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.


lucky said...

Good blog. Glad you had a good ride. I hope you have good driving weather this time. Lucky

Gogo said...

Sounds like you had a darn good ride and the help wasn't bad either. Those shots of the lights at night are cool. Got to love those winding roads back east. Never understood why they had 55 mile per hour speed limits though got to be for the sports cars.

Ed said...

you're ride with laird sounds like fun. any guy in the mountain bike hall of fame is a good guy to ride with! Ed.