Two days and 5 hours of time spent outside on my Pugsley. I keep saying every winter it’s the funnest riding I do all year. This winter’s riding is no different. We’ve lacked much snowfall, we’ve had just enough to keep the ground white. There have been many nights well below zero degrees Fahrenheit this winter. That has helped what snow we do have to become really firm. It’s taken most of the winter to get a decent base on the trails I ride. Finally this weekend, it all came together to make for some really great snowbiking.
And great views thanks to some sunny days. With the temperature below zero at night and creeping into the mid-teens (15F/-9C) during the day, it made for some of my favorite winter weather. At 15F degrees the snow is not wet and the trails stay firm. After many below zero rides, 15 feels warm.
Sunday I went in a different direction and rode a network of non-bike specific trails out to one of my favorite overlooks, Bardons Peak.
The trail conditions were super fast. I normally have my fat tires inflated to 3-7 psi for snow riding. Today I was running them at 11 psi. It felt like I was flying over the snow.
While everyone else if hoping for a quick end to winter, I’m hoping these conditions hang in until April. There’s been several years I’ve been able to ride snow until mid-April. Maybe it will happen this year as well.
It’s been nearly 6 months, and two seasons have passed since I last wrote a blog post. What has motivated me to put down some words and pictures after all this time? I’ll tell what. I got the E-receipt for renewing the domain name for this blog. I figured I better use it considering it’s costing me the price of a new bicycle chain of moderate quality.
The pictures are going to look the same. We are in the midst of a wonderful winter. I’ve been doing my favorite winter activity, riding snowy trails on my Pugsley. Hard to believe I’m in the middle of my 12th winter of riding on my beloved purple Pugsley. I’ve gone from being an early adopter of fatbikes to an old guy riding around on an old relic from the early days of fatbiking. But WOW, have I had fun on my one and only fatbike. I’ve ridden it more than 10,000 miles on snow alone. Ten years ago to the day today, Feburary 5, 2008, I rode it to a 12th place finish in the Arrowhead Ultra 135. One of my proudest, and toughest, accomplishments.
That was the last time I raced it. Nowadays it’s what gets me out in the woods in the winter. It’s where I love to be.
Most of the times I’ve had on this bike have been wonderful. There was one mishap the Saturday before Christmas that wasn’t so fun. I’m running an old Surly Larry tire on the front of this bike. It worked plenty good enough for the snowmobile trails I used to ride. Now I’m spending more time riding singletrack trails. I can’t push this tire when going around snow covered berms. It has a tendency to wash out. That’s exactly what happened to me on that Saturday a couple of months ago. I went down fast and hard. Landing on my side. I felt intense pain when I went to stand up. And when I tried to start riding again. I’ve cracked a rib before. This is what it felt like. Intense pain with every breathe. I continued to ride along in a lot of pain. After about 20 minutes the pain subsided a bit to where I could take a deep enough breathes to keep going.
I had either cracked a rib or bruised it quite bad. Here’s the kicker. Exactly one week later I was out for a ride and the darn tire washed out on me again on a berm. I landed hard on the same side. Talk about pain!!! I was injured enough that I couldn’t laugh or breathe in very much for a good six weeks. Only in the last few days have I finally been pain free. I still got out on the bike, and I did some cross-country skiing as well. It was all done with a certain degree of pain happening for the duration of the activity. Getting out of bed was quite difficult as well. At least I was still able to get out and take advantage of the nice winter conditions.
My plan is to start blogging again. Perhaps a goal of once a week when I have something interesting to share would be something to shoot for.