I brought my bike to work with me yesterday, and the plan was to ride when they cut me loose. When I walked outside to the parking lot though, I saw this:
I thought that I heard it might rain, but I wasn’t sure. With no drops falling from the sky, I hopped in my truck and made the short drive down to Backyard Trail and prepared to ride anyway. The sky never did open up, so I rolled out and prepared for some of
Charlotte’s most technical of trails. As soon as I crossed the street and hit the
dirt, something felt “off.”
Kinda like I hadn’t been on a bike in a long time.
I’ve been riding every day, but this was the first time I’ve been to BYT in a while. It doesn’t start out technical at first, but I was having trouble maintain my balance even on little uphill switchbacks. I woud find out later that this was a sign of things to come.
Rather than quit, I pushed on thinking that I would snap outta my funk and everyting would be okay. Besides, I was looking forward to one my favorite sections out there: the Poo Tracks.
Come on, say it with me now.
I’ve never had an issue there before, not even the very first time I rode it. Last night though, I was all over the place. I nearly fell of into the poo-laden dirt several times, and I swear a couple of trees even jumped out at me. It was one of those rides where I didn’t feel quite right, but at least I was out on my bike. That was enough to keep me going.
I was climbing just fine, and I had plenty of power in my legs. My balance though, was suspect. When I hit jumps, roots, and rocks, I was unstable. Reckless, if you will. Something was off and I couldn’t figure out what it was. When I got to the road crossing, I stopped for a minute to asses the situation.
With a quick check of the bike I determined that my rear tire pressure was way too low. I run pretty high pressure back there due to my weight, so I figured that was the problem (the tire pressure, not my weight.) I grabbed my Co2 from the Awesome Strap mounted to my bike and added a shitload of air. I was ready to roll again.
I immediately felt like I had more control, but as I hit a small rock drop I heard something make a loud noise. I stopped real quick to see what it was when I noticed this:
Shit. That was entirely operator error, because I forgot to secure my strap before I rode off. As a matter of fact, you can see it in the photo up above (where I stopped at the sign.) Since I rolled a pretty good distance after it came loose, I had to play “find all my shit on the trail.”
The tube was easily spotted.
I had to do a little digging to find the Co2 though, but eventually I did.
I never did find my tire levers, but that’s not a big deal. I have a couple of sets of Maxxis levers I can use. Don't worry though, because the Awesome Strap will not disappoint as long as you make sure it is installed correctly. I didn't, and I paid for it. Dumbass.
Back in the saddle again, I kept thinking that something else would go wrong. It didn’t, and the ride turned out to be pretty rad. Sure, it started out shitty, but in the end things just end up working out somehow.
Besides, a bad ride is better than no ride at all.
See y’all Monday.