Saturday, December 16, 2006

River Bottom Moxie

I'm not worthy, I'm not worthy...Kostik, you are my hero!

Greg Kostik showed serious Moxie on our 3 hour MTB training ride at the river bottoms today!

This picture is of the raft crossing at 9 mile creek...only during the winter, the raft is taken out and the creek is usually frozen by now. Recent warm weather reopened the water and left the only available "crossing" over a tree that had fallen across the creek. I'd like to point out that this is not the kind of tree anyone would typically look at and say, "Oh yeah, no problem." This tree started out only about 18 inches wide and ended around 8 inches wide crossing a 25 foot span.

Greg kept his title as Ride 2 Eat's crash test dummy on 9 mile creek not by riding down the bank and crossing on the ice before checking it as usual, but by crossing this spindly little tree while carrying his bike across with the grace and precision of a Flying Wallenda! Unreal.

My brain automatically went into self preservation mode and the argument against it was futile. Even the two MORC riders who were kind enough to stick around and watch this potentially amusing adventure come to the punch line were in disbelief. There was no way they were going to try crossing.

Before I knew it, Greg "shimmies" back across the tree, grabs my bike, crosses back over and tells me to "come on...just shimmy across". 6'3" don't shimmy. That and my shoes were slippery. So the great advice from the other side was to take my shoes off. Ok, fine. Shoes off and threw them over to the other side...brilliant. Gloves were slippery too, Ok, fine. Gloves off and threw them over to the other side...Einsteinian. At this rate, I'm either going to make it across or be stark naked with all my clothes on the other bank. Gotta go now. Only there's only one way my brain will let me. Namely the "scoot across on my butt while straddling the log" method. I'll let your imagination paint the picture. No pride here. The going was pretty smooth until I had to "scoot over" the stump of a branch kindly sticking straight up in the middle of the span. I finally made it across without getting wet. Back to riding and trying to shove the thought of the return trip into the back of my mind.

The return was a bit more ominous since we had to start out at the skinny end of the tree. Again, Greg trotted across with his bike in hand, came back over, grabbed my bike and back across. Eeesh, I ain't got it. For some reason I thought it would be a good idea to take my shoes off again...not like I was actually going to try the same tight rope act that Greg can pull off. Only one snag for my crossing method...that pointy stub of a branch was not only sticking up, but was now pointing TOWARDS me.

Fortunately, I again avoided getting wet but Lo, my darling wife, THAT's how I ripped my pants.

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