Friday, October 31, 2014

Why Wednesday's Rock my Socks

For the past 6-ish weeks I've been running to Laguna Canyon on Wednesday afternoons to shred the trails there with the Laguna Rads. The Rads are a sick group of guys who ride only the sweetest trails around, and they are wicked fast.
A sweet Laguna trail with ocean views. What could be better?
Last year I was totally intimidated by the Rads, because of rumors that they rode super techy, hard, scary trails. Also, they wont let girls be an official member of the club, haha. Carl hassled me for months about doing the Weds ride though, and eventually I caved and showed up to see what all the fuss was about. That first Wednesday we started the ride by climbing a terribly steep/long fire road. We are talking terribly terribly long. It was AWESOME! I loved every minute of that ride, every steep climb and every scary, techy descent. From that first week on I was hooked.
When I started riding with the Rads I was decently fast uphill and I had a little descending confidence. Now, 6ish weeks later, I feel faster uphill, and WAY more competent descending. I'm still far from Rachael Atherton status, but it is amazing how much I have learned in such a short amount of time, just from following different dudes down hill, and watching their body English. The pressure to go fast and try new things has also helped my descending a bunch!
Best of all, I get to ride with some of the coolest kids out there, plus some world champs to boot!
Maybe the biggest plus of riding with the Rads is the cool people on the ride every week. There are always super fast guys for me to chase up hill, and often super famous mountain bikers will show up as well.  A few weeks ago I got to descend behind Thomas Frischknecht and Hans Rey, which may have been the highlight of my mountain biking career. This week, at the Spooky Track challenge, I was on the same team as Brian Lopes, and Nino Schurter showed up as well. My team won, thanks to Lopes' incredible descending.
Lopes gave me the prize, a bottle of Lizard Blood (tapatio). It was another best day!
And of course there is the pain, suffering, learning how to corner, riding stuff I never thought possible before, going too fast and wiping out, riding in so much dust I couldn't see the ruts and cactus, and terrible, long, steep hike-a-bikes. I love every second of every Rads ride. My only wish is that I had come out for the fun earlier!

And that's why I love Wednesdays so dang much. How lucky to get to look forward to hump day as much as I look forward to the weekend?!

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