Monday, September 8, 2008

Crowning achievement

I am so "the man" right now I can't get over myself! Actually I'm having trouble getting over much of anything with this everlasting cramp in my leg.

This past Saturday I headed down to Markham park with some buddies for my monthly out of town ride until you can't move session. We got to the park and hit the trails at about 10:00 in the am with 80 degree weather and not a cloud in the sky. The trails were pretty empty as much of South Florida was preparing for the "oh my god we're all gonna die" hurricane Ike. (who never bothered showing up for his own party but that's another story)

We banged out a few trails right off the bat, hitting the warm up loop, washing machine, lost ring and Area 51 topping out at about 5 miles and then headed for some R & R. Those of you who haven't ridden Markham park really have no idea how much 5 miles of trail will take out of you.

The trails take total concentration as there are sharp little rocks everywhere and there are also some short steep climbs that you can't really get set for. I'm sure that the local's are probably laughing at me right now, but I only ride once a month now since my home trail has been closed.

Anyway, after our break we headed straight for "gunrange" which get's it's name from the fact that there is literally a gun range on the other side of the hill. I can say with all certainty that this is the most difficult trail in all of South Florida, and one of the toughest in all of Florida. It has a lot of super steep climbs over loose rock, chunks of cement and tree roots. Also the way the trail is layed out it is difficult to get a good run-up especially if you are following someone. This trail is also covered with a lot of small obstacles that have to be hit nearly perfectly to keep from crashing as well as some long narrow ridges that drop off about 15 feet onto rocks and some insane terraced downhills that'll make your pooter pucker!.....Pretty much one of the coolest toughest trail around.

So why am I the man? (Ok, I'm a man, does that count?) I made it with only 2 dabs! For the non-bikers out there, a dab is when you put your foot down to steady yourself when riding. Again, the locals down there probably don't think that's too much of a big deal but for a fattie that only rides once a month that is a total accomplishment. I'm not going to say that I owned it, but I made it and that's the most important part for me.

The downside is that I put so much of myself into that trail I was so whupped that I ended up walking up the hills on "Jet Ski" (wouldn't miss those decents for the world) and finally bailed to the trail head while the rest of the crew did "Crime Scene" and "Deep dark forest."

Well, I guess every long and boring story has to have a moral, so here's mine.
Set a goal and throw yourself at it with everything that you have and then some. Even if you don't make it you'll either be amazed that you did as well as you did, or you'll be too tired battered and bruised to give a damn!

Here's a link to some Markham vids and pics.
Some of the pics are kindof old but they give you the general idea.