Okay, I admit it. Being back on the bike, chasing my hubs around out in the woods is pretty freaking fun. Inertia though, (you know Newton’s theory that an object in motion tends to stay in motion… an object at rest, uh, that would be me, tends to stay at rest unless acted upon by an outside force) had a pretty good hold on me. The force is definitely with me now and I have been duly acted upon. I am slowly rolling into motion. I do believe that at first, I might have been paralyzed by fear, shock and well, gravity. The BC Bike Race is 10 months away. TEN MONTHS! I have at least 40 pounds to lose. AT LEAST!! And a lot of riding to get under my tires and a knee to rehab. Quads to build! Confidence to regain! Skills to relearn! Goodness!

Last week, I’m proud to announce, I rode twice. The first ride was a weekday morning before work. We hit a

The Tight Squeeze Trees
The Tight Squeeze Trees

local trail. When my hubs shouted back, “way to go, girl! That was the spot!” I didn’t believe him at first. “The Spot” he referred to was the quick up hill and &^%$$! ginormous exposed root that took me down last time. (Still sporting the big-ass bruises… yes, pun intended.) Oh, this time it freaked me out again, but I hit it with speed and determination, not to mention ignorance. I knew it was coming up, but I was past it before I twigged on. Hell yes! And, just to be clear, the creek crossing I had chickened out on the first time was also ridden through, TWICE! I didn’t walk anything this time! Yes, the trails aren’t super technical, but they’re not super, super easy either. I cut my arm on the squeeze trees the first ride, but this time I snuck through unstuck and unscathed.  Woohoo! (fist pump — big grin).

This weekend, I headed out on my own to meet up with some girl friends to ride another trail. I needed to check out her bad-ass bike too. She’s small in stature, as am I, so a 29er really isn’t an option. They don’t make a frame small enough. The new thing now anyway is the 27.5. These numbers refer to wheel size. Trust me, I’m no expert, but I do kinda/maybe (big maybe) understand the physics. I’m riding a 26 inch tire.That means that my wheels won’t roll over things

Yes, we did stop for a photo and flowers!
Yes, we did stop for a photo and flowers!

as easily, like big roots, rocks etc… It means I have to pick my lines carefully, analyze quickly where I’m gonna put my tire, between which rocks, figure out which ones I can roll over and which ones I have to avoid. Steps and drops are different too. With a bigger tire, a drop isn’t as big, and my tire hits a bit further out than a smaller tire. That means there’s less of an angle for me (the rider) way up top. I think it means I’ll be less top heavy. So, we rode a loop on a fairly level trail. Level, meaning no big elevation gains and drops to speak of, but dang, lots of rock gardens to navigate both on small up hills and downs. There were a few times when I thought that maybe I was about to lose it. I didn’t want to hit the ground (again). I made it. I also got to try my friends 27.5 bike for a few minutes. Wow! There is a difference!

So, I obviously need all the technological advantages that I can get, though I’ll never keep up with the hubs on his ‘niner. My bike’s about 10 years old, excellent shape and a very, very good bike… but we’re shopping. Kinda liking the Santa Cruz 1050c. Thought about a Pivot too, but there’s a fairly long wait for my frame size and it doesn’t come with the seat dropper. Now, some might say that I have my priorities all wrong. In fact, they’re probably right about that. However, I can’t help it that I NEED to love the color of my bike. Yep. My first mountain bike was an ugly gold color. I thought it didn’t matter, but ohh, it so does. I NEVER liked the color of that bike and it totally mattered. I wanna smile when I see my bike. I want it to beckon me, tempt me to ride it, and make me happy. I test rode a really lovely Juliana bike on Saturday. It had everything I wanted, but I couldn’t get past the “banana in the fog” color. If it had been a bright, clear and happy yellow, I’d have bought that puppy on the spot. Instead, it’s a wimpy, barely yellow, yellow. When I admitted my problem (and man, that was a hard thing to do to a bike shop dude) with the color, he acted like he’d heard that before. Maybe I’m not alone in my quest for a beautiful bike? He suggested I get online and check out the Santa Cruz 1050c; same exact bike, same geometry, but it offers a couple of color choices. Glory, glory, glory!! So now, I’m still stuck. I like both choices. Why couldn’t I love one color and hate the other?

It comes in bright happy orange with lime green writing, or bad-ass black with white. I’ve put it out there on Facebook for my friends to help me choose, they know me afterall. It’s kind of neck and neck, but I’m sort of notorious in my love of color. You need only to look at my house, my clothes and sometimes my language! The black just looks like a bad-ass. It could be my LBB, you know that go-to, just like your LBD. That has its appeal too. Here’s what I’m looking at. Which would you pick?

Bad-ass black or Happy Orange?
Bad-ass black or Happy Orange Whimsy?
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