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Trail riding

I'm not a mountain biker. I own an old mountain bike that I turned into a grocery commuter, with a big Wald basket on the front... but I still enjoy riding on gravel and hardpack dirt trails.
My 32mm Pasela TG tires give enough cushion to hold up against some light-to-moderate trail riding as long as I'm careful about it. The going rumour is that the Pasela has a slightly fragile sidewall, prone to damage from rocks and sticks. I've picked my way across some tennis ball sized ballast rock on the Redmond Ridge trail network and rolled away unscathed.
I've started adding some trail and gravel riding into my routine because I'll be riding the 3 Volcanoes 300k in the fall, and I've read some archive reports about the loose gravel road surface and washboard road base for 10 or so glorious miles. I'd like to be prepared for whatever road surface the route will throw at us, so I'm ramping up with the Redmond Ridge trail network, the Snoqualmie Valley Regional Trail, and the Mountain Loop 200k this weekend (for a real taste of gravel roads on a rando route).

Now it's matter of building myself back up from my current state of dilapidation and depression, and getting my sorry arse back into the shape I was in just a few short months ago when I managed to hang with the pack for a 15h finish at the spring 300k. It seems so far away sometimes; and knowing that I shot my schedule to hell by missing a second 300k and the spring 400k isn't bolstering my confidence for the 600k I've pledged myself to riding in the fall.

Time to get moving.



( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
Jun. 8th, 2010 07:42 pm (UTC)
Good luck with the training
I felt exactly the same way when I was trying to ramp myself back in to the series this spring. The fitness will return, and probably very quickly.

For what it's worth, I've been riding on Pasela (non TG even) and haven't had any issues on loose gravel. We went over 18 miles of it on our fleche (including some steep climbing and descents) and felt pretty confident.

Jun. 8th, 2010 07:48 pm (UTC)
Re: Good luck with the training
Seeing all the gravel road pix from your fleche are sort of what started me with the idea. I started to get the itch for some gravel when I was checking out pix from the L'Eroica in Tuscany. Now I'm fully committed to designing a 200k with acceptable inter-control distances that is greater than 80% off-road.

I thought you were rolling Jack Browns on the Boxer?

Edited at 2010-06-08 07:50 pm (UTC)
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )