Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Back to the Colorado Trail - Because That's Where I Belong

That's right. I'm headed back to the Colorado Trail. Another end-to-end attempt. Why would I do such a thing? Because I can. Because I want to. Because it's there. Because I belong there. Yeah. I really do.

Some friends may meet me on the trail. Maybe. The Morale Chairman may meet me on the trail. Maybe. But I'm prepared to do it all - Judd Style. Which means I'll do whatever I want to do when I want to do it. I'm thinking I'll just put my head down and pick it up once I reach Ska Brewing in Durango. Sounds like a plan to me. Ok, I'm optimistic and counting on a bit of good luck. But that's cool.

So here is the link to the Trackleaders Colorado Trail page. And the embedded map is below.

And if you want the SPOT snail trail - check out this link:

Judd's SPOT Snail Trail

And if YOU want to see some of Colorado.... check out these pics or meet me on the trail!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

The Lt Col Podiums @ 24 Hrs in the Sage!

That's right B.P.R. Fans. The Lt Col predicted a podium and The Lt Col delivered... 3rd place in solo single speed. I don't know the details - as The Lt Col refuses to use technology like email, cell phones, text msgs, etc. Ok. The Lt Col refuses to use technology ONLY when he isn't flying his $70,000,000.00 helicopter, I mean airplane, I mean spaceship.

Anyway. All I know is that I wasn't at 24 Hrs in the Sage and I'll get a boatload of S*^T for months or years to come. But The Lt Col was in good hands, I think. Rick and Tracy and Nick were all rockin' out at The Sage. So I'm sure he got a hug before he hit the hay for his normal midnight nap.

The Link: 24 Hours in the Sage Results

Our friend Jeff, a fellow B.P.R. freak, B.P.R. = Big Pig Racing, sent me these photos of the race. Looks like The Lt Col was standing around more than riding. But that's cool.

Check out Jeff's race review - THIS IS THE LINK, DUDE, DUDETTE!

Anyway. Next year I will return to 24 Hrs in the Sage to secure my spot at the top of the B.P.R. Leaderboard. And I'm sure that The Lt Col will be on vacation - that's just the way it works.

Is that Rick and The Lt Col... standing around?

Looks like The Lt Col is Suffering!

just screwing around again, I think

and jaw jacking, as usual

Only 8 laps by 9AM? I wonder if I'll ever hear the real story.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

The Colorado Trail - A Few Segments and That's It

The mind is a powerful tool. The mind is an Evil Weapon. The mind can save you. The mind can destroy you.

At times the pain & suffering is all in your head. Sometimes it's not. As a single speed freak that thrives on 24 hr solo races - it's hard to know the difference.

Our end-to-end attempt on the Colorado Trail (unsupported = CTR ITT) ended in total failure. Physical issues? Mental Issues? Who knows. Maybe I'll go to the Dr and gather more data. Maybe I won't.

Anyway, I entered the adventure under the weather. I felt 'weird' for a few days leading up to the ride. But I'm tough, I'd survive. Well, all I know is that my body completely broke down around mile 17. I spend the next 40 miles suffering AND trying to convince myself that I am the biggest wimp, wuss, loser in the world. Maybe I am.

I almost had myself convinced that 'The Condition' was a mental condition that would soon go away. Then we headed out of Bailey on FSR 109 and up Hwy 285. It became apparent that my legs couldn't turn over the cranks. Yes, I was rolling a 32x20 and that hurts on a fully loaded bike. But, I was done, the pain wasn't normal. My physical condition was clearly not ALL mental. (Maybe.) So, we turned around and headed back to Bailey. Just to think it over before we hit the high altitude trails.

The Morale Chairman discussed my symptoms with The Madre. (I had no desire to text away due to my personal battle with The Demons that sensed my weakness and were forging a full on assault.) The Madre was freaked out to say the least. She convinced me that I was one bad decision away from a long vacation - a vacation 6 ft under.  So I called it. Game Over.

Time will tell what really happened. I have a serious phobia of Drs - because I don't trust those pill pushing freaks. (Ok, they aren't all freaks - but I rarely find that time in a Drs office is time well spent.) And I have some major physicals coming up - required for work duties. So I'll find out sooner or later if it was a low grade fever / flu that blew up due to single speed induced pain on the CT or if it is some major issue.

Well, life's rough. The correct plan was to delay our start by a week... yep, history says we should've delayed the start until I felt 100%. But it's not always that easy for us middle aged dudes. We are owned by The Man (or The Woman) aka The Job. So it was a now or never situation. Ok. It was a now or next year situation. And I'm not a patient person.

The only guarantee right now is that The Morale Chairman & I will return to the CT, like soon. And we will give the CTR ITT a go in 2012. I plan to start ~ 5 days before the super freak racers. It will be a blast to watch them fly by in the high altitude segments near / around / after Lake City / Hwy 149.

And for Fun - Participate in the Quitters Quit Poll:

The Summary:
Victory at the Back of the Pack is always based in our Alternate Reality. But defeat is very, very real. Therefore we must have a sense of humor about all this. We must just wake up every day and keep those cranks turning. Dude. Dudette.

The Gatekeeper on Segment 1 - The Long Hike-A-Bike

The Burn on Segment 2 - get through here before the afternoon sun!

Lessons Learned:
  • 32x20 ain't that cool. Next time 32x21
  • You don't need to experiment during the early segments. Deal with the strategy for the later segments when you get to the later segments.
    • Ex. we rolled out with 4 days of food. The early segments have resupply points separated by 50+ miles. Basically. So, we were trying out our packing strategy for the Buena Vista to Silverton segments. If we were smart we would pack for light and fast. (Yeah, light and fast. Funny.)
  • Down jacket? Really? I may ditch it. Maybe. 
  • New Tires. NO MATTER WHAT! I rolled out with a hundred miles on my tires. I never thought I was cheap. But I guess I am. Bad decision. I was worried about the tires the minute I left my house.
  • Check the water filter (functionality) before any trip. 
    • And fix it when the flow rate is SLOW or non existent.
  • Hit the start of the CT before 7am. Get out of Segment 2 (South Platte to FS-550) before the heat of the day.
  • If a mouse wants a piece of you in the middle of the night. The dude (or dudette) will get a piece of you in the middle of the night.
The Raw Data:
Segment 1: Indian Creek to South Platte
Miles: 12.5 (Water Canyon to South Platte is about 4 miles longer & 1000+ more vertical)
Ascent: 1814'
Descent: 3087'
Moving Time: 2 hrs 34 min
Stopped Time: 15 min
Hike-A-Bike: ~ 4.5 miles
Comments: Watch out for the Eagles!

Segment 2: South Platte to FS-550
Miles: 11.5
Ascent: 2241'
Descent: 957'
Moving Time: 2 hrs 45 min
Stopped Time: 1 hr 8 min
Hike-A-Bike: ~ 5.0 miles
Comments: Ride Early. Avoid the afternoon sun.

Segment 3: FS-550 to Wellington Lake Rd (FS-560)
Miles: 12.4
Ascent: 1689'
Descent: 1446'
Moving Time: 2 hrs 22 min
Stopped Time: 39 min
Hike-A-Bike: ~ 2.5 miles
Comments: Nice camping, nice stream around mile 8. But you should make it past this on Day 1! Yes, you REALLY SHOULD make it WAY past this point on Day 1.

Bike Bypass #1: CTR Bypass - Not the CT Bypass
Miles: 28.2
Ascent: 5615'
Descent: 3700'
Moving Time: ?
Stopped Time: ?
Hike-A-Bike: ~ 1 mile
Comments:Estimate based on bike + car data - only experienced 1/2 of the route on the SS

The Ones Zeros in Graphical Form:

Segment 1 - Alternate : Indian Creak Trailhead : The Trail

Segment 1 - Alternate : Indian Creak Trailhead : The Profile

Segment 2: The Trail

Segment 2: The Profile

Segment 3: The Trail

Segment 3: The Profile

Bike Bypass #1 : The Trail : Estimated via Bike & Vehicle Data

Bike Bypass #1: The Profile

A Few Pics:

The Morale Chairman? Cracking a Smile?


The Start of Segment 3 - FS550

The Morning after the Mouse Attack. No Joke

Climbing the Road in / around Bailey

A Private Battle with The Demons.
It wasn't a lone, renegade Demon.
It was a Battalion of Demons.
A Frontal Assault and an Assault on the Left & Right Flanks. Brutal Battle!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Here We Go - The Colorado Trail

The Link to Judd's Location with Tracks:

The Link to The Morale Chairman's Location:

Chick Here, if you care


It's time to hit the road. The Morale Chairman and I are traveling to Castle Rock today and will hit the Colorado Trail in the AM. We've learned valuable lessons during our July adventures on the Colorado Trail. So we are prepared, I think.

Segments 18 - 23 in early July

Segments 25 - 28 in late(r) July

This will be the 6th bike packing trip of 2011. I'm FINALLY happy with my packing list and my packing efficiency. I may even have room to add in a jumbo pack of salt & vinegar potato chips - the bike packing food group made famous by The Moral Chairman.

And I've been carbo loading for the last month. So this Phat dude is rolling out Fat. Or... this Fat dude is rolling out Phat. Either way, it's all cool.

So we are both psyched & we are both ready for a vacation. A vacation on the Colorado Trail.

We may finish in 10 days. We may finish in 12 days. We may not finish. But if I were you, I'd put money on 11 days 6 hours and 22 minutes.

Also, if you see us deviate from the CT - it'll most likely be a planned resupply trip to Lake City. It depends on our progress and food supply. We don't intend to hit Segments 22 and 23 low on supplies. We did that July 2nd / 3rd. Not fun and not smart. But the consequence of the resupply in Lake City is one brutal climb back up Hwy 149. No problem. Right.

The Link to the CTR TrackLeader Site - our positions may or may not be on the Trackleaders site. You'll know and I won't.

Remember - We are racing in the Clydesdale Fully Rigid Single Speed Category. It's a brutal group at the Back of the Pack.

And if your curious about where we will be and what we will be doing....

This is where we will be and what we will be doing....

You might want to add in some serious thunderstorms too.

Another view of the Colorado Trail