The Bikin' Fools




The March 2001 Moonride


A Blast from the Past


Text and photos by Ryan Gracy

As the day was dawning the 'Bikin Fools' started appearing at the main guy’s shop (Mike) for the last cramming of carbs before we headed out for an evening of major funometer points from the magnificent La Luna.

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Pre-ride carbo loading

Dennis appeared to be there with no left over abrasion marks after a head over bar incident, which left him dazed and confused on whether or not to continue the risks of the L-Factor. Shawn and Brent strolled up along with their gizmo's and gadgets in order to keep in touch with the hanging survivors struggling in the back. Ryan drove up along with his forty pound Heckler which is now experiencing it's true potential life of the full moon brutality. Michel drove up making yet another trip from the big city to the country hills, for an evening of pure enjoyment in the sweet Goddess’s light. Lindsey showed up along with Dave Frame. However; with all the people meeting at Dr. J's shop we still weren't quite complete with the mysteriously disappearance of Eric who would not be joining us for the first time in many years (actually on a trip in Idaho). So with that in mind we toasted our beers cooked our meals and said "this is going to be a great ride." The night was still in absence without the sight of Jim Korte. Without much further adieu the fools looked at each other and said; "Lets take off".

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Linz in mega granny gear

As we started for our departure up the strenuous climb we began to appreciate the fact that we were pedaling. Because once onto the trail it was mostly climbing on foot, vertically. The Fools entered the sweetness of the hills in the shadows of the trees. As we were all hiking up the dense trail we parted our way through the seductive darkness of the tree’s shadows. The trees were illuminated by an extremely full moon, which radiated a mondo amount of light to complete this cycle of the L-factor.

After about 100 meter hike-a-bike, Dave and Ryan wandered aimlessly trying to find a trail. When the group caught up, Mike just kept on hiking as the trail began to get more and more familiar from his past encounter about 20 years ago. Just as the pack starts heading out Ryan comes to notice that Linz is missing, so as the rookie he decides to stay behind and help him find the way. Just as the two catch up to the group, they notice the sweet sound of silence, so that everyone can finally enjoy the Goddess’s light glistening off the water particles that are layered through the thin mystical clouds above.

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"Believe me, there's a trail here somewhere!"

Mike and Shawn as-well as the group soon departed for yet another hike-a-bike through the darkened forest. With not at all quite knowing where we were going the group came up to a fork in the road. So Shawn and Dave decided to cruise down a bit while Mike and Linz went up. Unfortunately the trail ended just past the spot Mike and Linz went to and that was the next place of departure. So as the group started to move on ward we found ourselves in the hole of the ride with huge live oaks, madrone, and other trees blocking the light from the moon as well as blocking the path(s) up the mountain.

Eventually our faithful lead man Mike lead us to a trail on which both he and Lindsey had discovered some 20 years ago. So as we headed onward with the trail unknowingly we came upon an old Native Indian plant refuge and found ourselves on the wrong ridge. However, Mike started jumping through the bushes, trees, and any other obstacle as if he were a yeti in the alps pounding, stomp after stomp, to his cave and eventually he found the route which we had to take.

It wasn't the nicest trail. In-fact it indicated only a 2 or 3 on the funometer; however the participants that had previous bushwackage experience crawled through as if it were a line of hot coals, just making one step after another. As for the few that got tangled up and couldn't pick up the rhythm, they soon found themselves questioning each other about being on the right trial. Eventually the five riders got to their destination, and were able to help give directions into the non-reality trail ahead. Finally Dennis, Michel, and Ryan came to the top of a ridge. They, however, were still surrounded by trees, but were able to make out a clear voice coming from Mike that we were heading in the right direction. Once the three fools' were out into the open they had a few moments of complete satisfaction and ease coming out of the fiery wrath of the heart of the ride, so we all decided to take a break and enjoy the moon light, since we now had the path insight and were just a few more steps on being back into the civilized world.

Once on the move we had to make a quite hike through the shrubs and little bonsai like trees, to keep the dogs in the distance on a low key. After we obtained that obstacle we were able to connect up with a short slow paced trail. Once that shortness stopped the bikin' fools' had a new obstacle which was looking at them from 12 ft. in the air, a barbed wire fence. So we all spread out to find the best place to accomplish the bike toss.

Now with that out of the way, the fools' had a fast bike ride along a vineyard path which spit us out at the top of Petrified Forest rd. With everyone recollecting at that point we all looked at each other and said "have fun, and see you at the bottom". As we were picking up speeds of about 50 mph, a couple of the fools ran into Shawn's significant other and suggested a rendezvous back at Dr. J's. When everybody's adrenaline was gone and they were back in town we all met up at the Calistoga Inn and proceeded to reconvene at Mike's shop for a few electrolyte replenishment beverages and some stories on the evenings ride.

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Post-ride carbo loading