4/24 SDS 2 Day
Ten years. Has this tour really been going on for ten years? It doesn't seem that long ago we were out there in route finding mode and bush-whacking our way through the mountains of the Shenandoah Valley that lay in between Stokeville campground and Douthat State Park. Eighty miles and around 12 hours on day one and another 80 miles and around 10 hours on another leg the next day. I have had the masochistic pleasure of getting all but a year and half of those.
So with all my experience and being the ultra-endurance riding that it think I am, I thought that a 100 mile single speed ride in the New River Gorge 2 days prior was really a good idea. That could be an easy(ish)10 hour ride on a nice day, but that day turn out to be an all day rainy day. Built some character, hanging my head low, that day for sure. A day and a half turn around time and I was in the Gun Show caravan with Pete, Jim, and Black and heading for Stokesville.
A quick but solid 4 hours of sleep and we are heading out and up in the dark to start the day. No race pace here in a solid pac of talented ridings, 80 miles in one day of rough terrain would be your only opponent that you would have to deal with. Then to turn it around and head back the next day on even more.
Dowells kicks off the dowhillin' with Mike Carpenter
From Dowells to Shenandoah Mountain Trail. w/Athens Bicycle
What started off as a nice day turned around on Little Mare. w/Chris Scott
Douthat Lodge was our resting point for the night Shenandoah Mountain Touring's staff had an awesome buffet laid out for us. They provide all the support for the trip (except a ride in the support vehicle), no need to worry about all the little things to make it through this journey. They've got you covered. It was like a one beer party that night, as everyone was a little shell-shock from the first days adventures. I will never forget that feeling I had on my first SDS ten years ago, that feeling that I had just done the biggest ride of my life, put everything into it on one day, and a creepy-scary feeling when thinking that I had to do the same thing the next day. It will make you, if it don't break you.
Day two departure above Douthat Lodge. w/Jim Shulz
Rolling on the beauty of Beards Mountain. w/Nate Shearer
Somewhere along the way my left shin started to irritate me a bit. I have never had shin splints, but that is what I thought they felt like. It was so much of a bother that upon entering Douthat State Park I veered off course and rolled gravel and pavement to the lodge. The next morning it was a little better and did not have any problem standing on the pedals, the first road section sitting and spinning, the little irritation turn to quiet a pain. Thankfully, mostly due to the wet and cold conditions the massive Elliots-Crawford leg was opted out, because there was no way my lame ass was making it up there. I soldiered on to finish the ride in the main pac. Got the leg checked out at the doctor when I got home and shin splints was the diagnosis. Doc (and everybody else) thought that it was a little unusual to get this particular injury riding a bicycle, to which I replied, "this was not your usual ride". Healing is progressing and I am hoping ten days of therapy will put me back in the game.
The SDS 2 day is an extraordinary ride with a lot of extra ordinary riders, that I have been a privilege to be a part of. Shenandoah Mountain Touring also offers two other 3 day versions if you just an ordinary experienced mountain biker. Just remember it just takes a little extra.
Last climb w/Joey Boyle
Full photos right here --> facebook photo album
Barboursville FAT Tire Brethren
Beech Fork Association of Trails
bFAT is an informal group of riders who appreciate the land and ride for a healthy well being.
Beech Fork is mostly a single track trail that follows around the lake leading into a combination of creek bed, hill climb, and fast downhill back to the lake. Barboursville's Park has some nice runs from the top with numerous scenic overlooks from the sheer cliffs and steep drops. The flat single track that follows the river and comes out behind the lake - is where the real fun can begin or end. Click on the link at top of page - above left to see a map! The Kanawha Trace and Adahi Trails are 32 mile and 17 mile multi user trails crossing over private land. Check with the Tri-State Area Council of the Boy Scouts of America for trail information and registration.
bFAT email groupo<----click here Become a part of an e-group forum that will let all subscribers communicate (free!). Send an e-mail with the word "join" in the subject or body and you'll get hooked up with other riders, to do fun group rides, get trail info and conditions, technical advice, etc.
contact info administrator at bike bFAT
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