Saturday, April 23, 2011

Rattling Run Trail

I never knew it had a name. We always thought of the "Stony Climb" as just that, a brutal 45-minute fire road climb from Stony Creek at 508 feet above sea level, to the radio tower on the top of Third Mountain outside of Dauphin, PA, at 1,601 feet. Stony Creek used to be a popular mountain bike destination until the Game Commission shut down the trails to mountain biking and horses about 10 years ago. The Stony Climb and the rail trail remained open with the climb still being all its cracked up to be -- an incredibly good training ride climbing 1100 feet. Donna and I climbed Stony last evening after a hiatus of about 3-4 (or longer) years from these training grounds. The road is still bad getting there, and the climb itself is still long, hard, and beautiful once on top. We both commented how our heart rates didn't climb as high as they used to years ago. Funny how that happens. We were pelted a short bit with icy sleet and the rain never let up the entire two hours. Although it wasn't a washout downpour, we were still soaking wet and cold when done. The temp was 41 degrees. It was an out and back ride, turning around just before the turn to head back down to the rail trail about 7.5 miles from the start. We climbed the rocky section which was interesting -- neither of us ever did that before. All in all, another great training ride with my training partner. It's SO nice to have a buddy to train with. I was just thinking last week how bored I'm getting with the Rattling Creek trails riding by myself all the time over there. The Rattling Creek system is small -- and there's only so many ways you slice and dice riding there and its starting to get old after 10 years. I gotta get out more. I'm really looking forward to riding the farm at Marysville after work starting May 4 and each Wednesday after that up until the Epic. The plan calls for race pace every Wednesday and we're both anxious to test our speed so we can build a little more speed to make the cut-offs at the Epic.

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