Friday, July 6, 2012


Needham Town Forest. Where axe head rocks are born. My own personal windmill and shame for the last seven years. It is literally a mile from my house. It puts fear in my heart. But its also a mountain bike playground. All the gnar you can find and more. Plus some pretty nice trails too. Went in with 3 of my friends Thursday night as an extension of the Cutler Enduro ride. I somehow was the only one who came out of there unbloodied. I thank my Zank 29er. And The Wilcox and Jon Nable for showing me how it is done. Mountain biking should be done with friends. It just lends itself to way too much hilarity to be done alone. Alone everything seems like its trying to kill you. With your friends you ride more of the techy stuff.

Sure I did almost kill two of my friends. Well one really. Jon hit the tree on his own. Although my chattering in his ear as he dropped off a 20 foot boulder/slash dirt chute may have distracted him from the task at hand. He hit the tree half way down, unclipped (thank god) jumped off the bike and landed like a cat on a rock outcropping gripping a sapling to avoid falling twenty feet onto a pile of rocks.

With the Wilcox it would have been more directly my doing as I suggested we try this "fun" trail. We were pretty punch drunk at this point. Not dronk, punch drunk. All the punchy up and down and technical stuff wears you down. And it was hot. We had been riding for while. And I remembered this fun boulder descent out of NTF back towards High Rock. I stopped halfway and got out of David's way. He passed me and took the wrong line. Like really wrong line. Towards a cliff! He stopped at the edge in a nose wheelie. He somehow got the rear end back down. Then just stood in a track stand for what seems like forever. You could tell he was plotting his next move. Sort of like in the movies when the car goes over the edge of the cliff and hangs there. He unclipped stepped on the boulder and almost slipped off and died. The rock was that slippery. He walked back towards us laughing his ass off.

Ian took a few knocks as well. One off a 2 x 4 and once endoing over a log and hitting a tree. NTF does not mess about. As dangerous as it seemed or was the scariest part was of course back on the road dealing with SUVs and runners etc. But what an amazing time. I need more of that. Mountain biking is incredible. My whole outlook has changed. And I really owe it all to the Zank, my friends and NTF. Oh and Shimano Xt brakes? I love you. I am building a little shrine to all things Shimano in the man cave. I will light votive candles and thank them for saving the Wilcox.

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