That’s A LOT of cobwebs!!
My old Gary Fisher Tassajara hung in the corner of my garage neglected. Achilles tendinitis had just hit me hard and my trail running escapades were on an extended hiatus. Gotta get out though! Mythbuster marathons each weekend were not a real option!
A little air in the Slime tubes, way too much chain lube and the bike was back to… rideable? I’ll tell you this though, being in running shape AINT the same as being in mountain biking shape. I needed a few “easy” rides to dust off my own cobwebs. I sense an awful lot of hike-a-bike in my future. Riding this old thing was going to take me way back.
Loaded up the 1.5 liter Osprey hydration pack with way too many snacks that I wear on my long trail runs. Running shorts and a tee? I’m not a big fan of those dudes that are all Tour de Franced out in their elite riding gear. Lame. I have an ancient pair of Teva trail runners that were my go-to way back in the day. A few hobbles around the block, the addition of a Lynco orthotic made these shoes perfect for me to minimize the impact of my injury and stabilize my foot.
I met a buddy and we parked on the corner of Grand Ave. and Monterrey in SLO right across the street from the Vets Hall. Hell, we could just bail and go to Franks Hotdogs! …but alas, no. Up Grand we began. Oh boy, I was already blowing hard. Cutting through all the road work in Poly, we hit the Poly Canyon dirt road up to the decrepit architectural exhibits.
Couple miles in past the farmhouses, first gate. Whew!! Mmmmm… chili dog *drool* Just a little break.
No! Onward! Rode another 10 minutes up to the base of the gnarly hill in Poly Canyon. Once upon a time, I could ride this thing. These days? I was hoping my injured foot could drag me and the bike to the top! I was panting, barely able to focus. MapMyRide, a spiffy iPhone app, said I was BARELY maintaining my running pace to this point. Man. Started up the behemoth before me and within about 2 minutes, it was a no-go. Time to hike! Foot held up nicely, lungs burning, I crested the pass.
⇑ That’s the canyon I just rode and hiked. Great view from the top, spectacular day! This is why I run (and now ride). Beautiful ride down the back side and around by the dairy. The final stop was Central Coast Brewing for a Chai Ale. Awesome!
Sometimes you gotta take just a little bite, a little morsel of things-gone-by. I’m not sure I’ll ever be what I once was, but do I really want to be? A bit like visiting your high school. Memories. Emotions. Nostalgia. It’s fantastic to go back for an hour or two, even if it just to see how far you’ve come.