Why Die Wondering ? Why ? WDW got me to New Zealand, it helped me join the Marines, it is helping me get stronger and faster on my PFT. It helps me do a lot of things, becuase all I do is ask myself, Why Wonder ? Why Die Wondering.
hence the name.
So anyways, W D W 2006 got off with a bang today. what was supposed to be a 28 km(17 mi) exploration turned into a 37 km (23 mi) exploration (i am pretty sure i know what screwed my estimate). what follows is a short synopsis of that five hour (07:40 - 12:30) journey into the heavenly pleasure of mountain biking.
I actually got to my start location at around 07:15, which was perfect because it allowed me to stage my gear and set everything up, so as the sun was peaking over the horizon, I was all geared up and reayd to go. the way that this worked out, the path I was taking was one way in, that same path out. so it wasnt any sort of loop. so what was downhill on the way out was uphill on the way in, and vice versa. so, the very first part was mostly downhill for the first 5 or 6 miles.
yes i understood what that would mean on the return trip. when i was dead tired. and the sun was high in the sky.
that brings up another point that my thumbs got really numb on the start. I had to take the gloves off for a bit and slap my hands around to get feeling back, but was eventually able to put the gloves back on it never happened again. am thinking that my hands are to big and just had to get used to, and stretch out the fabric... ???
I turned off Kings Valley Road to TR60. TR60 is like a 4wwd jeep trail. about a mile into it, i keep noticing that there is mud and water on my rear tire and on my feet. "Thats weird, I havent rode through any water." A little further on and it hits me ... "Oh SHIT !!!" I jump off and inspect my water stores and sure enough one of them had split open. so there goes 2 liters of water into the dirt. luckily I had two independent stores, so i was still good to continue on. Dont know why the first one split open. they were both brand new 2 liter bottles. only difference is that the one that split had been opened, so i suppose that that had something to do with it.
After a while i came to trail marker 53, this signaled the entrance to McPherson Wash. One of those obvious things that I should have realized but didnt is that in a wash, where water runs out, there tends to be a lot of sand. and biking in sand sucks, esp when you are going uphill. going nowhere fast. so i fight on for about an hour ??? dont really know, time kinda stood still. but i start recognizing terrain features from my map and realize, hold up, i'm here. I wanted to go further, I had plenty of time, but when i went to refill my camelback i realized that i had used half of my remaining water and that kinda forced me to turn around.
so i stop for a sec, take some pictures, then WEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!! all that work fighting up hill soon turns into me blasting back down the trail. All the caution and timidness that was apparent on the inbound journey suddenly disappeard and i just flew. It was here that I realized that a very large part of the inbound had been uphill, some not that steep, but uphill nonetheless, cause i just flew back down it. it was a thing of beauty.
But no matter how fast i went. sand can still stop you damn quickly. lol....
when i got back to King Valley Road (the start road), it was a challenge climbing those damn hills to get back to my car but...damn that was fun...
the gloves were definitely helpful. i took more than a few spills, some from carelessness, some from inexpirence. but by the end when i did fall i was either able to catch myself of just jump clear one way or another and land on my feet. on the way back, my gear came off and i had to fix it. dunno what happened there...oh yeah, that unplanned collision with the ground knocked it free. That took a few tries to get it locked back on, but i got it tied down. All in all a very good day.
normally, i get sore the day after a hard pt. My legs are sore NOW.... Can't wait to do it all over again next week :)