Friday, September 12, 2008


Rattling Creek Single Trackers hold the annual Bash north of Harrisburg in the Weiser State Park. This year four of us made the trip from Pittsburgh to the Bash. Mark who used to live in the area told us this was a must-do kind of weekend. I'd have to say after surviving the weekend, that he was right on.

Arrived Friday afternoon, just in time for the rain. Set up tents and canopys with Mark's friends from the area (our future trail guides). Not much to do but sit around talk about the next day's riding. One of the locals suggested that Saturday morning we might want to shuttle to the top of the ridge, while they rode their bikes up. Macho can cause so much trouble. We assured him we would be okay pedalling up, even though he warned us that in Pittsburgh we have hills, and they have mountains. Oh, how we should have listened.

It rained most of Friday night, but that didn't affect the Chili cook off. Dave, from our group, brought up some great chili to compete with (oops, forgot to vote for his). After gourging on chili and mingling with the other riders (maybe 60-80 people) we tried to get some sleep. Like at the 24 hour races, it's not an easy thing to achieve.

Woke up early Saturday morning, got some breakfast, and readied our bikes and gear. We were lucky to only have a group of seven so that we wouldn't be held up much. Of course later that day I cursed my self for not joining in with a group of 20.

We pedaled up the hill, errrrr, mountain. About 2.2 miles up some double track to get to the ridgeline trails. Halfway up I realized the sound advice of shuttling to the top. I was able to pedal to the top, but my legs were shaking from lactic acid overdose. Luckily the locals let us rest a whole two minutes before taking off to the rocky trail (forget the real name of it). Very cool rocks to ride, had they not been slick from the rain.

Finished that section of trail, and really considered going back to the campsite and calling it a day. Luckily, one of the leaders had deraiuller trouble which allowed us visitors to get our legs back a bit.

Headed down the ridges on some awesome single track. The trails were unbelievable, so different from home. We rode on uninterrupted single track for miles and miles, very rocky, but rideable. Every rock section seemed to have a line through them, and my 29er dos niner just rolled right through them. And because we were riding on the ridges, the uphills were never that bad - for me.

Dave hit the wall a couple of hours in. It was really hot and humid, he hadn't gotten enough water in him, and alcohol dehydrates you. The bad news, no quick way back to the campsite. The way it was explained to us, if we were in a volcano, we are at the bottom. No matter what way we go, we have to go up and over the top of the mountain.

We limped our way back to the double track that we had initially climbed. Let me say it was way more fun riding down the mountain. I was probably going way too fast, but it was a blast!

More to come...

No comments:

Post a Comment