Just checking in to say I'm still alive.
Finished Fairy Bells, the woosie version of Hells bells, in about 18 hours.
Now that I'm finished and alive I can tell you that the Bike leg was by far the hardest leg for me and I felt every one of the 70km's of it, (There was ALOT of cycling). I hadn't cycled in about ten years and didn't do any training before the race. Made for some hairy times on that "sweet single track". No crashes and no broken bones though.
Ended up renting a bike from Anaconda and it got the job done. In wet, dirty conditions the brakes certainly went quick though. Fun times.
Am hooked on the adventure racing though and will be buying myself a bike in the next week or so.
Thanks for all the tips!
Glad to hear you survived the adventure!
70km is a lot to bite off for your first taste, and I have to say you exceeded my expectations. Well done!
I thought you'd end up in a hospital bed or at least injured. Getting your own bike is a good idea. There is a lot to be said for knowing your bike's limitations well.
Thanks guys, got to say it was a bit ridiculous. there was a moment at 4am when I ran into a log on some single track while simultaneously getting whipped in the face by a tree branch where I thought, "Those guys were right, I am going to die out here."
So anyway, Am looking now at buying a mountain bike. Basically during the week it'll do an 8km easy commute to work and then weekends it'll find some off-road stuff.
I've been looking around and have found a new Fluid Renegade for $600. http://www.fluidbicycles.com/09FluidSpecs.pdf
It's what I rode in the race, although this time I'll get one that fits me! Are fluid, and the renegade in particular decent bikes or do I have to go a little more upmarket? From what I'm told by LBS, gears, brakes and forks are where I need to spend the money. Don't mind spending a little extra money but the renegade at half price seems like a bargain at the moment.
EDIT: Or Perhaps I dig DEEP into the pocket and get a fluid Rhythm for $900. Thoughts?
Go with the Rythm. Excellent buy for the money: good fork (if heavy), solid componentry that will survive the ardour of the trail, and has decent brakes and good tyres.
The Suntour fork on the Renegade will suck. Seriously suck. Tektro Auriga brakes have good feel but are light on for power. The tyres aren't the greatest.
thanks for the advice Trailgumby, it was what I expected you'd say. I did find the brakes on the renegade a bit iffy during the race so I'm hoping the rhythm's are much better.
Any other advice at $900 or is the rhythm a bargain too good to pass up?
You'll do better spending that sort of money on an under-two-years-old used name-brand bike, but you need to know your size well before you buy, which requires experience you don't yet have.
You could perhaps get better deals new, but you'll be a long time looking, Better to buy and start riding. Lots. If $900 is your absolute upper limit and the bike agreed with you on a test ride, I think you've found your steed.
Went down on the weekend and bought myself the Rhythm. It's doing everything I assume a bike is supposed to and very happy with it so far.
Gets me to work in about the same time as my car did too since I get to avoid traffic. Can't wait to get it out on the trails on the weekend.
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