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Old 12-01-05, 02:43 PM   #1
mydarkself
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when i was young

could be i'm still a kid.
theres nothing like 8 miles of gut twisting steep and vertigo inducing DOWNHILL.
but i'm 53 now. i promised my wife and kids i'd go around the steeps and use more brake.
i put my feet down more, thats for sure.
seems like i get dizzy easier too.
the people making bikes and equipment are making everything easier to ride.
where will it stop
70 and still doing nohanders.haaa.
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Old 12-01-05, 04:01 PM   #2
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Old 12-01-05, 04:09 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by mydarkself
could be i'm still a kid.
theres nothing like 8 miles of gut twisting steep and vertigo inducing DOWNHILL.
but i'm 53 now. i promised my wife and kids i'd go around the steeps and use more brake.
i put my feet down more, thats for sure.
seems like i get dizzy easier too.
the people making bikes and equipment are making everything easier to ride.
where will it stop
70 and still doing nohanders.haaa.
Makes me jealous !!! 8 miles of downhill. Only thing I can think against that is How far to climb to get it? Longest hill we have round here is about 1 mile, and that is over too quickly. Mind you, take that mile offroad and the adrenalyn does start flowing. One thing about being older- You have all those years of experience to know how to work the Downhills to your advantage. I still ride a hardtail, and the highlight of one of my riding buddies this year was that he beat me downhill. No excuse, I wasn't fast enough on that hill, but I made certain that he took my spray on the next two. On the more moderm equipment- you still need the experience to ride it, as I keep telling those mates of mine on the full suspension bikes. Either that or put the brain away before gravity takes over.
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Old 12-01-05, 08:16 PM   #4
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8 miles! Super! I ride down a 3 mile stretch of dirt road that drops 650 ft of vertical. It's very steep in places with ruts, lose gravel, and blind turns and drops. It's a thrill better than any roller coaster ride I've ever been on. I try to stay below 35 mph just to let my wife and daughter know I'm not being reckless. The 1 & 1/2 mile climb is always worth the down hill on the other side!
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Old 12-01-05, 08:55 PM   #5
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All that downhill would kill me as I'm not nearly as excited by that as I am about the climb leading up to it. I tend to put my feet down too. Unfortunately, I do it on the climbs. Just remember, if you promise your wife and kids you'll go around the steeps and keep it slow, don't take them with you. You wouldn't want them to know the truth would you?

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Old 12-02-05, 04:15 AM   #6
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When they go--- YES we go around ALL the steeps and keep it under 20! But they do know about the hill mentioned above. I'm sort of obligated to the truth.
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Old 12-02-05, 09:13 AM   #7
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8 miles! Super! I ride down a 3 mile stretch of dirt road that drops 650 ft of vertical. It's very steep in places with ruts, lose gravel, and blind turns and drops. It's a thrill better than any roller coaster ride I've ever been on. I try to stay below 35 mph just to let my wife and daughter know I'm not being reckless. The 1 & 1/2 mile climb is always worth the down hill on the other side!
One of the problems with our hills is that they are too short. I am talking a maximum of 1 mile hill with a 600ft drop in elevation. These are offroad though and the attached pic was taken in the Summer. Now imagine it from wednesday night, very slippery chalk, ruts are deeper, lot more flints about the size of footballs, and on the Tandem. We took it steady and still fell off 3 times, and that was climbing it. For some reason, we took it even steadier on the way down as it was on this hill we had a front blowout at 35mph in the summer and my pilot still remembers how hard the ground was. Also attached is a trail through woods. That little step at centre of picture is where the solos get launched. The Tandem doesn't get airborne on this little bit of solid Flint, but it does rattle a bit at 40 mph.
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Old 12-02-05, 10:46 AM   #8
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Stepfam,
Your ruts, groves and lose stuff make my New Hampshire dirt roads look nearly 20th century. I might go out this afternoon before dark comes and take a few pics. It's nice to see green. Snow today, tomorrow, Monday and Tuesday. More like ski & snowshoe season.
Bob
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Old 12-02-05, 04:05 PM   #9
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Stepfam,
It's nice to see green. Snow today, tomorrow, Monday and Tuesday. More like ski & snowshoe season.
Bob
Our trails also come in Brown. Taken in a Wet May in 2004, and these are after they had repaired the trail from the winter
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Old 12-02-05, 05:19 PM   #10
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Stapfam,
Are you the stoker or the guy-in-front? As a Californian, where brown is often more prevalent than green...I admire all that emerald color. The mud not so much.
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Old 12-03-05, 04:28 PM   #11
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Stapfam,
Are you the stoker or the guy-in-front? As a Californian, where brown is often more prevalent than green...I admire all that emerald color. The mud not so much.
I am the wise one on the back. getting shielded from the overspray from the front wheel. (Hence the large front mudgaurd.) By the way, the 3rd picture is not the crest of a steep hill- it is the mud trying to swallow the rear tyre.
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Old 12-03-05, 05:18 PM   #12
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By the way, the 3rd picture is not the crest of a steep hill- it is the mud trying to swallow the rear tyre.
It looks almost hub deep from this angle. You must have to do almost daily maintenance on the bike. Speaking of which, who maintains your trails....is this public or private land you guys ride?
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Old 12-04-05, 02:27 AM   #13
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It looks almost hub deep from this angle. You must have to do almost daily maintenance on the bike. Speaking of which, who maintains your trails....is this public or private land you guys ride?
We seemed to have wandered from the original subject, but this will appy to all rides in any case, so carry on. We ride on Public trails, but this particular path is on Forestry land, where you have the logging and maintenance trucks using their paths. The are maintained- normally by putting a Scraper over the trail to smooth it and covering with 4" of stone, but as you can see, by the end of winter, the trail is only suitable for tractors, And mountain bikes of course.

Maintenance after every ride will consist of a complete wash down of the bike and rider, then a spray with a water displacement oil (WD40 or the like) Then after a coffee and a bath, I check the bike. Wiping the remains of dirt and the oil off will get it clean, but at the same time you check for parts that need adjustment. have the cables got water in but they get released and lubricated after every wash, have the brake blocks gone out of alignment or do they need replacing, Are the wheels and tyres in good condition, any play in the bearings and so on. This means that next time out, and if I ever find one, I will be able to do that 8 mile downhill with the completely conviction that the Bike will not fall apart on me when I get to 50mph and that the brakes will work when I want them to.

Of course, if the bike has gone out and not got itself dirty, then it will not need a wash, but it will still get that wipeover, and check of the parts to make sure nothing is about to fail.
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Old 12-04-05, 10:59 AM   #14
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Maintenance after every ride will consist of a complete wash down of the bike and rider, then a spray with a water displacement oil (WD40 or the like)
Does the WD40 help with creaking joints, like the knees, elbows, or back?
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Old 12-04-05, 11:06 AM   #15
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Does the WD40 help with creaking joints, like the knees, elbows, or back?
Try an age-displacement spray! WD50Plus.
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Old 12-06-05, 06:50 PM   #16
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stapfam I have enjoyed your posts for quite some time. You are truly a Mad Dog -- and I mean that with all due respect and admiration. Your night riding posts have peaked my interest in an area that I had not previously been aware of. I have had a few UK riding clubs bookmarked for years and visit from time-to-time. Ribble Valley CC in Preston comes to mind.

As for me, I've become very tentative with downhills lately. Perhaps it's the drop in testosterone!

At one time however, I used an old Tour trick for the mountain decents: water bottles filled with buck shot. I would use these for downhill thrills here in the Pocono mountains of Pennsylvania. Like yourself, everything would have to be inspected to the nines. Then you just get into position, load the buckshot filled water bottles into their cages, and let gravity provide the show.

I look back at that now -- older and wiser (I hope) -- and feel it was one part skill, and a lot of parts luck, that I'm alive to sit here and type this now.

But what a thrill at the time. Man.

Edited to give a nod of the head to mydarkself, who started the thread. Careful with those no-hands decents!

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