Spending a much needed break from work here in the mountains of North Carolina. It has been two years since I last visited North Carolina. Last time
the weather was not as condusive for hiking and bicycling. This year it is (no snow, 40-50s during the day).
I did bring my bike with me. How could I not when I am minutes from Pisgah National Forest?
It has been a very relaxing couple of days spending time with my parents and siblings that I don't get to see that often. I have been resting, reading books and hiking with the dog. My phone doesn't even work well here so it has been nice to get away. For some reason I felt like writing today so I'm borrowing my father's teathering from his phone. Probably the last time I do this while down here.
Sunrise from the Blue Ridge Parkway.
Yesterday I met up with Dicky
and Zach (who for some reason I kept calling Josh. I blame it on Dicky's lack of proper introductions) for a ride at Wilson's Creek. The same Wilson's Creek where Dicky enlarged his ankle
I think we rode somewhere in the neighborhood of 4 to 5 hours give or take. Longest ride I have done since the beginning of the summer. I knew I was in for a treat since I haven't been riding much the past few weeks/months but no matter how I would feel I told myself this is a much needed ride. Especially since I opted to not touch my gearing and ride what I ride at home in CT (51.9 gear inches).
We started with a long slog up the road for a few miles and probably well over 1,000 vertical feet. Any numbers I throw out will be wild guestimates as none of us had any devices to record such data. Not even Dicky's new oh-so-smart-phone
(which is quite humorous watching him try to navigate through it).
We were rewarded with some very long descents that were a blast to ride. The cool thing about this area of Pisgah is most of the climbing we can ride on our singlespeeds. We'd then go up another climb. We repeated this process 4 or 5 times (give or take, I wasn't really counting).
The weather was great. It started just above 30F and climbed to the upper 40s / lower 50s during the day. Perfect for some wool jerseys.
At one point we crossed a raging river where we had to jump from rock to rock.
Later on we had to forge another river in knee-deep cold water.
It was cold for the first two steps but then it was not that bad. The remainder of the ride was tolerable too. I was surprised as my feet get cold easily but I was comfortable.
The last descent was just as awesome as the first. A giant ridge line with tight singletrack and rolled into some benchcut that meandered around the mountainside.
After about three hours or so, I started feeling the effects of not staying hydrated and not riding much the past few months. The last two climbs were tough on me but despite my slower pace than anticipated I did manageto keep going and finish the ride as planned.