The last time several of us met up for a big ol’ mountain bike group ride it didn’t go so well. There were flats, wrecks, and a few of us got lost. Yesterday we had one that was just the opposite, everything went right.
We had ten riders and trail conditions that stellar despite the recent heavy rains. Everyone on the ride was a strong rider and for the most part I was the only bonehead that went off the front. Everyone stayed together and it was a real gentleman’s ride. Not to say the pace wasn’t good; we averaged around 7 miles per hour.
One of the riders present was a special guest from Kentucky, Glenn, who is probably the most impressive rider I’ve ever seen. I’ve seen riders that can kill it climbing, and I’ve seen guys on big bikes that can annihilate the downhill, but Glenn can do it all. He rides a Niner RIP, and his handlebars look like the command center for a airplane with lots of switches and buttons, “Give me technology, if they had a 50 speed bike I’d be riding it,” he said.
One long rocky and super steep trail was only climbed by Glenn while everyone else walked up. The few times I followed him he would allow a big gap to open then on a downhill section go incredibly fast and smooth through some corners that had me with locked wheels sliding and unable to keep up. He would ride crazy lines for fun, bunny hop big trees and ride off big rocks. This was probably the one ride of the year I should have brought my GoPro.
There was fantastic fun to be had other then watching Glenn ride, like when I went over the bars in a creek and got completely soaked. Perhaps some of the most fun was riding near the two Seans who would lay down a hilarious commentary track about everything going on. I suppose I should mention just for the remarkable nature of his travels, one rider that was with us had just completed a run in Hamburg Germany a couple of days ago.
It goes without saying the ride was lead expertly by the Gate Keeper of the East, Eli. He kept an excellent temp pace that was fast enough to keep everyone together but not so fast that no one got left behind. Not to mention that Sergeant Ellis kept the breaks short with 5 second countdowns to launch.
It also goes without saying that the Shawnee is beautiful right now, kind of like summer without the ticks, poison ivy and oppressive heat. Now is the time to get out there yet we didn’t encounter a single other person.