Fat Tire Amber – even the squirrels are loving it

September 26, 2010

I bought some delicious Fat Tire Amber Ale from the good ‘ol US of A. The stuff is brewed in Fort Collins, Colorado, by the New Belgium Brewing Company. I’ve never been to Fort Collins, but I bet there’s good riding there.

Anyway. The beer. It’s really good. And because it’s a microbrew with bikes and stuff on it, from a company called New Belgium Brewing, you feel legit as a mtn biker drinking the stuff. I suspect it also refreshes the palate of roadies, DHers, and is likely especially good for post cyclocross pain numbing. It is a hoppy brew, after all. (OH, I WENT THERE, THAT’S RIGHT.)

Just wish I could keep the squirrels out of it.

This guy got into my supply and drank himself into a happy stupor. But while he was sleeping it off, the neighbor’s cat came over and chewed on his face. So let that serve as a lesson or two, here, folks – do not drink another person’s microbrewery beer and pass out on his lawn, and cats are mean people.

I can’t believe I got so far with a head so empty.

September 23, 2010

That’s a good line. Hutch Harris, one of the founders of Portland’s indy rocker trio, The Thermals, reminds a bit of Moe Berg, from the Canadian 90’s group The Pursuit of Happiness. They both sort of epitomize the whippet thin indy-rocker-dude to me. Evan Dando fits in there somewhere too. And the Nada Surf dude – whatever his name is. All of those guys have this weird sort of almond milk and vegan-esque, perfect teeth and shiny hair, sort of aura. I don’t have a clue what that means. Like they might ride bikes, a bit. Maybe. This Hutch character probably does. I don’t think you’re allowed to live and breath in PDX without logging saddle time on a regular basis. This vid seems to take place on some bonafide Hood River area singletrack. Huh.

Bend Cyclocross Vids

September 19, 2010

We went out to check out the local cyclocross scene at Bend’s midweek racing event – the Thursday Thrilla. This event was fairly mind-blowing. They raced everyone together, at once, mass start. Older dudes, kids as young as 10 years old, elite men and women, guys in costumes, pros, mountain bikes, the whole deal. Most every week this season the event has been raced by 2006 US National XC MTB and Cyclocross Champ Ryan Treborn. It was pretty cool to see that level of fluidity over the barriers; like he was out for a stroll. But neater still was the fact that the race had a massive attendance from local spectators and was an all around festival type of deal. Really cool to see cycling so embraced by a community. Check out the Bike Blender – unreal and hilarious.

Bend, Oregon

September 19, 2010

Well, Bend is just about everything you’d ever want in a mountain town. High desert environment, local microbreweries and coffee roasters, incredible riding and awesome people. An ideal spot for Ms. Zing and I to take an early fall trip – extend summer by ten days or so and get dusty.


September 13, 2010

Probably the most perfect place for me to want to live.

Some meadow in Idaho.

September 11, 2010

This field was just out back of a fairly rustic bar and grill type joint just off of the main highway south. The super nice people let us camp there, about 30 meters from where the train came through – 4 times during the night. The regular clattering and whistles of the locomotive weren’t enough to keep wildlife away though. Two times during the night I woke up to the sounds of rustling just outside the tent. The rustling was accompanied by some loud huffing. But when I got out and bounced the five steps to the car to turn the headlights on whatever it was had ran off into the woods. Who knows? Maybe a curious black bear.

A cold sweat just watching this.

September 7, 2010

Alex Honnold is a 22 year old climber that has a mutant ability to turn his brain off. How else could you explain his capacity for putting himself in such insane, high risk situations? Free soloing means climbing without a partner, without protection, and without any room for error. He free solos big walls – not just a pitch or two – but nearly a vertical kilometer of climbing. One lapse in judgment, a simple mistake, and he falls 500 meters or more. That’s 5 football fields. Honnold climbed Half Dome, in the Yosemite Valley, in just hours – a climb that can take up to two or three days for most human climbers. And speaking of time – and someone more physics oriented might correct this – but in the case of a fall from 500 meters, it would take close to 15 seconds to deck. Honnold would accelerate to 50% of terminal velocity within just 3. In 8 seconds he would be at 90% of terminal velocity. By 15, he would be at 99% of terminal velocity and right around then he’d hit the ground at close to 200 km/h and be terminally dead. That’s a lot of time to think about things as the ground rushes up.

No idea how someone could have that mental discipline. Good Lord. Think about this the next time you’re bombing a bike, or your skis, down some choppy hunk of downhill and you start to wonder if maybe you should speed check or pull back a bit. You’ll probably be just fine.

Alone on the Wall – First Ascent from Mountainfilm in Telluride on Vimeo.