Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Chequamegon

This past weekend I returned to the Chequamegon National Forest for some MTBing. I joined a group who goes there every October for a weekend, this was my 2nd year with them and I really enjoyed both times.

We stayed at a very nice "cabin" and as there were seven of us it was also pretty economical. My favorite part (besides the lack of mildew that we lived in last year) was that we could ride from the cabin to the trails (which were dry and in excellent condition!).

After not biking much this summer, and my last few rides being dirty, and costly, it was a real treat to get back to the old stomping grounds, and riding in the 50's most of the time. Thanks so much to Mr. and Mrs. Bacon http://3speedblog.blogspot.com/ for letting me use the Mrs. hard tail.

CAMBA is the organization that builds and maintains over 200 miles of MTB trails inside and outside of the Cheq. National Forest. There is a little over 60 miles of single track right now, and plans are to continue building single track until there will be over 100 miles of pure MTB bliss!!

60+ of those miles will be connected so one could ride 60 miles of single track without repeating one inch of trail! That would be over 120 miles out and back... if ever there was a thing that would be fun enough to kill ya.

We started on one of my favorite trails: Esker. It winds up a hill and then you ride a ridge of roller-coaster hills that ends in a large climb to an amazing vista. One of our group took a wrong turn and wound up skipping the hill+vista (he didn't mind) and got back to the cabin solo.

After a brief mission of seeking, he retraced his pedal-strokes to find us and we went into Cable for some supper.

The next day we went to Fish Hatchery trail to start what would be our day of single track. The following video shows me rubbing tires with Mr. Bacon (my helmet camera got whacked by a branch right at the start of the ride and I didn't realize it was loose the rest of the day):

video

Did you notice the orange vest? We found out when we got there that it was a special season for deer hunting because the DNR determined there are too many does and if we don't shoot them they will die.

We heard some gun shots, but nothing that was close enough to us to be of concern.

After a hearty lunch at my favorite Norske Nook in Hayward http://www.norskenook.com/ we spotted a bobcat on our way to the Rocklake trail!

We split into two groups for the afternoon ride. One of us was on trails for his first time and it wasn't really fair to him to take him on the longer route.

I was having a difficult time at the end and I felt really exhausted by my efforts, only to find out I'd been pedaling with the rear brake rubbing against the rim of the wheel! So my 36 miles on the day should have some factor added to it, but I'm not that smart.

Our group doctor had a run in with a stick at the very end of the trail that day and the stick won: it removed his rear derailleur and jammed it into his spokes. He had to walk less than 100 yards to the cars, very lucky in an unlucky kind of way.

That night we had a spaghetti feast and watched Terminator 2 (my favorite of the three) on the satellite TV.

The next day we rode briefly on the Ojibwe trail and took the Short&Fat/ Sleigh/ Birkibeiner trails back to the cabin. We were all pretty tired, next year we will not be doing single track on Sunday.

1 comment:

rigtenzin said...

This is a good report. But your forgot to mention all the stinkiness.