Chadwick vs. Heartland Spodes

BSWIFT

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#1
A small group of spodes left for Banson Thursday afternoon to meet up at Jeff's. Jeff runs the golf course at Branson and he had invited us up for a trip to Chadwick. DWreck, Evenslower, CrashandBurn, OKKX'r, and myself made the trip. The weather was perfect. We made it to Jeff's around 10 pm, unloaded the bikes, enjoyed a few adult beverages, and got ready for some sleep.
As the morning came around, I found that I was the only one the got any sleep. Seems that I snore (I had no idea ;) ). A quick run to the QuickyMart for coffee and the trucks got loaded and we headed off for breakfast. After a good breakfast buffet, eggs, biskets and gravey, sausage, bacon, and more coffee, we headed out to the Mark Twain Forrest. We stopped for our permits and got to the parking area and unloaded.
I have to say again, the weather was perfect. We got geared up and passed some gas (well, I did anyway) and we headed down the trail. Jeff was in the lead position and he was setting a fairly brisk pace. The trail was a 2-track with mostly gravel size rock, fast, nice corners, whoops, and roots. At the 1.1 mile mark, Jeff decided to take some soil samples. Some bent bars and abrasions for proof, we are back on the trail, a bit slower but still a good pace.
The first trip out came to an end as we made our way back to the trucks. Another truck and trailer arrived and Jeff introduced us to Toby. Toby was a rider at the Last Man Standing this past December and an Iraq Vet.(Thanks Toby!) After he got ready, we were off. Now the pace is ratcheted up. Toby is on the pipe every gear, getting air off of twigs! You didn't want to stay too close, the roost was falling some 60 feet behind him.(did I mention the soil composition?) Toby led us to some single track that was superb. It was tight, technical, and down right sadistic! The seven spodes watched as Toby hit the hill, grabbing gears until he was pancaked flat about 3/4's up the hill. He's back up, down the hill, tosses the broken bark buster off and hits the hill for revenge! After he makes it to the top, he comes down, no handed, taunting us to give it a try. Being day 1, I passed as did everyone else.
Having Toby lead us around was cool. It was fun watching the lines he took and his ability to avoid obstacles without a second look. His shifter gave out and he headed back for a spare. The rest of us headed off to hide our spodelyness from the eyes of others.
The terrain is outstanding but will destroy your tires. I had been warned by many Chadwick veterans and now I understand. At the end of the day, we had made a 45 mile journey that had us tired and hungry. We loaded up and headed back to Branson for some BBQ. This nite, everyone slept. More later.
 

BSWIFT

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#2
BTW, Evenslower's birthday was Friday. Hope he had a good day.
 

evenslower

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#3
Toby is my hero, dude is insanely fast and a character to boot.

And yes, if you happen to be wondering, I kept my streak alive and managed to conjure up some rain, overnight on Friday. I'll post some pics later after I get them resized and add a little to Swift's report. My hands are still cramping as I type.............
 

evenslower

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#4
Here's a few pics.

First one, we found this dude taking a nap on the trail so we let him hang with us for a while.

Second one, we made the fastest guy in the group take the picture so the better looking ones could be in it, still a pretty rough looking bunch though.

Third one, Don wondering how in the heck dry rocks get so slippery.
 

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DWreck

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#8
Thursday afternoon as OKKX'er and I were loading the bikes in front of my house I hear "Uh Oh that's not good" and turn to see Don moving my rear wheel back and forth. Wheel bearings, dammit! We are already running behind so we head on to Swifts to meet with him and CrashandBurn for a little pizza and off to Branson we go.

Evenslower was well ahead of us coming down from Columbia and by the time we got there he and Jeff looked to have put a dent in the case of Beer he showed up with.

I made the decision to go a head and ride with the hopes of finding bearings for the bike that evening. Chadwick uses interlocking paving stones in certain spots in the main trail and Don mentioned at Jeff's crash site (mile 5.11)that he jumped his first concrete double.

Things definitely got interesting when Toby showed up. Our riding area in Stillwater isn't really known for it's elevation changes so the hills Toby took us up were a real change of pace. I even made it up a few....and got a kick out of the barrage of insults that were hurled down the hills that we didn't try.

That night we went to Famous Dave's for barbecue and Wilbur beans. The group wisely told Swift that he could not have the later considering he already had enough gas to drive it to Pittsburg. By now Evenslower had done his rain dance and a bunch of worn out Spodes headed back to Jeff's for rest.

I spent some time on the phone trying to locate wheel bearing for my bike not having any luck. You know the guy who works at the parts store that can cross reference anything and get you back in shape in no time. He doesn't freakin live in Branson.

more to come
 

DWreck

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#9
I think day one covered 48 miles.

Saturday started off a little slower as coffee drinking and story telling seemed to take precedence over getting loaded up and headed to the trails. We went back to the same restaurant for breakfast and met up with a couple of CrashandBurns usual Chadwick riding buddies. They were able to locate one of the bearings for my back wheel.

The pace was definitely slower although we found plenty of challenging hills to climb on our own.

The best entertainment of day 2 was watching Jeff show how NOT to cross a creek and then Donald's friend who goes by the nickname Frog decided to also go for a dunk.

After about 25 miles OKKX'er, Swift and CrashandBurn headed back to Oklahoma and Jeff and I headed back to his house to meet with Gorp who I was planning on going to Park Hills, MO for the Lead Belt National that next morning.

more to come.
 

BSWIFT

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#10
The pics should have "objects maybe closer than they appear" or "hills are steeper than this pic portrays". Nice pics, John.
 

BSWIFT

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#14
Day 2

The morning rolled around and Evenslower and I were off for coffee. Upon our return, life was beginning to stir at Jeff's. After taking a few pics, we loaded up and headed for breakfast.
Once we arrived and unloaded, we were still slow getting started. Shortly after we hit the trail, Rob fouled a plug on his KX as we found out after Frog back tracked. We did a short trail and returned to the trucks. Rob had just finished draining the fuel on the KX and changed mixed fuel. The ride was at a real good pace, fast but manageable. We found a creek crossing and Jeff must have been hot so he took a dip. The photos show the hill we decided to play on while Jeff emptied his boots. DWreck made it up the farthest but I don't even know if there was really a top to the trail. It was fun hammering the throttle up that hill.
After that, we went bookin' down this revine trail and as couple of riders got some pucker factor looking at some on coming quads that were haulin' the opposite direction. Hopefully, CrashandBurn knows a proctologist that can remove seat covers!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!:yikes:
We ended up on trail 113 in a clockwise direction, the sadistic direction that is. Most of the trail is easy with an occasional moderately difficult section. Then, out of nowhere, you get the shelf rock hill climb from HE!!. At least each hill was followed by some ridge running with some speed. Some of the uphills started out the sweeping S turns that abruptly become shelf rock, crossway in the trail. You just had to hold the throttle pick a line and pucker!! I am SOOOOO happy with my MX-Tech suspension. I could have never handled some (most) of the trails on the stock YZ 'roid maker suspension. Riding rocks is near impossible on a stock MX suspension but if you are setup, they really are that bad. Not necessarily easy but doable.
After some fast twisty trails, we headed for the trucks. The day ended on a positive note and no one went to the ER. Thanks to everyone for a great trip.
 

DWreck

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#15
Saturday night Gorp came up and met us at Jeff's and we headed out a 3am Sunday morning to head to the Lead Belt National Enduro.

Gorp and I have been battling it out for top honors in Vet C all year. The last two races he has given me hope for a victory and then managed to do just enough to leave me sitting in second. This time things were not looking too promising to me considering I had just ridden two days in a row and still hadn't found wheel bearing for the bike. As we got into the first test section I watched him steadily pull away as I missed a couple of turns and battled arm pump. I finally relaxed and tried to set a pace that I thought would get me through in second.

This was my first time to race with the big boys of the sport. Russel Bobbitt was on row 21 on his factory Red Bull KTM and passed me in every test section. You know how when a rider who is faster passes you that sometimes you can fall in behind them watch their lines and pick up the pace. It didn't happen. He was gone so fast I couldn't believe it. We were on row 18 and the last test section was 15 miles long. I quit paying attention to numbers when pros from row 24 passed. Michael Lafferty was one of them coming from row 25. I have never been passed by so many people in my life. It wasn't my best ride by any means but I'm not sure that it would have made a difference. Toby Adkins, the guy we rode with at Chadwick on Friday finished 21st overall in the AA/Pro class.

The trails were awesome. Sand, ruts, roots, rocks, mud and a creek section where the small rocks were the size of your head. Just about the time you would start to get tired of something it would change.

Unfortunately the Blackjack Enduro Circuit lost a rider at this race. After the last check Bob Harris stopped to relieve himself and died of a heart attack. He was in his 60's and from looking at his times was still getting around pretty good on a bike. One of the last people to speak to him asked him how it was going at one of the checks and said he grinned and said I am having a great time.

All in all I had a great weekend, didn't get hurt and got another second in the Blackjack points.
 
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