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Sep. 6, 2007
A Rebuilt Bike, Boise ID & Fashionable Mossy Oak
Just got back from my Boise vacation. I love going to Boise to visit my wife’s kinfolk. For the last few summers, we’ve headed out there to spend a little time doing very little—and it rocks. My son has a blast, my dog loves the large property we stay on, we eat food grown right from a big backyard garden and all the scraps get fed to a bunch of hearty-looking chickens who pop out some of the tastiest eggs I’ve ever had the pleasure of ingesting.

We also stay in Winnemucca, NV on the trip out and back—which means we get to eat at The Griddle and Las Margaritas twice. Two times. Count ‘em. Breakfast at The Griddle is almost worth the trip to Winnemucca on its own; and if you toss in dinner (and some tasty margaritas) at Las Margaritas, Winnemucca starts looking more and more like a destination. Maybe next year we won’t make it all the way to Boise and instead we’ll just hunker down in the middle of Nevada—at the “Crossroads of the West” as the folks in Winnemucca like to say. Hmmm…. Being so close to those tasty margaritas could be trouble.

The trip to Boise started out a little hectically. I had an Orbea frameset that needed building in order to race the Idaho State Championship Crit on the 26th, and I ended up putting it together the night before we were to depart, which is just the type of last-minute plan that’s almost bound to go awry. And awry it went. The new frame unfortunately wasn’t quite the right fit. I’ve already spent far too much time crashed and banged up this season, so trying to set up a slightly ill-fitting frame in order to rip around the streets of downtown Boise just didn’t seem like a good idea.

So, the morning we were supposed to leave turned into the morning I swapped all the parts from the new frame to an older Orbea Opal that had been crashed in March and repaired in July by a guy who fixes carbon sailboats. I absolutely love racing the Opals, so I knew if the repair held up I’d be able to hold my own in Boise.

When it was all said and done, the vacation started a few hours later than we’d planned, but we headed off with the Opal intact and ready to roll. I got some great rides in during the week leading up to the race and by the time I lined up at the start line outside of Big City Coffee, the bike felt just right. And the figure-eight course did its part to challenge the frame repair. One right turn in particular had a wicked & sizeable divot in the best line and each lap the frame repair was thoroughly tested.

The race went well. I had to do a lot more work than I wanted to in order to keep things together, but I was itchin’ to finish well in front of family and friends who were cheering the whole time. With five laps to go, one very fit dude was still off the front and was going to solo in for the win, so the rest of us were racing for 2nd and I was feeling good about my chances of pulling off the bunch sprint. By the last lap, things looked good. Sitting around 6th wheel, behind the Boise Development Team’s lead-out train I was licking my chops—and then, right before the final left turn into the finishing sprint, the Boise Development Team’s lead-out train crashed itself and sent the rest of us scampering for any sort of line that would make it through the mayhem. My line wasn’t so hot, but in the end it did keep me upright. I managed to take the last turn crazy wide, then get up enough speed to come around a couple guys who’d slipped by me in the crash, and finished 4th in the bunch sprint—good for 5th overall. It wasn’t the 2nd place I was gunning for, but it was good enough to get the family & friends excited and, in the end, I was very happy to have avoided the crash.

As if a great vacation with family & friends and a fun bike race weren’t enough the next day I got a slick new ball cap from my wife for our 7-year anniversary. Mossy Oak camo pattern no less, from the Rockhouse Coffee Shop in Jordon Valley, OR. While copper or wool items tend to be the traditional 7-year anniversary gift materials, I’d highly recommend anything in Mossy Oak to the woman who wants to show her fellow that things are still exciting seven years into the “union.” Mossy Oak sorta says, “Hunt me. But do it in style.”

And I’m definitely committed to doing my part to put Mossy Oak on the map as a high-fashion option. It either goes with nothing or it goes with everything—and it looks great either way. That’s the beauty of Mossy Oak. I welcome the mystery and the challenge that go hand in hand with wearing such a cap. One of the guys in the office just walked by, gave me a nod, and mumbled approvingly, “Best hat ever.”


The vacation was worthy, the race season is ending on a nice note, and Mossy Oak and I are off to a fine start.

Thanks for reading the whole dang thing.

Posted by:
Le Sensation American
Team Clif Bar

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We like getting our heart rates up, taking a big breath of fresh air, savoring delicious food. But we also love telling stories and here's where we type 'em up. (BTW, it works both ways; leave a comment—please and thank you.)

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