Saturday, February 21

Mr. Mountain Biker

On my peak bagging adventure today I came across a guy along Raleigh Peak Road.

I was dressed for hiking, not riding, wearing my sticky rubber approach shoes, button up Columbia shirt and my fuzzy hat instead of a helmet. I definitely looked like a noob or a gumby for sure. Didn't care at all...I was bagging peaks.

I had cut cross country from Colorado Trail to RPR because I really wanted to be on the road instead of the trail. I hit the road a few yards from a buy with a full suspension MTB and he was pumping furiously on his tire.

"Need some help?" I asked.

He looked up and replied: "I've got a slow leak."

He pumped a few more strokes and then added. "This is my second pump in two rides and this one has broken too."

I walked toward him slipping my pack off. "I've got a pump."

He sort of half heartedly looked up and said, "It's probably not set you have...Presta valves?"

"Yeah." I replied.

He sort of stood and started looking intently at the ground but threw me a glance too late as he said: "Usually more serious cyclists will have Prest...uh." And he cut off.

I just grinned.

He was still looking for the part that had come out of his pump, and I happened to see it.

"Here you go." I said as I handed it to him.

"Thanks." He replied without meeting my eye.

After a minute or so he finally said: "I guess I will use it...while you're right here."

"Oh," I said, realizing he meant my pump, "OK!"

I dug it out of my pack and handed it to him. He pumped furiously for a minute or so and handed it back to me with a thanks. We had exchanged a little more small talk before both of us got on our bikes and headed the same way, out toward Raleigh Peak. I hung back a little to let him, the "more serious cyclist" go on ahead.

On the third hill I passed him as he weaved all over and within a few minutes I realized I had left him far behind.


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