Ok, my first blog entry as Tim and Ryan generally beat to writing about all the DH races, but I want to make sure I write about this because it was simply too much fun. Wade's excellent adventure is an event hosted by Wade Simmons, and organised by the kind folk at the NSMBA. The event is run as a "treasure hunt" style, with teams of five having to complete a number of laps on Mt Fromme.
I had to withdraw from this event last year as I was on holiday, and the guys I was supposed to ride with made me pretty jealous with their tales and stories following the event. Needless to say, I was pretty excited to get the chance to do it again this year with a crew from John Henry Bikes. We were a mixed bag, to say the least. One adventure racer, one xc-racer, two downhillers, and one guy old enough to have done it all (sorry Ian!). Tim and I endured a pretty heavy amount of heckling, especially when asked why we were wearing knee pads and camelbaks. Why wouldn't we? That said, I was genuinely shocked at how well we rode as a group and matched each other's pace, both up and down.
We were in second place after the first lap, behind the Rocky Mountain Bikes "A" Team, and held that position until halfway through the second lap, when disaster struck in numerous forms. Meghan fell hard, and did a good number on a rear wheel. Having agreed to split up so that we could regroup back at the transition area, some of us made a, um, "navigational error". Who's fault this was shall not be discussed, And the fact that the route card was in my pocket at the time is irrelevant, ok? Long story short, we tacked on an extra couple of hundred metres of climbing to an already pretty long route. I'm not sure where we finished but all five of us managed to complete the final lap together, and we did so with some healthy-sized grins on our faces.
We'll be back next year, for sure, although I suspect someone else might be responsible for navigating.
Thanks to all those involved with organising, and if you get the chance to check out this event next year, I would strongly encourage you to do so. It's a fantastic way to ride the trails of Mt Fromme in a way you wouldn't normally, and you'll be supporting the advocacy and trail maintenance efforts of the NSMBA.
Oh, and props to they guy that rode the whole thing in green hot pants and a football helmet. A solid effort.
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