Who the Hell is maadjurguer?

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I like to ski, mountain bike, drink beer, cook and listen to any jam band I can get my hands on; all while making a complete ass of myself. Hopefully this catharsis is as interesting to others as it is to me.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

FOTP

Flight of the Pigs started early for me. A 40 minute drive with a check in at 6:15 left me with an alarm set at 5:30....somehow I managed to wake naturally at 4:30 and toss and turn the last hour. C'est le vie. Upon arrival, I saw the rumors were correct....weigh in with bike and full gear.....197lbs.....Oink, Oink.

The rollout was a bit chilly, but as I warmed up quickly with my legs coming to life; I was glad I had placed my jacket in my pack instead of leaving it on...there would be a lot of folks pulling over in the first hour to remove some clothes. However...I did manage to screw up somehow....I forgot to use the bathroom...so the 1-liter of water I pounded before the ride was painfully displacing the 1-liter of water I consumed the night before.....pulling over to remove the pressure, I glanced back and saw riders approaching.

Other than the pitstop I had just performed, I was relieved to reach Buena Vista lookout in the time allowed without any of the drama which would have prevented me from doing so (mechanical, extensive and/or messy bathroom break, aggressive laser equipped javalina's, carnies)....

Meeting back up with Noelg whom I was looking to ride with, we took off on one of the more beautiful sections of National due to it's proximity and clear views of the eastern front of the Estrella's as they rise steeply from the undeveloped bajada below.

Descending down to Telegraph pass, I was met with the foreboding that prefaces a long Hike-A-Bike. For me....nothing triggers IT Band pain more than an extended HAB...and for every foot I descended...I knew I would have to regain it on foot. After the HAB, we all paused at the top with me snapping a pic of Noelg...
....as he snapped a pic of me.

Riding on, I saw the "Bevinator" who I had first met at the 88 back in August. She had brought her famous cookies with her for everyone to eat at breakfast, but I had yet to partake in them.....yet.

Descending down the west side of National Trail, I tried to stick with Noel since he efficiently flows over most anything SoMo has to offer on his Kona hardtail that I manage to bumble over on my 5.5" of travel. However he opened it up and quickly disappeared down the talus and loosely formed trail/scree field that I had almost performed a ninja-dismount two weeks prior. Feeling sketched and very much wanting to avoid the "DNF", I walked down a section or two before riding on. Coming around a corner, I found Noelg looking dejected. It quickly became apparent why....he had cracked his Head Tube. I gave him a voile strap which I always carry for field repairs in a feeble attempt to reduce the play in the growing crack. I resolved to follow him to the road where he would call his wife for a pickup. Riding on and feeling bummed for Noel, I came upon San Juan lookout where folks were waiting for everyone to regroup.

The original flyer for the ride requested that participants bring "interesting food for trade"....so I brought some interesting food.....apparently, I was the only person who brought interesting food. I gotta say....I much prefer my interesting food heated up with garlic and butter. I believe this was the sentiment everyone else had who were brave enough to try them out of the can....let's leave it at that. I will note that the Del Taco hot sauce did cut the slime out of my mouth somewhat.
Taking off to the northeast, we rode the canal up to 7th street where much to my surprise, we found Noelg and his wife. Apparently, he had missed only 15 or so minutes of the ride and his wife was able to bring her bike so he could finish the ride....very cool.

An uneventful ride took us north on 7th to Zoe's where we parked our bikes....

Had some food and got out of the sun....

....and I stuffed my face with "Bevinator" cookies. I think from now on...I will ride in any event that features "Bevinator" cookies....

As the riders trickled out of Zoe's to gather for the second half of the day, I snapped a picture of some FOTP flair....

....and we were off again, heading to the Phoenix Mountain Preserve to ride Trail 100. Riding north on 7th, I was listening to some Parliament Funkadelic feeling very much in the groove. I had been looking forward to riding T-100 since I have never set foot on this trail much less some knobbies...hard to believe. Stopping shortly after the start, I snapped a pic of some of the folks climbing away from 7th Street....and switched over to a Phish show on my iPod....Alpine Valley, 8 JUL 2000.

It was at this point that I wished I had drank more water at Zoe's. I had a full camelback, but I had only drank one glass of water during lunch. Hindsight told me I should have had far more because the heat of the day and it's radiation beaming back at me from the black rock was wearing me down slowly as I rapidly drained my camelback. Despite this and the climbing level of pain in my knee on some of the HAB found on the steeper climbs, I thoroughly enjoyed this part of the day. The craziness of Trey leaning into his guitar just centimeters from my brain during "Guyote" distracted me enough from the pain as Phish transitioned into "Run like an Antelope". The memorable moment of the day came after cleaning one climb up to a saddle and seeing a long, flowy descent below me. Just as I saw this descent for the first time, the crescendo in "Run like an Antelope" hit me between the eyes. Seizing the moment, I shifted into the large chainring and dropped down a trail I had never seen or ridden, descending with a sense of renewal, trust and the wind in my face; singing...."Run like an Antelope, out of control......". Before I knew it, we were nearly at the end of the trail when I ran into RobZona who had a low tire. Waiting for him to get it aired and chatting him up, we finished the flow back into civilization, on a grassy knoll, with shade....and good beer.

Feeling home free at this point, but very pained by my IT Band which at this point was a red-hot stabbing icepick; I knew I would make it but would do so with a week of easy riding and lots of stretching rehab ahead of me. Meeting up at the last rally point in Papago Park at Hunt's Tomb; I took my lap around the tomb.....

.....dismounted for some beer and bacon....

.....admired the scenery.....

.....had some more bacon.....

....and watched the sun set behind the Estrella's.

Riding south on Mill, I stopped to take one last picture of the tired piggies lined up, waiting for the light to turn green....and bring us one street closer to some beer and some burgers.
I had a blast on this ride. Being a social ride; it was great to meet new folks, ride with others and eat bacon with strangers. I'll be back for more bacon next year.
Distance: 68.5 miles
Elevation gain: 6,046 ft.
Riding time: 7:19
Beer n' Bacon time: 3:26

In addition to my photos, someone was kind enough to post up their video of the event. I feel it accurately captures the vibe of the day.....very chill. Grab a beer, crank up the volume and enjoy!


5 comments:

Mike said...

Awesome write up and pics. I wish I could have been there... I've wanted to ride FOTP for a couple of years now, but we've been out of town fro Thanksgiving each year.

Might have to just ride it solo sometime...

MaadJurguer said...

I'd say it's something to do for sure....just so you can say you've done it. But personally, I would not ever consider doing it solo with all the road riding. Part of the cool thing about it was rolling in a pack of ~80 riders taking one entire lane of traffic through PHX....you'll miss the fun with that if solo. That and the cookies....

beverly rogers said...

Hey, are you going down to KENTUCKY CAMP???

I am planning on it!!

bevinator:-)

e mail me at brogers23@cox.net

MaadJurguer said...

I've reserved my spot....now I need to make sure I can get down there...may only do the short loop as I'm unsure which knee will show up...the short loop knee, or the long loop knee.

splitchimp said...

FOTP fun! hey don't screwup up your knee. rest and scrape that summer wax off ur skis! I hope to get in 3 or more days this next week if it dumps like they say!!!!!!

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