Slashing the mud on 26″: Tokul in the rain
Saturday midday, the parking lot at Tokul was packed, but we ran into only three other groups out in the network of trails on the mountain. The rain didn’t seem to deter anybody and since Billy, Evan and I surely weren’t going to let getting soaked and muddy ruin a perfectly good Saturday shred sesh, we pedaled out into the expected grease.
The Last Frontier trail turned out to be surprisingly hardpacked and manageable. It was my first day back on the SX Trail since December and I was rockin’ the romantic Valentine’s Day gift I got: Hammerschmidt carbon cranks. Boom. Carbon is super lightweight–knocking a good pound off my bike–and when you’re a chick of my size (115 lbs) they’re perfect for dh riding because I’m not going to thrash them too crazy. I was definitely conservative this first day out, but stoked to be back at it ripping down the single track, riding low and behind the saddle, putting a foot down on the hairpins, opening up on the steep straight-aways, racing up to Billy and Evan until–O.T.B. Over the bars I went and the bike came crashing down on me. Gotta learn to not grab sudden handfuls of brake.
I wasn’t the only to have a little spill. Evan proceeded to roll a small drop with his seat fully-extended, which got his front wheel stuck in the soupy mud poop. (Poop!) He and the bike crumpled down into slosh pit with Evan bursting into laughter before he hit the ground. Unfortunately the mishap clean broke off his derailleur. So Evan, a previous Whistler inhabitant and now FSA design engineer, then proceeded to ride out on our two exit dh trails coasting with no chain. Billy joined in on the technique and I was left peddling my hardest just to catch them.
It was a good day riding with two of best freeride guys around. I’m excited to get pushed by them. It will be a good summer. But it is still winter and there is still some snow in the mountains. Going snowboarding tomorrow. Probably lap the park and hit up the top of Alpental. Gotta love the Northwest playground.