Saturday, October 30, 2010

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Climb - on

6087 feet of climbing in 44.3 miles
South Hill (start) Moretown Mt, Herring Brook, Hog Hollow, Perry Hill, Camel's Hump, Sharp Shooter, So Hill

 Getting down to the wire..the race has already started really.. still have bags to finish, cues to make and gotta keep riding without burning out!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

I'm training for TD really

                                                            Raynor Road, Roxbury, Vermont

I am sooo far behind.  Reminds me of some of my classic late shows at bike races.  Galloping Gears in Randolph Vt - what a course!  I remember one year starting 3 fields back with the women... that was fun ... actually did ok.   But I gotta get on the ball here.  A bunch of last minute equipment changes ( nothing as drastic as DaveB tho!) waiting for my tarp/shelter to show up, just got my Selle Anatomica replaced by the factory,  still need to print up cues, load corrected gpx, dial in the packing of everything... thus the lack of blog entries and also the lack of google stalking all the newly added racers to the list:  Sorry to my two blog followers and "way to go" to everyone who can train and blog! Love reading that stuff.

I used my Steripen this weekend after I drank 4 liters of water climbing Braintree gap at 93'F.  Wasn't it snowing last week? I got a global weirding sun burn to boot.  So far no tapeworms - but who knows - it must take a while to grow to 4 feet.  Giardiosis takes 7-10 days to appear.

The whole process was a lab accident waiting to happen.  Dirt on the bottle tops - dirty hands... I rinsed everything with stream water then uv lighted the hell out of it.  Not as friendly as your aqua mira bottle sterilizing technique.  I keep thinking of all the mico bio and chemistry behind it... the water physically sticking to the bottle - etc.  The whole thing is a literal crap shoot!

So while DaveB was off on the tourist cruise of the Central Vermont Bike Tour - I was doing a four gap ride of:
Moretown Mt
deep down in to Devil's Washbowl
Raynor Gap
Braintree Gap
Middlebury Gap

53.11 mi (19.08 mi uphill, 21.70 mi downhill, 12.26 mi flat)
6081 ft total ascent (6910 ft descent) - 9.0 %  uphill grade, 8.9 %  downhill grade

0:04:57 pace (12.0 mph average speed, 48.5 mph max speed)
31.693 difficulty, 130.378 effort

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Selle Anatomica lives on

Crazy I know - I rode on my new Selle Anatomica LD 25 miles (tour of the valley) and decided it was good enough to take on my next ride: the 240 mile 24 hour no questions asked Warren Vermont to Mystic Connecticut Fleche.  And it worked!  Just like Tom Milton says " this saddle requires no break in."  I thought I had found my perfect Tour Divide saddle... but there was one little problem... a red welt on my right thigh where the saddle skirt rubs my leg.  A close inspection of the saddle revealed that the  right side of the saddle was not curved in as much as the left.  An email was sent to Tom Milton at Selle Anatomica.  A prickly back and forth resulted some saddle related some not.  I gave up. I sent the saddle home, dear John.   I know I'm a guy who didn't try to get along.  And he won't get a chance again. That's all she wrote: "Dear John; I've sent your saddle home." as the Hank Williams song goes.

Then I got a call today from the factory - Tom Milton died riding a double century this past weekend.  They will be carrying on  the business of making Tom Milton's Selle Anatomica designs.  They are fixing my saddle and sending it home to me....

Ride on Tom....

                                Selle Anatomica (brown) vs Brooks B17 imperial (narrow -black)
The Selle An has an interesting leather lamination and longer cut out.  The Brooks has much deeper sides and a much more polished look.  Randy said the Selle looked like I had made it myself!

Thursday, April 01, 2010

the perfect bike for the Great Divide

                                   Great Divide Dave!

I saw this bike outside the Salvation Army in SE Portland.  I didn't know Magna made a Great Divide model. I couldn't believe this one had the Dave vanity plate to boot!  What Karma!  I tried to meet Dave - but no luck.  I will have to acquire my own Great Divide bike.  Perhaps I will suggest to Matt Lee that Magna sponsor the Tour Divide and we all ride this model bike - like a One Design race.

I puttered around Portland a bit - but no other riding for an entire week now.  I did run some - ran 1:15 out of town here in Spokane to get to a restaurant - ate then ran/walked back to the hotel.  Interesting running on a FULL stomach of Indian food.

Got my first taste of what the Great Divide might look like on the Ag Facility tour in the Palouse and the Scab Lands of SE Washington.  Saw pivot ag and sage brush and tumbleweed and long off mountains, slow long climbs.  I was trying to figure out how far off the near horizon was - 30 or 40 miles?  I then ended up at the Continental Divide dinner table with the inspectors from New Mexico, Texas, Wyoming, Montana ( Salish - Kootenai Tribes near Flathead Lake) - Colorado was across the room. We had a grand old time - it will be tough to pass up fun times like these and keep on racing! 

Sunday, March 07, 2010

Letter of Intent - Tour Divide

I did it - I wrote my letter of intent - no turning back now, have to stay in one piece between now and June - July really.  It took me a while because whenever I thought about what to write all that came up was the poem "Uphill" by Christina Rossetti :


Does the road wind up-hill all the way?
Yes, to the very end.
Will the day’s journey take the whole long day?
From morn to night, my friend.

But is there for the night a resting-place?
A roof for when the slow dark hours begin.
May not the darkness hide it from my face?
You cannot miss that inn.

Shall I meet other wayfarers at night?
Those who have gone before.
Then must I knock, or call when just in sight?
They will not keep you standing at that door.

Shall I find comfort, travel-sore and weak?
Of labor you shall find the sum.
Will there be beds for me and all who seek?
Yea, beds for all who come.

Christina Rossetti was obviously a cyclist.

With this letter* I state my intent to be at the start in Banff on June 11 and some days later stand on the podium** in Antelope Wells New Mexico being congratulated by the TD podium girls***.  It has been a long time goal for me to ride my bike across**** the USA.   Although I have never touched a wheel to the backbone of North America, I have been training a bit here in Vermont and hope I can translate this to success in the West.  I plan to finish strong and finish happy.   I am looking forward to seeing some snow capped peaks, tumbleweeds, ghost towns, cacti, and sitting under the stars at night frying up jackalopes in a large cast iron skillet.    I have scoped out the competition and this year looks like the year of 100% success rate - so count me in!  I am looking forward to racing with you all.*****

David Tremblay
Moretown, Vermont USA

* Actually it was with the purchase of the non-refundable plane ticket that I stated my intent.
**The podium for people named "David" and if necessary the sub category of those from Vermont.
*** Provided my daughters pick me up at the finish.
****The vertical north to south version will do.
***** Even if it is for the first 5-10 minutes of the race.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Braintree Gap training ride

There is a photo somewhere... 4:35 pm on top of Braintree Gap on Feb 15, 2010.  Third day of riding in a row... DaveB and Geoff Wade off riding the Canadian Ski Marathon.  I figured it was a good day to go long... but a bit of a late start required extra permissions and taking the Ayup light. (mounted to helmet)

Bike after the ride with frozen on mud.

Braintree Gap ride stats:

time out: 5 hours - 2:30pm to 7:30 pm
Max speed ( North Road by Tremblay Rd) 38.9 mph
Avg moving speed      10.6 mph
avg total speed         9.8 mph
total climbing    4167 feet
max elv             2425 feet
min elv                 582    feet
distance                49.6 miles
time moving           4:40 hr:min
time stopped         22:31 min
riding in dark         1:15 hr:min
walking/pushing in snow: 2 miles?
my house to top of bt gap: 25 miles
bt gap: 2.7 mile climb
780 ft to 2425 feet
Tire pressure: 18 psi front, 20psi rear!
water carried: 48 oz
water consumed 31 oz
water undrinkable due to temp:17 oz
food consumed:
choc chip Clif Bar 240 Cal
2 peanut butter crackers 65 Cal
total bike weight at end of ride: 35.4 pounds
beat old Hincapi bibs w/ Craft warmup pants over.
vb socks
ss ibis wool bike shirt
ls light Louis garneau base
rain shell
wool hat
Louis Garneau gloves
bandana - for road dust

clothing layers worked well - a little light and began to get a bit chilly at night but good for 20"F and not stopping.

This was a no (little) stop fast (besides the hiking) pace ride at TD race pace... but I ate and drank way too little.  Mostly because I knew I was only going to be out for five hours.  300 calories - should have been 3,000 - though I doubt I could stomach that amount.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Waitsfield Gap

Randy and I did another snow ride - this time with 1-2 inches of fresh snow. We met at South Hill - rode up Moretown Mtn road over the Moretown Gap. Mostly frozen dirt with a few bare ice patches. Flew down the other side into Devil's Washbowl - which had surprisingly been plowed sometime this year. We then rode to the end of Bear Mt Rd and got on the VAST trail over Waitsfield Gap. This would have been ok but only two snow machines had been on it and that was about two storms ago. Here is a great shot of Randy hitting a surprising stream crossing:

Coming down the other side was a blast.  I made a little movie of Randy crossing one of many ice patches:

We then hit Floodwoods road for about 20 feet then got on Elwin Neil's VAST trail - awesome down hill to Pony Farm,  Then a mellow ride home.  A completely normal ride despite the 20'F temp and snow and extra layers and cold feet and frozen water bottle.  Bike remarkably clean for a 18 mile mountain bike ride.  Just a krummholz of snow off the bottom bracket.


total ascent 2500 ft
max elevation 2208 ft
max speed 34.1 mph
distance 18 miles
moving time 2:13 stopped: 31:18
8.1mph avg 6.6 total ( we had to walk a mile or so)
Like they say - every mile on snow is equal to two.

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Friday, February 12, 2010


                                                         Fracture of the Radial Head.
                                                           (top of lower left bone) 5/1/09

Some days I can come up with dozens of reasons not to go off on a 2750 mile bike ride. Creaky knees, family responsibilities, money, mosquitoes, agrizoophobia, coulorophobia, Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever.... but the one thing that keeps rearing its ugly (radial) head is my elbow. I broke it last spring and it still won't open all the way. When I try to open it all the way - it aches. I couldn't do a push-up with it until about two months ago. I have been working on that. I have also been hanging from the chin-up bar and doing some pull-ups. Pull-ups are palms out - right? I am trying to reach my PB record set in 1975: 13. Of course in 1975 I had an incredible power: weight ratio being just 50 pounds. I now weigh three times that and can't do nearly as many chin-ups. I have had my sports chiro working on my elbow. He wanted it re-x-rayed to see how it has healed. Here's how it looks today - nine months later:

                                                    2/12/10 Healed Radial Head Fracture.

Not too shabby looking - right?  Especially considering I was doing a 240 mile ride four weeks after I broke it.  Thanks Charles Martley and Akhil Kaplan at Three Moons Wellness!   Now if I can just get full extension.

Oh- how did I break it?  Hmmm people don't get it when I explain I'm a 46 year old skateboarder- I have now cut back on the skateboarding but I still love it ... I am just getting too old and too big to fall.  Next year - hope to work on my falling.  Below - me and the skatepunks back in the day:

                         L-R John Champy, John Siudut, me, Mike Seeley, Mike O"Connor  circa 1980?
                                                       On my 1/4 pipe of salvaged wood.
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Sunday, January 31, 2010

Last day of January snow bike ride

Randy and I went for a little loop - conditions are perfect right now for cycling - anywhere! We did a little single track on Grandma's trails then cut across Erica Dow's fields to the Duxbury VAST trail. Snow not deep enough for snow machine, x-c skiing or snowshoeing but we saw tracks of all three of these. Went down the brook by Harwood where I crashed into a block of ice in a stream crossing then across Rt 100 to the Church o t C. One then Vast behind Simplicity Farm to Small DOg then Pony Farm back to Moreotwn. The climb home was as hard as it has ever been for me! Randy rode his Rawlands with 650b Pacenti's and I took my SS Litespeed with custome ice spikes. No mechanicals no flats. The gear was a bit high - the same gear I raced VT50 with in 5:15 - pretty tough with the slow tires and breaking throw the crust. Strange randy seemed to float on the surface more than me.

More photos here:
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Saturday, January 30, 2010

new LC-142 Vermont Tax Form

Here is the *new* LC-142 Vermont Tax form. This is a bit off topic - but I can't find this form anywhere! Just Gov. Jim Douglas making hard for poor little renters to get there tax rebates.  This form seems to be available only by request for some reason.  Oh and here are the instructions: (click on image to get printable form)

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Monday, January 25, 2010

The Vermont Farm Show maple contest 2010

Maple syrup was tasted and judged, And the winner is - you'll find out tomorrow - first time ever for this Best in Show! The three class winners in syrup were all very good. I ended up judging maple products with Hugh Lund but then went to the syrup table for the best in show contest. This was a lot easier than last year when I judged the fancy - hit my limit on drinking syrup. I had a pretty clean pallet going into this and when the six judges all gave two votes to each of the three classes I cast the deciding vote: ________ ! It was an excellent example of this class - one of the best I've had.
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Thursday, January 14, 2010

Guy Amundsen

photo from the Valley Reporter 'Valley Vetrans Honored" pages.
Guy was in the USMC 1955 - 1959

Guy died today while skiing at Ole's. It was a great day for skiing - the "pick of the week." Guy taught my girls to ski and was always such an inspiring, cheerful face in the Valley. I am glad I had a nice long chat with him while picking up my season pass application at the Waitsfield Ski and Skate sale. But I didn't get out on the snow with him this year - I only had one other brief conversation with him in the ski shop... Our family will miss him.

I was pretty low coming home from my otherwise wonderful ski - listened to Moondog's "Bird's Lamment" twice in a row with the tiptronic on and picked up Hazel. I didn't say anything to her about Guy so I thought it was sweet she insisted we go out for a ski when we got home. It appears the ski bug has jumped into her rosy cheeks out here in a star lit snowy Vermont field, her head lamp forging ahead through the darkness.

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Sunday, January 10, 2010

Killington Stage Race 2010 is on!

Just saw race director Gary Kessler at Ole's - the race is on:
Still no sign I will get a job out of the gig....

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

The boy who rode to Perham and back in.
Kent "Mountain Turtle" Peterson  is in for TD2010.

"While I am going to be ramping up my training in March and yeah, I'm spending the month of June racing the Divide, .... First off, it will take a lot of prep, a ton of luck and something of a miracle for this old guy to crack Chris Plesko's amazing 19:00:21 record for the 2741 mile course. My old record of 22 days and change was for the 2500 mile border to border route. Jake makes it sound like I'm just going to ride up and take the record back. I'm going to ride like heck (at a persistent, old turtle pace) to see if I can do it, but it's by no means a forgone conclusion. I'm racing to find out if I can do it."

Says it all... much better blogger than me.  27 comments and followers galore.

51 years old and aiming to win and break the SS record!  Inspiring... maybe I can do the TD in 2015?

Go Kent!

Sunday, January 03, 2010

Mr Lamb ride

Six gaps in one 222km day.
Moretown 1590 ft
Rochester 2109 ft
Brandon    2170 ft
Middlebury 2144 ft
Lincoln        2410 ft
App Gap     2365 ft
total: 12,000 feet?

plus the un-named:
Northfield Gulf
Granville Gulf
Baby Gap

I just got a nice note from Don Nolte about the 2009 MR LAMB ride. It was a fun day - the politics/business part of the ride soured things for me and kinda tainted the memory of what was a really cool thing to do. It was great to raise a chunk of money for the PTN and the Safe Routes to School program at Moretown Elementary. But when our project was delayed and nasty letters to the editor written... I threw up my hands and thought "why bother?" But hearing from Don made me look at the photos and re-think the whole thing. The Bolgers did a great job supporting the ride and the after party at Randy's house was excellent - especially with the deput of the Red Hen Pizza!  MR LAMB 2010 anybody?

Start at Moretown Elementary School

Rochester Gap (aka Bethel Gap) 2109 ft

                                                                       Brandon Gap

Middlebury Gap

Lincoln Gap

Appalachian Gap

Red Hen Pizza!

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Biggest snowstorm in Vermont ever (that we missed)

33" in Burlington, 3.3" in Moretown

Hiked to top of Baldy with Annie and Martha plus dogs Posey and Oscar.
It was spectacular.  I am always disappointed how un-spectacular my Vermont photos are... esp compared to blogs out west.  But I assure you: it was spectacular.  In the link below is a view of the clouds dumping a record setting snowfall west of the the Green Mountains!
more photos here.
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Friday, January 01, 2010

First place woman

Suzanne M Marcoe

"This summer I plan on becoming unemployed and catching up on all the mountain biking that I have been missing out on in recent years. I think 2745 miles should probably cover it, so I will be lining up under Mt Rundle on June 11th. It’s time to leave behind the mind (and soul) numbing boredom of the 9-5. See you in Banff."
Hard to tell with Suzanne... she comes right out and says she has been missing out on mountain biking in recent years.  That works for me... and certainly her unemployed angle might work for me!  ( at least for a little while) Not much to report otherwise.  This could be her ... looks a bit young for a long distance rider:

another short track rider!

"It's a friendly, no drop ride, right?"

About  Brian De Groodt

Brian De Groodt - makes it easy for me: nice website!  Very funny letter of intent - I'd say he is already in the lead of contenders, certainly on the LOI podium.  BUT what the heck went down at Leadville last year??!!  Interesting.  Very interesting.  Demons and baggage and witches.  Did he learn his lesson?   Sounds like he'd be fun to ride with anyway.

Damn hard to see all these people signing on while I have to sit on my hands.