In the months leading up to the trip, Deux North’s Hunt 4, we were all focused on miles. Like most of us, I’d done a few big days on the bike before, 8+ hours in the Rapha Gentleman’s Ride or a trip upstate, but never back-to-back-to-back. None of us knew exactly what to expect on the third day, when we would all line up to race the King Ridge Grasshopper Adventure Series.
The Color Dipped Collection continues at Specialized, with a bright, neon blue treatment. Last month’s Chartreuse came and went, leaving this blue and what appears to be a neon red for June and July.
See June’s offerings below and head to your local Specialized store for ordering.
When Erik and I committed to riding the Oregon Outback, we didn’t want to absolutely kill ourselves, but we wanted it to be tough. On paper, 360 miles is totally doable in three days without crushing your spirit. Hell, I think we could have done it in two and we still would have been ok but that’s not the point.
I had a responsibility. One that I take seriously and that’s documenting this trip. Granted, most of the time, I didn’t want to stop to shoot a photo, or hop off my bike, I just wanted to keep going…
The second day of any big ride is usually the toughest. Your body just assumes it’s going to be on the defensive for an unknown amount of time and begins to push back. Usually, that is. For Erik and I, we awoke in the Silver Lake Community Park f-u-c-k-i-n-g freezing. The weather said it would drop to 45 degrees as the low, so he and I brought hammocks and 40 degree bags in the interest of space and weight.
At 4am, my phone said it was 28 degrees. A cold front had moved in.
I was shivering uncontrollably, had I known it was going to be that cold, I would have brought a sleeping pad and a tarp, both of which I’ve used to alleviate the loss of body heat that happens in hammocks at such low temperatures. But alas, you reap what you sew. We would be cold on this trip.
All our field guide said about mile 120-240 was that we’d be crossing altitude desert and would be without water for up to 80 miles. I brought an Arundel Looney Bin to hold a 48oz Nalgene, which, after making breakfast, I filled up. Along with my two large Purist bottles. We had to get moving. Fast… It was 6:30am.
Continue reading in the Gallery captions.
With the success and failure of Erik and my last AWOL ride on the Diablo range, we started looking for another mission to continue the story. This couldn’t be just any camping trip, it had to be hard. Like, really, really tough and big and stuff.
Then it dawned on Erik (I was too busy to actually look for anything) – we’d do Velo Dirt’s Oregon Outback. Erik contacted me in his Swedish voice “ok mannn, we’re going to do this really fucking tough ride, called the Oregon Outback, are you in?”. Me: “Of course!” – not wanting to sound like a sissy. At the time, I was probably traveling for something and I didn’t even know what the Outback was. I just assumed it was a chill weekend getaway…
28 hours of moving time, 60 elapsed hours, 13mph average, 15,300′ elevation, 368 miles later and Team AWOL is done. We finished the Velodirt Oregon Outback, self-supported, fully loaded on Sunday, 45 minutes ahead of schedule. I rode the last day with a bum knee and a crooked back. It was three days of highs and lows, with a constant headwind.
… but we did it. Expect a whole torrent of photos and posts once I recover and return home to Austin.
Thanks for the support on Instagram and your patience while the site has been inactive.
So I haven’t made a big deal about this for a few reasons. First, I don’t want to jinx myself or my teammate on this ride and second, it’s part of a project that won’t see the light of day for a few months.
That said, I’m doing / racing / riding / surviving the Oregon Outback, a 360 miles MTB trek from Southern Oregon to Northern Oregon. Our plan is to do it in three days. Unsupported. That’s 120 miles a day on dirt.
I do rides like this often enough, maybe not to this degree, but essentially bikepacking or touring. So I thought I’d let you in on my packing list, via knolling. Check out a break-down below.
Look, just forward to the 1:50 mark… It’s 3am and I’ve been up since 6am the previous day. You’re not gonna get a lot out of me right now.
Ride Along: Hot Boyz of Cycling – Marc Marino
Words and photos by John Watson
Marc Marino is the nicest guy ever. He’s also super hot. Ladies, take note. He’s got it all: tattoos, tan lines and a track bike. On a serious note, Marc’s a good friend and I always enjoy spending time with him, especially at the Amgen Tour of California.
Today, I forced Marc out into the course to shoot some photos before he woofed down his lunch: a donut with almond butter smeared on the top… Check out a Ride Along interview below!
To keep your summer bright for the next three months, Specialized will be offering a “Color Dipped Collection“, featuring three products, all washed with the same color. The first month being chartreuse and I’m guessing a blue and a bright red or orange will follow.
See the full offering below and head to your local Specialized shop to order this limited edition set.