Thursday, October 18, 2007

So, Dave Muse, Fools Gold route designer describes the 24 hour of Clear Springs course I'm about to race like this:

Ever ridden there before?

The terrain is wild; deep gulleys everywhere, and the trail just goes straight up and down the fall lines. The vegetation is so tenacious, that if a trail gets worn out they just move 4 feet to the left and cut a new one, and a year later you can't even tell where the old trail was.

I haven't been there in years, but it used to be terraced, stair-step, vertical climbs followed by equally terraced, stair-step vertical descents, composed entirely of basically sand and criscrossed by an infinite number of roots. At the bottom of every hill is quicksand and though there were some flatish spots, they were equally hard to ride because of all the water they collected. I swear, Conyers and Carters Lake are harder, but every other cross country trail in Georgia is easier than Clear Springs. I remember it as a savage, merciless, unyielding, face-crushing, mangling, devestating beat-down. One day I dislocated both shoulders there in as many laps.

I say all this, and yet we rode it pretty much every other weekend. It is, in fact, a really fun trail, if you're into that sort of thing.

In the summer, it's typically over 100 degrees in the woods with 100% humitidy. If you stop for a second, it feels like you're baking. This time of year it should be pretty nice though, especially if it hasn't rained in a while.

The park ranger who took over maintenance of the area just before I moved to GA was a really avid mountain biker, so the trail may be god's gift now, but back in the day it was pure screaming hell. Also, my memory may be skewed because I really sucked back then.

Hope you guys have fun. Especially you Nam, on the singlespeed.

So..yeah. He's not really selling me on it. Can anyone confirm or deny the above??

Just over 2 weeks and counting.................

BTW--the Decatur Beer Festival is SOLD OUT! Told ya! Eddie and I got our tickets, though...I've been looking forward to this all year! :) Neal, I will drink one (or five) in your honor since you decided to go to Bolivia instead...Jodi, I will drink 1/2 of one in your honor since you are a slacker non-commital type!


Blogger Charlie said...

Wow I'm really regretting my uninformed "what the hell" decision of randomly signing up for 24 HoCS (first 24 for me).. I shouldn't read so many blogs then I could've continued living in blissful ignorance until Nov 3.

On the forums they compared the course to Conyers but didn't go into much more detail than that..

5:57 PM  
Blogger Namrita O'Dea said...

haha, i know....

well, we can suffer together!! :)

6:01 PM  
Blogger Hmmm.... said...

KICK ASS NAM! I know you can do this. Just think of it as training for next year! :)

Have some fun!

7:20 PM  
Blogger allan said...

Hmmmmm. That sounds a whole lot harder than I thought it would be You and Eddie will kick ass though.

4:29 AM  
Blogger bcoleman said...

Hey, I'm the race organizer for the 24HOCS, and I can flat out deny the trail description you were given. It is not anything like what he said.

Dave is talking about the old "Tally's trail" that indeed is straight up and down the fall lines (at least for the first 2 miles). It is not part of the race course

The race course is on the Richardson's Creek trail and can be summed up as "super flowy". Its almost entirely bench-cut into the contour of the ridges around the area. The whole course is a little over 10 miles and faster riders are known to do a lap in well under an hour (~45 minutes is the record right now), so you know its not going to be the killer ordeal Dave described. There is one nasty climb right at the end, but thats all the "straight up" you'll have to deal with

One last example, because my singlespeed bike is a beater/convert I don't have many ratios that will work with the chainstay length without running a tensioner. One gear that *does* work is 32:15 and is obviously a pretty stout gearing. I had no problems riding the race course with 32:15 (I definitely had to mash up some of the little steeps, and had to dismount on that nasty climb at the end) but had no problem going out for others laps after that.

You don't need to be afraid, if anything it should be easier than some of the stuff I've read you've raced before..

Looking forward to seeing ya'll at the race!

Brian -

6:13 PM  
Blogger bcoleman said...

Besides, we had a guy ride a Muni last year (, so it can't be that bad!! :)

Brian -

6:21 PM  
Blogger Namrita O'Dea said...


Thanks for the info! I was coming to race anyway, but this description sounds much better :)

See you in a couple weeks!

6:35 AM  

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