Riding This Week

2013

Chainbuster MTB Racing Series - Georgia's friendliest MTB racing. 6 & 9 Hour Endurance racing for solo or teams.

Dirty Spokes - Duathlon and Trail running series. Love these guys. First class events.


Sunday, December 4, 2011

Hangin' at the Horse Shoe Drop

I'm sitting here watching "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town" with my girls.  They've never seen it. At 9 and 12 years old they have a ton of Christmas programming to choose from. Animation has come a long way since I was warped by this one and the Rudolf the Red Nosed Reindeer one too.
I've always found them to be a little creepy. Sorry if this offends any of you. Some of my worst childhood nightmares came from trying to cross over the snow covered mountain and getting caught by the "Winter Warlock" or running from the "Abominable Snow Man" in my dreams. As their father it's my job to protect their innocence for as long as humanly possible so I've avoided these movies. But now I see that I've been too harsh. They keep laughing at it. I guess it's so old and jittery that they find it funny. Like a puppet show. I should have known since they can't sit still and watch my old Muppet Show DVD with me for long. They should be just fine sleeping tonight. I hope I will.

This Saturday my daughter had a birthday party where she and her friends painted beautiful pictures with real paint on real canvas. I was in charge of doing something with the boy, Thomas Pattillo. So...we went biking!
Duh.
I asked him where he wanted to go and he said Fort Yargo in Winder. Turns out that's been on his mind for a while. His Dad took him there.

Kelley Edwards and his boys Jared and Cade came with us. We met at 9:30AM and it was a gorgeous day.
Cade, Kelley, Jared Edwards, Thomas Pattillo, Me.
Jared Edwards
Thomas Pattillo
We warmed up on the new beginner loop located behind the tennis courts. Thomas was flying around the course and ended up washing out and getting run over by Jared. Not a very good way to start but ok, as I always say "that was our glitch for this mission". We headed counter clockwise on the trail and I started looking for the signs that pointed to the horse shoe drop. I love that thing. It's a blast. And so of course we somehow missed it. But in the interim we found another one that Kelley dubbed the "Baby" Horse Shoe drop. The kids tried it about three hundred times until each one made it at least once. It was a blast to watch. It's good that I don't have telekinesis because those boys would have made it every time. It was probably just as funny to watch Kelley's body language as he coached his sons through it without helping them. It's also funny to think about the difference between boys and girls. I mean, I'd have been in the ditch ready to push my girls so they wouldn't fall over or crash backwards. With the boys, Kelley and I were content to let them wheelie back on their heads. It reminds me of a Jeff Foxworthy quote:
  • When I was a kid, my parents had a 900-pound television on top of a TV tray. My dad's theory was, "Let him pull it over his head a few times, he'll learn. You wanna put a penny in a light socket? Try that out. OHH! Hurt like hell, didn't it? Don't do that no more."
Cade Edwards
The fun we had there was too much to take so we rode a shortcut back around to try and find the "real" Horse Shoe Drop. It was easy because the YABA folks have the course marked great and there are maps everywhere. We found the Drop and started trying to get the kids to do it. They were having none of it. They didn't mind sliding down on their butts and tearing up clothes but riding it was "too scary". No Evil Knievel's in this bunch I'm afraid. So Kelley and I had some fun and we moved on.

video

My knowledge of the trail system paid off when we skipped a large section around the lake by riding across a bridge. The boys thought that was really cool. Then Kelley and I decided to ride off in front of them and hide. They came to a cross road and began to panic. We listened to them yell for a while and then let them off the hook. Yet another bit of turmoil we would not have inflicted on the girls.

The road back would soon become hard for our group of young mountain bikers. We stopped at the top of the power line climb and had a snack before the tough section back. They were doing great and having a lot of fun. Ignorance is bliss. Listen carefully at the end of the video as I mention how much longer we have to ride. The silence says it all.

video

The remainder of the ride was a practice in perseverance. They were running low on energy but kept pushing to get back. I was actually very proud of them. All total we rode 11 miles and spent just under 3 hours out there. Great memories and sore bodies were made. In fact the next day at church the first thing Jared said to me was " I am so sore". They sat around telling "fish stories" about it all day.


Athens, GA - Winter Bike League
This coming Saturday I hope to join my friends and a few hundred others at a Winter Bike League ride in Athens, GA. This winter road bike series is a classic. It's what all other winter bike rides aspire to become. It's got mileage, it's got pro riders, it's got speed, it's got pee breaks and exit routes and sprints. There's even a Mad Chronicler (aka David Crowe) who invents words to describe each ride and it's participants. One visit to the website and you'll see how simple minded I really am as a blogger. One visit to the WBL and you'll see just how out of shape you are. So...I'm gonna go see.

The anti-Tebow bias isn't about football
Before I sign off I want to share a link to an editorial that sums up my feelings not only as it pertains to Tebow and the NFL but as it pertains to all Christian men who are trying to change the male role model in America, not just sports. The article says it all so I won't preach.

Sometimes I blog to promote a renaissance of masculine virtues. I want to bring back a time when men take center stage and strive for perseverance, compassion, family fidelity, community, responsibility and faith in God. Maybe it's a crazy dream. Maybe the world is too big of an influence for the throngs of lethargic men it has created to overcome. But I'd rather be the man with the answer who never shuts up than part of an apethetic silent majority too lazy to get this one life right.

Now it's time for a quote:
The struggle now going on for the world will never be decided by bombs or rockets, by armies or military might. The real crisis we face today is a spiritual one; at root, it is a test of moral will and faith.
RONALD REAGAN

Thanks for reading! Have a great weekend and be safe!

Chad

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