There was a moment somewhere on the Hutt river trail, on Sunday, as a dropped into another sharp gravel corner where in considered whether I should perhaps be on a more appropriate bike. Now my ‘road bike’ sits in the bike room coated in mud with another 200km on the clock. Later in the ride I rode up a nice climb in the sun with a man on a bike half the weight of mine.
Many a time I have tried to describe what it’s like to ride a bike for lengths of time longer than most people sleep at night. And I guess I enjoy it, all fucked up out where unable to speak clearly and lacking basic motor function. Things get real bent, a sort of withdrawal. I think I leave parts of myself out there, ridden into the roads and tracks between places where others travel too. Those no name locations that I hinge memories of times, states.
And I miss losing my sense and grinding myself into the paste you might find between your sprockets. So Sunday came around and despite the northerly gale I followed though with a near 8 hour stint aboard my ‘roady’ called Bernard. Taking in every off road opportunity too and over the Blue mountains, Akatarawa's and Makara. Just shy of 200km I was not ashamed to be a bit uncomfortable grinding up though central park on the way home.
But so often that I have done these things to myself my body is harder shock. It’s become resilient to abuse, to a point of course. Where it just gets injured and makes me mad. So yes I did get a bit lost and bent but not as much as I am use too, maybe a little disappointing really.
In more understandable news I have a new steed, the Santa Cruz Highball, a wonderful entry into the carbon mountain bike world. From building it up it’s hard to grasp how much this frame will take compared to its weight, which is next to nothing. After a few adjustments I've been enjoy the fine times of light hard-tail riding including three local races finishing in the top two.
With a slightly more trail/aggressive geometry set up compared with other XC based 29’er bikes I've ridden it really shows class on the way down. Coupled with the directness and weight of a hard-tail carbon bike it also climbs like a minx. It’s been quite some time since I raced a hard-tail and its bloody good time. Fully's are still dam sweet but there is something more honest about a hard-tail that gets soaked up in the rear end of a fully and beaten out by a rigid.