Friday, May 30, 2014

ThNNDDR - First of the Year

Last night was the first official Thursday Night No Drop Dirt Ride (ThNNDDR) of the year and actually the first time it's been on Thursday nights. It was also the second Thursday Night No Drop Road Ride (ThNNDRR) and it was also ladies night at Cycle Works, if you couldn't find something bike related to do last night you weren't trying very hard.

Got to Cycle Works a bit early so I decided to snoop a little at the stuff they were setting up for ladies night, new trail maps are out. Miles and miles of great trails in the Capitol city, you should get a new map and explore a trail you might not have known even existed.


Speaking of things you should do, if you ride/walk/crawl or visit Wilderness Park you should pick up one of these and donate whatever you can to help replace the two bridges to help make the park whole again.


Got to the Van Dorn trail head with a few minutes to kill before Gary was supposed to meet me and noticed that the swallows were working diligently on making their mud nests underneath the old Park Dr. bridge. Always thought it was pretty amazing how they get that mud to stick up there like that as the hover in mid-air.


Went in for a bit of a closer look...


... the swallows however weren't as excited by the concept of someone taking a closer look as I was and started flying in circles, so I decided to leave well enough alone.


Which was alright because Gary had shown up and it didn't look like anyone else was coming so we decided to set off as a group of two. Taking pictures while riding one handed, twisting through the trails of Wilderness Park at speed isn't as easy as it sounds but I got this nice picture of Gary getting a picture of me, getting a picture of him as he rides at the speed of blur.


I do end up with a lot of random, unusable shots of trees, blurry indescribable things and lots of pictures of my helmet and/or shoulder depending on the angle but look a that helmet. Those lines, the way the blue and white come together and those little pieces of reflective, fake carbon fiber looking bits; who wouldn't want endless pictures of such a beauty... and then there's Gary's wheel photo bombing an otherwise perfect picture.

Wilderness Bridge

In retrospect it probably was a good thing there wasn't a big group of us out there last night, while 85-90% of the trail is in really good condition there are a few spots that needed to be ridden around and one hike a bike section which could have been interesting in a large group. The mosquitoes were not very forgiving anytime you stopped to circumnavigate one of these sections, blood loss may have become a factor on a larger group with it taking longer to cross and get back on the bike.



On an extremely positive note, the vandalized bridge is fixed with two functioning rails and lots of new welds and wood pieces. Glad to see it was able to be repaired in such a quick time frame, score one for the Parks Dept.


Like I said, pretty small group this week but with Dirty Kanza just around the corner and so many other biking options on this Thursday it just wasn't our night; I am sure the numbers will build as long as the weeks go on as heat doesn't get too unbearable.


If you didn't make it out last night for the ThNNDDR should come out, it's always a good time and you don't want to realize that you missed out; like this lady who literally broke down in tears on the side of the trail when she discovered that she had missed the ThNNDDR. Don't break down in tears, get your bike and your gear together and come out next week, I promise high fives for all those who want one.


Saw this when I got back to the car to throw the bike on and head home, looks like ladies night was a huge success. Bikes for days!

Monday, May 26, 2014

Memorial Day Gravel

Not much of a story just some pictures of the amazing clouds that often form on the great plains of Nebraska, glad I got out for a little gravel today, I almost didn't because of the ever changing forecast. Click on the pictures to see them in larger sizes, more interesting large. That's what she said...





This one is more than a bit disturbing, it says "Dead girls don't say no!"... yikes!

Thursday, May 22, 2014

ThNNDRR - First Of The Year

Tonight was supposed to be the Thursday Night No Drop Dirt Ride but Mother Nature had different ideas and literally rained on that parade. Since I'd already planned on the trip down to Lincoln, I didn't have anything else going on and it was  perfect opportunity to hang with the roadie half I decided to hit up the Thursday Night No Drop Road Ride.


Motley crew getting ready to head out on the open road... who is that I spy in the background?


It's Brent and Mukluk, just never know who you might run into at Cycle Works... although since Brent works there I suppose you might expect him to be there.


Headed out on HWY 6 towards Waverly into a slight headwind, other than the slight breeze it was a perfect night to be out on the bike, earlier in the day it looked like there might not be any riding today with that crazy Nebraska weather constantly changing.


Somebody wasn't having all that great of a time, cars cannot occupy the same space at the same time people, quit trying it's just never going to work. I guess better they bounce off each other than bouncing off us though.


Didn't realize the pink porn barn was still in business, guess $7 for a juice isn't unreasonable after all. I'm not going to lie, I've been there a time or two but it's been at least a dozen years or more and they used to allow you to exit and enter all night so you could keep a cooler in your trunk for adult beverages. I would have thought that when they got rid of that privilege the place would have went belly up, guess perverts wanting to see nudity trumps the need for a good beer... for some people anyway.


Back in town for a regroup and noticed this little bit of urban decay, sad to see places just left to the elements falling into ruin but they do make for interesting pictures sometimes so I guess it's not all bad. All in all it was a great night for a ride and an awesome time was had, hopefully next week the weather will cooperate a bit better and we can get in some dirt miles, it's been too long since I've ridden through Wilderness.

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Walnut Creek Trail Day

Had another trail day today down at Walnut Creek, it's really starting to come together and once we can get some bikes through there I think it will get even better.





Wasn't much of a crew today just two of us but Jeff brought down his awesome older Bronco so we tried hauling out a fairly large tree that is destine to be turned into a log feature.


The permanent bridge is in now and it's rock solid.


Added a new section of trail, still needs some work but I know it's ridable because we rode the entire loop once we finished with the dirty stuff.


Remnant of an old deer stand, most likely from when Omaha didn't quite stretch this far out.


Those are some big nails, they look secure in the tree but I don't know that I'd want to climb on them with wet or muddy hunting boots, they'd make a really nice gouge in the shin when you slipped off I suspect. For the most part the trail is in at Walnut Creek now, just waiting for the official word so that we can get some wheels rolling and packing things down in there, should be a fun little trail.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Tour de Brew LNK - Braving The Heat Of Mid-May

Yesterday was the third Thursday of the month, which meant that it was time again for another awesome installment of the Tour de Brew LNK ride put on by the folks at Cycle Works and Moran's Liquor Works with special guest appearances this month by Nebraska Brewing Company, Ledbelly Contemporary American Pub and Tavern on the Square. When the Tour de Brew LNK rides first kicked off a few months ago had you bet me that the ride in mid-April was going to be warmer than the ride in mid-May I probably would have taken that bet and I would have lost. Last nights ride was actually a tad bit on the chilly side and of course I forgot my jacket at home.


As always the rides kick off with registration and free beer samples at the always awesome Moran's Liquor Works.


On tap were several tasty offerings from Nebraska Brewing Company, being a craft beer drinker I've had all of the ones they had available except the Melange a Trios Belgian style ale they just started making. I have to say it was pretty darn good but at $15 plus for a bottle it's not one you can drink all that often and still afford to put the rug rats through college... perhaps higher education is overrated.


In a when worlds collide type scenario, we have here a bearded brewer from Zipline (holding an offering from NBC) and a bearded brewer from Nebraska Brewing Company (likewise holding an offering from Zipline), the wisdom of the hops must lie within the tangled folicular structure of a bushy beard. Take note all you clean shaven brewer wannabes, the bigger the beard the more secret recipes there are stashed in that sucker.


Awesome Avengers Koozies at Cycle Works... we will assume he wasn't double fisting it and just "holding" that second beer for someone but with beer this awesome who can really blame him.



It looked a lot warmer than it was, the ride from Cycle Works down to Leadbelly's was a bit chilly and down right brisk on the ride back to Cycle Works later in the evening.



I was pretty excited when I heard that this months ride would include Leadbelly's, the food there is top notch and they obviously were prepared for us.

Photo May 15, 7 53 32 PM

Finally ended the dry spell on winnings at Leadbelly's in a big way and won a ton of free swag and beer from Moran's Liquor Works, I think all told we ended up with a hat, two koozies, two sweet Tour de Brew LNK stickers, two free six packs of Nebraska Brew Company beer and the t-shirt. I guess when it rains it pours and tonight was my night.


Found a new home for one of the stickers before I even left Leadbelly's, even matches the orange theme I've got going on the bike.


You just never know what you're going to see when you are down in the Historic Haymarket and should be prepared for the unusual but a giant peanut mobile was not really something I expected to see.


Or this old school Klein Bad Attitude Race, was a sweet bike in it' hay day and still a pretty nice ride even today.


First time hitting up the Tavern on the Square, not a bad setting for a beer garden at all.


Fire pits right there in the beer garden, I told you it was a good setting and with the temps dropping the warmth from the fire was much appreciated.

Photo May 15, 8 47 50 PM


Had another great turn out again for the ride, probably could have sat next to that fire, drinking beer for most of the night but all good things must come to an end and so did this night but not before there an abundant amount of good food was eaten, better beer was drank and great company was had... and we also helped to raise some coin for the Great Plains Trail Network so that they can keep us rolling in style through the Capitol City. If for some reason you haven't yet made it out to one of these Tour de Brew LNK rides I have no idea what you are waiting for, it certainly isn't a written invitation, like my pops used to say, because you've got that already several times over... no excuses people, get on your bike and come out. ALL the cool kids are doing it and they want you to come along too!

Monday, May 5, 2014

Hilly Street Blues

Weather is finally starting to get nice and stay nice, which is really helping me get back into the biking groove. What's not helping me is all these hills, I swear Omaha is way more hilly than Lincoln was and my singlespeed legs aren't quite what they need to be yet this year, I guess the only thing to do is put on my big boy pants and ride the Cog more.


Decided to head down to Walnut Creek and check out the progress on the trail since I missed the trail day last Saturday because of the Syracuse ride. Things are coming along, both bridges are in now but still a bit of work to do with this one yet.


Rode only about half of the trail and then pussed out and rode the cement around the end of the lake, once it gets burned in and get some wheels on it to pack it down it'll be a good trail but right now it's a bit soft and the singlespeed was the wrong choice of weapons.


Skies were more than a bit hazy, news is blaming it on the folks from Kansas burning stuff down that way... whatever the cause it makes for good pictures but definitely not for good breathing. Man, I got the whine flowing tonight...


I did wash all those particulates in the air down with one of these bad boys when I got home. They combine two of my favorite things chocolate and craft beer so there's not a lot to dislike about it, it's becoming one of my favorites.