Thursday, August 14, 2008

Missive from Yankeedom

As I've flown the coop from Durham and settled in the upstate NY (aka The Land of No Barbecue), I thought I'd update everyone on how the Ferrous likes the new surroundings. (Updates on the General Lee and the Cannondale will have to wait.)

A few days after piloting the moving truck into Albany I started itching for a ride. A few feelers on the web landed me with a guided tour of the Saratoga Mountain Bike Trails just north of Albany in Saratoga Springs. Brian, a knowledgeable local and officer in the local club, was kind enough to meet me and show me around their complex, overlapping trail system.

And it was a good thing that he was there, as I never would have managed my way on my own: the trails were tight, slow, rocky, and highly technical. Normally I find myself getting bored on slow-speed trails (like Rocky Road), but after an initial break-in period I found myself having a blast. The trails were hard, and I appreciated having a local to follow, as I'm not sure I could have picked my way through the rock gardens otherwise. As it was I tried to stick Brian's wheel, crossed my fingers, and prayed that the big wheels and my fork would make up for my relative inexperience on this type of trail.

These were easily the rockiest trails I've been on since I left Arizona, and it was quite a shock just how many boulders can equal a trail, as well as how much exposed granite slickrock there is here, many miles from the mountains. In fact, there wasn't too much elevation change at all, though the quick, technical nature of many of the climbs had me walking more than once (or twice, or three times a...). I would have loved to have had a lower gear here than my 32x18, as I think I might have faired a little better and embarrassed myself a little less. A swap might be in my future.

I wish I had some pictures to illustrate what the trails look like, but as we got caught in a torrential downpour it was probably best that I didn't have my camera with me. Next time, though, I promise.

1 comment: said...

sounds like ali preferred type of riding!!

get some GL reports up!!!