Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Appalachian Thanksgiving

Aside from the last two days of freezing rain, our visit to North Carolina was fantastic. Not only did we ride some of the most beautiful roads and trails of the southern Appalachians, we also visited a number of Hendersonville’s finest bakeries and coffee shops. Here’s a break down of our trip:

Pisgah Mtb Ride – We headed up Black Mountain Trail, then hopped on Buckwheat Knob, to Bennett Gap and finally took the road back to where we parked at the ranger station. It’s about a 3 hour loop that starts out with about a 2 hr climb (give or take). The first part of the descent involves some crazy tight switch backs peppered with some pretty big drops. Jeff opted to ride back to the house in effort to log in some more hours. Oh, and plodding down Bennett Gap I managed to lose my cell phone. Fortunately someone found it the following day and left it at the Ranger Station for me. Yay! I don’t have to send out another obnoxious e-mail asking for everyone’s phone number.

Brevard Loop …plus a little more – One of my favorite road rides in the entire world is known to some as the “Brevard Loop”. This ride typically leaves from the Ingles parking lot and heads into the heart of the Pisgah’s via route 276, hang a left on the Blue Ridge Parkway (this section is closed to traffic during the winter months), and then another left on 178 which brings you back down to 64 ….hang a left and follow 64 back into Brevard. This time we did things a little differently. This time we decided to leave from the house …which made for a pretty big day (for me anyway). Jeff gave me a 45 min head start and he still beat me to the Parkway. Damn it! Logging in about 100 miles and something around 6000 ft of climbing (I think), the final stretch home took me a little longer than usual. Definitely a ride I hope to do again in the near future ….lots of good climbing and amazing views of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Oh, and as many of you are already aware, Friday was “International Buy Nothing Day”. Sadly, I was forced to break this pact when I purchased the following items on my ride.

Cross Ride Abbreviated: Saturday's weather was crap. We ended up doing an out and back and then heading straight to the local bakery for some sugary carb recovery treats.

Sunday’s weather also sucked; however, we did manage to get a short ride in at Dupont State Forest (just 7miles down the road from the family homestead). Dupont is a unique place to ride as it is a hot spot of water falls, huge granite slabs, dirt jumps, and rooty rocky technical stuff all on a relatively small amount of land. Don’t bother trying to read the map as you will quickly become overwhelmed. Just ride with a map and don’t look at it until you’re ready to go home. We rode until we had reached the threshold of misery (soaked with freezing rain) and then headed for the gym where we did some indoor riding while watching football. Not exactly epic, but it’ll do.

We drove home. Now that I have a male travel mate I think I need to do a comparison male/female bathroom study; Sounds like there is quite a disparity between the two.

Oh, and this is what happens when you screw up the butter to flour ratio for sugar cookies. But the gingerbread men turned out perfectly!


Lorena said...

you cookies picture proves that we are soul sisters. last night i just did the exact same mistake on a batch of cookies. they look a little sad, but still taste good!

roger said...

Sounds like someone is likely to be in pretty good shape come spring if your training schedule simulates that of your roommate. Watch out Lorena!

Anna said...

Perhaps! My roommate also inspires me to frequent the bakery more regularly ...hopefully that won't weigh me down too much.

Which reminds me, Lorena, I challenge you to a bake off.