Upcoming Events

A New Year, A New Year!!!
Of course the flipping of a calander page does not change the world we live in, but it is progress and movement towards better times.
With that flipping of the page comes new opportunities and I want to take this time to look ahead at some of them.
Calendar of Events:
MBAA- Mountain  Bike Association of Arizona
This is the organization that puts on the local, or Arizona wide, mountain bike races.  The first race was this past weekend and you saw in Gord’s post 4 or your teammates went.
My impression was that it felt as safe as going to Target. I was impressed with the event and how people conducted themselves. Mask usage was about 100%, the amount of people felt safe, and there were enough racers that there was a true event. I never felt, in any way, that I was in a conjested space, or that people were being careless with masks. The event of course was outside in the desert and there was ample space to sread out.
With that information I feel safe encouraging kids to go and race, and Damiano will continue to attend, if subsequent races feel as safe.
This has been discussed with Sean, who raced along with his wife, and Gord, and we have agreed that we feel they have created a safe environment for us to enjoy.
The next two races are as follows:  All information can be found at www.mbaa.net 
January 23rd and 24th– MBAA Mountain Bike Race #2 in Phoenix at Estrella Park
February 6th and 7th — MBAA Mountain Bike Race #3  in Phoenix at White Tanks
These can be done in one day. You can drive up race and come home in the same day.
 Intermediate and Expert race on Saturday and Beginners on Sunday 
Categories are self selected and we can help 
Races cost $25– Grupo will reimburse you if you attend and race the event. We ask that you register yourself. 
The full spectrum of riders were at the last event, from wicked fast kids, to kids who had to walk sections. I feel confident that there is a category for everyone to enjoy competing in. Please feel free and encouraged to ask if you have questions.
If racing is not what motivates you and you want a different option then I have proposed a campout over the weekend of February 13th and 14th. 
This is the weekend that was to be the 24 Hour race and Valley of the Sun. Both of those events had to be canceled for their own reasons, but that gives us a chance to go camping.
I have proposed a Gravel Road Trip to the Chiricahua Mountains. This will be a two night adventure. We can help transport bikes, but unfortunately not people. The Chiricahua Mountains are South East of Wilcox. There is primitive camping on Pinery Canyon Road that is very adequate for our size of group. There is ample camping for families to enjoy the nature, however no facilities.
The riding is best for gravel bikes, however if you want to come out with your Mountain bike, you are welcome. There is no single track, just dirt roads up and over the mountains. The routes are very tough, to  be honest and clear.
We would follow the same protocalls that we did for the Winter Break Bike Tour. All rides would need to show a negative covid tests that’s within three days of us leaving. You will then be asked to quarentine post test to ensure results. Then at camp we would continue to follow best practices.
We would need to have family vehicular support, as we are still not using the vans.
Families there is a ton of space to camp in the primitive area, or you can camp down the street at the structured area at the National Park. There is also excellent hiking at the park, if you want to drop your kid off and enjoy the weekend for yourself or with your family.
 
After the Camp Out weekend: More www.Mbaa.net racing 
March 6th– MBAA Mountain Bike Race #4– Lake Havasu
All races are on Saturday
The Race/ Event for those not sure about racing:  https://thecactuscup.com/
March 12th- 14th– Cactus Cup Mountain Bike Stage Race
                                McDowell Mountain Park– Fountain Hills, Arizona
This event has been taking place for a few years now, and we have participated in the past. It is a very unique race in that there are three events over three days that ultimately make up your time. We have really enjoyed it in the past as it gives us a chance to camp together over two nights in the beautiful park and enjoy some great racing. This would be a great first event/ race experience for many of you. So if you are not sure about the MBAA events, then I encourage you to put this on your calander as a goal, as long as things conitue to improve and the situation is safe.
We would really like to encourage everyone to do this event and to have fun testing themselves.
This is the team event that we would like to have well attended.
Again we would follow the same protocalls of having everyone take a test and then quarentine.
The team will take care of camping and food.
I don’t want to look too much farther ahead than that, as we might be in a different world come late March. However this gives us a course of action. It also gives us races to shoot for, and a fun camp out for those that don’t want to race. So trying to meet everyone’s desires.
I will be traveling to all the MBAA races listed. At this point I will be heading up on Friday night, as Damiano will now be racing on Saturday.
IMG_0073.HEIC
                                         

NO MCKENZIE RANCH TOMORROW

I apologize for this late notice.

 

I do not have access to my car tomorrow, so I am unable to get out there.

 

If you already planned on heading out there, I very much encourage you to do so. It is a great network of trails. They are fast and flowy and lack sharp rocks.

 

 

Happy Holidays

Happy Holidays. I hope this finds everyone enjoying time with their family while staying healthy and safe.

 

I want to thank everyone for my present of being able to do what I love with the group of young people that I admire so much. It has been a joy to be able to come back to the club and to be able to help, assist, and coach again.

 

I also want to thank every family and rider for doing their very best to keep each other safe. I very much appreciate that everyone has been very mask conscience and aware. Who knows how crazy things are going to get with the pandemic, but we can control how we act around each other and the decisions that we make away from the club. So thank you all for being so mindful of each other.

 

 

BIKE TOUR RECAP

 

Last weekend I was fortunate enough to lead a group of riders on a three day bike tour of Southern Arizona. I worked hard to build as many gravel bikes as I could so as to invite as many riders as possible. I hope in the near future that we have such a bike for everyone.

 

The idea for this trip was conceived because some riders had expressed a desire to go on a bike tour, others wanted to camp with their friends, and others wanted to try gravel riding. After receiving all this input I decided to try and put something fun and safe together.

 

So first we mandated that riders take a covid test with in two days of departure and to quarentine as best as possible after the test to ensure results. We wanted to be as careful as we could. I also constructed the route in such a way that youth would be in cars as little as possible and outside as much as possible.

 

Day 1– We rode from the Clubhouse to Arivaca. This was an 80 mile ride and we camped just outside of town close to the lake. We arrived at the lake at approx. 1 pm and riders where then able to maximise their card playing time. It was a joy to watch how easily everyone fell into the camp card playing and that everyone respected my no electronics mandate.

 

 

 

Day 2– Was the big gravel day. This was another 80 mile day but this time we had to ride 60 miles of it on very rough dirt. For many riders on the trip this was the hardest bike ride they had ever been on. It took my group more than 6 hours of riding and 8 hours total. The highlight of the ride for me was the last hour. Everyone on the ride had cracked physically and emotionally,we were spent, but spiritually we came together. At the 7 hour mark of being away from camp, I stopped all  of us on a random stretch of dirt road, just north of Mexico, and we created a power circle. We all came together and acknowledged that we were going to need everyones strength to finish the day. We were all spent and the ride was harder than anyone one of us prepared for.

 

But magic happened. That beautiful magic when you are your body and soul do something above and beyond anything it has done before. This alignment of energy I believe only happened because we as a group had decided to ride together and to care for each other. As we got the extra flat tire no wanted to deal with and the road seemed endless, no one complained. We just did the work. This was an instant classic of a day. It found that perfect space where you over reach to do something special. It was the most brutal of days, and yet it brought each rider massive amounts of pride.

 

These are the days that I missed as coach. The days when that new lesson is learned. When the comraderie of the team pulls each rider up to do the impossible.

 

Arivaca to Parker Canyon lake via Ruby road, and then Duquence.

 

 

Day 3– Parker Canyon Lake to Tucson. Only Myles, Axel and Elliot actually made it the whole way. The rest of us were transported to Sonoita and we enjoyed another perfect day. We rode 65 miles and were able to ride up and over the Santa Rita mountains via box canyon.

 

We may have been only gone 2 nights but I think for all of us it was what we needed. Just a few days to explore and to forget. 3 Days to let nature encompass us and to remind us of the beautiful world we get to call home. We have not had space or time to get out like this and we certainly needed it.

 

Thank you to everyone who came and helped. Especially David Cross, Daniela’s Parents and Don and Judy Lewis. Without their support we could not have made this all happen.

 

 

 

Nacho’s Notes

Race Team members thank you for the hippie circle on Thursday.   We took time as a team to understand and discuss the value of Perseverance. We talked about how it is a virtue that is not given, or asked for, but earned. It is earned when we meet a difficult moment in life and… Read more »

Nacho’s Notes week of October 26th

I want to thank everyone first for your understanding and patience last week.   Thank you for your flexibility with the current situation. We are certainly trying our best to provide safe and healthy programming and your support makes it so much easier to make the tough calls.   Expectations for Riders moving forward during… Read more »

Nacho’s Notes

I imagine that I feel like the rest of you right now in that I sure am missing being around the clubhouse and all the wonderful energy, but yet totally understand that the right decisions were made.   These are crazy times, and like I used to say, Life is like a river, we have… Read more »

Schedule Change For this week!!

I am going to take time tomorrow to thank everyone who came up to Prescott and made the weekend so much fun. However for now I want to make sure to get this information out.   Hopeful plan Tuesday— All kids go on a road recovery ride. This will help the Gila kids prepare. They… Read more »

Whiskey Gear List

Whiskey  Gear List 2019 Riding Gear Camp gear Quantity Item Quantity item 2  Riding shorts 1 tent 1 Team jersey 1 sleeping bag 1 Long finger gloves 1 sleeping mat 1 short finger gloves 1 head lamp 0 race wheels zero Nothing electronic 2– 3 Spare tube Cards OK 1  helmet 1 Riding jacket Hygiene… Read more »

Weekend Update

State Crit– I posted earlier this week about the race and asked for feedback. I really did not get any at all from riders. So we made a decision. If you are racing at Gila then you will be doing the crit. You need the practice. If you are not racing Gila then you will… Read more »