Sunday, January 27, 2008

Re-Runs From Last Year

Originally written on March 18,2007

Today I decided to take advantage of some glorious March weather. I laced up my hiking boots, grabbed my GPS and camera, and drove up to the Hogbacks area just north of Elba. When all was said and done, I had hiked for 6 miles.

A nice small lake within the Hogbacks area.

Looking back along the trail.

A view from the top of a ridge.

It's much steeper than it looks... basically a root staircase.

Between the trees or over the roots... you decide.

Fall line runs seem to be the norm here.

The end of the line, unless you have a horse or waders.

Another fall line run. Once again, it's steeper than it looks.

A river runs through it.

Through the open and flat.

The trail next to the lake.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Fun in the Cold

Trainers and rollers are excellent off-season training tools, so don't get me wrong here. They have one major flaw though, and that is boredom. Sitting in the basement spinning away like a hamster on a wheel. TV with the right video helps immensely, but there is still no substitute for the real thing.

Saturday, I chose to brave the chilly temperatures and met Steve out at Island Lake for a few miles. Steve is one of the regulars on the board. We decided to start with a lap of the Blue loop (approx. 10 miles), and make the call on the ~5.5 mile Yellow loop afterwards.

Here we are about a third of the way through the Blue loop. Steve's on the right, I'm on the left.

We did the blue loop, were feeling good, and decided to give the yellow loop a go. Trail conditions were excellent for the season: snow was good and grippy, there were only a few small icy spots, and only one tree down (about 2 miles or so into the blue loop). The wind was only a factor in one spot, the open area by the swimming hole.

Here's your's truly at a crossing on the yellow loop.

I'm the drab green spot in the middle of the photo. Note the runner up ahead. We weren't the only crazy ones out today.

We completed the yellow loop, and decided that we had time (and energy) to do another go-round of the blue loop. When we rolled back into the parking lot, I had about 23 1/3 miles showing on the computer.

Here's a photo of Steve's dash after the ride. Note the temperature of 13deg F.

Friday, January 11, 2008

The Fun Stuff

May 17: Zoo-De-Mack
This will mark the 3rd year that Brandy and I did this ride. It has proven to be a fun time the past two. Picture arriving at Boyne Highlands on Friday, drinking, waking up on Saturday morning, riding, break for lunch and drink beer (or a massage in Brandy's case), ride some more, ferry across to Mackinac Island, drink more. Fun times

June 21-27: Pedal Across Lower Michigan
A 6 day bicycle tour across the state. Brandy and I did this 2 years ago, but missed last year's ride because we mailed in the application a "wee bit" too late. May 1st or 700 riders... last year they hit 700 riders by the end of February. We won't make the same mistake again.

Sometime in Late September-ish: High Country Pathway Fun 50
Click back in the archives a bit... 'nuff said!

Also on a date yet to be determined, I'm contemplating a trip either to the North Country Trail, Copper Harbor/MTU Trails, Mohican, or even as far as Pisgah NC.

2008 Tentative Race Schedule

Apr 13: Pontiac Lake TT
April 20: Yankee Springs TT
Apr 27: Bloomer Park XC
May 4: Fort Custer Stampede XC
Jun 7-8: Brighton Stage Race
Jun 14: Lumberjack 100
Jun 28: Stony Creek Marathon XC
Jul 20: Ruby Campground XC
Jul 27: Stony Creek TT
Aug 3: Big M Cross Country XC
Aug 24: Pontiac Lake XC
Sep 7: Stoney Creek XC
Sep 21: Addison Oaks XC
Sep 28: Pando XC
Nov 8: Iceman Cometh

My key races will be the Brighton Stage Race, Lumberjack, Stony Creek XC, and Iceman.