Monthly Archives: July 2006

Bluff Point Beginner Ride

Riders: Andy, Dave, TracyWe started out doing the Haley’s farm loop, and this time I decided to try some of the obstacles that I would usually walk. I tried the whoop die-do, but didn’t quite make it up the other side, and I almost made it through the rock section that leads to the road at the end of the loop ( I hit the brakes too early). It wasn’t that hot and I kept up with two of them. Dave made the suggestion to go another way out to the point instead of going up that awful hill, and the new way I have to say was much better. It still had a climb, which Dave crawled up slowly(he said his legs hurt from doing two races over the weekend). I actually followed Andy right up the hill, I think he was surprised that I kept up with him up the hill. This trail we took lead us to the same trail we usually take, just minus the awful trail. We made it out to the log, which they wanted me to try, and I lost my nerve when I got up to it. Maybe next time. From there we went out to the point, and stayed there for awhile, before heading back to the parking lot, just as the sun was setting. It was a good ride. — Tracy

Tyler Mill Race

Race Results Race Video Race Pictures

Racers: Steve, Jonathan, Rick, John, Dave Fierro, Jill, Cliff

Support: Tracy, Vicky, Allyssa, Lauren, My Dad, Mike

I can’t even express how happy I was that the expert women were racing at 9:30am. My Dad was visiting from Florida, he was trooper and got up early with me to head down to Wallingford. We put up the tent and banner and I got ready to race. Did a couple laps on the “orange prologue” course to warm up and headed over to the racer meeting at 9am. The men were doing a prologue lap to spread out the field and the women were heading straight up the hill. Said Hi to Tom from Vernon Cycle and chatted briefly with Cliff who introduced me to Jeff the new owner of Central Wheel ( Lot’s of women on the line, this is a favorite race for a lot of people. Michael gets there just in time to wish me luck then the whistle blows and we’re off heading up the windy, narrow, steep, new single track section. All of the riders in front of me get off their bikes and I do as well. The girl behind me is still riding and asks to pass but I have nowhere to go, I apologize and keep moving forward. Amazingly she cleans the whole thing, the only one I’ve seen make the climb so far. Down the creepy, steep, rocky hill on the other side and pop out onto the road. Long, long stretch of road and pop back in to the “old” course. Great single track, lot’s of fun stuff. This is the kind of race where you forget you are racing because the terrain is so varying, challenging, and just plain fun. Over Doug’s bridge, around the double jumps (Did Mar do the jumps???), through the switchback section that I don’t care for then back into the fun stuff. More bridges, rock gardens, and loose rocky descents. I am behind a girl I don’t recognize but she is super courteous, warning me about upcoming tricky sections and mud. Get to the end of the lap and my Dad hands me a water bottle but I start heading up toward the field where the old trail used to go, realize my mistake, suck down some water, give the bottle back, and the girl passes me. Crap! We get to the new section and she starts to pull away, it takes me too long to get up the hill this time and I lose sight of her by the time I finish up on the road and scoot back into the woods. Uneventful 2nd lap, I’m having to dig deep to keep the pace steady in the heat. I see Justin again on foot heading out with another flat! Every time I let up I think about the girls behind me catching me and pedal harder. After the 2nd lap I unload my camelbak and grab the water bottle from my Dad. At the top of the 1st climb I drink most of it and worry about getting through the rest of the lap with little or no water. But I feel a lot lighter without the camelbak and I concentrate on pushing out another steady lap. Michael shows up as I come out of the loopy section with a beautiful, ice cold water bottle so I throw him the empty one, grab the new one and push on. Every time I pop out of the woods he is there with the video camera. He has a way of seeing the course in his head and knowing which shortcuts will get him to each spot (a skill I definitely do not have). I saw the girl behind me in the switchbacks so I knew I had to keep pushing because she wasn’t that far behind. My left calf was feeling a bit tight but I have never cramped at a race before so when I stepped down with my left leg to push off a log I wasn’t prepared for the kind of pain that I felt. I couldn’t stop myself from screaming but I just kept pedaling, the finish line was less than 10 minutes away. As Michael said when I popped out of the woods, just suck it up and keep going so I did exactly that. This race was challenging but fun, I really enjoyed the perfect conditions of the trails. There was hardly any mud, it was nice just being able to ride without getting stuck in huge mud bogs and getting your bike all mucked up.

After the race I met Jonathan’s Mom. I never did get to meet him but he was out there racing with the beginners along with Steve. Rick, Dave, and John were getting ready for their sport race so my Dad and I headed out to the course to get some good video footage. The sport racers were not doing the new steep section so we hoofed out to the first climb and waited. Got some good footage of our 3 sport guys and hiked over to the rocky uphill after the road section. This was much more exciting because Dave was the 3rd one by and Rick followed soon after. We got John and a tiny bit of Tom and headed over to the rocky downhill for the end. Got a great shot of Tom doing a wheelie before the descent and headed back to the parking lot to congratulate the crew, break camp and scoot home. My Dad didn’t care so much for the hills (no hills in Florida!) but he stuck it out for the whole day, worked the feed zone for me, and didn’t complain when I dragged him all over the course to get some good video. Thanks Dad!!! -Jill

Tyler Mill Ride

Ride Pictures

Bluff Point Beginner Ride

Ride Picture Ride Videos

Riders: Juliana, Tim, Sierra, John S., John A., Mark, Evan, Tracy, Dave Fierro, Nathan

Time: 6:00-8:45

We started out by doing the Haley’s Farm loop, along with seeing the Amtrak train zoom right by us. This time we saw horses on the trail (at least for my first time). We came to the second parking lot, took a break, and then went on to the big rock that is possible to climb, although some of us didn’t want to take the chance of not making it. We then went on to get back on a trail road. Just before the road, I started to lose control. Andy squealed his brakes (he wasn’t using his Truth this time) and waited for the fall. He was surprised about what next; he later called it crashing without having any part of the body touch the ground. I had wiggled my wheel in just the right way that it had prevented me (at the last possible second) from falling. Everyone caught up, and we continued the rest of the loop. We took another “loop” after that one, one with a long hill up. We all climbed our way to the top, had Andy take some pictures of some us going of a big rock, took another break, and continued to the log section. The medium size log that has no trail around it was one I made when I walked it last time. Everyone else also did a great job on it, too. We went onto a trail with some rock walls in it, finished that and took another trail to the point. We hung out there a while, and then took another trail that retraced what we did a little bit. Then we encountered a rock wall and another route to go around it. Some of us went one way, and some of us went another. They both met up just past the rock, so it really didn’t matter. By then the sun was starting to set. We started downhill, and came to an intersection where we saw two trails leading to the same spot (the parking lot). We rode one trail and ended up right next to the parking lot. By the time everyone left, the sun had set (my opinion: I like late sunsets. It means more riding!!.). I think this was another great ride. –Nathan

Nutmeg State Nor’Easter

Race Pictures Race Results

Racers: Shelby, Evan, Doug, C. Shirmer, D.J., Andy, Dean, Dave Fluckiger, Sarah, Dave Fierro, Steve, Garth, Randy, John Stockford, Rick, Kyle, Jill

Volunteers/Support: Kevin (marshal/kid’s ride leader, Matt (expert promoter), Geoff (canopy!), Jen and Tom (registration), Tracy (water station), Arch (marshal/first aid), Jan, Cyndi and most of the racers also helped with marshaling, set-up, clean-up, break-down and about a hundred other things.

Our riders, racers, and volunteers showed up in droves today with tables, chairs, pop-ups, 4 wheelers, and every other item needed to make a bike race happen. What an incredible showing, there were Nerac Earth jersey’s everywhere! I started helping with registration until the start of the first timer/beginner race. Cyndi, Tom, and Jen had it under control so Matt gave me a ride on the 4 wheeler up to the course to marshal. This is my favorite part of Channel 3 and Nutmeg races because I get to see most of the riders, take pics and cheer for them like a crazed person. Just got finished sending the pics to John and had to delete a bunch of them. Dean, Evan, and Andy do you think you could slow down next time so I can get some non-blurry pics???? The Nerac Earth riders all seem to be having a great time. Doug is smoking the field and Evan and Andy are not far behind him. D.J., Evan and Shelby are looking like pros instead of first time racers! Dean, Dave, and Steve are having way too good a time in all that mud. Nice jump off that log Steve! After the 2 beginner laps Matt comes to get me on the ATV to get ready for my race but the sport race is about to start so run down to wish everyone good luck, yap with the beginners about their ride, then the kids race is ready to go. Kevin is leading the kids, there were quite a few of them including Sarah and the Shirmer’s 7 year old, got some pics of them then awards for beginner’s start. Got a few more pics then got ready to race. Yap some more with John, Rick, Dave, and Randy about the sport race, conditions, etc. There are 2 competitor’s in my class today, Laura and Leslie. At the start line Arch is called to treat a sport girl that fell on the last stretch of single track, hope she’s ok. The race starts and as usual my legs start to burn and I end up behind Leslie and Laura and we stay this way for a while. After the track widens, I pass both of them and Laura follows me. It stays that way the entire first lap, Laura is right on my wheel. At the beginning of the 2nd lap she starts to pull away and I don’t worry so much at first but then I realize I don’t have the legs to catch her so I try to ride steadily but I can feel the slowness creeping in. At the top of the climb on lap 2 I turn back and see Leslie about a hundred feel behind me. Craaapppp. I snap out of my slow, steady, pedaling and start taking some risks in the single track and pushing the speed. Poor Sarah tries to hand me my water bottle as I ride by but I’m on a mission now trying to stay in front of Leslie and maybe catch Laura. The 3rd lap flies by now that I’m back on track. I see Juston running with his bike – he’s got a flat. Bummer! Every time I come out of the woods there is a posse of Nerac Earth members. Doug, Dean, and Dave Fl. are on the ATV screaming from location to location to cheer for me and Kyle, they are having some serious fun. The finish line looms up finally and I congratulate Laura, she rode smart and fast today as did Mar, it sounds like they finished together. -Jill

Wednesday Nutmeg Ride

Riders: Doug, Arch, Evan, John, Rick, Juston, Mike, Andy, Jill, Jay, Freddie
We started on the sport/expert/pro course and about a mile from the split of the beginner course Andy got a serious mechanical and decided to head back. Michael hooked him up with Dave F. who was out there with Matt doing some trail maintenance and dropping off the fencing for the race. We continued on and ran into Freddie – actually he ran into us. He was watching his son play lacrosse and saw us riding and ran over to his car, got his kit on and his bike and pedaled after us. So we lost Andy but gained Freddie. Kept climbing, the trails aren’t in bad shape considering all the rain we got the night before. A few small puddles but if we don’t get too much rain before Sunday we should be ok for the race. Lot’s of stories being swapped about the Holiday Farms Race and the Pat’s Peak race. Andy appears as we get ready to ride the new whoops that Matt added last week and it’s all downhill from here. Another lap but this time we split up so Evan and Doug can ride the beginner course. Mike offers to lead this one and takes Andy, Freddie, Evan and Doug with him. The rest of the crew bombs through the next few sections. It was a lot more spongy than when I rode with Mary Lynn on Thursday. I felt like I was riding with a flat tire at times. The two groups meet up again at the whoop trail, Freddy headed out to pick up his son and the rest of us finished out the loop and back to the parking lot with the farm dogs. Hope I can pull out some better laps on Sunday, my legs were lead tonight

Elm Knoll Farm Beginner Ride


Riders: A new DJ, Jill Nugent, Sarah Fluckiger, Dave Fluckiger, John Sattar, Nathan Sattar

Time:6-8 o’clock P.M.

The heat combined with humidity on this ride was brutal. Stay in one place too long and the mosquitoes come to get you. This was mine and DJ’s first time here. He seemed pretty ready for this ride, but I had no idea what was coming. Everyone could tell Sarah and I were a little tired at the “top.” It wasn’t called the top for nothing. The rest seemed to be almost all downhill which was really nice. I was the only one that crashed in parts of the trail, so everything went pretty smooth for the most part. Sarah and Dave took a shortcut to meet us at the Christmas trees while we went in all the whoops. A few tight up hills, whoops and sharp turns was all that was in it. It was a great section. Then in another part like that we went up steep hills that were single track and hard to get up, we got into some more whoops (big ones this time). Finally we came out onto the field. A few of us almost got caught in some sand and had to snake through. Sarah and Dave decided to go back down and meet us by the cars, while we went on a long uphill to find a trail that leads to one of the fields. Then we turned around and headed back to the cars and saw Dave and Sarah watching a lacrosse game. Dave and Sarah decided it was time to go home while we did some road riding. We went down the trail leading to the cars again (all downhill) and packed up to leave. –Nathan