1200 Miles & a Cup O' Dirt & a little Mississippi Mud!

Take the year long challenge of completing a dozen or half a dozen dirty centuries and join the fun in December! Everybody who completes this challenge will be rewarded with a custom hand-made stoneware mug as well as be in a drawing for other prizes. Read the FAQ for details, and welcome to the fun!

I've increased the fun to give some more folks a shot at the cup - a bit 'watered down' - We'll have the 1200 Mile Cup O' Dirt and a 600 Mile Cup O' Mississippi Mud and new in 2008 is the 1/2 Liter O' Dirt - earned by completing 12 metric centuries in the year! A special award will be presented to anyone completing either a dirty century or metric century in each month of the year.

Thursday, December 31, 2009

Cup O' The Day - Tim Riekena's Chase


While my North Missouri riding weather is usually milder than Iowa's (and I should know since I grew up in Iowa Indianola HS-1977), getting in all 12 metrics has been a journey in itself. I have a lot of respect for you guys/gals up north.

From icy gravel to eating hot July dust, this challenge has been a blast. It's taken me all over North Missouri, and then some.

I never got in a true century which was disappointing, but I guess that's why we make goals.

Last July, I got in two metrics, which ended up being a good thing. During my cross
country season (I coach) I was diagnosed with a hernia. The doctor said he would do the procedure after the season was over. So, in November, two days after I rode my 12th metric, I had the procedure. Recovery was stupid slow, still is. I had my 12 metrics, but I was hoping to get in one every month (December). Time was running out.

I've had a few days off during Christmas Break and started thinking about trying to get the December one in. Local riders have told nothing but horror stories about our icy gravel we currently have. One buddy actually went to the doctor concerning injuries he sustained while riding our gravel. I didn't think trying to ride 62 miles on local icy gravel was a good idea. The last thing I wanted to do was crash and re-injure the hernia thingy.

Yesterday, I loaded up the bike and drove south. I went to the KATY trail down by the Missouri River. The KATY is a flat, 220+ mile crushed limestone trail. They had less snow there, but enough to make me to pull the plug.

The first 10 miles took me well over an hour... plus a lot of effort. I couldn't believe what was happening. Where I wasn't plowing through 2 inches of crusty snow, I would be on soft sandy-type gravel. The freeze/thaw cycle had already hit the surface making it like riding through sand. There was nothing easy about it. Surface conditions, plus the fact that I hadn't ridden in 7 weeks, took its toll. I got in another 8 miles and realized I wasn't' going to make it back to the truck if I kept going.

So I turned around. I think my total was around 36 miles. I'm glad I had the 12 metrics in, but I really wanted to get in that December one.

Since I've been riding MTBs, I've had a few DNF's due to equipment failure, or not making a cutoff time, but never have I had to DNF myself. Still, it was strangely one of my best rides. I saw awesome scenery, a bunch of bald eagles, zero cars, truck or tractors, and only a handful of people. When I rode up to the truck, I was much more tired than any other metric I've done.

Like they say, even a bad day on the bike is better than not riding.

Thanks again for putting on this challenge. I hope to get up to your CIRREM event...surly my hernia thingy will be totally mended.

Tim Riekena
Chillicothe, MO

"None are so old as those who have outlived enthusiasm."
Henry David Thoreau

No comments: