Saturday June 24, 2006

Trip Start Jun 23, 2006
Trip End Jun 26, 2006

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Flag of United States  , Texas
Sunday, July 23, 2006

I got up at six on Saturday morning and put on my gear and headed to the Tamale House to pick up some tacos for breakfast. I ate a couple there and got an extra frijole con queso to have at lunchtime.

Just as I turned off on City Park Road it started to drizzle. As I traveled further, I noticed water in the ditches so I figured it had rained last night or earlier this morning. The closer I got to the park, the harder it came down. Once again, I hadn't packed a raincoat or poncho or anything like that. We're in the midst of a long drought in Laredo and we only pray for rain. No one else was at the park when I arrived so I tried to read the Chronicle, but it was dark enough that I had trouble doing that. Mitch arrived and we laughed about the weather and waited in out trucks for someone else to show. Ray and Don arrived with Ray driving the big motor home. Once they opened up the garage area in the rear of the motor home, we hung out in there and waited for the others to arrive. Folks began to trickle in, Rob, Joe and Lance Miller, Dao, and Stephen.

The rain slowed down to a stop and we began, albeit a bit late. We started out introducing ourselves and what class we rode, what we wanted to get from the school, and what areas gave us problems. I still have problems with tight turns on loose surfaces. I told Ray I had dropped a lot of points in these woods at the last event here.

Then went over bike preparation, I always pick up something new on that subject. Next we covered the basics turning, body position, etc. After a warm up, we headed for the creek bed and Ray set up a section that had some tight turns through the trees and up and down the walls of the creek bed. The morning rain made things a bit slippery. Add to that the fact that our tires were clogged with mud so that you couldn't see the knobs on the tires. I started amazing myself right off. There was one turn on the hillside that was approached going down hill and then up that I just couldn't do without taking a dab there. I was pretty happy being able to consistently ride the section dropping only one point. I was doing things I wouldn't even attempt under these conditions and making it!

We moved further up the creek bed and Ray made a section that included a long up hill where you had to make a tight 180-degree turn and come back down. It included a couple of steps on the way down to make it interesting. I was pleasantly surprised to make it to the turn without problem. Coming back down was a little difficult. Once I got my body in the right position for the descent, I was able to negotiate that pretty well.

The clouds had cleared out by now and it was good and humid. Most of us were wearing Camelbacks and drinking lots of water. Our gear was totally soaked with sweat!

There is more to come!

Check back soon!
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