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Jen and I shelled ourselves in the 1st Fat Tire 40 in the Butte.  The course was muddy, poopy, fast, tacky, brutal, swoopy, rocky, covered in wild flowers and the weather was perfect.  I ended up 4th in the SS class finishing just under 4:30.  The original goal was to finish under 5.  I was quite undergeared, but I think my legs will thank me for it later.

Jen was the 4th woman finishing in just over 5 hours.  She had some stomach issues vomiting before the race and twice during.  She wasn’t too stoked on that, but had a good time since there was something like 30 miles of singletrack.

The finish area is on the edge of town.  I took the pic from the back of the camper where I’m picking up 3 unsecured wireless links.  There are 7 more that are secured.  Even so, I can’t get pics to upload to wordpress.

The 24 hour townie race is happening in the same location with the lap rolling through our area.  There are lots of hotties on townies, clownies on townies, and very strange bikes.

Doug Bradbury was out on the trails today at a critical junction keeping tabs and giving directions.  He’s the guy who invented the Manitou fork.  It’s always inspiring to see guys like that helping out with racing.  He had to cross the canal which was knee deep to get to his course marshall position.  The guy is a legend and he’s out there being a course marshall.  That rocks!

Anyway….We are enjoying the cool weather and the Fat Tire Festival. 

Oh…can I get a high five for Michael Jackson’s death?  That creepy weirdo won’t ever molest another kid again.  For some strange reason a few of his songs popped into my head during the race today – usually with tweaked lyrics.

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Jen and I are slowly becoming acclimatized to the thin air up here in the Butte.  Jen won the SS race at Wildflower and I got my butt kicked with a 5th place finish.

I’m hoping the 40 miler goes a bit better this Saturday.

Stay tuned.

This year’s summer vacation is off to a great start.  With a severe lack of creativity, we’re dubbing this one “Summer of Fun 5”.  We’ve yet to come up with a subtitle like…Singletrack Siestas  or whatever.  I guess I could come up with some Lampoon style subtitle, but then it might not make any sense whatsoever.

We started out by stopping at Mt. Baldy in Socorro, NM.  We’ve always wanted to ride the South Baldy Trail, but we always were on pinner tires after suffering up the hillclimb.  The climb up was much more pleasant than when being raced.  The descent was quite fun, very off-camber, and rocky. 

Jen coming down south baldy

Our next stop was in Santa Fe where we camped at the Black Canyon Campground.  It’s super close to good trails and we followed some random gps tracks I downloaded from motionbased.  We ended up doing some great climbing and descending.

Day 3 took us to the Monarch Pass area where we paid to stay in a super lame campground off of the Colorado Trail.  We rode the CT over to the highway where Jen and I parted and I continued up toward the Continental Divide.  After climbing for an hour, I ran into some spitting rain/snow and decided to turn it back to camp. 

 Shivano

We then spent 3 nights at Hartman Rocks.  We rode the Growler course both directions during our 4 days of riding there.  I also on-sighted Free Fall!  I really wish I had helmet cammed that one for the guys in El Paso.  We need to build trail like that.  Hartman Rocks has plenty of great trails and the camping is fantastic as you can see from our camp spot.  We showed up on a weekend and no one was camped anywhere nearby. 

 camp at hartmans

luna and dave at hartmans

The weather is improving now so we headed up to the high country.  This is our 3rd time in Crested Butte.  Two nights up Brush Creek with rides on Strand Hill and Teocali Ridge should have us prepped for this weekend’s Mtn. States Cup.  Jen and I are both racing SS.  Hopefully it will be worth the $50 entry fee, but I doubt it.  We both need the intensity and with our lack of motivation for “training”, it should pay off.

 jen on strand bonus

Our ride up Teocali was slow.  We saw some elk, a huge sage grouse, and after Jen decided to turn back when she saw piles of snow in the woods, I ran up on this porcupine.  He was almost completely yellow with his quills out.

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We’re spending tonight in an RV park about a mile from Gunnison so we can do laundry, clean bikes, use lots of hot water in the shower, and do the internet thing.

 Luna is doing really well and she’s better than she was the weeks before her surgery.  She carried an eight foot long pole/log/stick about ¾ a mile up from Brush Creek all the way back to our camp.  She’s regaining strength quickly and our consistency with glucosamine and fish oil has reduced her rice crispy joints to an occasional click.  We’re hoping that her patchwork fur fills back in before we get home.

I’m digging the Chris King BB.  I’ve dunked the bike more than a couple of times this week in some deep creek crossings.  I’ve seen my share of mud as well.  No creaks yet and I was getting creaks from the Exo BB’s with ceramic upgrades within a few days in dry conditions.  Wish I’d just held out for another year before I spent all that money on the bearing removal kit and the the ceramic bearings.

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Hopefully I will be able to update this in another week or so.  I opted out on the skycard for the computer which is probably a good thing because there have been several camps without cell service.

enjoying brush creek