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Daily Archives: November 23, 2020

I like to ride stupid at least once a year. That was yesterday.

I wanted to ride my mountain bike so bad I could feel the grips in my hands before I rolled out of bed. It’s a rare day I’m hankering for that bike, so I wanted with everything I had for the forecast to be wrong.

Rain rolling in at 7am, possibly snow… and the temp was 2° above freezing (1 C). At 7:30 it started snowing, lightly though. Just flurries. A few calls between friends and we prepped to roll out, hoping it would stay flurries. We were on the damp road at 8:30, but the dirt wasn’t that bad at all. And I was in all my glory.

My wife had to ride her mountain bike because I messed her gravel bike up trying to fix a bent chainring (it came like that, very long story). I’d had it pretty close but had to get it perfect… alas I went too far and now the pros will have to fix it. Point is, there was no way I was going to ride my gravel bike while my wife had to ride her mountain bike, anyway. At 8 miles my wife said, “You guys are freaking nuts. I’m taking my toy and going home.”

She wasn’t wrong. It was nasty.

A little on the slow side, but fun.

As we rode on the snow intensified and it seemed like all of a sudden the roads went from “not too bad” to straight up “baby $#!+”. We had snow caked on us from head to toe – actually, that says a lot about our gear when you think about it – if snow can stick to the outside of your clothing, there isn’t much heat escaping. With just over a mile left Chuck made a joke about Mike looking like he had an “ass-splosion”. I chimed in with a crack about being on the wrong end of a bean burrito. We were a mess and our bikes were absolutely smoked and grinding all sorts of grit. We were a sight.

I’d pushed it as hard as I could after my wife turned off early and turned that 10.8 average into 12 by the time we rolled onto my paved road. I was soaked to the bone, but from the inside. Now I remember why we bought those gravel bikes in the first place. That bike is work.

I didn’t even bother going inside. I took my bike straight back to the hose and rinsed it down before taking it inside to dry if off and clean and lube everything. I had to strip off my outer layer before my wife would let me in the front door. Her top layer lay in a heap on the floor, puddles formed under the tires on the wood floor.

We had a lazy day, watching it snow, and life was good. Every once in a while I like to ride stupid. Too often would get old, especially with the maintenance. Once or twice a year, though, makes me feel young and dumb again. That’s definitely a good thing.