The sad tale of our first attempt at a two day, fixed gear cross bike ride is right here. If you like tales of gratuitous suffering, sex, 25 year storms, enormous mud puddles, sex, and guys basically getting their asses kicked by a typhoon, you'll enjoy it. Otherwise, you'll hate it.
Okay, fine. There was no sex. But the tale of how the trail and the all-day heavy rain beat us down might be worth reading, if you're into that Shackleton / Jon Krakauer / Fat Guy Suffering on a Bicycle type of thing.
This time around, the weather looks like it's clearing in time for the weekend. I'll be on the Surly Cross Check, flipped over from 44:22 single speed cross setup, to my 44:20 trail fixed setup. (My usual road gearing is 44:18 or 44:17, it was too high for a trail ride with heavy panniers and mud. It would be fine in the dry weather, but screw it. I'm going to be kind to my knees and spin 200 miles, rather than grinding.)
So, I got the bike basically ready for that with hybrid tires, mounting the rack and so forth tonight. Tomorrow night I will pack. For right now... it's time for bed, but not before I sip at least three fingers of Russell's Reserve, a small batch bottling put together by Jimmy Russell, the master distiller for the Lawrenceburg, KY distillery that produces Wild Turkey. How is it? Weeelll... Maker's Mark is a better straight up sip, Wild Turkey's own barrel proof Rare Breed is the best thing in their line, and if I had my druthers, I'd probably stick with Knob Creek or Basil Hayden's, or maybe Bulleit for a day to day drink. But Russell's Reserve is really good. I'm not alone in thinking that. Here's what Cigar Afficionado had to say about it:
The Reserve is a heady quaff with a nose of sweet vanilla and buttery cinnamon toast. In the mouth, it shows its age -- woodier than other Wild Turkey products. It is very sweet without being cloying, but also informed with the tang of orange peel and some spiciness. The finish is all maple candy. In short, it's a warming tonic for when the weather turns cold on Thanksgiving.Good for Thanksgiving, huh? Ain't bad for October 18th either, I can tell you.
BTW, here's your trivia for the day - the backstory behind the famous chapel and cycling museum of Madonna del Ghisallo.