Monday, May 2, 2011

Sure, I'll try it...

Life is a strange and interesting thing.  It starts at point A and ends at B, yes you can get into deep philosophical, religious, and abstract conversations about A and B and what happened before and after or if there is a before or if there is an after.  None of that really matters when you break it down to the most simple aspects that we forget to enjoy.  Not that I'm saying that I "enjoy" breathing, but that is a very important process that one does or should do on a daily basis.  Breathing is very over-looked in everyday life... unless you happen to have asthma, or you are currently choking on a baby fist sized piece of steak that you shoved into your mouth and is now lodged somewhere in the neck-chest region.

Where am I going with this?  Not sure yet, but hang on...maybe we will get a laugh out of this.  Do you like Beer?  I like beer, I have been known to drop the L-word when it comes to the hopped beverage.  Will Rogers said "I never met a man that I didn't like", with the advent of Face Book that takes on a whole different meaning.  Anyway, unlike Will I have met beers that I did not like, but I have not met a beer that I would not drink.  I have met several that I would not buy.  Did you like the first beer that you drank?  I did.  I will admit that it did take me some trial and error to become an aficionado of dark beers.  My first beer was a Bud Light, I know it is hard for me to admit that -kinda like the first girl that you kissed was the village bicycle, or something like that.  Must have gotten lost in translation.

Ok, let's bring this all back around to the point, or just near enough that I have a post.  My first bike was a Stu Thomson Huffy.  Red.  It was probably purchased at SEARS, we got everything from the SEARS catalog back in the day.  I rode that bike until I found skateboarding...and then I got my first mountain bike.  A Trek, because Lance Armstrong rode a Trek and he was from Texas.  No lie.  Did I like my first bike?  Yes, but I did eventually get a taste for the finer things in life?  Yes.  Some of the best things in life require an acquired taste.  You have to learn the love, it does not always come from instinct.

Life can be an acquired taste, you have to learn to enjoy what you have.  We have a limited time on this spinning rock in slot #3, so while you are here -you better try and make the best of what you have.  If you think it is not all that great, give it some time and see where it goes.  It might be an acquired taste, or just say "screw it" throw it in the garbage and try something new.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Cedro Peak

Last Saturday I woke up with a massive elevation/one too many beers hang-over in the oxygen-challenged city of Albuquerque.  Something about hanging out with my sister and the ability to open a refrigerator makes for a toxic combination of too much blood in my alcohol.  Head feeling like a broken cinder block in a metal trash can, I hit the coffee pretty hard and tried to force some bread down.  Rye bread and I don't get along, and in my weakened condition the first bite of what was supposed to be sourdough -almost came up.  Luckily I had an army's supply of clif bar products in my bags.  Sports nutrition is awesome for "curing" the chemical imbalance that a night of consumption creates, oh yeah and coffee, don't forget the coffee.

Thirty mins down the road and I was in a parking lot of one of Cedro Peak's trail heads, still reeling from my night of "youthful magic moment", I was starting to question the intelligence of riding.  Then I came to my senses and threw a leg over the saddle.  Good choice.  Buttery single track, some rocks, lots of rocks, bermed down-hills, and lung busting climbs -this is the mountain in mountain biking.  All other riding is just off-road.  The fog in my brain lifted and the machine that is the human body started firing on all cylinders, Houston we have lift-off.

Cedro is a multi-use trail system in Cibola National Forest and Albuquerque Open Space.  The trails range from fire roads, motorcycle tails, to double and single track.  They can be as hard as World Cup or as easy as weekend warrior.  It has not rained in the Albuquerque area in a very long time and some parts of the trails were powder, we are talking over the rim powder.  I have ridden in over the rim sand (pain), but never over the rim powder.  The traction is not that bad, but it just freaks you out, some drift involved but nothing that you wont get used to.  At Cedro you have to earn your turns and there is work involved to "get the goods".


The biggest problem I have with riding Cedro is charging all of the climbs.  I power up as fast as I can so I get to the down-hill, a little over-eager on my part, but I get so excited and the prospect of another down-hill is too much.  Rookie, I know, but railing bermed turns through pine trees with mountain vistas in the background just does something to me -kid in a candy store with a winning lottery ticket.  Cedro will make you pay, there is no free ride and you have to get up to get down.