Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Bear Springs Trap, by Csaba

Better luck next time pretty much sums up my Sunday. With that said,
Bear Springs was by far my favorite of the MTB race courses that I've
ridden in OR. I'm looking forward to camping and riding both days
next year.

As Fergus and Greg alluded to in their race reports, I had trouble
keeping air in my tires. I pinch flatted 1/2 to 3/4 of the way
through the race... and then again less than 1 mile later.

While the trail taketh my air, it provideth me with a patch kit. But
the trail was capricious..


My spare tube was either bad to start with or I managed to double
snake-bite my spare in flatting the second time. Finding and patching
all four holes was a frustrating task at best. Rhonda, Erik Tonkin's
wife, was kind enough to leave her pump with me as I'd spent my C02 on
the first flat (that's the abridged version, there's some more story
there that I'd share over beers if you're interested).

At this point I was paranoid about flatting again, was out of water,
and had nothing to prove, so I rode super conservative and hiked the
bike over anything nasty looking. I limped home for a DFL, though at
least I was not the last person on the course.

Lessons learned:

* For a remote race like Bear Springs, carry a pump as well as C02.
* ...and a patch kit. No reason not to as they are so small/light.
Better than hiking all the way home.
* Make sure pump and C02 gadget are operational before the race.
* Make sure zipper on seat bag isn't welded shut with mud from
previous races that I can not get it open.
* Knock the rust off technique to ride "lighter" and avoid pinch
flats. I've ridden some really rocky stuff in AZ, but it's been a while.
* Need to figure out how to stop blowing up on the first steep climb.
* Bring extra water to the start (and stand in the shade for roll
call) so that I don't drink most of my water before the race even starts.

I have a short video clip of the team from before the race start, but
uploading the video requires figuring out where my camcorder ended up...


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