Saturday, November 7, 2015

Bloggers Get Together with Fatbikes, no Beer is Drunk

A few weeks back, fellow Buckeye bike blogger Cody posted up on looking for other fatbikers to ride in the Cincy area, or maybe up to Caesar's Creek. Since Caesar's is roughly between Columbus and Cincinnati, I said I'd be there for a ride at Caesar's. This weekend, our schedules were both clear for a ride, so we set a rendezvous at 8:30 at Caesar's.

The theme for this ride turned out to be "old school." Caesar's Creek is one of the oldest mountain bike trails in Ohio, and it still has some fall line trails and tight. bumpy corners to keep us on our toes. Further, between our fat tires, abundant leaf cover, and relatively dry trails, we were able to do some bushwhacking, beach riding, and exploring:

This reminded both of us of how it used to be, before every trail was groomed for flow and sustainability:

Some of the beach was firm and easy to ride:

But other sections stopped us cold:

Both of us being new to beach riding, we were enjoying the novice experience of still learning how to read the terrain. It seems like only a small color difference would spell the difference between floating across the top or sinking down six inches. Even Cody, with the mammoth tires on his Surly Ice Cream Truck, struggled across some sections of this beach.

The beach definitely gave me some headaches. The sandy, muddy soil packed my chain tight, and pushed it off the front narrow wide chain ring:

After several minutes of unsuccessfully trying to get the chain to run across the ring, I gave up and swished the whole drive train in the lake to clear the chain. That worked well enough to get me through the rest of the ride.

Creek riding was a new experience for me:

After the beach episode, I actually emerged cleaner after riding back up the creek (clean enough that I didn't feel too gross to stop at Chipotle on the way home, squishy shoes or not)

All in all, it was a beautiful morning of riding, and it was great to meet another Ohio biker/ blogger/ fatbiker/ beer drinker/ father. My only concern were my knees: I've been riding the Muk quite a bit this week, and on the drive home, I winced every time I had to push in the clutch. That wide bottom bracket may not be so great for my knees. Or I should get an automatic.

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