Sunday, December 16, 2007

Outside Ride

I mentioned in a previous post that I hadn't really spent any time riding in the snow before and my first experience with it was at last week's Kisscross race. It's weird that I've actually had one mountain bike or another for eight or nine years or so, but there's so much about the experience I was missing before now. Chris and I decided to go out and ride at Rose Lake yesterday and I was so glad we did. I had a blast. I don't have much cold weather gear, as I've mentioned before, but I improvised and it actually turned out okay. The only thing I really missed was a pair of winter tights. Just about all of me was pretty warm, but my legs were freezing in my thin tights.

I ended up using a handwarmers and footwarmers to help supplement my flimsy mountain bike gloves and mountain bike shoes and it surprisingly worked very well. I was afraid the handwarmers would be worthless since my fingers would be colder than the rest of my hands. I told Chris before we started riding that I wished they made tiny little finger warmers that you could put in each finger of your glove. However, it turned out my concern was unwarranted as the heat spread to my entire hand fairly quickly and by the end of the ride my hands were actually hot. My only wardrobe malfunction involved having to stop fairly soon in the ride because one of the foot warmers had shifted and became wedged between my toes and the front of my shoe and was actually hurting my toes. I stopped, took my shoe off and rearranged it and it was fine for the rest of the ride.

We were a little nervous when we got in the parking lot of the trailhead because the lot was one big sheet of ice with a dusting of snow on top and was extremely slippery. It also looked like there was a lot more snow on the trail than what we had at home. (Around our house there was still lots of grass poking through and very little snow accumulated on the ground.)

The snow was actually a lot of fun to ride in, though. There were a couple of icy spots, but most of the trail was a layer of crusty snow. I was fairly easy going with the bonus of the tires making a satisfying crunching noise as they broke through the crust. We only stayed out for about a half hour but we had a great time and it beat riding the trainer any day.

I felt really positive about the ride. I have to try and remain that way instead of thinking about all the time I've wasted with a perfectly good mountain bike not doing anything fun with it. If I let myself think like that all the time I'd be really depressed, so I'm trying just to think about the whole new world I've opened up for myself and all the new experiences that are in front of me.

We are supposed to be doing a team ride (more on the team in a later post) later today and I'm really excited about that because I had so much fun yesterday and because the trail we're supposed to ride is one I've never been to before. I'm hoping those plans aren't going to be thwarted, though, because we got dumped on with snow last night and more is coming our way today. I'm going to be really bummed if I end up having to get back on the trainer again before Monday.

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