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TSE - Day 3

TSE Day 3 – Gravel, gravel, gravel.

We rode a lot of gravel if you didn’t infer that by the title of today’s review. Our plan was to start slow and maintain a good pace then go faster if we could. Again, I was the weak link, but not as bad as yesterday. The heat is beating me down. I poured every third bottle of water on my head and neck to try and keep my temperature down. It helped a bunch. Bla.

What we saw today came straight out of an issue of National Geographic. Green everywhere. Solitude in the forest is what we witnessed as we climbed for a total of 5300’ in 49 miles. It was hard to imagine how some of the climbs kept going. We’d round a turn and think we were at the top but the next turn revealed more up. It seemed to never stop. Most of the climbs were along mountain streams. We also had quite a bit of shade (thank God). Some of the streams were misting upwards towards the road bed and you would occasionally get a cool treat from the water. The route took us through Coburn, PA…

Trans Sylvania Epic - Day 2

TSE Day 2 - Welcome to PA’s finest.

Today hurt. 43 miles, aw shucks - that’s not so far! Well heck, I can ride that far at the drop of a hat... but not on rocky Pennsylvania single track. For those familiar with the rock garden near bottom of Pilot Rock Trail, Pisgah National Forest N.C., – take that and spread it out on 15-20 miles of single track. The rocks weren’t as big and loose as on Pilot, but they seemed constant. Most all of the trail was rideable but throw in the 90 degree heat, steep gravel climbs and 15 extra pounds around the midsection and you have a prime candidate for the sag wagon. Oh yeah, I’m teamed up with Cynthia T. Fowler. I didn’t realize that the “T” stands for tenacious and there was no pity party for me on the trail today. I wanted to stop several times but I was provoked by a cheerful voice that kept reminding me of earlier days, when I was actually in shape and actually prepared for a ride like this. She never let me stop. I am thankful for that. I went thr…

Trans-Sylvania Mountain Bike Epic -day 1.

Pre prologue. Tired. Heavy legs. Nervous. Why? Don’t know. What you scared of? Don’t know. Actually not much unless I’m nervous. Belly full of nerves. Here for fun. This isn’t fun. This is nerve racking. Soaking up all my energy. Instead of into the pedals it’s into my head. Want to be here until I’m here. Then it’s easy to be somewhere else in my mind, but not physically. I need to be here now. Physically. Mentally. Emotionally. For me. For Cissy. It’s dangerous not to be here. I’ve checked out. Gotta check back in by 2:30, when the race starts. Then we have 1:30 minutes before Cissy and I start our prologue. I’m racing against nobody but my head. Basket case. I’ve raced 100’s of times. Nothing on the line. This is supposed to be relaxed and easy. I’m so nervous I almost wish I was working. Gotta break through this nervous energy before it consumes all my good calories and mental energy for the prologue. This is what we do. Why? I guess it’s what we know. I’ve raced in this area twic…