So on Friday, it was 15 degrees here in Cincinnati and I was on my way to the suburbs to pick up some new dog coats when Caveman texted me:
I just had a hamburger for breakfast and soon to be some trail time.
I texted him back:
It is 15 degrees here and my crotch will be on the trainer.
Caveman texted me back:
It’s 19 here. Perfect trail tackiness.
I thought about my Voodoo all the while sweating out intervals on the stupid trainer later that afternoon.
Then that night, Charlie C. texted me to wish me a happy Friday the 13th. I texted him back a Happy 666 and told him I needed to grow a pair to get my ass out on the trails. His response:
Better get on that shit! Frozen trails rule!
HUGE THANKS to Caveman and Charlie for that little push. Apparently it was all I needed.
So, yesterday, I bribed Dominic with a Red Eye (two shots of espresso in a large cup of coffee) to get my Voodoo ready for a trail ride. It’s like pulling teeth trying to get him to work on my bikes these days. The caffeine worked and he had my bike ready in a half hour.
Temps would be in the low teens this morning and I knew the trails would be frozen until noon, at least. I decided to go to Devou since I hadn’t ridden those trails on my Voodoo yet, and it’s close by. I got there at 10:30am, just as a couple of guys were leaving. Both of them confirmed the trails were rock solid.
I haven’t ridden frozen trails ever. There was that time last winter we rode 3 miles in 8 inches of snow. And it was awful. Frozen trails are different. Scary. Devou is not all that technical. A few switchbacks, some rocks, but for the most part, easy. I rode there on my Raleigh CX bike last fall with no problems. Frozen, well, that’s a little different than hard packed mud. The first mile or so is uphill, and I did not get rad. I was on and off my bike until I got to the top where it levels out and then I got some flow going.
It took me one full loop to get used to being back on my Voodoo – oh man, I fucking love that bike so much. I forgot how much until today.
My 2nd loop was much faster and my flow was way better. The trail was starting to thaw in a few spots and the mud was flinging up in my face. I was loving it. It felt so fucking good to be on the trails, just me and my bike and the naked woods all around. I think I’ll be looking forward to freezing temps a lot more – as long as the snow stays away.
The only thing that really sucks about cold weather riding is when you have to pee. Getting all those damn clothes off. Today I wore a DC jersey over a baselayer, my Raleigh thermal jacket, bibs and thermal tights, wool socks and hat under my helmet. No shoe covers or balaclava needed. And as much as I love my DC jersey, I really wish it was a full zip.by