Last weekend we hit the road and ran for the hills. Rocky Hill Ranch is a private Ranch located an hour from Austin, TX. The course is long and the location hosts many races including an off road duathlon and a dedicated MTB race yearly.
To clue you all in as to how it went: it was muddy. Texas may have the “advantage” of never having a real winter (I think it was a balmy humid 75 today, and felt more like 90 with the humidity and steam rising off the pavement. The skies, however, were still drab gray.) We tend to have wet winters, and the soil here loves to hold water.
A good mountainbiker leaves the trail untouched, so this means you have to be extra careful about when you bike. There are plenty of spots where we had to slow or take a less than optimal line, and also many spots where the inclement weather forced us to all pitch in together and clear the trail of downed trees.
At the end of the day we ended up losing our lone 29’er (and singlespeed) rider James “TJ” Nguyen to an injury. We kindly led him to the fire road and pointed him home, hoping the coyotes wouldn’t make him their dinner.
We did, however, order him a pizza and some beer at the camp site’s bar when he finally made it back in one piece.
Rubber down: you can see the red clay TX soil baked into our wheels. I think my headset is so full of crud from fording several streams (without putting a foot down!) that the handlebars won’t move from side to side. Time for a post ride tear-down. Lubrication isn’t just a hobby, it’s a way of life. (That’s what she said?)