Linz B-Day bash
Linz birthday ride was a great excuse for many to quit work early and party hard into the evening, which included a bike ride somewhere in between. Linz had selected a nice ride, though there was some car shuffle required. The ride selected was the newly legalized east side of Oat Hill. It was early in the afternoon, so the time shouldn't have been a problem.
Birthday boy enjoys the pre-ride portion of a long day
The birthday party began to assemble at the Cedar St. brewing establishment. Several people enjoyed the day and swilled homemade and purchased beer. Lucy made a cameo appearance, staying long enough to pound a couple brews before (wisely) taking off. Minutes turned to hours as the festivity raged onward.
Watch me pull a beer out of my pocket
Eventually the sun began to get towards the western horizon. It was agreed that the ride had better start soon, or else the thing could take all night..... Actually there were several more beers to consume, safety issues to be resolved and balls to toss for the dog. By the time the crew of six riders approached readiness, the sun was now low in the western sky. A command decision was made to alter the route. Instead, the reliable and recently modified 420 route was selected. This would accommodate a no-car shuffle when Megan agreed to drive the van back home from RLS.
One more stop at Cal-Mart for food.
Finally after all of the delay the group was ready to leave. As the van began to roll, Linz insisted that one more stop for food was required. The van parked in the Cal Mart parking lot. While waiting for Linz, Bill walked by on his way from the store. "Where are you going?" He asked. "It's Lindsey's birthday, you want to go?" It took Bill only moments to snag his bike and gear and quickly returned to join the six others.
Van disgorges group at RLS
The group headed up the trail as the sun began to kiss the horizon. There was very little pain being felt by anyone. Dan shredded the single speed ahead of the pack. Austin and Bill were close behind. After a steep climb, some in the lead made a wrong turn. It mattered not, but helped to keep the group together for a little while longer. Soon the top of the climb was at hand. The sun had set and the moon was well into the sky. A short break was taken and then the group began the very technical descent towards Table Rock. This was Bill's first moonride. He seemed right at home.
Austin and Dan check out the Lake Co. View
The moonlit descent was thrilling. With each of the participants well lubed with liquid courage, there was fun for all as the entourage clattered, shredded and splattered down the hill. The pack reconvened at the 420 turn-off. Much to the surprise of some, the here-to-fore sketchy, steep, former jeep road had been bulldozed recently. The earth was soft which helped to slow the speeds on the very, very steep trail.
Despite a trip into the bushes, Austin feels no pain
The drop past Table Rock went swiftly on the newly smoothed-over road. It took little time for all to reach the ranch. There were sheep in the pasture. They would panic, bleat and generally go nuts as the 'fools tried to quietly sneak past the house. It didn'd help that the metal gate was fixed with a big chain. The process of opening and closing the gate made an awful lot of noise. Did the resident rancher hear the commotion? The bikin' gang left the area as quickly as possible. The ranch road is slightly downhill and high speed. As the bikers approached the last gate before the Old Toll Road, they came upon several horses. One particual equine decided to mess with the bikers heads by simply not moving off the road as had all the others. He (She) stood defiantly infront of the gate, perhaps waiting for a chance to bolt free. Most of the riders got past the big guy, but Dan was a little hesitant.
Shawn waits for the last riders to pass
"LIGHTS! There's a car coming!" Someone yelled.
A pick up truck appeared on the road that the fools had just descended. With Dan safely past, the gate was slammed shut and the riders sped off down the Toll Road. The riders decided they could beat the vehicle downhill. The driver would have to stop, open the gate, stop and close the gate by which time the cyclists would be gone. The group reformed at a safe distance downhill and out of sight. The vehicle never came by.
Required de-briefing session at the Cali-Inn