The Best Dam Ride is a charity ride hosted by Chain Reaction Bicycles, a LBS here in the Augusta area. The ride benefits the Southeastern Firefighters Foundation, there are several road options and a few MTB options.
This year, like last year, a small group of us started about an hour before the official ride started and added some extra trail to the MTB route for about a 70 mile ride on the Thurmond Epic, which I’ve written about before. Since that blog post I’ve ridden the route half a dozen times or so, it’s a fun long route. Of all those miles only about ~11 are on pavement, ~4 miles of doubletrack/woods road, and the rest is singletrack.
Sunday’s ride was GREAT. We had about a dozen guys do the big ride. From the start a few of the experienced long distance riders stupid fast pace right at the start and the group broke up as soon as we hit the first bit of singletrack, but everyone found their way and had a good ride. I had one of the better performances I’ve ever had and hung with the "lead" group all day, even riding my singlespeed on the road sections. Here’s a few pics I took.
How to survive flat roads on a SS when riding with geared riders. Grab a wheel and catch a draft, and hang on for dear life. Spin at 1,000rpm for a few seconds, coast, repeat. DO NOT LOSE THE DRAFT!! If you do, they’re gone. Work hard, stay hidden from the wind, it’s the only hope.
So glad I got a pic of this awkward almost-fall haha
I’m going to start marketing some add on fork crown mounted aerobars. I’ll post the link to KickStarter when it’s ready.
~40 miles into the day, with ~30 miles left to go – nothing hits the spot like some Dixie Champagne and a Snickers bar.
Nice ride, Dustin! Miles are going faster when riding in group, especially "lead" group, right? 😃
Over 3kkall burned – one Snickers isn’t enough to compensate. Was there post-ride XL pizza involved?
For the first part of the ride I kept thinking "slow down stoopid, you’re going too fast, this will not end well…screw it, lets see how long I can stay with them" 😼 The pace was slow enough I could keep up, but just fast enough I had to work at it, and I knew it wasn’t sustainable for 70 miles.
Thankfully after about two hours they eased up.
At the end of the ride you finish the last bit of trail, then there’s ~2 miles of pavement. Long flat section across a dam, then a big descent down to the parking lot at the bottom of the dam. Going across the dam by youself SUCKS, especially on a SS. It’s windy, dead flat, and you can work work work work and it feels like you’re not going anywhere. By the time we got to the end of the singletrack one guy was way out front, another a minute or so ahead of me, and then everyone else about 10mins behind me. Thanksfully, Patrick, the guy just ahead of me, waited at the end of the trail and we rode across the dam together. I was super thankful to have a wheel to to sit on and hide from the wind. It was all I could do to keep up, but it was the fastest I’ve ever gone across that dam on a MTB I’m pretty sure haha.