Early before the all day rain. It looked good until about 10 am, then it went pear-shaped.



Dodging too much thunder and lightning strikes until the last few hours of daylight. Then finally sunshine to finish the day. Tomorrow not so much. Out at 4, then wonder why I did that to myself.



My neurosis grows. Fall isn’t far off and I feel optimistic and slow at the same time. I can’t see the results even though I’m not looking for them. The more I try to be calm and normal the snowball gains speed and mass and focuses 100% on the first start of the year. The other races are so much fun with so little pressure that idea of cross, there I said it, CROSS, gets me beyond excited. I know what to do, I just have to arrive there calm (relatively) focused. Not stressing about every single detail and every misstep leading up to number 1. Get the shit together now and don’t worry about the rest of the year. Ride the bike. Be happy, there are worse things to be concerned about. Which, I know is bullshit. On the line it all comes down to tunnel vision.


Roots so wet you could see your reflection in them if you got close enough. Trails the are different from the usual put an even bigger smile on my face. I hear the tires roll over the slicker stuff, slightly conservative and then confident that the big wheels can handle a bit more speed, lean and drift. Solo effort because most of the time it's better that way. Pushed a bigger gear, and felt the bike flow, I almost found that place, then back to reality.

Oh, good, it's the Police

I thought it was funny that the dump truck and the other work trucks that passed me in a line on Swan Mtn Rd gave me at least three feet but the Sheriff's sedan gave me about a foot and a half. I love COPS! Riding up and over the hill to finish the dirt ride of the day and the cop decided to ignore the courtesy and (law too) that requires autos to give cyclists three feet. But wait, he's a cop right? He doesn't have to obey the rules.



Trying to trim away the clutter, the fat gets rendered, moving onto late summer. Nothing much to show aside from scars and disappointment. With a good engine and little better planning, it'll swing around. Feeling coiled and ready to pop, ready for the Fall to be more in the light than the Summer. Having to push through to the light, stay too much in the dark, the light never comes on.


Look Around

Dodging the tourists is hard, it's not my path. Instead, look to the dirt and don't aggravate the shoulder or anyone else. Going up felt great, some company and a different bike than normal to get out of the way. Save the body for the work to be done. It's always cool to see how far out of the way you can get in 2 two hours on the dirt. Looping up to almost 12,000 feet just to look around.



Moving back into the familiar pattern that makes the chilly wake ups early and quiet. Press pot because it's quieter than the the machine, catching up on the tour news, looking for a little excitement before 6 am. Listen to the 2nd half of summer and know that it's too short, that fall is coming too fast and the days are never long enough. An eclipse daily, shortening the distance between breakfast and dinner, struggling to get it all in. Then, it's lost, the enjoyment of summer and the TV brings the pictures from France that just create another want, to see how steep the climbs are, to look at the Alpine roads and picture another rider on them, finally get to ride-cloudy mid summer, while it's still here.



With all of the time spent on the bike, working on the bike, living the monastic, sheltered exisitence of a sort-of bike racer I look at the hour totals on trainingpeaks and wonder what could that time have REALLY produced? More money? Better career? I'll trade it for that subtle feeling of the bike having less resistence. Better than sitting on a park bench punching yourself in the nuts over and over. Pedaling is much better than most. Right now it feels like a warm blanket.


Quietly pushing through what I know I shouldn't do, cheating in a way the route I know I should take but it's easier to not change direction, a month into the rehab and I'm still not a quitter. Needs are met only on one side, the other side suffers. That's the best part, the numbers are there. No need to listen to the bad side when the good is rolling well. The engine is tuned we'll see what the rest of the system allows.


Too big plates holding too little amounts of fish or piled high salad greens with some obscure organ-meat, doesn't sound too appetizing, at least not to me. I prefer to simple foods and the odd (monthly or quaterly) cheeseburger. After eating only chicken and fish for 20 years the sheer party of a burger is exciting.


Every action has a reaction, today it was pedaling at dawn the reaction was tired-ness all afternoon, dragging my ass out of bed at 5 am in favor of time in the woods. Ducking into the woods and out to treeline. Drop down in time to see a thoroughly uneventful, neutralised stage on the Tourmalet. WTF? 70 km to the line from the top of the 3rd most storied climb in the history of The Tour? Show a little respect.


What was once woods is now clearcut. It was a sweet section of snaky trail, now it's avoid the stick in your wheel. Either way it was nice to ride alone on the way in and with friends on the way out. Superfly Single couldn't suit me better. Floating up, dancing down.



One of these afternoons I'll get to do the loop, it's been years since I rode it. You know, it's hard. This summer I on plan on doing it, twice. Weekday afternoon on a day that will get close to 200k. Air up, fuel up and go.



Bike path slalom, getting through the crowd for a little easy tempo. Off and out to the less seen roads, quiet and low flying for the rest of the ride, little bit of sun and my new stuff turns over the little pistons and finishes with a smile.


Way too soon

Sometimes the legs are in sync, like a Rubic's cube of gristle and muscle. Not hard just good stuff today, clearly clear up the hills, instead of one big it was a bunch of small, kind of like...I know it's only July 3, but kind of like that favorite thing.



Crisp and clear, lunch doesn't mean you taste a sandwich today I tasted a bit lactic.