My first couple of rides–what I’ve learned so far

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This topic contains 4 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by  gmtbrus 8 years, 5 months ago.

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  • #100536

    Okay, so I’ve christened my shiny new mtb with a few rides on the trails of Fort Ord Public Lands, and I thought I’d share what I’ve learned so far.
    [*:1tys82di]Sand sucks.[/*:1tys82di]
    [*:1tys82di]Mountain biking is an absolute blast, but…[/*:1tys82di]
    [*:1tys82di]…nothing reminds you of how out of shape you really are quite as quickly or effectively as mountain biking.[/*:1tys82di]
    [*:1tys82di]Sand sucks.[/*:1tys82di]
    [*:1tys82di]When you hit sand, lighten your grip on the bars and let the front wheel drive it’s way through. If you white knuckle the grips and try to steer your way through, you WILL fall.[/*:1tys82di]
    [*:1tys82di]Sand sucks.[/*:1tys82di]
    [*:1tys82di]When you hit sand, don’t brake, but PEDAL, PEDAL, PEDAL![/*:1tys82di]
    [*:1tys82di]Sand sucks.[/*:1tys82di]
    [*:1tys82di]What goes down, must painfully go up.[/*:1tys82di]
    [*:1tys82di]If you’re spending more time [i:1tys82di]in[/i:1tys82di] the saddle than [i:1tys82di]out[/i:1tys82di] of it, you’re probably doing something wrong, and your butt will be sore for days.[/*:1tys82di]
    [*:1tys82di]If you forget you’re on the biggest cog and try to upshift again, and your derailleur is due for it’s post-break-in adjustment, the odds of jamming your chain between the big cog and the wheel are high. And that sucks.[/*:1tys82di]
    [*:1tys82di]Sand sucks.[/*:1tys82di]
    [*:1tys82di]It’s okay to look just in front of your front wheel when avoiding ruts and stuff, but when going fast, avoid maintaining that gaze, otherwise you’re likely not gonna see that sharp turn up ahead in time, and end up in the shrubbery, separated from your steed.[/*:1tys82di]
    [*:1tys82di]Wiping out doesn’t hurt nearly as bad as I thought. [/*:1tys82di]
    [*:1tys82di]If you’re new at this, you’re pretty likely to wipe out at least a few times on your first couple of rides out.[/*:1tys82di]
    [*:1tys82di]If the trails you’re riding consist of lots of great hardpack singletrack with many hard-to-spot sand pits, you are guaranteed to wipe out more than a few times on your first couple of rides out.[/*:1tys82di]
    [*:1tys82di]Wiping out in said sand doesn’t usually hurt much…unless it stops you in your tracks, throws you off your bike, and your bike lands on you. Ouch.[/*:1tys82di]
    [*:1tys82di]Apparently, sand is also capable of bending a front rim. Dammit.[/*:1tys82di]
    Okay, so the astute observer might notice a pervasive theme here…
    Anyways, I know that you seasoned riders already know all this stuff, and can probably surf right through the gnarliest sand pit with grace, but I just thought I’d share my lessons learned.
    BTW, does anyone have any other sage advice on dealing with sand pits on the trail?

  • #100537

    Ya must be from FL…. 😆 😆 😆

    With all the sandy statements, that sounds just like FL. The best advise for sand pits is too just avoid them or go around them, if not or unavoidable, then speed is your friend. 😄

  • #100538

    Yeah, you’d think with as much sand pits as there are on these trails that I’m in FL, but this was actually at Ord Public Lands on old Fort Ord near Monterey, CA.
    Like I said, I’m learning to deal with the sand pits, but many of them are unavoidable on the thicket-lined singletracks out here, so you gotta learn the right technique for plowing through them. Use the wrong technique, and you’re gonna wipe out (like I have many times) or bend a front rim (like I have once already).

  • #100539

    Riding through sand is often like riding through mud – let the bike guide you. You’re 100% accurate on loosening your grip, though – no need for white knuckles. Your tires, if good, should give you some semblance of control, but it’s like ending up on ice: stay straight up, maintain your momentum by pedaling (even spinning strokes), and keep the rubber side down. 😀

  • #100540

    Thanks for the fun to read and interesting post, must get my son to read this as he thinks sand sucks too. 😆


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