A big tree came down along a segment of our local mtb trail recently. We got it trimmed up a few weeks ago and last week, it occurred to me to try riding over the fat end where it hangs over a concrete block lip. So it's a logover but it's also a drop. Can you predict from these video stills whether or not I endoed?
I'm getting confident enough in my hopping backwards that I'm looking for logs, rocks and ledges to hold a track stand against so that I can back up and THEN try to get up/over them… just for fun! Here's a video clip from last week. The skills sequence: 1) track stand against the vertical ledge of an old bridge; 2) hop backwards; 3) track stand; 4) pedal ratchet to get into position; 5) 3/4 pedal stroke to lift the front wheel; 6) pause in pedaling while unweighting rear wheel. 25-second vid, normal speed then 50% slowmo:
I decided a week or so ago that I needed a refresher on my rocking skills, as I was having trouble deploying them consistently on the trails for tight turns and some obstacles. It occurred to me that, just like I did for learning track stands, I might be able to benefit from 5-10 minutes/day doing drills in my driveway. After 5 days, I've made pretty good progress in my straight-ahead rhythmic rocking. Here's a clip of my session from yesterday, on my 29'er hard tail and on my @advocatecycles Watchman fat bike. Why am I better at rhythmic rocking on The Watchman (Advocate Cycles fat bike) than my 29'er hard tail, even though it's about 5 pounds heavier? #goodproblemtohave 55-seconds, 50% slowmo:
Earlier this week I placed these two railroad ties in our local skills park as a different type of skinny challenge — steep up and steep down. But then I discovered that it was a fun challenge to ride up, make a tight turn, and ride back down. It was a good way to practice my novice-level 'baseline balance skills' of track stands, hopping, and rocking. You can tell I'm a novice by how long it took me to get lined up for the descent — hence, the 4x speed for that segment, followed by the 50% speed for the hopping backwards segment. Now THAT was satisfying! 30-second video
I rode all the black and red sections of the new Brownie Lake trail at @morcpics's Theodore Wirth Singletrack this week. This video shows two sections that I found to be the toughest: 1. An uphill, armoured left turn. After a couple of fails (not that steep but the rocks were a bit slippery with dust and leaves), I cleaned it with a wide cheater line and then again with a straight shot up the middle. 2. The long, straight, steep, rocky uphill with a steep slab in the middle. I got up the slab twice but then lost my balance. I gave up after about a dozen tries. Traction was absolutely perfect. Looking closely at the video, I can see now what I did wrong. I will be back. So. Much. Fun. 55-second video, 50% slowmo:
Two different ways up a tight switchback at @morcpics @lebanonhills with a downhill slab after the turn. 1. Front wheel inside the round rock at the base of the switchback. A track stand at the start: A) gave me time to scope out my line up the incline as I ended up too close to the tree in previous attempts; and B) it gave me time to weight my rear wheel (19-second mark) before applying torque to the leading left pedal, as I was spinning out in previous attempts. After rounding the tree at the top, I rock the front wheel sideways to the left as I'd crashed on the slab in a previous attempt. I added 2 old photos to the video to show the slab. It's tricky because one's wheel is turned sharply left as contact is made. If you don't have time to straighten it by the time you ride off the end of the slab, it's OTB time. 2. Front wheel outside the round rock at the base of the switchback. I'd dabbed so many times to the inside as I pedaled up the incline in previous attempts that I wanted to see if 'straightening the turn' a bit would give me a more reliable route up. Rocking the front wheel sideways 3 times did the trick. It also enabled me to go wider around the tree which in turn allowed for a straighter route over the slab. 57 seconds, 50% slowmo
Brownie Lake segment at Theodore Wirth MTB opened yesterday. More details to come: