Tuesday, August 26, 2014

I'm Official!

I picked up my MS150 rider packet and jersey today!

I picked up my MS150: Ozarks Ride rider packet and jersey today! Only a week and a half away from a weekend of cycling my arse off - Clever, Missouri to Joplin and then back. I'm a little nervous, but very excited. I've been pedaling like mad since mid-April.

I picked up my MS150 rider packet and jersey today!

Monday, August 25, 2014

S24O Camp and Cycling Trip to 7C's Winery and a Sunday Morning Ride.

Friday and Saturday s24o bikepacking trip to 7C's Winery, up the Frisco Highline Trail.

Friday, after work, I ran home, changed clothes, grabbed my bike and camping gear and sped across town to the southernmost point of the Frisco Highline Trail at Kearney and Hwy. 44. I parked my car, unloaded my stuff and hit the trail with a goal of reaching 7C's Winery, above Walnut Grove, before the sun fell behind the hills. I was to meet a few people from the Springfield Sunrise Coffee & Bicycle Club for a Sub 24-hour Overnight (S24O) camp trip.

Friday and Saturday s24o bikepacking trip to 7C's Winery, up the Frisco Highline Trail.

Friday and Saturday s24o bikepacking trip to 7C's Winery, up the Frisco Highline Trail.

After about an hour and 40 minutes and 19.6 miles, I made it off the trail, up the farm roads and hills to the winery. About this time I got a text saying the others had some technical difficulties and were just getting started. They wouldn't be there until nearly 10pm. I went ahead and rang the doorbell of the winery and Dwight and Jean, the owners, graciously opened the doors for me after hours. We had arranged to stay there a couple of days before. I bought a dry red and a half bottle of semi-dry white, one to take home and the other to drink that evening, as well as a couple of bottles of water that I promptly drained of their contents. Then I went about setting up my tent and waiting out the the arrival of the others.

Friday and Saturday s24o bikepacking trip to 7C's Winery, up the Frisco Highline Trail.

The girls got there about 10pm, set up their gear and then went up to the tasting room. Dwight fired up the grill and we had a late dinner on the back porch. The night sky was super clear, with very little light pollution and the stars were out in all their glory. Cicadas sang us to sleep and coyotes, whippoorwills and owls did their best to wake us. I didn't mind. With zero rain in the forecast, I didn't bother with the rain fly of my tent and every time I awoke, I just stared at the night sky for a while through the mesh ceiling.

Up early the next morning. Coffee and breakfast before picking up and heading back to town.

Friday and Saturday s24o bikepacking trip to 7C's Winery, up the Frisco Highline Trail.

Friday and Saturday s24o bikepacking trip to 7C's Winery, up the Frisco Highline Trail.

Friday and Saturday s24o bikepacking trip to 7C's Winery, up the Frisco Highline Trail.

Friday and Saturday s24o bikepacking trip to 7C's Winery, up the Frisco Highline Trail.

Friday and Saturday s24o bikepacking trip to 7C's Winery, up the Frisco Highline Trail.

A special thanks to the owners of 7C's Winery. We very likely overstepped our welcome on this trip and they were incredibly nice about it. If you read this and find yourself near Walnut Grove, Missouri, please go see them and pickup a bottle or two of their wine or mead. It's good stuff!

Sunday morning, John and I rode another 34.4 miles, from my house and down Seminole to Lone Pine, Sunshine, Oak Grove and out of town by way of Catalpa. We saw a lot of wildlife on the stretch of road north of Sunshine/Hwy. D - eight deer, two skunks, a fox and a barred owl.

Sunday morning ride - 34.4 miles.

Once we hit Hwy. D, we went through the hills of Turners and meandered our way out to Rogersville, then across Hwy. 60 and back on FR 186 and the Galloway Greenway. We made really good time this trip. Much faster than the previous two times we've ridden the route. I downloaded Strava this weekend, which is a tracking App that monitors your route, speed, ascents, time, etc. It's a lot more accurate than the one I was using. We averaged about 18 MPH on the way back to town on 186 and I bombed one hill at 28.5 MPH. I never knew we got up to speeds like that until this App. Pretty cool.

Sunday morning ride - 34.4 miles.

It was starting to warm up considerably by the time we got back to my house, but it was a nice ride, overall. I biked about 73 miles for the weekend and I've already put over 200 miles on the new Masi CX.

Monday, August 18, 2014

43-Mile Ride through Battlefield, Republic and Billings

Saturday, we rode from Golden and Weaver, on the SW side of Springfield, out through Battlefield to Republic and picked up the Pancake Ride loop route out through Billings and back for a ride of about 43 miles.

I put around 130 miles on the new bike over the first eight days of ownership. Not too bad, really. We're making a push to up our mileage a bunch over the next three weeks before the MS150: Ozarks Ride. I've been riding to work, errands, etc. and trying to get as many long rides in a possible.

Battlefield, Republic and Billings Route - 43 Miles

Battlefield, Republic and Billings Route - 43 Miles

Battlefield, Republic and Billings Route - 43 Miles

Battlefield, Republic and Billings Route - 43 Miles

Battlefield, Republic and Billings Route - 43 Miles

Battlefield, Republic and Billings Route - 43 Miles

Battlefield, Republic and Billings Route - 43 Miles

Monday, August 11, 2014

53-Mile Test Ride of the New Masi CX

Saturday morning we rode a repeat of the Turners/Rogersville Loop we did a few weeks ago. Only this time we rode it much faster and added 18 miles of Greenway to it when traffic picked up too heavy for comfort on farm roads. The new bike hauls some serious arse in comparison to the old MTB with road slicks. I am a stronger rider than I thought. I was feeling better at 50 miles than I usually do at 30. It just goes to show you that you need the right tool for the job, no matter what it is.

Test ride of the new Masi CX

Test ride of the new Masi CX

Test ride of the new Masi CX ,p> Test ride of the new Masi CX

Test ride of the new Masi CX

Test ride of the new Masi CX

Test ride of the new Masi CX

Test ride of the new Masi CX

Test ride of the new Masi CX

Test ride of the new Masi CX

Test ride of the new Masi CX

Test ride of the new Masi CX

Test ride of the new Masi CX

Friday, August 8, 2014

Masi CX, my new ride

I ordered this on Monday from Queen City Cycles and picked it up today on my lunch hour. I'm pretty freak'n excited to test it out this weekend. Hopefully the rain will hold out long enough for me to get a ride in.

My new Masi CX cyclocross bike from Queen City Cycles.

My new Masi CX cyclocross bike from Queen City Cycles.

My new Masi CX cyclocross bike from Queen City Cycles.

I went with the steel-framed Masi CX cyclocross bike over a lighter road bike for a few reasons. I want to do some light weekend touring and bikepacking with it when the weather starts to cool. I've read nothing but great things about this bike for its price point and I'm hoping to maybe even do a longer trip on the Katy Trail sometime next spring. Aside from the steel frame, some other differences are the ability to mount fenders and pannier sets to it easily. That'll help when it comes time to take it some distance.

Monday, August 4, 2014

A couple of recent bike rides.

Friday morning, I awoke long before my alarm clock went off. Rather than lay there fuming, I put some clothes on and hit the Galloway Greenway. This put a much better mood in my morning and a firm smile on my face. Love the fog.

I woke up well before my alarm went off this morning, rather than lay there annoyed, I went for a quick bike ride.

I woke up well before my alarm went off this morning, rather than lay there annoyed, I went for a quick bike ride.

I woke up well before my alarm went off this morning, rather than lay there annoyed, I went for a quick bike ride.

Sunday, up about 4:45am and got my gear ready and my butt in gear. 6am, I met John S. at Willard High School for a repeat ride of the 30-mile Willard, Walnut Grove and Ash Grove triangle loop. It was a beautiful morning, starting off almost chilly and warming to a light sweat by the time we rolled back into Willard, Missouri. We maybe saw a handful of cars the whole ride. It was great.

We did see a box turtle, about a dozen deer, a fox, two pileated woodpeckers, a raccoon, tons of rabbits and squirrels, a blue heron, a few largish hawks, some redwing blackbirds, scissor tailed flycatchers and a lot of other songbirds I couldn't identify. We were also greeted by the braying of donkeys and the crowing of roosters as the sun topped the hillside.

30 mile Willard, Walnut Grove and Ash Grove loop.

30 mile Willard, Walnut Grove and Ash Grove loop.

30 mile Willard, Walnut Grove and Ash Grove loop.

30 mile Willard, Walnut Grove and Ash Grove loop.

30 mile Willard, Walnut Grove and Ash Grove loop.

I sold my Sea Pearl 21 on Saturday

Sad to see it go, but it'll free me up to start building again and pick up a nicer bicycle for the upcoming MS150: Ozarks Ride charity event that I am doing in September. Aside from all the training I've done this summer, this is another way I am sacrificing for others.

I sold my Sea Pearl 21 on Saturday