Monday, January 30, 2012

Lebron traveling to work

Alright, what would you do if you had tons of money and you were a NBA superstar, tons of cars, probably bodyguards and chaffeurs to drive you around. Would you get a ride to work everyday in the plushest, or the fastest and greatest? Well Lebron played it green and rode to the game on his bike. Now wouldn't it have been funny if he was riding a Magna or a NEXT rhinoexcitor bike? haha.

Omaha Beer Week

Seriously, like I need any more reason to drink. But hey, why not? Omaha Beer week is next weekend, beginning on Friday Feb 3. Here is the link.

On Saturday, JoneZ party bus is doing complimentary bus shuttle service between bars from noon till midnight. I personally know the owner Kevin Jones and this is a great thing they are doing.
Look at the events page here. Lots of good specials on brews, along with contest and giveaways at various bars. Who is in?

In Ireland, the pubs seem to pride themselves by serving your beer in the appropriate glass. Or maybe it is just standard practice for them. It really adds to the whole Ireland experience!

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Trailwork, Pseudobeach Riding, and Humongous Burgers!

Wow, what a day! After another busy week at work (this time 11 hrs of OT), I was hoping to sleep in on a Saturday. But somehow a planned trailday at Lake Manawa and riding afterwards had me up and ready to go by 8am. I don't even wake up that early on workdays!

This is the first thing you see when you arrive at the boat docks of Lake Manawa

Mangled and twisted, this TTF was displaced by the flood

I loaded up the fatty, packed up the beers, brought a PB and J, and headed down to Council Bluffs. Hooked up with 11 other THOR members to help repair a TTF that was moved about 15 feet due to the flooding this past year. Besides the strong and chilly winds, the first thing that I noticed after stepping out of the car was the sand. Sand everywhere. No grass or dirt. Just sand. It was a very fine sand, packed down more than you would believe. It reminded me of a trip to Destin, FL. Minus the beautiful beach and bikini clad girls of course. The only water I would be seeing this time is the Missouri River!

Key was to figure out how to dismantle this thing

The other half about 15 ft away

But the sight made me smile. This winter has been weird, very little snow in Omaha except for maybe one or two quick storms. I figured, heck if I can't ride snow with my Mukluk, then I might as well ride sand. Never in a million years did I think that I would be riding sand in January on my fat bike in the midwest. Snow yes, sand never. And the sand is a sight to see. It looked like a wasteland. Everything was out of place. Trees coming out of the sand. Water level lines making an impression in the flora of the land. Yes, the flooding had done its damage. The real question is whether or not the trees survived after being underwater for half of the year.

The other half was behind me, yes it had moved that far

The reassembly

On to the ttf site. We followed a flagged trail that would eventually get us to what is left of Tony's Playground. The ttf was still there, it was just in two pieces and one section was severely twisted and about 15 ft from where it should have been. The original goal was to have enough hands to pick it up and move it. Not gonna happen. The base supports alone for the ttf were massive. The THOR team worked away with sledgehammers, cordless drills, hammers, and screws to disassemble, move, then reassemble the once and still intimidating piece of riding structure. It went a lot quicker than I had imagined. Thanks to everyone who showed up to help. Time to ride!

The finished product

Now Todd, just no repeat of 2009!

Riders were throwing out nicknames for the trail, such as Mana-sands and Mana-dunes. In my mind I was calling one section, "The Beach". The following pictures will speak louder than words. There are still some downed trees in the far east side of the trail. And I'm not talking log crossings. I'm talking get off your bike and lift your heavy a** Mukluk2 bike over two feet of log. About four of those if I remember right. I quickly learned that to use that bike in a cyclocross race, even as a joke, would be torture.

You can see the water line on the trees. And remember folks, this part of the trail is a good 10-20 feet above the river. 

More water lines on the trees

What the heck is this thing?'am your wig got swept away in the flood

Logs stuck up in trees

After riding the lollipop shaped loop for two laps (about 3.5 miles total), we headed to lunch in Bellevue. Stella's is where we decided on. Cool hamburger joint, where seating is first come serve and we had to wait at least 10 minutes. But man was it worth it. Tall boy Schlitz, onion rings, and a humongous southwestern burger to refill my energy. Plan was to ride Swanson afterwards and that we did. It was slow going, but fun nonetheless. Thanks to whoever installed that new section of trail at the end, nice looking loop! Looks like a lot of hard working hours were used to get that in place.

Dave riding through the beach

Kind of surreal. It is quiet and there are trees coming out of the sand. 

It was a busy type of exhausting day. Ended the day with a three hour nap on the couch. I think this will be a good year of trailworking and riding. I plan to head back out to Manawa with my DSLR, tripod, GoPro, and Mukluk one of these weekends. There is just too much out there to absorb in one day. Here is a link to Paul's pictures.

I tracked the route using Endomondo:

Now that's what I call a burger!

Paul and Dave ready to dig in. No plates here, burgers are served on a napkin

Some proof that we actually rode Swanson

So on Brian and Paul's Surly Karate Monkeys, you can actually open your beverages on the Tuggnut. We were having way too much fun with it. 

Surly Tuggnut, meet Dig. Enjoying New Belgium's latest spring time brew, Dig. Good stuff guys! It's their newest pale ale

Thursday, January 26, 2012

at Lake Manawa

Saturday, January 28
9am - 12pm
Battery opperated drill and philips drill bit.

The Details

Trailday this Saturday. About half the TTF in No Second Chance floated 30' away. Either we get 10-15 people out there to lift and move it, or we break it down into sections and move it.  Bring bike to ride or walk cleared new trail - between one and two miles.


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Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Slightly snowy MNR

More coldness. But no wind. Just plain cold. But I wasn't complaining. Why? Because there was finally some snow on the ground and I was having a blast on the trail with the Mukluk. Sunday night we got between a half to one inch of snow in certain areas (I'm totally guessing here). All day, temps hovered around 31 so I figured that the trail would be way too sloppy to ride tonight. Boy was I wrong! Once the sun went down, the temp dropped and anything wet was starting to refreeze.

Holding the camera while biking singletrack in freezing temps on snow at night is not recommended. But I do it anyway. No flash = blurry pics. As soon as I had gotten onto the trail and realized how bright it was with the snow, I had wished that I had my GoPro mounted on my handlebars. A night snowbiking film would be awesome! I have no clue how many lux the GoPro is or whether it can pick up anything at night at all. 

The tires just bit into the light layer of snow on the trail. I led most of the time once I met up with the group, only to help pack down some of that snow. Not that there was much packing down needed. Fingers were near frozen, same with toes. So we called it quits after riding a majority of the Tranquility. But man, going through the trees and taking those sweet singletrack turns just a little too fast made for a thrilling ride. I was purposely unclipping as I came up to a turn so that I could stick a foot out. I think it saved me a couple of times. The back tire would just start to whip out, and there was just enough time for me to say whoa before the Surly Endomorph would catch the traction again. Great times fellas and glad we all made it out (seven of us plus Cody the dog). Thanks to Paul for sharing the heat of his basement and for the Pale Ales that Brian brought over (not sure who brought the Leines, but thanks also for those). I ended up back at work from 10pm till midnight. That's alright though, more money equals more toys and down payment!

The Mukluk encounters snow for the 4th time

Monday, January 23, 2012

Congrats to Papa Aaron and Mama Amanda!

Congrats to Aaron and Amanda on their new baby girl! I got a picture text tonight while I was at work. We were just discussing with Aaron on Saturday how Amanda was still working and due at ANY moment. Best of health to the mother and baby and congrats on your new bundle of joy!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

My new toy!

Now that my turntables are spinning again with my desktop, I decided to buy a new monitor. 24 inches of hd LED beautifulness. So bright compared to my old 18 inch lcd. Windows 7 is awesome because you can run the extended desktop between the two monitors. Serato Scratch Live running on the left, music folder open on the right. Oh yeah! I figure it will be good for photo editing, blogging, music, etc. It's just hard getting use to the big screen. I went into work on Friday and had to do a double take when I was looking at the puny screens (they're actually 19 inch monitors at work).