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Old 09-25-05, 08:28 AM   #1
rasheed
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the end of the riding season is slowly coming around the corner for some of us, with maybe a couple more months of autumn riding before winter hits. i thought i'd post up and see how everyone's season has been so far in terms of acommplishments or failures with respect to the goals that we had set for for ourselves at the beginning of the season.

for me, i hadn't really set any specific goals and just wanted to get more time in riding than i did last season. i also wanted to improve in my overall bike handling skills and i'm glad with how my season has progressed this year, despite the fact that i still feel fairly uncomfortable in the air and apprehensive of hitting dirtjumps and drops bigger than 4' after a couple of crashes i had last year (one in which i broke the arch on my fork and another in which i tacoed my front wheel). as the season's been winding down i've been working on that a bit though hitting up drops more often and trying to go a bit bigger and bigger each time. hopefully, next year i'll be comfortable with dirtjumps again.

as for handling skills, i've made quite a bit of progress and am getting more comfortable with riding skinnies and ladder bridges. a bunch of new stuff has been popping up here and there in the don trails and i've been trying at least one new stunt each ride out, giving them a go as my confidence on the bike has been getting stronger. my favourite has got to be this new one that was put up just last week:





it's not really skinny, being about a foot wide (done for safety reasons - the city wouldn't be too happy with non-"fatkid"-proof stunts), but it's super long and super fun. at present time, i think i've pretty much hit up every skinny in the don except one (which happens to be one of the longer, skinnier skinnies in the valley). teeters have become a piece of cake and i'm starting to get better at judging just how much fast or slow stunts can or should be hit at.

my trackstand isn't where i want it to be yet, but it's getting better. bunnyhopping is on and off... some days my technique and timing is on, some days it's seriously lacking. i've started learning how to ride up larger obstacles like riding up onto 2' ledges and sets of stairs more than 3 or 4 steps high. as for learning how to wheelie and manual, i've kind of put that off for the meantime in favour of getting more comfortable on the trail and improving my balance on the bike. next year, hopefully, i'll spend more time on things like wheelies, manuals, endos and more of the trialsy type moves. using those tricks thoroughout the trail make things more fun, challenging and not to mention styley .

i also got my first real taste of dh and loved it. hopefully, i'll get more chances to head up to bluemountain and get some more experience riding dh as it's a whole different animal than the crosscountry type trailriding we do within the don valley.

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Old 09-25-05, 09:36 AM   #2
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Ladder bridges are interesting to me. They seem so out of place. That's cool you got back on the jumps after some falls.

While I don't do any trick stuff or jumps, I ride a lot of cross-country (4-5 days per week).

I started riding in August of this year and am already clearing uphills I used to have to step down 4-5 times on. I've pretty much turned all my body fat into muscle. I feel lean and mean.

I'd like to be a little less heavy on my brakes during downhill parts. I think about all the bike accident's I've had in the past (BMX, 10 speeds) and really need to get over them.

I'd like to learn how to clear the more technical uphills in my trail system. There are some parts with a lot of slickrock, 1 to 2 ft. stairs, root ledges, etc. Maybe you can give me some advice there? I'm kinda tired of having to walk over them.
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Old 09-25-05, 10:21 AM   #3
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My season has been stagnant to a point. I haven't progressed much, but have gotten better at what I was good at before. I have taken a lot of newbs riding and have focussed on getting them better which has slowed me down to a point. On downhills I am much faster and much more proactive instead of reactive. My trail vision is better and mu confidence is way up. My air time still stinks but is getting worked on.

I also think the 6week broken ribs took some air out of my progression. That was my prime time to ride with all my better riding buddies up here to push me. All I could do was watch.

I also worked on my body weight and my xc skills. That likely progressed more than my dh stuff. I rode a lot with lots of little skinny road sized riders. Lots of lung. In the end they helped push me up, and I showed them how to ride down seeing as they would smoke me up and I would beat them down as they hiked tech sections. Now they just plain beat me as I have them riding the tech sections instead of staring at them. haha

Bonus of the year - I now have 4 ot 5 people I can dh with at any time. Thats key
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Old 09-25-05, 10:22 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thejoe
I'd like to learn how to clear the more technical uphills in my trail system. There are some parts with a lot of slickrock, 1 to 2 ft. stairs, root ledges, etc. Maybe you can give me some advice there? I'm kinda tired of having to walk over them.
Body english. Has everything to do with unweighting and weighting the front and rear of your bike in perfect time
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Old 09-25-05, 11:33 AM   #5
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my first 'season' mountain biking, so nothing really exciting. i have seen a HUGE improvement from when i first started, that isnt saying much.

the first time i went i could not make it up this long stretch of fireroad to get to the trails, now i am powering up it twice a ride sometimes. i have not made too much progress on the dh part. i can tackle the more techy dh parts, but i still fall sometimes, i dont really mind. i dont fall in that spot the next time.

i think this forum has helped me a bit on getting into this sport, thanks guys!
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Old 09-25-05, 12:13 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thejoe
Ladder bridges are interesting to me. They seem so out of place. That's cool you got back on the jumps after some falls.
well, that's the thing, i haven't really hit any dirtjumps since those two crashes. i don't know what it is, fear of getting hurt or fear of breaking my bike. i've hit a few kickers on the trail, which launch you more forward than up like dirt jumps do, but that's not the same as hitting up gaps and stuff like that. you don't really have to worry too much about casing with the jumps i've been hitting as of late.


Quote:
Originally Posted by thejoe
I'd like to learn how to clear the more technical uphills in my trail system. There are some parts with a lot of slickrock, 1 to 2 ft. stairs, root ledges, etc. Maybe you can give me some advice there? I'm kinda tired of having to walk over them.
like mael said, "body english". body positioning is key when attacking obstacles regardless if you're climbing, decending or just riding on relatively flat trails. learn how to shift your weight back to get your front wheel up and then shifting your weight back forward to help get your rear over. also figuring out the timing for your pedal strokes help out a lot. nothing worse than tackling a climb with obstacles like roots and rocks and having your momentum killed by catching your pedal or crank arm on something - or even having your back tire slip on a root or something cause your pedal stroke was timed wrong.

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Old 09-25-05, 12:56 PM   #7
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What is all of this talk about SEASONS?
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Old 09-25-05, 01:08 PM   #8
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Wanna come here and try and ride in the winter? hahaha
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Old 09-25-05, 01:16 PM   #9
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****, those look fun.
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Old 09-25-05, 01:56 PM   #10
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My season's been pretty good (well, I started cycling in March, but that's about the start of the season, no?). I learnt to trackstand, drop, jump, gap, DH, FR. My wheelies are doing good, trackstanding is also going steady, dropping is fine, along with jumping, gapping I'm still in need of some confidence to get more speed before hitting the actual gaps. Bunny hopping is doing very crap and I'm practicing as much as I can. Manualling? I've managed a few 1 second manuals which were decent, nothing more. Skinnies are doing great, I'm fairly confident on them. I'm very confident doing endos (I love doing them, as my RST will testify: It's got a lot of play and flex in it. I've managed some no footer endos but I'm still not too confident on them, I can't get the back end up far enough without standing up to shift my weight. A few weeks ago I had a nasty bail on a kicker and twisted my ankle, really scraped my knees and elbows and nearly had to get skin transplant on my right calf for like a 2"x3" area. I screwed my crankset in June, sandwiching the 3 chainrings together, bending a crankarm and ripping off both pedals. The biggest drop I hit was 6' to tranny, it was pretty scary. I also learnt how to do a 90 degree endo.
All this in 6 months.

MTBing rocks.

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Old 09-25-05, 02:23 PM   #11
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My season's been great!

I started serious mountain biking in February after purchasing my first "real" MT bike.

I can say that I've definitly progressed faster than I ever thought I would. Mostly rode XC trails in the Cambridge area being that's all that's available. Built up in speed, endurance and technical ability.

Played on a few different North Shore setups which was a blast, after seeing it done in all the bike videos - to be able to go and do it for real was a rush.

Even started dabbling in trials type activities. Must say the bike is too heavy for some of the things I may want to do but I've enjoyed the challenge!

Wish we had more hills around though! I love to downhill - will be making a trip to Montreal to some of the "mountains" out there in October. That should be a blast... hitting up some long and steep hills.
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Old 09-25-05, 03:00 PM   #12
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Mine was great until July 20th.
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Old 09-25-05, 03:05 PM   #13
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Mine was great until July 20th.
Sigh...What happened July 20th? Inside story?
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Old 09-25-05, 03:14 PM   #14
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rasheed where exactly is that skinny you showed pictures of? I think my friend was telling me about that same one but I have no idea where it is.
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Old 09-25-05, 04:21 PM   #15
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Sigh...What happened July 20th? Inside story?
I broke my ankle in three places, 10-12 week healing process. It sucks.
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Old 09-25-05, 05:26 PM   #16
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My season didn't really happen. My big goal was to buy a 5" travel dual squishy, but being unemployed for two months after graduation ended that dream. Ideally I would've used those two months for riding, but I was always waiting for word back on one job opportunity or another, and usually getting screwed by having my resumes processed by a computer (ok, I'll end that rant). I did a little bit of riding, but never got out of the Portland area.

In early spring, though, I did have a few chances to work on my skills a little bit. I'd never really done any drops before, so it was a pretty big step up to do a couple 3 footers to flat on my hardtail. Now I'm focusing pretty heavily on soccer, but maybe I'll take some time to work on wheelies and manuals.
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Old 09-25-05, 05:28 PM   #17
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I'm NOT a "seasonal" rider.... Thank YOU, GOD....

As for the rest of you sinner's, better luck next year, huh?
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Old 09-25-05, 06:14 PM   #18
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HEY MAN! we're mountain bikers. when one season ends, another one starts. It's like change of scenery.
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Old 09-25-05, 06:16 PM   #19
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Seasons over? My season is about to start up, as soon as summer ends!
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Old 09-25-05, 08:36 PM   #20
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My season has been somewhat of an adventure that is temporarily on hold due to injury.
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Old 09-25-05, 08:47 PM   #21
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Ok im just starting to get in to moutain biking i live in South California. What do you mean by end of the season? You guys dont moutain bike in the winter?
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Old 09-25-05, 08:55 PM   #22
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Ok im just starting to get in to moutain biking i live in South California. What do you mean by end of the season? You guys dont moutain bike in the winter?
I do, I just go into park mode.
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Old 09-25-05, 09:02 PM   #23
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fall weather is soon to come hooo-raw
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Old 09-25-05, 09:46 PM   #24
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Quote:
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Ok im just starting to get in to moutain biking i live in South California. What do you mean by end of the season? You guys dont moutain bike in the winter?
6 ft of snow...hmmmm...I guess I could ride on the road. But wheres the fun in that.
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Old 09-25-05, 10:40 PM   #25
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well for me ive had a great year, i went from toodleing around on my xmart bike to rideing my big freeride bike to the limits

-ive become an extemly smooth and flowy rider
-ive ridden at both sunpeaks and whistler this summer(also my local mountain, see huck pic)
-had 2 injuries, a broken back and a concussion (results of the concussion crash in pic as well as the jump i crashed on. not me in the pic, but think bigger, i overshot it so bad)



-did the biggest huck of my life


-learned trials stuff (hopping, pivoting, rollbacks, trackstands)
-learned to wheelie very well and have almost got the manual down
-my balance is prety good now but still needs some work


-ive also helped others get better
-ive learned to do no foots, one foots, suicide one hands, and no handers, whips and tables.





i think its been an awesome season for me
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