Lone Wolf Cycling – Crazy Train

7 Jan

LWC Crazy Train

“A bad ass, go anywhere, multi-multi-multi-terrain, urban area and beyond…. Ride. Singletrack, doubletrack, train track, eroded track, no track, road, dirt road, clincher road, forgotten road, rail to trail, path, stone path, creek crossings, log overs. Run up/through/overs, mud pits…” More or less anything and everything. A guess a grand-fondo/classics ride type of thing where the idea was to get some miles in with good friends and enjoy yourself.

I was on the fence about going but figured why not Saturday night around 10:30pm. I got the cross bike ready and got some food together. I woke up and cruised over to 5th and Spring Garden to jump on the ride up to Pennypack Park with the Bicycle Revolution shop guys. It was about 12miles up to the park and theslickness of the  newly fallen snow took a couple people out along the way. We rolled into the park and I was surprised how many people were already there 45min early registering and hanging out. This was going to be a wild one.

The 100+ people started in the parking lot off Pine Rd and quickly bottlenecked turning into the first trail section. After a small decent and a person going down within the first couple minutes I was leading and caused everyone behind me to go the wrong way. Whoops! After getting back on track I cruised with a couple friends and talked a bit. The single track was tight/twisty and really slick with the melted snow.

We got to the first pit stop and I was promptly handed a beer, a Lionshead to be exact. It quenched my thirst. We all hung out a bit and I ran into one of my teammates, Dave who id been looking for. He got lost at some point, got to a different section of train tracks and saw people walking across them to get to the pit stop. We waited around and helped carry out beer from the pit stop in hopes of running into the rest of the team. No dice. We were in good company at this point with Topherand Charlie showing us the way. Topher had a trunk rack mounted cooler/music-machine that had Ozzy Osbourne’s ‘Crazy Train’ on loop for hours on end. He also had a slew of beer and other goodies (ie cheese, a bag of bacon, and liquor with matching shot glasses for the kids)

After a flat or two, a couple road sections, a couple dirt sections a guy on a carbon Merckx roadbike with Zipps made a quick U-turned and followed us up and over a 4ft tall pile of concrete with the hopes that we were on a giant group ride. He quickly left and got back on the road.  We then trudged on to some mucky mud slog sections next to the train tracks and some more single track. Eventually made it to the midpoint stop that was in a residential neighborhood.

Luckily we were still with Topher and the gang and he brought out some 12 and 10 year scotch and bourbon respectively. The shots flowed and they were smooth as butter.  Those guys know how to do it right. Soon after I saw them lay out some cheese, bacon, salami, and little ‘juice boxes’ of Black Box wine. Me and Dave got back on the road a bit after as it was getting late and we had things to do.

We hit the first section of the ride that was on old abandoned train track. Holy hell, train tracks are the pits to ride on. My kidneys still hurt from riding on them. By this point Dave wasn’t feeling it and I could tell he wanted to be done. After a long section of road I doubled back because I hadn’t seen any arrows in a while. Unfortunately we just hadn’t ridden far enough. A couple extra miles no worries.

After some more train-track, dirt, even more train-tracks, and some muddy tow path action, we finally finished up. We were late to the game but I guess the park rangers weren’t too happy so many people were there without a permit and they kicked everyone out. I was hoping to grab some water and a sweet patch but it was a no go. I saw some people who had ridden up from the city but everyone was catching a ride or jumping on the train. Luckily for me one guy was in the mood to ride back home and we jumped back on the Pennypack trail and headed out. The head wind home was brutal but we kept the talking heavy as to keep from being bored. At some point I thought the cranks were binding but was hoping it was the amount of mud/dirt that covered the drivetrain. Around Lehigh and Front I gave it a crank and bam, the chain snapped. After finally fixing it with the help of Kevin we were back on the road.

6 hours and 67 miles later I was home and ready for some food. I had a great time and it was a really fun event. It was amazing to see that many people out in the beginning of January on road/cross/mtbs having a good time. I had also never seen so many (3+) on the road SS conversions from people tearing off rear derailleur’s/hangers.

Strava Jawn: http://app.strava.com/activities/36425495

Edit: Video.. (original song version not used due to copyright issues)

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Stolen gram shots go:

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