All Cycles End

I’ve been thinking about it for a while and today I’m posting the last blog post.

Riding has changed for me. Shouldn’t be a surprise as life changes for us all. I still enjoy cycling. This isn’t an I’m done riding story. I still plan to ride once or twice a week on the road and a mountain bike ride on the weekends when I can. It’s hard to fit it all in a lot of the time and when there’s a fork in the road, I’m choosing smiles with my family. I also recognize there’s not enough content to do the blog justice anymore. When I lived in Illinois there were not mountains but there were amazing people who helped make not only the blog what it was but also helped make me who I am.

I’ve had more smiles than my fair share with cycling. I’ve met the best people, you know who you are. I’ve seen amazing places and accomplished some cool things. I hope none of that changes. I’ll still try to smile more than I should, love the great people I’ve met, and continue to join in on trips for amazing cycling adventures. The only change is no blog.

Thanks for reading.

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Winter Texas MTB Tour

I joined one of my best friends this past week for a tour of some of Texas’s MTB offerings. We rode some trails in Austin and then headed to Palo Duro Canyon. It was a fun week of car camping and riding some tech in mostly sunshine.

We started in Austin Texas riding at Pace Bend. It was a neat place with some rocky riding. It’s nice to be able to start and end rides from your campsite. There’s about 13 miles of trail that weaves around the peninsula that varies from windy rocky fun to smoother dirt and flow.

Our second day in Austin we opted to explore the city because it was cold and rained some. We spent some time with a friend who moved to Austin a handful of years ago. We then checked out Mt. Bonnell, the Graffiti Wall before they tear it down next month, the S.R.V. memorial statue, and finished the day with some local pizza and brewery stops. We also dropped by Mellow Johnny’s Bike Shop. It’s a shop with some heritage and association with Lance Armstrong. It’s got some historic bikes and yellow jerseys inside. Form your opinions on him but the shop and seeing some of his stuff was neat from a historic perspective.

The other trail we rode in Austin was Reveille Trails. I had a great time riding this trail system. It’s got some unique rocky terrain that I really enjoyed. It was also a sunny and beautiful day.

We ended the trip by driving to Palo Duro Canyon, a really neat rather large canyon in Texas. We had great weather there in the 70º’s. The riding varied from windy smooth ribbons of fun to off your bike tech. I really liked this place and will be back.

I rode my 2018 Epic for the trip and it was great. I like that bike a lot so far. This trip did however add to me thinking I want to put a dropper post on it. I’m also thinking of a slightly more aggressive and larger volume front tire.

My Element was a great car camper vessel for the trip. With a flat flooring and full-sized air mattress and a sleeping bag, its comfortable when it’s time to rest. I made window covers last year for the non tinted windows for privacy. I can charge my laptop and things. I’ve got a cooler. Life is alright on the road in that little weird all wheel drive car.

It was a fun trip with lots of good moments. 70º’s and rocky mountain biking with a great friend is an alright way to spend a few vacation days in February. Next year we’re planning on going to Big Bend for the Texas Mountain Bike festival in February. That should be rad.

It’s about that time of the year for me to start shaving my legs and joining road bike rides. That with a weekly mountain bike ride should balance to a good year. Good times ahead.

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Life Is Like Singletrack

Singletrack.

Some sections of singletrack are easy, some are hard. Some trail has smooth fast sections that you rocket through with more smile than effort. Some trail is uphill or riddled with obstacles making it feel slow and tough.There’s that rock garden you want to clear or drop you want to take, often requiring lots of falls before you achieve what you want. There’s that big ride you plan but requires you invest extra saddle time. Some rides are looked back on as high points, like riding a bucket list trail or a big race you’ve been working towards. Some rides are routine and while not memorable or important, they are the substance that ties you until the next high point.

Life seems so similar.

Some sections of life are easy, some are hard. Sometimes life has smooth fast sections that you rocket through with more smile than effort. Sometimes life can feel like it’s an uphill struggle or riddled with obstacles making it feel slow and tough. There’s that trait or habit that you strive to improve upon as a person, often requiring lots of attempts at change before you achieve what you want. There’s that project or task at work you want to succeed in but requires you invest extra office hours away from your family. Some moments in life are looked back on as high points, like finding a person you love more than words or the birth of your daughter. Some days are routine and while not memorable or important, they are the substance that ties you until the next high point.

To me, the most important trait both life and singletrack share is that they continue. There’s another bend coming up, and around that corner is more. What you do with that next opportunity is the beautiful part.

– Cycles In Life

 

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Today On A Bike

Hairy legs, no fitness, and smiles in the sunshine. I rode Northshore Sunday and had a good time. Early season feels. It’s still a little weird to be riding in shorts and a jersey in January but 65º and sunny is easy to get used to.

It’s fun to see how trails weather over winter, some lines becoming easier, some harder. Erosion, moved rocks, downed trees. It’s like getting to talk to a good friend after not seeing them for a while.

The Epic continues to be a great bike. I enjoy it. The ability to carry two bottles and all the needed things like tubes on the bike are freeing. No pockets full of stuff. Jump on the bike and have a great time. The tires do surprisingly well in the rocks. I’m considering a stealth dropper post though.

I’m figuring out what weekly rides I want to start attending. I think I’m going to aim for the Tuesday and Thursday Pop Rides, but opt for the B group to avoid the recklessness and unnecessary risk from measuring egos in dangerous ways on a group ride. I know I want to also ride the Wednesday McKinney Velo ride too, I like that ride a lot. Great people and great country roads.

Mid February I’m joining one of my best friends who is coming from Illinois on a Southern tour for a few days. We may check out Arkansas, and in Texas area Dallas, Austin, and Big Bend for the mountain bike festival. The plans are loose but I’m sure we’ll have a good time. I hope we have good weather.

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Looking Back & Looking Forward

Cycles In Life 2017 in Ten Pictures

Thanks for showing my blog some love. 2017’s been a little different of a year for me, maybe you can relate. I’m enjoying family and holidays during these cold days.

I wish the best for you in 2018. See you then.

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