Thursday, August 30, 2007

Camp Politics & Riding

The Camp proceeds with its weired official attire politics. For PyZahl this all seams odd, useless, counterproductive and not at all ESH improving but worsening -- is DO* is playing god and we have to adhere the prophets? -- PyZahl dose not be leave in god, but in the simple rules of nature or just physics -- so what, he proceeded with his project hiding in the all new playground and did not cared for today.

About riding today: Starting the day with an extra hill this gorgeous morning and finishing up tonight until sunset with a little more Cyclocross out of the Camp heading towards Wading River Beach. It was such a nice evening, very comfortable and warm. He felt like trying something new and so a good swim was very tempting. No towel, no swim wear, but his bike shorts would do the job. So, one thought and action, getting rid of everything but the shorts he went into the water, it was great, very nice temperature, and just did a few laps -- slightly more tired, he was little tired already getting there -- and got out his leftover sandwich and enjoyed it, while the sun was more and more and getting down, so he cleaned off sand, put back on his shoes and rode home via the last few hills via North Country just in time with the sun set.

A Cappuccino, a Cookie and his home made bread with honey, a quick nap, listening to DRSdrü. Still hungry, preparing a quick dinner and finishing off with an Espresso & Vanilla Ice Cream.

Let's wait what's coming up next at CU... -- 4sure a long weekend :-)


Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Views of Camp Upton

PyZahl did his weekly We n8 ride tonight (hammered just a bit away) and was at pretty weird moods today cos of some strange Camp politics today in contrast to actually nice results he recently got at testing a new scanning pico probe system at very cold environment.

Here is a recently captured view of our good friend over Camp Upton...

And here we have a real Canadian...

And this is how silver looks like if you just magnify about 42'400'000x ....

Sunday, August 26, 2007

D2R2 2007 - Third Annual Deerfield Dirt-Road Randonnee - Report

On Saturday, August 25, 2007, the Third Annual Deerfield Dirt-Road Randonnee (D2R2) started at 6 AM at the Franklin County Fairgrounds in Greenfield, Massachusetts. The ride will benefit the Franklin Land Trust. This RUSA populaire is breathtaking in both senses of the word: 107 miles, 70% on dirt roads, with 11,300 feet of climbing.
However, PyZahl finished with about 120mi and over 13611 feet of climbing.

A little unconventional, but greatly suited, he used his new and Custom made Stonebite Cobalt Cross Race 28" mit 700x30 Michelin Cyclo Cross Mud 2.

** a special machine **
Friday early afternoon PyZahl took off to meet with some buddies to travel to Greenfield, MA.
In Northhampton, close to Greenfied, they went to the famous Northhampton Brewery for a Pre-ride pasta dinner and a little bit of local brewed beer.

Going to bed early, as they took off at 5am to get ready at the start at Greenfield Campgrounds -- rolling off at 6:06am.

The start was fast -- PyZahl always wonders why they all race out so fast for such a long thing, does it matter, is it good at all? -- they passed by an crash situation of an (to PyZahl) unkonown rider, he hopes he is fine and wishes all the best. -- Hell, this is not a race!
Little ahead of the group with Phil and Kevin they missed a turn, got behind without the others knowing. Next, on some rougher sections, Kevin broke a spoke, they lost more time and got further behind there group. Managing the bike to roll again, but not good to proceed, Kevin made it back to his car, went to a bike shop and got it fixed.

In the meantime PyZahl proceeded with Phil and enabled his GPS D2R2 2006 track log navigation to prevent further missed turns, which worked great. As there are not always local route aware riders around, streets and turns unnamed at times and the Que Sheet is hard to follow on the fly going fast. At the first secret Water Stop and Checkpoint:

Riding on, great country sites, and roads, but getting hot and staying very humid, here taking a photo of fellow riders and waiting up the only one remaining in his "group" -- and Yes, PyZahl is taking along his big and heavy digital SLR for great shots!

Meeting Kevin at the 2nd stop, the rest of group seams lost, confusing, however, we need to proceed as the cut-off time comes closer. Here the second official Checkpoint and Water/Food stop settled at a scenic setting across a covered bridge:

Checkpoint #2 well stocked with food and water, gels and drinks:

One more view:

So PyZahl proceeded now again with Phil and Kevin, passing great valleys and river sites. Here on left of Phil one unkown rider tackling the course on an MTB.

Very scenic river with some kind of art, too tempting to take a dip, now!! But they needed to proceed....

That nice gently down stream dirt road along that river was too soon to be left, PyZahl felt a bit like sh*t and mentally tiered that moment, however the following climb after a sharp almost U turn (which can be miss easily, but thanks to the GPS we did not :-) woke him up and at top a short and fast road downhill came up, he topped his speed close to 75km/h, that was a great cooling wind... At that point Kevin must have bailed... as we waited at the bottom for nothing.

Crusing a few easy roads at good speed made PyZahl feeling much better again, but not for long, the next, and he thinks, longes and steeped climb came up on them, here, at the end of the steep part -- waiting and taking a few photos :-)

That trees spending shade were really great and life saving at this brutal hot and humid day.

Most of the steep off road climbs, PyZahl was really happy having plenty of gearing, good grip tires, so he was able to pedal up all the steeps, not even goofing on a single one and confidently making fast turns on descents :-)
Pushing "big" gears may work the first and second time, but most riders got in trouble later. At least a compact or better triple chain ring is recommended.

Me and Phil ready for take off from the last Checkpoint to the finish :-)

...finisthing the tour with some fellow riders ;-) GPS runs out of battery at last 7mi, making it to the finish by the Que Sheet without any troubles.

Finish together with to fellow riders the official "115mi" at about 6:20pm:

At the Finish PyZahl found out the rest of the group got lost and bailed at about 100mi total.

PyZahl GPS Track Log (some missing mi and ft):

See also the overview pages of all photos with comments below the photos:

This was an extraordinary tour, close or at PyZahl's limits. Especially with that hot weather in place.

And special thanks to all the organizers and volunteers and secret water stop volunteers along the route...
if you want to figure out your limits, that is the tour to do -- you have to do it, to get the idea of it and what it means, to ride almost 200km on dirt with over 4200m of elevation gain!

*** D2R2 180k Results, taken from Newhorizonbikes site (search for D2R2 results) and sorted this looks like this table. ***

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Jacks 54mi hill ride or how to make up 1300m elevation gain on Long Island

Early Saturday morning PyZahl got up to ride to SUNY to Jacks hill ride what is supposed to link a good number of uphills and "long" undistracted downhills to simulate a bit of mountain feeling.

At the Lighhouse:

Well, still no mountains but PyZahl got a good 1300hm in this gorgeous clear and very low humidity day.

Here is how and where in detail

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Turning on coarse sand at some speed

Saturday the 11th PyZahl joined Jack's 103 miler from Sunshine Mall out to the East Hampton Wind Mill. Starting with some bagels at the start more and more riders showed up and finally with a late start at 7:20 instead of 7am the group rolled out south.
On the way a few more riders joined, a head group took off heading for a Dune Road -- one business stop on Dune Rd -- regrouping and again some splitting along Dune Rd and over the bridge... -- here some riders split off to short cut, since then the 103mi group stayed together.
1st misshapen (stuck in some crack in the road), two riders going down, they are fine, just one bike had a broken spoke and the other needed some wheel truing.

... and finally we got to East Hampton, Windmill for lunch.

... return more north and backtracking over the bridge (the route) and proceeding north on the EBs S route, further to Riverhead ...

PyZahl had a little slide out on some gravel from last days rain on a tight turn, not so nice feeling if there are many little sphere like objects suddenly and unexpected under both wheels in a turn... some emergency slide and tip over ended up in a scratched up rear quick release and a little hole in his skin at the elbow :-(

So what, the ride was finished little late due to the sum of delays, but still, it was a great day.

A BBQ at PyZahl's place with friends finished the day.

PyZahl used Sunday for chill'n home :-)

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Foggy Duck Pond

8am, 28C, close to 100% -- PyZahl must stop on his ride to work to capture his scenery in the raising morning sun.
Wading River, Duck Pond. (C) PyZahl

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Return to the Island

PyZahl now looks back on one more great Mountain Bike getaway and a four day Tour in the Swiss Alps, Wallis -- that's why he was so quite here lately -- he found it feels really good to forget all the WWW and computing stuff for some time and get back to mother nature and just enjoy fresh mountain air and let the panoramic views memorize.

He wants to share just a few impressions, as it is almost impossible to get the idea about it without been there and doing it, riding it he means...

Day 1: Ulrichen to Brig -- via the Aletschglacier, Maerjelensee, Bettmeralp

Day 2: Brig to Grimentz via Turtmanntal, Gruben, Meidpass, Ayer. The last 400m elevation gain to Meidpass were not ridable and so the bike was carried on the back...

A view just before the bike carriage passage:

all the way up here...
on top
Day 3: Grimentz to Nendaz via Lac & Glacier de Moiry, climbing further up to Basset de Lona, Euseigne (Pyramides) ... a awesome very gently climbing (or descending) trail along small water supply streams (irrigation feeders) and again climbing up to Nendaz.
[GPS: ]

This morning PyZahl felt very tiered and not well fueled up, as last nights dinner was not so perfect and too low and less on carbs... a whole bunch of Cliff Bars helped finally to make it.

This first road section was a pain.... (only the last few km shown here)

But the magnificent view on top let forget all about it...

At Basset de Lona, the peak needed to be climbed to get the big view...

A short fast downhill along a little lake and one more climb to get over the pass flollowed...

From there a steep downhill on a rubble field followed, PyZahl did not felt comfortable riding it all the way down, but his swiss buddy just went for it.... wooooosh, oh well. No Photo.

A nice long tail brought the three bikers all the way down to the valley and they stopped to see the "Pyramides of Euseigne" on the way.

The day was not yet done, as a last climb up to Nendaz was waiting, but easy going on paved road, just a constant 8..11%.

Day 4: Nendaz to Martigny via more mountain passes including one more steep hike/climb a bike section
[GPS: ]

The day stared with an easy road section and more steep gravel road and turned into a awesome long section of smooth but party very narrow and challenging to frightening steep drops on the right and at times water filled deep gap on the left of the trail...

Here an easy going section...

Some rock falls were blocking the ride...

... and more surprises

... which let to an pretty steep climb (hike) the bike up the forest on an detour ... no photo, to steep, to narrow, to busy ... that detour and an more extreme downhill done (more or less riding for PyZahl once again here) a great long and again narrow trail followed before one more pass had to be climbed and a final hike the bike...

... before the awesome way down to the valley of all ripe apricots started.

The team figured on the fly a connection of several more or less challenging hiking trails all the way down into the valley, along apricot trees and wine fields. All the way down, a few more km had to be done in the flat warm and very windy -- head wind for sure -- valley to the finish in Martigny at the train station. [more photos here]

* * *

However, back to normal, Sunday Early Birds were a go today, or should he say one more supersonic flight -- anyone cares about wind? No. Hills? Where?