More like I haven't had the urge to drive anywhere to ride my mountain bike. I have just gone out the end of the driveway and done the road bike thing for the last several months.

Well last night I came home from work and just felt like loading up! I got out the bike and loaded up the Blazer and headed to one of the better local trails. Sherman Branch was calling my name! I guess I just needed a break cause I swear I literally was laughing out loud!

It took me the better part of half a lap, about 5 miles of bouncing off of trees and running of the trail before I found my groove again! It was funny and sad all at once. BUT... Once I found my groove again and got my head in the game, I was focused and rolling! Mister momentum is the best riding buddy you could ever want.

All I needed was a few miles and a few smiles to make my evening. Four months of road riding and nothing to do with the mountain bike went right out the window. I found the enjoyment of being in the woods again. Now I want to ride all those local trails that I know ever hump bump and root or rock on. I think I have been away long enough now to miss all of them!

Don't worry the road bike is not gonna be parked, I have a ride planned for Sunday. But I also have plans to ride with a few friends Monday morning in the woods. I started lining that up on the way home last night. I came home with a smile on my face, maybe driving to ride isn't such a big deal after all. A break was just what I needed!!!

                                                        I swear I love bicycles...........

Or maybe I just love the freedom and places a bike will take you. Plus I rode the motorcycle back and forth to work all week. Overall I guess I had a good week. I had the wind in my face every where I went all week! The motorcycle may be "motorized" but it still only has 2 wheels.....

                                     Have a good holiday and see ya on Tuesday........

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Lazy Night ,,,,,,,,,

Last night was a "Lazy Night". I came home from work and helped the wife fix dinner, from there it was the couch and a short nap. Dinner was served and then I made my way to the garage. I did a little cleaning and then I decided I needed to at least go to the country club for a walk.

I loaded up the dog and off we went. Then we stayed till it was way dark, the club house was empty and we were the only ones left. That was a nice evening. I came home and took a shower and hit the bed. Tonight I will ride.......