Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Thoughts on Road Biking in Boston

I think I see Massachusetts plates.
If you haven’t figured it out yet.  I can’t stand road biking.  It’s not the lack of suspension, thin tires, awkward body positioning, or spandex shorts that I can’t stand.  Frankly, the ten pounds you shave off a road bike is worth these indignities.  I can’t stand road biking because it takes place on roads, where inevitably I will find drivers.... Boston drivers. 

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Kingdom Trails: Numbers (August 21, 2011)

Cowpath or Bike Trail? 

Four hours. Three thousand feet.  Thirty miles.

Those are the cold hard numbers that can't begin to convey the more meaningful experience of exploration, exhilaration and downright joy that I found on my third trip to Kingdom Trails this year.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Beyond the Minuteman: Whipple Hill (August 2011)

A Fells-ish spot at Whipple.
I was upside down, completely underwater and with my bike on top of me. Despite the thought of being trapped, I found it hard not to laugh at my predicament.

It was the summer of 2008 and I was biking the Nanamocomuck trail with a couple friends who had gotten far enough ahead of me to be out of sight.  “The Nan” was a wild trail, littered with blow downs, running along the Kancamagus Highway.  A long section of the trail ran atop an elevated berm with occasional water crossings. The first few of these crossings were only inches deep.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

-Trip Report- North Tri-Pyramid Slide (February 2009)

A glimpse of the slide.

There is a serene beauty that envelops you on a winter night in the mountains: a clear sky, a fresh foot of snow softening your surroundings, and the silence of a hardwood forest asleep for the winter.  These are the peaceful memories that sustain you during a stressful day at the office.  It helps however, when you edit out the “port-a-potty on game day” smell of the inside of your tent.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Beyond the Minuteman: Landlocked Forest Unlocked

Paint Mine Area:  Good place for biking.  Not so good for flying kites.

A short time ago I lived in a world where an evening ride at the Landlocked Forest in Burlington, MA required me to first drive through rush hour traffic on Route 128.  Well I’m happy to say that the world as I knew it has ceased to exist. 

In its place is a better world.   One where you don’t need a car to go mountain biking; where you can ride for hours while avoiding busy roads with drivers who would rather make you a hood ornament than arrive at their destinations thirty seconds later;  and a world where you DON’T have to listen to Metallica on the way to Yoga class.

Welcome to the world just beyond the Minuteman.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Gear Review: 2010/2011 K2 Backlash (Now I See)

I swear I didn't plan this shot.  Really.
It’s really hard to find bad reviews of backcountry products online. When was the last time you ever heard someone tell you that the item they tested was a piece of garbage? 

Maybe bad reviews get buried.  Maybe people are a bunch of liars.  Maybe when there’s nothing nice to say, people don’t say anything at all.   Personally, I think there’s a tendency to rationalize or justify a purchase: especially with large ticket items.

So let me readily admit that my earlier ski reviews are total bullshit.  I was blind and now I see.   I can thank the folks at K2 for my new perspective.