Wednesday, September 24, 2003

Diablo Junction - 22 miles
Stayed home today so I rode my bike to the start. Found new guy Jeffrey unloading on Doncaster so I stopped and waited for him. I thought JB and Adam would be coming but I didn't confirm so Jeffrey and I started out together and rode at a pace that was comfortable for him. We saw our first coyote near the dumpster gate down in the tall grasses - Jeffrey asked me if it was a fox but I told him how common the coyotes were on the mountain. Shortly before the bump Mark passed us up but not going as fast as he usually does - he had one wheel sucker in his shadow but lost him in the 10% section. Just below the ranches we saw 4 more coyotes hunting for squirrels - one of them trotted along side us for a little while, he looked so friendly and completely comfortable being near us… a little unnerving. with about 3 miles to go the first of the Diablo Cyclist came up to us and Grant launched an attack in his inimitable style - it looked like he was really fighting the bike but he was making pretty good time. We made some jokes but everyone admires him. I decided it would be OK to ride with these guys and let Jeffrey finish by himself and we made good time the rest of the way to the Junction - elapsed time for me was 43m32s which isn't bad considering what an easy pace I rode at for the first three miles.

At the Junction I realized that Grant and Mark were riding secret prototype single speed Rivendells. They were actually two-speed since they were fitted with a double chainring, but the rear wheel had a single-speed freewheel mechanism and the rear dropouts were track style with long horizontal slots for adjusting chain tension. Mark and Grant both loosened their wheels and "shifted" to the big ring and then readjusted the chain tension by repositioning the wheel - it looked like something you wouldn't want to do more than once per ride but it does work. The bikes had Rivendell head tube badges, front brakes and a dummy brake lever for the right hand, and they were painted a deep forest green. Mark had his Time ATAC pedals on and Grant of course had big flat platform pedals - I think they're the BMX ones in his catalogue. Both of them had on very big diameter tires, Grant's were cushier than Mark's were though. Most of the conversation around the bike racks were about these two new bikes - one of the guys had already ordered one.

It got to be 6:30 and Jeffrey had to leave. I stuck around a few more minutes thinking JB might show up but started down myself shortly after. Then I ran into JB coming up about 1/2 mile below the Junction so I turned around and rode back with him. All the DCers had started down by that point too so we were the only ones left at the Junction. We didn't stay long and headed down before it got too dark. JB said something about logging his total heartbeats for each ride as some kind of fitness indicator - he multiplies his average HR times his elapsed time to get the figure. I'm not sure if there's any sense to that or not.