It’s The Bike Stupid!!

It’s The Bike Stupid!!

Saturday I rode the Lutsen99er.

The 69er version for this particular day.

72.43 miles

Almost 4,000′ of climbing, in 8 hours and change.

This post isn’t about my 23 year old riding partner, who kicked ass by the way!! 💪🏻👊🏻

Or the kick ass campsite we had at the Temperance River campground west of Tofte, Mn.

It’s not even about the event itself, which was exceptionally run, with a volunteer group 2nd to none!!

I will say one thing about the riders of this event…. by the amount of race course garbage I personally saw; they are illiterate!! That is all.

What this post will be about, is how I felt during and especially afterwards riding my FatBack Rhino FLT. For up until today is the longest saddle time I’ve had on it since bringing it home back in March of this year.

I knew what to expect, I’ve done long rides on my Pugsley and Krampus respectively.

I was prepared for sore wrists, arms, elbows and shoulders. Along with a sore lower back, and maybe a sleepy left or right foot (depending on the day), for a couple days afterwards.

Hey, that’s the price I’ve been willing to pay in the past… why should it change now?? It was all in the pursuit of my passion that’s called fat/plus biking.

Well, throughout the early part of the ride I felt strong…. legs were fine, I kept a moderate pace. God Damn climbing still kicks my ass; and I’ve made peace with that fact…. so I settle in and turn the pedals until the climbing stops.

Thomas pulled ahead, obviously!! Why would he wait for his slow ass climbing old man?? I wouldn’t if I was him!!

😂😜

The 25 mile aid station came and went… I’m still feeling good; picked up speed and started picking off slower riders. Nothing new there…. it always takes me a bit to get completely warmed up.

From here to the 45 mile aid station i realized I was clipping along, picking off more and faster riders than myself; by bombing through mud holes, bombing down descents with abandon… damn I love the fatbikes big boy tires!!

I also started waiting for it…. the soreness to start creeping in. It usually starts in the wrists and lower back at the same time…. but it didn’t come.

The 45 mile aid station came and went; still no creeping soreness….. and at around mile 52 I caught the young 23 year old!! LOL

The heat was doing a number on him, and he slowed down to compensate. We stopped shortly after reconnecting, and I dumped a good amount of water on his head and down his back….. I saw his demeanor instantly change!! Super I thought… and we moved onto the 2nd to last aid station at the 51 mile mark.

Which just so happened to be two city blocks from our campsite. I mentioned we could go sit in our camp chairs until he was ready to finish. Without missing a beat…. “nope, we’ll stop here for a bit, then move on.”

At the campsite later that evening, he said he was afraid if he sat in his chair he would’t get back up!! LOL smart young man!! 💪🏻👊🏻

So this is where he sat for awhile before we moved on….

By this time I was expecting the soreness to come crashing down on me at any moment. I had even popped a couple ibuprofen after filling Thomas’s water bottles in preparation.

Mile 61 came and went…. nothing.

Mile 62-67 nothing.

Then the single-track…. who puts single-track at the end of a race?? For Christ sake, how am I suppose to enjoy it… being sore and beat down!!??!!

Well, well…. what do you know… I enjoyed the hell out of that end of the race single-track just fine, thank you very much!!

More climbing to the finish… which sucked goat balls… but I did it!! 🥺🙄

After all this, what am I sold on??

My carbon fork in combination with the carbon bars; and running my tires tubeless; and riding a fully rigid bike that was specifically designed with this sort of a shit show of a days worth of riding. I swear to God I would not have felt this good if I rode either of my other two bikes!!

Steel vs aluminum frame? I’m not so sure about that!!

Did I just have an exceptionally good day? Not particularly.

I know I’ve prepared myself similar in years past for an event such as this, so that’s not it.

I’ve thought about this a lot since I laid my head down in my tent that Saturday night.

Carbon fork + carbon bars + tubeless setup + Fatback Bikes Rhino FLT = pain free riding!!

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It’s Starting to Become A Reality!!

After many years, countless hour of tireless background work, by a lot of nameless and faceless individuals; purpose built single-track mountain bike trails will be becoming a reality in the Northland!!

There’s already been one community plannings session, with another scheduled for…..

This is a dream come true to many riders in our area and far beyond!!

Iroc-mtb clubs most recent press release….. reads as follows.

Contact: Pete Kero FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

P: 218-969-8745

Email: PKero@barr.com

 

Iron Range Off Road Cyclists Announces Second Planning Session for Redhead Mountain Bike Park and Recreational Area: Ideas finalized for Spring 2019 construction.

Hibbing, MN—With over two dozen people from across the area, Iron Range Off Road Cyclists (IROC) held the first of twocommunity input sessions Thursday night to gather community input on the forthcoming Redhead Mountain Bike Park and recreational area.  

The session, held at the Minnesota Discovery Center (MDC),was the first of a two part series to gather insight fromcommunity members about what they would like to see in the bike park and larger recreation area. 

The second session, to be held Wednesday, October 24, 6:30 PM at Minnesota Discovery Center, will refine the list of features for inclusion in the park, the larger recreational areasurrounding the park and amenities at MDC.  Everyone is invited and encouraged to attend.  Admission is free.

Participants in Thursday night’s session brainstormed ideas insix key areas: what would you like to see for trails; integration of the park with MDC; community impact; getting kids outdoors; facilitating women, aging, and physically-challenged riders and rides; and other amenities for the larger recreation area.

Ideas ranged from wider trails to allow hand bikes; fun, easier trails for new, young and or aging riders; a large play park at MDC; swimming in Monroe pit; hosting an annual community mountain bike fest; kayaking; and craft beer, good coffee and excellent food at MDC.

Scott Linnenberger, construction manager for the three, iron range, off-road cycling destinations currently under development spoke at the IROC session.  

“The best projects are the done by the community, for the community,” Linnenberger stated. “Everyone can ride (off-road) with the right trails.  We want to know those needs and desires.  If we get a list of 100 ideas, we try to incorporate 99 of them into the system.”

Linnenberger has managed the construction of destination trail systems across the United States.  He is currently overseeing theconstruction of the Giants Ridge lift-served mountain bike system and the Tioga single-track trail system in Cohasset.  He is also leading trail construction at Redhead.

“We have the best builders in the Midwest working on these projects,” said Linnenberger.  “With the amount of funding from the IRRR, the speed of development, and the cooperative agreement to build three parks simultaneously, North American mountain biking has never seen a regional initiative like this.”  

“What we are building here is a huge asset,” said Benji Neff, IROC President.  “We are building community, regional, and national tourism destinations.  With the combined trail systems of Tioga in Cohasset, Legion Hills in Grand Rapids, Maple Hill in Hibbing, Redhead in Chisholm, Lookout Mountain in Virginia, and the gravity trail system at Giants Ridge, we are creating a world-class destination.  And it is already underway.”    

“I have been interviewed by national publications about our project,” said Benji Neff.  “Word is spreading.  We are starting to get calls and texts from folks out of the Twin Cities asking, how can I help?  This is an exciting time.”

Construction on the Redhead Mountain Bike Park is slated to break ground spring 2019.  The park will be located south of MDC along the shores of the beautiful Monroe Pit, visible from HWY 169.  The park will consist of 25 miles of single-track mountain bike trails, which will be open to the public, and access free of charge.  The recreational area surrounding the bike trails, including amenities at the Minnesota Discovery, may include a kinesthetic playground, camping, swimming in the Monroe pit, food and drinks, and entertainment at MDC—as designed by our community.

Mountain bike parks have become a destination for individuals and families as evidenced by the heavy traffic at Cuyuna Country State Recreation Area in Crosby, MN.  Communities with mountain bike parks have seen an increase in customers for food, drink, bike equipment and repair, and lodging.

Redhead will be a park and recreation area designed to attract riders of all ages and abilities and their families.  With a healthy list of ideas generated from the first session, IROC will work with the community on October 24 session to finalize ideas for inclusion in the project.  Women, children and families are encouraged to attend and voice their opinions.

Soon enough….. this picture will be more than just words for people from all over!!