08 May 2017


On Sunday a bunch of us rode technical singletrack to a lake.
One of the reasons I moved west was because I was feeling burnt out on riding in Brevard. I still got stoked about the big nasty loops but groaned every time someone proposed riding Maxwell to Black or parking at Lake Imaging for some Dupont meandering.

There was a raft on the shore, so of course it had to be put out to sea.
I'm still a fiend for novelty. I'll always pick a new ride over a familiar one. But out here I discovered a much better way to manage that constant nagging desire: take six months off from biking every year.
The vessel could not by rights be called a two-person raft.
By October, I'm always so over it, so jaded, noticing every creak of my bike, annoyed by the constant maintenance costs, numbed by the sameness of the trails. Then I ski from November to April and it's glorious and I love it. Then my outerwear gets too dirty and my skis haven't been waxed in forever and my boots are causing blisters and strange growths on my feet and the spring snow is too variable to be fun.

Those who felt the craft was not seaworthy contented themselves with rock skipping and Dead Trapper Horseshoes.
Everyone starts talking about sun and dirt and mountain biking with palpable longing and I'm right there with them, not wanting to wear layers or stiff heavy footwear, or carry avalanche gear and shoulder the fear that accompanies it.

A feral creature, washing his moose skull before he caches it.
Bikes! The joy and bliss that those first rides bring is unquantifiable. The pleasure of traveling through the woods on the most perfect steed, chasing friends, getting muddy and sunburned. And it's an ego boost. I'm a reasonably confident skier after five winters but that's nothing compared to a lifetime spent riding. Being on a mountain bike feels so intrinsically right, especially after a long hiatus. I am a mountain biker. And I'm so glad it's finally May.
There was actually a little bit of mountain biking too.