Sunday, February 28, 2010

Frozen Muddy Gravel Fun

Plenty of muddy, frozen gravel riding this weekend. Saturday was nearly 65 miles of frozen mud up in Iowa. Cirrem results here. Sunday the gravel roads thawed a little quicker than expected turning the Smithville Gravel Grinder into a muddy mess. Still everyone seemed to have fun, which is why we are out there riding in the first place.

Here are some pictures from the Cirrem and Smithville.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Smithville Gravel Grinder v4

Plenty of gravel in store for this weekend...

Saturday is the CIRREM 60 Mile Gravel Road Race.

Sunday we will give the Smithville Gravel Grinder one more try...

Smithville Gravel Grinder v4
When: Sunday , February 28, 2010 - 10:00 am start time
Where: Smoke N Davey Trail head (off W highway) , Smithville, Missouri
Who: Any and all are welcome
Why: Because it is time for Randy to get off his ass and ride.

Come join Cow Town Cycling's Randy Cartwright on a scenic trip around Smithville and surrounding counties - 4 to be exact. Route is just under 34 miles and includes our favorite, hilly gravel roads. See below for route maps. Route is marked and ready to ride. Yellow flags = Left Turn, Pink flags = Right turn.

The Smithville Lake MTB trails look like we could ride them early on Sunday before the GG. Check back here on Friday for an update. Forecast temps are 21 in the early a.m. Let's keep our fingers crossed....

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Smithville Gravel Grinder v3

Update 2/21/10 (7:30 a.m.). The Smithville Gravel Grinder has been cancelled for today due to unsafe driving conditions and icy roads. And the fact that I could not get out of my neighborhood with my little truck due to the slick roads....

Update 02/20/10:

Randy marked the course today. Yellow flags = Left Turn, Pink flags = Right turn. Bailouts are flagged with both Yellow and Pick. See below map for bailouts.

Based on the forecast (30 degrees), the planned MTB ride before the GG is not going to happen. We will meet at around 9:50am for a planned 10:00am departure for the gravel grinder. This looks like it is going to be a real classic - wintry mix, snow, slush, ice, slop.

What: Smithville Gravel Grinder v3
When: Sunday , February 21, 2010 - 10:00 am start time
Where: Smoke N Davey Trail head (off W highway) , Smithville, Missouri
Who: Any and all are welcome
Why: Because it is time for Randy to get off his ass and ride.

Come join Cow Town Cycling's Randy Cartwright on a scenic trip around Smithville and surrounding counties - 4 to be exact. Route is just under 34 miles and includes our favorite, hilly gravel roads.

If the trails are frozen on Sunday morning (long term forecast says they should be) a group of us will also ride one lap of the Bone Bender course beginning at 8:30 am. After the MTB ride we will ride the gravel grinder route. What more can you ask for. A full morning/afternoon of riding our bikes.

Here is the course map - Smithville Gravel Grinder v3 Course Map

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Mullets 'n' Mud 'n' Good Times

What is a Gravel Grinder without some Mullets? You are not really doing it correctly if you don't see plenty of mullets or dead squirrels on your gravel grinders. Both were found on Saturday's Mullet Ride hosted by Gerard Arantowics. As advertisted, this gravel grinder was held at a much more relaxed pace which allowed for more social riding and some good times riding the scenic and historic roads of Baldwin City.

We had a good group start today's gravel grinder. Not all completed the ride. Some like, Mark and Joe, joined us for part of the ride then headed back home to complete a long day in the saddle. Some like John Williams were not able to finish the ride due to mechanical failures. You would think someone in the group would have carried a spare chain ring, but noooo....

The majority of the route was on gravel roads. As expected during this time of year they can get a bit muddy. Everyone surprisingly rode the muddy spots like true champions and never missed a pedal stroke. After a few miles the mud had flung off and we were rolling along.

During the ride we visited some interesting sites like Signal Oak, the Battle of Blackjack and we learned about a section of land that produced over 10 million dollars in 10 years from those little oil pumps.

Complete pictures can be found on Cow Town Cycling.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Mullet Ride

Gerard Arantowics is hosting our next Gravel Grinder this Saturday. His annual Mullet Ride is a must do. Course will include some nice gravel roads around Baldwin City. Pace for this ride will be very mellow and is very mountain bike friendly. Course distance is 25 miles with a 12 mile option. Maps will be available.

What: Mullet Ride
When: Saturday, February 13, 2010
Where: Baldwin City, Kansas

We will meet at 6th and High street in Baldwin City. Parking is available at Antiques on the Prairie or at the Collins gym. Ride begins at 10:00am.

More info to come...

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Chucky's Challenge

Edit 02/05/10:

Doug Long sends word that Chucky's Challenge is still a go. They only got about 1 inch of snow and everything is looking good for tomorrows ride. The 54 mile route has been flagged and custom designed for our current weather - Flat and Fast.

Be sure to check out for course maps and any updated info.

See everyone tomorrow.


The third Annual Chucky's Challenge gravel grind will be rolling out of Jamesport at 10:00 am on Saturday-Feb. 6th.

The route will utilize the fine ground gravel via Amish buggies, some paved sections, and the rolling hills of the "Green Hills" region. I hope to put together approx. 60 miles of route with a shorter option. We had a SAG at approx. 1/2 way last year. It took the fast guys over 4 hours to complete the ride last year and there was at least one hill that 90% of the riders walked.

The start is at the 4 way stop downtown Jamesport. There is plenty of parking in the lot next to the Jamesport Tavern. We had 20+ riders last year and hope to continue to grow this till one day it may become a competive event.

Here is the info:

3rd Annual “Chucky’s Challenge”
Ground Hog Gravel Grind
Saturday-February 6th
Jamesport, Missouri

Climb out of that burrow and join the Green Hills Trail Association for our 3rd annual “Gravel Grinder” from historic Jamesport, MO!

Why this ride? Chucky says “Lighten up dude, I wanna see my shadow! After being in a hole for 4 months, I’m ready to break the ice, hang out with my friends, and get the riding season started.” The ride drew 20 riders in 2009.

Starting time is 10:00 a.m. and we’ll be departing from the 4 way stop right downtown next to Gingerich’s Dutch Pantry . It’s “show-n-go” so there is no participation fee. Just show up and we will provide route maps and all the gravel riding you can handle. This will not be a race but don’t let that frighten you back into your den.

The 2010 route will traverse the hills and hollers of the Green Hills region with some “aggie flats” thrown in for recovery. Riders can choose either the “Full Chucky”-60 mi. or the shorter “Lil Chuck”. Most of the route will be on smooth crushed limestone suitable for cross or mountain bikes. The route will be posted and blazed the week of the ride so we can hopefully stay away from any fresh gravel maintenance “large gravel” and pick the best route.

Jamesport is an Amish community, so expect to see horse and buggies and prepare to take a little step back in time. There is a small grocery, some restaurants, and a “watering hole’ for post ride libations.

Please contact me at: if you are coming so we’ll have plenty of maps and so I can forward the route to you via email.

Anyone can ride a trainer on a cold February day, but it takes some courage to brave the weather. Will you come join the fun? Or are YOU Afraid of your shadow?????

Monday, February 1, 2010

Groovy Gravel 'n' Broken Spokes 'n' Fish Bowls.

Sundays ride start at Curtis' house. Temps were in the 20's but the sun was coming out and it looked like it was going to be a great ride. Bill handed out maps and Curtis covered the course route before we headed out. Little Martell was dressed and ready to go, but his darn rig did not even have pedals....

The Lone Star Gravel Grinder, hosted by Bill Anderson, traveled from the University of Kansas campus along rolling twisting gravel road to the sleepy little town of Lone Star. Some nice groovy gravel with many sections still snow packed with a thin layer of snow were encountered along the ride. After a short loop around Lone Star Lake we headed back rolling along on the snow packed gravel and back country roads.

Ride went very smoothly except for..... Mr. Pot Pie sprung a leak early on the ride. Don't you hate it when your bladder leaks. Poor guy had a frozen water fall coming out of his jacket the entire ride.....We went slightly off course Sunday. GPS said we were on route, but Bill's sense of direction and the a printed course map said were heading in the wrong direction. We opted to go with the GPS and ended up added about a couple of square miles of road. I don't the added miles bothered anyone, especially our single speed rider as he had the perfect 46 x 16 gear for the road.... Along that stretch we encountered our other small problem. A broken spoke. But Dan's build job was first rate and only required a wrapping of the spoke to get us going again.

After the ride about half the bunch headed for some refueling and rehydration at the 23rd Street Brewery. The promoters of next weeks Chucky's Challenge were also on hand. They had just finished up 4 days of riding and needed some recharging. The special of the day was "Fish Bowls". 60 oz of your favorite ale for $6.00. Personally I was not man enough to finish my Fish Bowl, but Dan, Doug and most of the others had little problem. Heck, even ole' Jeff Arnaud finished his but I think he did have some help from his GF.

Great ride, fine food and good times. Thanks again to Bill and Curtis. We will see everyone Saturday at the Chucky's Challenge up in Jamesport, Misssouri.

Here are some pictures of our ride.