Trek Ride Camp Day 2

Im typing this in Backroads Coffee on Thursday morn. Just relaxing a bit before the long drive home. I planned on a short gravel ride this morn before I left but Im too sore from yesterday.

Day two of the ride camp started with a ride to lunch leaving at 11am. I got to camp a bit early and hung out till ride time.

The plan was to ride the Esker trail to Danky Dank to the Rock Lake cluster. All of which I have never rode before. Danky is the new connecter to Rock Lake and was finished just a year or so ago.

Before things got ugly.

We rolled out on the Esker trails which I have been on about 15 years ago. Again, we were all together for about 10 minutes and the the hills started. The guys leading the ride were great but after I held up the entire group for the third time I just asked them to not wait anymore. Again they had no problem with waiting but I insisted.

I looked for the dude I rode with last nite and found out he was on a demo E-bike. I won’t see him on the trails anymore today. I guess that would have been a good time to try one out too.

So 10 minutes later I was alone. And I have stated that I expected that to happen and was mentally prepared for it.

Like I said before Ive never been on the trails on this side of the system. Ive almost always rode from either the OO trailhead or Bodecker trailhead. Those trails are fast and flowy.

These trails were way more technical than the others. Huge rocky sections that were way over my head at times. I kinda knew what direction I was going but I had no idea my average MPH would be about 2. I average 8 or so on Seeley Pass. So the trail I laid out for myself took me about triple the time to do. A 2 hour ride turned into 5. And between hour 4 and 5 I was exposed to some huge rocky climbs. I started falling down often. After hour 3 I was out of food and water. I was never really super lost but I did not know where I was. So I never knew if the next trail intersection was 100 yards or two miles away.

This was more of a mental thing at first. I never knew where I was. I never knew what direction I was going in. My Garmin died about hour 3. Am I headed back? Did I turn wrong and am I heading farther out? After hour 3 I really didnt recognize anything from the trip out. I was a bit concerned then.

Really the only thing I can do is put my head down and keep going and thats what I did. And then by hour 4 I was physically done. I had hit the wall. I was walking every hill, big or small. It seemed every uphill had huge rock formations that I could just not ride even if I wanted to. Some I had a hard time just trying to walk up with the bike.

All the while talking to myself out loud. Telling myself to keep calm. Don’t panic.

I really wasn’t panicking. It wasn’t a life or death situation. It was more frustration. And I was feeling pretty crappy. No water or food and my knees were hurting with all the walking up the climbs. I did lose it once. Dragging my bike up this steep kicker with tons of rocks I fell and had a short episode. I think I even kicked my bike. I just felt terrible and wanted this to be done.

I settled down, lowered my chin and rode on. From that point I had no more power left to pedal. I kept the bike in granny gear the rest of the back. Coast down until I could pedal the gear, grind slowly up even the slightest hill, then coast down and repeat.

I made it back about hour 5. Beaten. Everything hurt. Nausea. Wasted.

I look around and some are back to camp. How can that be? They would have rode past me?

Turns out they were also not able to ride all the way back and called out for a ride. The truck was leaving as I rolled in to go pick up others. All of a sudden I didnt feel so bad. Turns out if I kept riding another mile or so I would have made it to the lunch site but at the time I had no idea where I was or what direction I was going and flipping it was the safest call under the circumstances.

Once back I stumbled to my car, drove to my room and laid down. While Im sure I needed food I was too sick to eat right away. After not moving for a hour and a half I felt much better. Drove back to camp and had dinner with the group. I would have stayed longer for the bonfire but I forgot a lawnchair and just could not stand up anymore. I said goodbye and was back in my room in bed by 830.

Heading home.

Its now Friday morn and I first feel a little better this morn. Yesterday’s drive home was smooth but I still was out of it. I again didnt eat until I got home around 4pm.

While Wednesday’s ride turned into a death march I still had a good time in the northwoods. Stuff like that happenes when you bite off more than you can chew and with my weight and fitness thats just not hard to do. I should have know to turn back sooner when I saw how hard the trails were. Nobody’s fault but mine. Again, the guys leading the ride were great and I had to insist they not wait for me. And in hindsight many needed rescuing and I made it back unassisted. So there’s that.

Tomorrow morn I’ll feel like riding again and will get a few miles in before work. Sunday will also be a ride of some sort. Maybe cross bike Saturday, MTB on Sunday. That seems to work out to a nice weekend that way.

The weather is great, get outside.




After leaving home before the sun was up I traveled to Hayward,WI to participate in s in Trek’s 3 day ride camp. Im a little skeptical of going and riding with such a group with the fear of falling off the back. But I thought I would give it a try anyway since it was in one of my favorite places in the world. I dont need much of a excuse to drive up here.

I got up here pretty early as things dont get started until near 5pm but I used the time to sightseer the fall colors. The camp is happening at the new Birkie start area( which looks great!) with rough camping. Im too old for that. With temps in the 30’s in the morn I opted to stay and the Lodge in Seeley.

So I headed over the the start at about 5pm. The first ride was a nite ride and I brought all the lights i own to make sure I can see where I was going.

It looked like about 20 bikes were ready to roll out and as I searched the group for someone to ride with I was concerned. I lot of skinny young gays and gals. I was in trouble.

So we roll out and i was about in the middle of the group and immediately my HR was pegged. One by one the riders asked to pass and soon I was hanging on the tail for dear life. At the 12 minute mark I was alone and with dark not far away and the amount of leaves on the trail being alone in the woods at nite would have been bad. I considered flipping it during the next five minutes and was ready to do so but then one dude waited for me and rode with me the rest of the ride. Saved. It was about a hour and a half ride into the woods where they set up a small chili dinner near Seeley Fire Tower. After some chili that was way too hot for me we heading back in fire roads to save time. All in all it was a fun ride but almost was a disaster for me.

Today its a 2 hour ride somewhere in the woods for lunch, then two hours back. Since its in the daylight Im not so nervous about riding alone.

This morn Im sitting eating breakfast at the Sawmill in Seeley .In about an hour i will head over to camp to start the day. Hopefully I will keep up a bit better.I looked at last nite ride profile and there was just over 1000 feet of climbing in a hour and a half.

And Im sure today will be no better.

And Im off.


Weekend And Beyond

Not a bad riding weekend. Weather seemed always on the brink of rain but it didnt come for the most part. Saturday a few met at the store for breakfast ride . Pretty much the first one for me since last spring. In summer the ride moves inland and is full on road bikes with a 20mph average. That leaves me out. In the winter its all cross and MTB’s and I can keep up much easier.


That said the Saturday ride was about the fastest I’ve been on in awhile. Maybe the fastest of all summer. It was nice to sit in a group again as I just dont do that much anymore due to the fact Im mostly solo or maybe one other. I could tell I was working harder and I wish I could do that more. Riding alone has made me a little soft on the road. I could tell I was feeling better on the bike in just 20 miles. I hope to do more of this.

Sunday was a bit of a lazy morning. I was invited to ride the MTB on some trails that were a 2 hour drive but I decided to keep it local and rode the  city park just a few miles from my house. Nothing spectacular. Just tooled around for a bit over a hour. Just good enough to get me out of the house.

This morning has me pretty stressed. It’s a Monday in the store, so ordering and other Monday stuff is in order. Im here alone all day. And its the last day Im here until Friday.

Tomorrow at the crack of dawn Im off to the Trek Ride Camp in Cable, WI. Im there Tuesday, Wednesday and coming home Thursday. It looks like the first ride is a nite ride Tuesday nite, then a couple rides Wednesday and maybe a moring ride Thursday before we leave for home. Taking my current fitness level I am prepared to ride alone and Im good with that. I am considering bring my cross bike for some gravel road riding,but dont want to just haul it around with a just a small chance I would use it. Maybe Thursday morn.

New gadget product of the week!


New Barfly SLi Garmin mount has GoPro mount under it. Light & Motion’s Urban lights mount to a GoPro mount. So I now have a Urban 500 hard mounted under my computer mount. You can now but them both mount and light in a combo set. Very cool. Along with the 500 out front I have a 800 on my helmet. Bring on the nite rides! First ride with this setup will be on CAMBA’s trails Tuesday nite.

I’ve got so much to do.  Prep bikes, charge lites and get all my gear in order in general. First I will get store stuff done. Then after lunch concentrate on not forgetting anything for the trip. I’ll be on the road tomorrow by 6am for the five and a half hour drive. I’ll have my small notebook computer with me so I might post a bit if Im sitting bored in my hotel room. And thats a possibility as I dont stay out too late and the extended riding might have me in bed early.

I will let you know how it all go’s.


Busy Friday (weird post)

I thought about not posting at all this morn. I did get out for a ride this morn and been busy since I got to the store so no post. Except now it super late in the day to do so but I’ll throw some text together before I go home today.

I have another couple hour ride planned in the morning to back up the one I did today. Then, on Sunday I plan on hitting up a trail system about a 2 hour drive away. The southern kettles not to be confused with the northern kettles we here here quite a bit.

The southern trail system is by far more popular due to the IL people coming north to ride. Plus its pretty close to Milwaukee too. I’ve been there maybe twice in my life and not since 2008. So its been awhile.

Also Im just about getting ready for a 3 day trip to Hayward,WI. On Tuesday thru Thursday. Back to work on Friday morn. More on the on Monday’s report since Im leaving early Tuesday morn.

A strange looking post for me but one from me nonetheless.

Have a good weekend.