Thursday, July 26, 2007


So I'm back on the job fresh from a long vacation in dreamy Kansas. A month off to clear my head, drive less, and (hopefully) ride more; the first of which was accomplished, the latter two not so much. It was nice seeing all of my friends from back home, but vacations never last. I left the truck and trailer in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin in the loving care of Dave Haase and his crew at Attitude Sports. I finally got my BMX bike thrown together; a big special thanks to Matt M. and Matt H. at Sunflower for that months long prank. I would have to say my favorite part of the whole ordeal was having to move those two boxes whenever I needed anything out of the back of the truck. It was truly the prank that kept on giving. My RADitude has just tripled. Well it's almost time for The 24 Hours of 9 Mile, my first race back. I wonder if I still remember everything...

Monday, June 25, 2007

OH! Canada

When I climbed back into the truck still damp from Niagara Falls I was nervous for the border crossing to come and as it would turn out my nerves were justified. I had been in contact with the office all week ensuring paperwork was filed and things were in order for the trip... completely prepared. My first stumble was trying to cross at the wrong bridge. I was ordered to cross anyway, get refused by Canadian Customs, return to America, and proceed to the correct crossing. I did as instructed and drove a few miles north to the appropriate crossing where all of my paperwork was supposedly waiting for me. Wrong again. The brokerage firm handling our papers had absolutely no record of NiteRider in their computer system and it took a few phone calls to figure out what was going on. Needless to say it took about an hour inside the customs office to finally get clearance to enter Canada. I was exhausted after all that ordeal so I drove about an hour away from the border, washed the truck and trailer, and got a hotel for the night. I woke up on Thursday refreshed and ready to get to the race site and set up. I checked out of my hotel and took a lap around the rig to inspect my wash job and took off. This would prove idiotic later on. Toronto for it's beauty and cleanliness has a horrible traffic problem. Mapquest, traffic, the Metric System, and poorly marked interchanges were making my morning incredibly frustrating. After cursing all four I finally found the race site and got down the business of setting up. I worked for about an hour in a tee shirt and jeans before deciding it was too hot for such attire. No problem, I've got a whole bag of other options in the backseat I thought to myself. As soon as I opened the door I was greeted with nothing but backseat, no sign of any bag. A decent shot of panic rushed through my body as I instantly knew what had happened. My admiration for a well-washed truck and trailer had caused me to leave my bag in the parking lot of the hotel about an hour away. I called the hotel to find out with much relief they had my bag. I finished setting up the trailer and took off to retrieve my bag, and sit in more traffic. After a busy day I decided to go into downtown Toronto and go to the top of The CN Tower, the world's tallest building. It rises above the Toronto skyline just above the Rogers Centre (formerly the SkyDome) home of the Toronto Blue Jays. They were playing the LA Dodgers that night and the roof was open leaving me with this cool shot. Rob and Shawna were flying in from San Diego that night so I met up with them for dinner and a drink at the hotel and we called it a night.

We didn't have to be at the race site on Friday until about five so Rob and Shawna wanted to go to the CN Tower which meant I was spending another $25.99. I didn't mind since it was pretty cool. Perhaps cooler than the tower tour was our lunch at the Hard Rock Cafe. All cheesiness aside they actually did have some cool stuff on the walls like the original handwritten lyrics to "Get Back" by the Beatles and Elvis Presley's pajamas. Check out the view from our table too! Alas it was time to get down to business and we took off for more traffic and eventually the race site.

Friday night was fairly uneventful with a few folks dropping off batteries to be charged and lots of questions about Saturday. Company President Jack Gresmer flew in and met us out at the race site and we all went to dinner to discuss new products and the joy of getting through customs. Saturday would be insane and we all knew it.
It was a steady stream of people from 9:30a.m. until about 11 when people start preparing for battle. Our inventory was getting quite lean by about 2 and we actually sold out of a lot of systems. It was the busiest I've seen so far.

I guess I should mention that this is North America's largest 24 hour race with over 2,000 racers. The start of the race is a spectacle in itself. With so many people out on the course in almost exclusively single track I'm sure the first lap was just like Toronto traffic, crowded and slow. I was able to sneak out for a lap around 2 a.m. Sunday morning and saw nothing but extremely tired faces which is understandable at that point. The course was really well marked and a total blast to ride. It was nice and rolling with a few good climbs to make you work hard, but it was exactly what makes mountain biking fun.
Finally the sun came up with NiteRider supported athlete Danielle Musto from Slingshot Bikes in first place in the womens solo category! Good Job Danielle! Santa Cruz Syndicate rider Mark Hendershot came away with the mens solo victory in the 40 plus division, he's no stranger to the podium at 24 hour races. Matt Klymson got the win in the hotly contested mens solo under 40 division, the top four guys were only a lap apart.
One of the coolest things I've seen so far at a 24 hour race was Chico's Mud Bog. Around 10:30 I was hearing some chanting and a lot of yelling so I decided to go investigate what it was all about. The Chico Racing crew had made a huge mud hole with a log ride through the middle of it and were giving away shirts for the first group of riders to brave the bog. So many tired faces would approach the bog and chicken out and take the bypass to a chorus of boos, but there were a few brave souls willing to risk their relative cleanliness for fame and glory. Here are some shots of the brave victors and the fallen. Some people welcomed the putrid waters and decided to ignore the log all together, but some made a go of it and won. I have to say Adam and his Chico Racing staff sure put on an awesome event and all Customs fiascoes aside, I'm excited to come back in August! I'm off to Kansas for my friends wedding and a couple of weeks of downtime , don't worry I'll keep in touch. Roll on!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Farewell America!

Niagara Falls; my last American stop before venturing into the lair of the Metric System. Of course I had to check out the falls, ride the Maid of the Mist, get soaked, and enjoy the worlds worst $11.00 cheeseburger. I was dive bombed in the parking lot by a (pardon my obvious choice of words and insert your own big hair joke) flock of seagulls hungry for some french fries. I threw the fries and when I turned around about 3 seconds later there was no sign of them. Here's a few of the drier moments I was able to catch on film. Next stop - Duty Free Shop for cheap booze and smokes, there's plenty of room in the trailer. Well maybe not. See you in Toronto!

Stylish I know. Almost as classy as the giant yellow trash bags.

On the boat approaching the Canadian Horseshoe falls, still dry.
Leaving the mist, very wet.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

38 minutes. I sat silently still in the truck for 38 minutes on the drive from the race to my hotel. No cell phone, no iPod, just me and the world around me in the blackness of night. It’s strange how loud the littlest things are when you aren’t battling distractions; the sound of my gritty palm against the steering wheel. The inexhaustible grind and whistle of a diesel engine fighting the New York topography, water bottles sloshing in time to the rhythmic flow of the road. The almost dreadful click-clack of the blinker - Silence and yet the loudest din.

Death is a subject that I’ve had too much experience with in my short 24 years about this Earth. I’ve had a friend, a family member, and even a family friend pass away all within the last year. Tonight I experienced a different kind of loss – the loss of a stranger. We had met briefly and exchanged a few niceties, and there was even a mention of some rum for later in the evening, but for the most part we were strangers. Ben was the manager of Park Avenue Bike Shop in Rochester, NY; albeit a stranger he was still bike shop brethren. What we lacked in personal experiences together we shared a common love – cycling.

I snapped this picture about five minutes before I got word that someone was in bad shape out on the course. The sunset was beautiful; the weather was perfect for a mountain bike ride. It’s exactly how a person should leave this life - doing what they love and surrounded by beauty.

Cherish your friends and loved ones and your times together for they are truly sacred. Spread love until your wheels stop turning.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

That sweet singletrack I was talking about.

I know a group of Dirtbags who would love this stuff...

Monday, June 11, 2007

Traveling from Alabama to West Virginia I was anxious for a little bit of downtime. Driving has been the theme lately, but some relaxation and time on the bike was in store. I packed up and got things trucking so I could get there as soon as possible. I arrived on Tuesday evening after a couple of light days in the driver's seat. The race site is about 30 miles East of Morgantown and only a couple of miles from the Maryland border, so it's a little off the beaten path as far as hotels go. I stayed in Morgantown which was one of the most confusing towns I've ever experienced. It's built in and around the hilly terrain that is West Virginia and you never know what's around the next bend.

Since I had arrived so early I was able to get set up at a fairly leisurely pace which allowed me enough time on Thursday to get out for a ride with Granny Gear Productions founder and inventor of the 24 hour race format, Laird Knight. We were joined by several other volunteers and event workers for what would be one of the funnest rides I have ever been on. The trail was amazing and I was feeling great. It was the first time in a few years where I've been riding with a huge smile on my face. I was thoroughly relaxed and refreshed after we finished. It was such a beautiful trail and I was kicking myself for not having my camera with me. Mossy rocks, ferns, and beautiful forest everywhere.

I had two volunteers for the weekend who were from the local bike shop in Morgantown - Pathfinder. It's a strange concidence since I used to work at The Pathfinder in Manhattan, Kansas. Those are apparently the only two bike shops named "Pathfinder" in the whole US because we would often receive shipments intended for them and they would get our stuff occasionally. Andrew and Steve were by my side all through the night charging batteries and answering questions. They did an awesome job and their help was much appreciated.

With good help I was able to get out and explore pit-row and the campgrounds with help from our MiNewt light. I snapped a few blurry pictures that looked really cool with the MiNewt's blue glow.

At some point during the night a strange visitor showed up at the NiteRider trailer - this huge moth. It landed on my shoulder and as I tried to brush it off with a roll of paper towels it just stuck to them and stayed until about 1 p.m. before taking off. The thing was huge so I snapped a picture of it with a quarter for proper size comparison.

I shot a few pictures of the timing tent and the flyover brigde that all of the riders had to cross before their lap was through. They look like ghost pictures with only the glow from their lights as proof they were there. Some of them looked pretty cool so I thought I would share them with my faithful blog readers. Enjoy!

Sunrise brought much relief to the NiteRider crew, and we got a quick nap before the awards ceremony. On to New York for the Hardcore 24.

Monday, June 4, 2007

Yes, it's a bike race

...But the other kind of bike. Ever since I started working with bicycles I've always told people I was a bike mechanic. Often I've had to deal with explaining that it wasn't motorcycles I worked on, but "the pedal kind" of bikes which inevitably leads to disappointment on both ends of the conversation. However, this past weekend I was at a 24 hour race for that (at least to me) "other" kind of bike - The 24 Hour Perry Mountain Challenge in Maplesville, Alabama. You might be saying to yourself, "Wasn't he in Spokane, Washington last weekend? I bet that was a long drive!". You would be right.

I pulled out of Spokane on Monday at about 11 a.m. hoping to make it to Casper, Wyoming before stopping for the night, however I ended up in Sheridan, Wyoming after about 9 hours and called it a day. On Tuesday I left Sheridan at what I thought was 9 a.m. but was actually 10 once I figured out I was in the mountain time zone. I figured if I put in a long day I could make it back to Kansas and catch up with family and friends for a day so I settled in. I experienced all kinds of weather that day. It rained off and on the whole way back to Kansas, there was snow on the ground outside of Boulder, Colorado and about three inches of hail in Limon. Once I hit the high plains of Eastern Colorado the skies turned dark and I knew it would be bad. Somewhere around Colby, Kansas the sky turned black as night and the wind was epic. I shut off the iPod and turned on the local stations. All they were talking about was exactly what I was driving into which included but was not limited to : tornadoes, hail, deadly lightning, torrential downpours, and of course 60-70 mph winds. As they rattled off mile markers on I-70 it was glaringly obvious I was in the belly of the beast. The wind was pushing that trailer all over my lane and I slowed it way down to keep it on the road. Eventually I made it out and was back on the way. I pulled into my hometown at about 2:30 a.m. tired and road worn ready for some sleep.

I spent Wednesday getting fitted for a tuxedo for my friend Brian's wedding in July, hanging out with family, and giving tours of the trailer for curious friends. In a small town you can't have a ride that big and not expect to get passers-by asking questions. A big steak dinner with the family and back to the road on Thursday. I pulled through Nashville listening to Waylon Jennings, it just seemed appropriate. Anyone who knows me will know that I have a ton of love for some old country, so being in Nashville for me is like being in the Holy-Land, even if I was only passing through. I stopped South of Music City and called it a night. I finally made it to the race venue on Friday afternoon around two-ish and met Shannon our ATV brand manager and got set up.

As soon as I pulled in to the race people swarmed us like buzzards on fresh roadkill. We hardly had time to get the doors open before we were swamped. I must say it's cool to see people other than cyclists so excited about NiteRider stuff. I was unsure how busy we would be at a motorcycle event, it turns out REAL busy. After rocking and rolling on Friday afternoon we ducked out at about 8 and drove the 30 minutes to our hotel.

Saturday morning is always a rough one when you know you aren't going to sleep again for a good 23 hours or more, but we showed up at the race around 10:15 a.m. and got down to business. I had a few repairs to take care of during the afternoon, but for the most part it's a quiet time for "the light guys". I did keep things interesting during the mid-afternoon lull by burying the Dremel tool about 1/4 of an inch into my left middle finger. That felt absolutely wonderful and was incredibly hard to clean out, but the show had to go on bum finger or not. As soon as night fell we were busy again with people buying extra batteries and helmet mounts. Charging batteries wasn't as big of a job as at a mountain bike race since most of the guys had their R.V.'s to hang out in, but we saw a little bit of action with that. I stayed fairly alert throughout the night and we ended up cutting out around 6 a.m. to catch a few hours of sleep and make it back for the awards ceremony.

The race promoters really do an excellent job of putting this event together, I was blown away when they brought us a first-aid kit with the race logo on it as well as really cool shirts, a calendar, a race program, an embroidered hat, and all kinds of goodies. I have to say the thing that made me most impressed were the giant checks they handed out to the winners, I've always wanted to stand on the podium and hold a giant poster board check over my head, it seems like the perfect mantle piece. Sweet! We also handed out a few NiteRider systems to the winners, although Shannon did fine with it, he sure did make an ugly podium girl. All in all it was an awesome race with incredibly good people all weekend. I tried to get some cool night shots of the riders passing by me on the trail but man, they go a lot faster with those engines. All of my shots look like I was snapping them of a ghost or a UFO or something. Here's the best I could do...

Well now I'm off to West Virginia for the Granny Gear Productions 24 Hours of Big Bear. It should be a big one. Over and out.

Thursday, May 31, 2007

From Portland I headed up to "The Emerald City" - Seattle, Washington. I had a few bike shops to stop at and talk about our three new light systems that will be out in the next couple of months. *Hint. Stay peeled to your daily driver for news and hints in the very near future.* One of my best friends from elementary school lives in Seattle now so I avoided hotels once more in favor of a familiar face and a foreign couch. My time in Seattle was brief so I wasn't able to do everything on my Seattle checklist, but I did get to the top of the Space Needle. I was a total tourist the whole time there snapping pictures of everything. It really is a cool way to see the city though, I recommend it for anyone who has the opportunity and if you get up there on a clear day you can get a great view of Mount Ranier. I didn't make it to the Experience Music Project, but when I was walking by it Dio was blaring from their sound system which induced some fist-pumping from me.

On Friday I took off for Spokane, host city for the Washington State 24 Hour Championships. Big Mistake. Everyone who had a boat, motorhome, ATV, motorcycle, or any other item requiring a trailer was on their way to a three-day weekend through Snoqualmie Pass. Traffic was an absolute nightmare topped off by a flaming motorcycle in the middle of the freeway. I crawled along at the blistering pace of anywhere from 5 to 45 miles per hour for about an hour. I was supposed to pick up Rob and Shawna from the Spokane International Airport at 4:55 and the traffic got me there right on time. I had hoped to get the trailer to the event before I picked them up but it wasn't happening. As much as I was dreading it, it was very nice having two extra bodies to help get the trailer ready to go and set-up was a breeze.

Tired from a long day of traveling all three of us just wanted a bite to eat and a bed to crash in. As we headed into Spokane a blinking sign caught my eye - The Swinging Doors. It took a minute to convince Rob and Shawna that this place would be grand, but eventually they caved. The place was a riot and we all were pleased with the food. It was a nice little slice of Americana that I've decided should be the new focus of my travels. Less corporate chains and more off-the-wall places, I think it will make this experience a lot more memorable and make for better stories to tell.

Saturday when we showed up at the race we were immediately bombarded by people asking questions so we were all very glad that we'd spent some time on Friday getting everything ready to go. Things are always crazy until about 11 a.m. when people really focus on preparing for 24 hours of pain. I was able to sneak away and get a pic of the "Non-NiteRider" charging station. A few power strips and a confusing tangle of cords was all that was offered for those without NiteRider equipment.

Bagpipes sounded shortly before the race which was a cool way to kick things off. The tunes were cranking out of the pipes during the starting run, as a Scotsman myself I was extra appreciative. Things died down of course after the start and we found some time to catch our breath. I even got out on the course for a lap which quickly put me in my place. Let's just say there's a climb called "5 minute climb". That uphill combined with "Devil's Down" left me limping in hurt, tired and winded after my lap. I went over the handlebars on Devil's Down and ended up off the trail still clipped in to my pedals. I survived with very few injuries but as I was hustling to get off the trail and out of the way my left leg cramped up and I fell straight to the ground. The cramp was way more painful than the wreck. I managed to make it in before we got busy and nursed my wounds with a Red-Bull.

The sun sticks around for quite a long time when you're that far North. Sunrise was around 5 a.m. and it doesn't set until about 9 p.m. so the light runtime was a lot shorter than I'm used to. Once the sun went down a movie screen was cranking out some cool MTB videos and we had a front row seat. I have to say the race director Gino definitely knows how to run a cool event. I had a blast at the race and everyone was insanely nice and appreciative of our being there, especially Gino. The lighted archway right in front of the timing tent had to have been a welcome sight during the middle of the night for the riders, it also provided a really sweet photo op.

I can't forget to mention our new best friends in Spokane - David's Pizza. Mark and Ted were churning out pies as quick as they could and the demand was high for their tasty slices. It was awesome pizza and they were hooking us up at the NiteRider trailer with free food all weekend. Super cool guys with a super cool rig, I had a little bit of booth-envy once I saw their Pizza Response Vehicle. Yes, those are ovens on the side of the truck. Jealous much? I'm off to Alabama for my first motocross event of the season, should be a change of pace. I can't wait for all that windshield time.

I'll leave you with this pic I snapped in Spokane, analyze and discuss.

Monday, May 21, 2007

It's always sunny in Portland. Isn't It?

Sorry for the dust around here, I guess I've been too busy enjoying my downtime. I've been staying in one of the nation's most bike friendly cities - Portland, Oregon. Cycling is much more than a weekend adventure or an expensive hobby it's seen as and used as a viable means of transportation. It's such a change from the Midwest where cyclists are constantly verbally accosted simply for being on the road. Portland is a model city for progress, it seems like everyone is constantly thinking about their impact on the environment and how to live as "green" as possible. NiteRider has several programs in place to cut down on pollution with all of the Fazer series commuter lights being packaged in 100% recycled material. NiteRider also participates in a battery recycling program that keeps old environmentally harmful cells out of landfills. Protecting the environment is everyone's job and it's something we are proud to be a part of.

My cousins Dave and Amy were very gracious hosts and tour guides during my stay in this clean city. They have a beautiful home in a really cool neighborhood in the Northeast part of the city. It's been nice the last few weeks staying with someone I know as opposed the the lonely life of empty hotels. Things from here on out are only going to get crazier for me so I know that this luxury is something that will not last. This weekend I have a race in Spokane, Washington and the following weekend I have to be in Alabama; that's something of a long haul. I spent some time getting dirty helping them with landscaping and gardening which is something I actually enjoy. I could definitely feel all of the shoveling I did the next morning.

On Wednesday my cousin Amy, her dog Lazlo, their roommate Eric, and myself all piled into the car for a trip to the coast. Oregon isn't exactly the beach vacation hot spot that Southern California is, but it is absolutely beautiful. It was surprisingly sunny for my entire stay in Oregon, something I didn't expect at all. After an amazing drive through the Tillamook State Forest we arrived in Pacific Beach, Oregon. The beach is famous for it's large rock outcropping offshore called a haystack. The Oregon coast is littered with them, if you've seen The Goonies you've seen a haystack. There's also a huge sand dune right on the beach that is a leg burning climb, but it's worth the view. Once you're at the top you can see out to sea for an eternity and up and down the coastline for miles. For a landlocked kid from Kansas seeing out over the ocean for that far is a very humbling experience, it really makes you feel small.

Time to cross the Colombia River and head up to Washington. I'll be in Seattle all week visiting bike shops until it's race day in Spokane. I plan on being a total tourist while I'm here in Seattle, Space Needle, EMP, ferry rides, all of that. Stay tuned for updates.

All of the photography on this post was done by my cousin Dave, I wish I could take credit for it.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

San Fran!

I spent the weekend in San Francisco visiting an old friend from high school. We drove to the city from Vallejo and had to navigate the maze of freeways and detours caused by the tanker truck accident last month, it was gridlock all the way to the Bay Bridge. Fisherman's Wharf was amazingly busy and coincidentally quite annoying. It's the definition of tourist-trap with street hustlers and performers all trying to catch a buck. Coit tower provided a scenic shot of the city skyline at night and a more tranquil experience of the city. The Tour of California has staged it's Prologue here for the last two years, and the climb up Lombard street is nothing to scoff at. I ended up talking about our lights to a couple of cyclists we ran into at base of the tower, one of whom works at R.E.I. It's a small world. We went for a bite to eat in Chinatown and ended up at a restaurant that I had been to about seven years ago, it was pretty weird since we just walked into one at random.After a delicious meal we cruised across the Golden Gate Bridge to Marin County. It is always cool going to the place where mountain biking got it's start, but it's frustrating to know that there are so many trail access issues in the area. There's a really cool movie called "Single Track Minds" that documents the rise of mountain biking around Mt. Tamalpais and the eventual legal battles that ensued. It's about 30 minutes long and is worth the time if you've got access to it. On to Oregon!

Thursday, May 10, 2007

You got to know when to hold 'em

San Pablo, California is $19.99 dollars richer because of me. I'll never let them take it all... This folks is why I don't gamble. The true irony of this penny is the fact it was spat out to me by a Kenny Rogers "The Gambler" slot machine. I never cared much for his chicken and now I don't like his slot machines - the music, that's a whole different story.

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

10-4 Good Buddy

When I woke up on Thursday morning I knew it was time to get this show on the road… literally. My boss, Jack had invited me along for a nice early morning ride in the Mission Trails area just east of the NiteRider global headquarters so I met him at 6:45 for a nice spin on my last day in So Cal. We rode the short couple of miles to the trailhead – uphill. I was feeling pretty good when we first hit the dirt so I put out a pretty good effort on the first climb which I was sure would never end. Once I finally reached the top I was a little worried about what was to come. My physical condition is certainly nothing to brag about. The trail system wasn’t overly technical, but my laziness was shining through and I was picking horrible lines and getting tossed everywhere. We ended up riding something like 16 miles and I felt every inch. Luckily I survived without any spills and hurried around to leave for The Coolest 24 in Cool, California.

Bidding San Diego a fond farewell on shaky legs it was time to hit the road, and after a quick jaunt through Compton (yes that Compton) I was well on my way to Cool, California. Interstate 5 is a truckers’ dream, wide open road, truck stops, awesome. Something about pulling into truck stops and getting diesel amidst all those “real” truckers cracks me up. I’m working on my trucker lingo, now if only I could procure a collection of pearl-snap shirts and silver-tipped boots, and a furry upper-lip. A C.B. radio would be amazing – I’m currently accepting applications for trucker handles.

Cool is a tiny mountain town nestled in the Sierra-Nevada mountain range about 100 miles west of Reno, Nevada. The drive in from Auburn was one of the most nerve-racking and gorgeous drives I’ve ever done. Pulling a trailer on a super twisty mountain road is not exactly a relaxing experience. I managed to pull over a few times and snap some nice pictures of the valley and the American river that runs through it. It’s the kind of drive that would be best enjoyed from the passenger seat of a very safe, slow-moving vehicle. I don’t recommend it for anyone easily affected by motion sickness. The Coolest 24 is a mountain bike race for an extremely good cause. All of the proceeds from the race were donated to the fight against cancer and they had well over 400 registered racers! It is a really great event for a great cause and I strongly recommend it to anyone who can make it! You could tell all of your co-workers and friends that you were doing charity work all weekend plus you would be able to ride your bike which makes philanthropy feel doubly good.

I was the only NiteRider employee from our main offices who would be attending the race, but I did have two very competent guys helping me through the night; our Northern California sales-rep Brian and his friend Rob. Their help was absolutely invaluable and I was lucky to have such great help. I was a little overwhelmed with repairs at the start of the race and they really kept the heat off of me so I could hunker down and get the work busted out. A million thanks guys, hats off really! Brian is a die-hard Oakland Raiders fan and me heralding from Kansas City Chiefs territory I wasn’t sure how we’d get along but all was fine, I did however find a few interesting pictures on the camera…

In the spirit of Cinco de Mayo I brought an assortment of chips and salsas which was a nice way to pass the afternoon. Salsa buffet in the afternoon, charge batteries and flirt with incoherency at night. Everything ran fairly smoothly through the night after we figured out a few power issues. We kept tripping the safety circuit on a power strip and we would find ourselves in the dark, swimming in irony. After that little battle was fought about four times we finally had it to where there would be no more problems and it was smooth sailing ‘til daybreak. Things do tend to get a little weird for me around 3:30 a.m. through about 5:30 a.m. it’s a really strange feeling fighting through the urge to fall asleep standing up. Luckily I had Brian and Rob to talk to and keep my mind preoccupied.

The Coolest 24 Hour Mountain Bike Race is an event that solidifies my faith in the cycling community. Using your bicycle and self-sadistic desires to help fulfill a societal need is something more people should get behind. Bikes + Charity + No Sleep = Good Times with Great People! This event is only going to get bigger with such a good cause and absolutely beautiful countryside. Be there or be decidedly un-round.

Keep the bugs off your bumper and the bears off your back door. This is your daily driver, over-and-out