Once a cyclist accepts that they, along with their bike, will be covered head to toe, stem to stern in mud, if we’re in the proper frame of mind, the mess ceases to matter and getting gnarly becomes a game.
Add to that proper frame of mind several friends and it can get downright sloppy in a hurry.
Add to that, the fact that all of the cyclists in attendance are roadies mountain bikes on muddy roads, and it becomes comical.
The weather, other than the ridiculous amount of water on the roads, was perfect. I wore an ultra-thin pair of tights just to keep the mud off my legs. Upper body was just a thin tech base layer and a lightweight long-sleeved jersey. No foot covers needed. It was almost sixty and overcast when we left.
Saturday the roads were a little wet. Not bad but not all that good either. Yesterday was all mud all of the time… and Adam and Diane were on their mountain bike tandem. Funny thing about tandems… 1-2/3 the weight of a normal bike, the wind resistance of one bike, and two sets of legs.
Adam and Diane absolutely hammered us into the substantial wind. So, being roadies, what do we do when we’ve got a superior wheel that we’re struggling to hang with?
We draft. Drafting on wet paved roads sucks. Drafting on wet dirt roads is comical.
All we have to do is make sure we don’t take the spray in the chain and drivetrain…
So we stacked up behind Diane and Adam and got dirty. And we laughed.
It is said that the average person eats, accidentally, 1 pound of dirt in their lifetime. Give or take. A muddy ride on a dirt road will feel like you ate half of that in ten miles. We went 27.
Truthfully, once I made peace with the fact that it would take an extra ten minutes to clean my bike, my usual cycling smile returned to my face. And my dirt consumption doubled. Year over year, I’d have to estimate after yesterday that my dirt consumption is up around 482% because the nastier I got, the bigger my smile got.
This is what I’m dealing with today:
Coming up tomorrow, how to clean a seriously pooched mountain bike.
I ended up the week with an exceptional (at least for me and in December) 153 miles. While many of those miles occurred on the trainer, more than half were on the road and for the middle of December, that’s simply awesome. Alas, this too shall pass. Next week we’re looking at a serious cool down and a return to normal temperatures. Sure was fun while it lasted though.