Sunday, September 6, 2009


"You rise, you fall, you're down then you rise again. What don't kill ya, make ya more strong."

--James Hetfield.

I know some of you have probably written Duckman off and who could blame ya? I have gone "off the grid" for awhile due to several factors including but not limited to: personal calamity, shitty economy, stress, lack of audience participation, and I lost my supply of give a f**k. Can I get a witness?

One thing I didn't do in my sabatacal is forsake training and riding. Nope fish gotta swim and Duckman's gotta ride. I have missed racing this year, really missed it but in it's absence I have substituted a sometimes weekly ritual simply know as................. Deathride.

My buddy and creator of some hella-sweet MSG Cylocross courses, Dwayne Letterman has a knack for putting together tiny goat-path mountain roads in such a combination that they are a lot of fun and pain to ride. As always, what don't kill ya, make ya more strong. These rides not only build fitness and character, they also make memories.

Some of the places you have never heard of: Flag Pond, Oak Hill, Shady Valley, Bald Mtn, Windy Gap, Baileyton, Indian Graves Gap, Oak Hill. Some you may know such as Beech Mountain, made famous by one dude from Texas with the initials LA, thinks he's pretty good on a bike or something ;).
Each one has it's own brand of suffering. Baileyton is mostly flat to rolling but average speed can be in the 20+ mph for 2 hours or more making what hills are there really painful. The mountains are what they are and that's where the real fun and blue collar suffering comes into play.

Beech Mountain, North Carolina - Good enough for Lance, good enough for me.

We have some steep stuff around here and those rides are always my favorites. There's nothing like the feeling of being 40 miles from home on the wrong side of a mountain in some little place that's not on any map and forget cell phone coverage. You are tired, hot and hungry, the tank is near empty and you still have to climb up and over the fuggin thing to get back. Yeah, dog! Fun times!

Sadly, all things must come to an end, if only for a short time and yesterday's ride over Spivey Gap, Bald Mtn, Windy Gap and Sam's Gap was the last one for the season as things now will get a little busy with Cyclocross and a few late season mountain bike races to take up the weekends. Even though I have missed the racing scene this summer and missed seeing friends that I have made through racing, missed tasting all the different kinds of dirt from different places across the south, I have really enjoyed the fun, comraderie and mindless suffering that has come from Deathride.

Viva la Deathride.

I will be getting back to racing beginning next week with the Black Bear Rampage in Chattanooga and then it's off to Georgia and the 12 Hours Of Dauset the following weekend. After a week or two off, then Cyclocross kicks in and that will put my butt on a bike with a number plasterd to my back all through the fall and winter. God I love racing!

Peace y'all.


My name is Stephen said...

Glad your are back!!! Happy Labor Day!

Brad said...

Welcome back! Iv'e missed your antics and rantics.

EL SandPine said...

Hey Amigo.... Same here... just dropped things and haven't been able to get back to racing for many reasons. I might see you at Dauset though. So another 10 lap effort as last year will be a mayor task to achieve for me with less riding and racing I've done this year and a few pounds heavier. LOL...