Archive for December, 2009

The Amazing Skiing Mousetrap!

Today I went skiing.  My 7th outing of the season, 4th on skate skis, at which I annually suck.  Today I sucked a bit, but also had some really good / strong moments.  One time I only got dropped by the fast people by like a football field or something.  Not too shabby…  We were at MacBride, I bummed a ride out with the Eppen’s in their huge truck.  Lots and lots of people out there, one guy skijoring, one guy who was just in the shop yesterday and not only bought my old moustache handlebar but ordered up a couple of handbuilt wheels for his Raleigh 20, that one pro guy, a canadian, Team Skin representatives, a new local bike/cook/ski/roof/tri/garden/swim/knit/run racing kind of team, and me.  Plus all the other usual local yokels that would be skiing on a Sunday morning.  It was great!

photo by BEppen

I lost track of time, crashed 3 times, got tired, it started to snow, it got frozen into my hair, eyebrows, chops, and all over my sunglasses.  I could not see by the time we called it a day.  It was still snowing, we got 2″ maybe?  The road out was super slick, the Eppen truck was not fazed but some of the sports cars that are so popular with the fitness crowd had a tough time getting out of the park and at least one had to be left there until the road could be cleared.

Upon walking in the door at home, sweaty and tired, a mouse ran across the floor right in front of me.

file photo, but this is what they were doing

The cats were busy, so I used their empty food containter to catch the little bugger for them and then deposited him in our compost pile so he could find something to eat.

If you need some skiing or mousetrapping done send no money now, just ask me if I want to go skiing or mousetrapping and I will check my schedule.  Happy winter, starts tomorrow!

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First Tracks

The typical Iowa winter has been working it’s magic.  Snow, melt, freeze.  Not so good for the skiing, it topedoed our first race, but it is at least passable for going out and getting sweaty.  After a strong 3 days in a row classic style start I missed a couple of days due to other things going on, skated a day when it was really warm and I sucked with a capital everything, then I missed another day due to crummy conditions.

Neighbors house included for scale

Today, however, was magic.  The snow was freshly groomed, I was the first on it at 9:45 this morning.  After a couple of days off here and another there I was actually feeling pretty fresh.  I think it was the best skate outing I have ever had.  Skied 6 loops, never biffed it, and felt like I was actually going somewhere.  It was a beautiful sunny morning, too.  My skis were sporting many layers of wax that Brian had helped me apply over the weekend while we drank beers.  Thanks Brian!  Between building my wheel, waxing my skis, and grooming my current faboo facial hair (chop, chop) I am feeling like a durned-right militant Tarikista!  I am going to get out again tomorrow for more skating, and my boss has cleared me for another daytime expedition so it is good to be the me.  Hoping to work my own waxing stand and related accessories into this winter budget, we shall see.  I sure do love the skiing, and hope we have a long season of it!

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Ski! Ski! Ski!

Well, the Jingle X wrap up is never going to happen here.  Sorry.  Just to give you a crumb, that is to put it succinctly; Jingle X good, Dave Towle announcing bad.

Road find muck boots.  Cody and I were riding the tandem out to the boyhood home of Ira Ryan to give thanks when we found them.  We found a 20 dollar bill on the same ride!  Thanks.

Moving on, post Jiggle X I took a week off from activity other than the usual riding around town to get where I need to go.  Last weekend, with the Shop now closed Sundays for the winter season, I took in the sights and sounds and smells of an Amana ride.  My first of the year!  We had a good group, and a pleasant ride out of town until Doc H blew his tubeless tire off his 29er.  It was loud, I thought we were being shot at.  A bit of a delay as a bike swap had to be made, but at least we were only about a mile from his house.

Out on the road things stayed mostly calm, Joe punished us for a mile or two before turning for home, we got chased by a couple of dogs and a pig on the loose (true!) and the Rock suffered a couple of mechanicals.  The B roads are all dry and frozen now, so the tricky part was keeping your eyes open so you did not biff it in a rut.

Once to the Amanas it was decided that we should not drink beer there but continue on to North Liberty for the Red’s Ale House experience, which has been known to send riders to the hospital passed out – drooling drunk and with more in their shorts than just a chamois.

The ride in was much faster than the ride out, Vincent peeled out when we hit gravel and it was a fast roll all the way across the Great Northern Route.  I was happy to be able to hold the wheel and I even took a couple of pulls.  Go me.

Red’s was fun, we drank some beers, ate some food, dried our clothing, and a couple of our group (they shall be unnamed)  called for and received motorized evac.  That was about it, the typical Amana ride.

Now it looks as if that will be my last ride of the year.  The snow has flown, the temps have dropped, and yesterday morning I got out for my first ski of the season with Cody.  We did a couple of loops in the cemetery and it sure did get my parts to hurting.  Shoulders and calves and hip flexors all protest this morning, but I am going to head out again now that it has warmed up to about 0 degrees F.  Another easy ski this morning, I am hopeful that Ashton will be groomed today and I will try and get over there tomorrow.  Exciting times when the skiing starts!

Sooper Tubed!

Everyone appears to be interested in doing ski racing again so I will be putting those together again.  The blog has been updated and we are hoping to be able to hold the first race next Tuesday?  Maybe, snow must hold and details must be worked out.  See you out there shooshing!

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