Monday, February 21, 2011

Snake Creek Gap time trial #2

Snake Gap Creek time trial – race 2, Feb. 5, 2011
First race of the season, and I hurt. It’s been a long comfortatble winter……on the sofa. “On the sofa” can be used like “between the sheets” in fortune cookie lingo but it’s not a good phrase to describe your fitness.
This race made me feel as if I were “just off the sofa”. At least I’m headed in the right direction.
Snake Gap Creek is run on the PInhoti trail in Northwest Georgia. Being from GA I’ve ridden most of the trails, but not the Pinhoti. It opened up after I fled for WNC (Western North Carolina) in 2004.
The route was a 34 mile point to point race with about 4,000 feet of climbing, per some unknown rider on the bus who seemed to know what he was talking about with exception of the rocky section of trail near races end.
As a self designated “seasoned racer” I leave my mind open to all trail suggestions, hints, pointers, etc. however, I put those pointers in the back of my head until I get to the spot referenced then I make my own call on the particular spot. This occasion was no exception. On the bus ride to the start I heard so many descriptions of near death experiences on this “rocky section”. Also, it covers the last 6 or so miles of the course. I arrived at the rocky section and was thankful for my Pisgah home. Much gratitude went out to countess efforts on Pilot Rock Trail, Laurel Mountain Trail., Squirrel Gap and Farlow Gap Trail. The rocks were tricky but didn’t hold a candle to the Pisgah trails mentioned above. These trails prepared me well for this North Ga. Adventure.
I was uncertain how my legs would react to 34 miles of North Georgia trail. I’d only been on the mountain bike one time this year and that was a brief jaunt at Dupont State Forest. Thank heavens for the Tuesday/Thursday training classes at Sycamore in Hendersonville.
The race went well although it felt like I was towing my sofa. I guess in a way I was. It was just a smaller 15 pound version attached to my belly.
Hopefully I’ll make it to the March race, ten pounds lighter and with race ready legs.
The Pinhoti is a lot like 34 miles of Laurel Mountain Trail in Dupont State Forest. It was muddy and soggy on the day I raced but if it’s dry…hold on! The long drive is worth the effort and the race promoters do an excellent job.