Some who follow my blog might of thought i expired! Not so, all's well & BUSY! Between some gravel riding, an occasional S24O, attending DK 200, helping host Odin's Revenge AND doing an entire re-model/addition to our house, well, yep...I've been BUSY!
my 18 yr old son Lane decided back in January to up his pain threshold & wake up at 3 am one morning to enter Dirty Kanza 200 & he made it in so was then committed to an actual training regime, which for him wasn't entirely serious by any means but it was a good excuse for me to get out there & ride plenty of gravel miles with him & back in April I even got my first ever gravel century in with Bob "Captain Cowbell" Wiek who also was entered in DK 200. So June 2 found us in downtown Emporia, KS anxiously awaiting the start of 420 riders from 35 states, Canada & a rider from the UK, heck I even decided to get a taste of it at the last minute & entered to ride the DK Lite, a casual 50 miler to get a taste of it.
Spending over 20 yrs. as a cowhand making my living with cows/horses I've heard of the Flint Hills of Kansas for many years but had never had the opportunity to visit, I just assumed they were very similar to our beloved Sandhills here in western Nebraska, man was I WRONG! This is some of the most spectacular country I've ever seen & I couldn't believe the huge expanses of wide open country & never ending vistas of natural prairie.
I also got to say the surface is much different than our loose, sandy roads here, knife edged flint that's just waiting to shred your bike tires without warning, fortunately for both my son & I we both survived the miles unscathed. I was riding my Salsa Fargo with the Continental Race Kings it came with which are wearing thin & Lane was running Schwalbe Marathon Mondial's in a 35mm on his new Kona Major Jake carbon cross bike
pretty tough to beat a view like this while out for a bike ride!
this is Lane's new set-up for his long gravel miles & it proved to be a reliable platform for his first ever DK 200, a full set of custom made bags by Rob Robert's of Burbank, CA The top of that bag holds a 100 oz Camelback bladder & there's plenty of room for tubes, tools, snacks, etc. between the whole set, good for 200 miles!
This is Lane 16 hrs & 45 min after he left the starting line at 6 am that morning, yep, he finished his first ever attempt at the DK 200 with a few extra miles for a wrong turn for a total of 208 miles, what an incredible finish for him at only 18 yrs old, he may have a future in this sport yet! It was just an incredible experience for ALL of our family, between the beautiful country, the brotherhood of over 400 gravel riders in town for the weekend & the actual hospitality of Emporia I'd have to bet the odds are pretty good that we will be back for a good many more years.
Hopefully I won't disappear for quite as long this time but ya never know, like I said, it's been busy & will stay that way for a few more months, I do have some future posts planned so stop back by to see what's going on!