If at first you don't succeed....
As promised, I got back on that 2-wheeled horse called a mountain bike and headed over to Massabesic again. This time I adjusted the tension on my pedals to make it a little easier to get out of prior to hitting the ground. It's one thing to crash and fall, but it's embarrassing to fall and still have your feet firmly attached to the pedals. Technically, I only fell once in about 1 1/2hrs of riding but had MUCH more fun this time! Lots of new trails, some I could actually ride, what a concept.
With my newly restored confidence I now began to wonder about the difficulties associated with riding a mountain bike at night. With no firm plan yet on what the heck I'd do for lighting I decided to take a trip to my local bike shop. The first light he shows me costs $450! Hey buddy, my bike doesn't cost that much, are you friggin serious? I'm sure these lights are bright and all but I'm thinking my night mountain biking days may come to an end sometime on Sunday. Let's face it, I can barely ride during the day, why would I want to ride at night...on purpose?
I left without a light, but not empty handed. I bought some new cleats for my shoes, multi-directional release cleats. Anything to make it easier for me to get out of is a good thing. When I got home I found out one of my RTB teammates (Douglas) was letting me use his bike light, via NYC. Phew, one less thing to worry about.
Later in the day I decided I really needed to get at least one practice ride in at dark so I duct-taped a flashlight to my bars, a headlamp to the front of my bike and tie-rapped another headlamp to my helmet. At 8pm I headed over to Horse Hill for a ride. Well 50 minutes later I made it back to my truck, unharmed. Imagine that? It ain't easy but it is definitely doable, even with crappy lights. As it turned out, the flashlight pretty much just came along for the ride. My Petzl running headlamp mounted to my helmet was really providing all the light. By the way, my new cleats were awesome!
Confidence fully restored, I'm ready to go!
This might actually be fun after all.