Tuesday, May 8, 2007

First Real Ride On 29er

Today I did what I'll call my first "real" ride on my new 29er. By that I simply mean it was of decent length, and involved trails (even if it was a small chunk of the ride). There are two very short trails within town, so decided to see what it was like to ride over to one of them from my house, ride it and come back. The quick of it:

Distance: 13.7 miles
Time: approx 1 hour 45 mins (of which about 20 mins was on dirt :(
Ascent: 2300'

The trail, Ridgeline, was quite buff - with scenery/surroundings that made me think a lot of Skeggs/El Corte de Madera in the Bay area: shady with tons and tons of trees, lush, buff trail with a few small rooted sections. It was actually the perfect intro to a dirt ride on the rigid 29er. It is going to take some getting used to to be fully effective on a rigid bike! The thing rolls really well, and it climbs quite well. But, I did a small little drop off, and wham, uh, ya, there'd be no give at all in the rear end :) Interestingly enough, it's really the rear suspension that I miss/notice the most. I think the front is more obvious, and I'm lifting the front wheel as needed more. I will most definitely be getting some fatter tires for mtb riding (and I already received the Schwalbe Big Apple 2.35 mostly-slicks for town riding). The bike definitely rails the buff singletrack, very direct-drive. Any way you slice it though, it's a fun ride, just have to re-train my brain a bit. One note... I haven't played with tire pressure much on this bike yet I was running the tires pretty hard, mainly cuz I've been riding on pavement a lot. For real dirt riding, I could go lower pressure, plus, as said, I'd use something bigger (I'm riding the WTB Nanoraptor 2.1's, will likely go with some Panaracer Rampage 2.35's).

The ride overall was nice, mainly because I got out for a couple hours on my bike in beautiful weather, and got to be on some dirt (even if it was weak). About 30 mins in I was pretty hurtin' and just bummin' over my fitness. But, by the end, cranking up some seriously steep hills, I was enjoying it a lot, and much more positive. Hopefully this ride, and some others will become a multi-day per week event going forward. Working at home again I'm feeling I'll be able to do that.

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