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Cheater on the Creeper

Thought I'd fess up here before you hear about it somewhere else...I participated in a cheater ride today and don't feel good about it.

The big spiff for hundreds of cyclist is to drive to Damascus, Virginia, for a ride on the Creeper Trail.  Most pay $13 to have their bikes and butts driven up to the Whitetop  drop off, and then descend for 17 miles back to the car.

It was OK fun, but felt weird.  I didn't earn that descent yet sucked all the benefits from the ride down.  Should have climbed that 17 miles, basked in the effort, then descended.  But on this day, it was master competitor and several thousand other bikers taking the ride to the top and letting gravity do the work, instead of my own engine.

Needless to say it was one of the biggest weekends of the year.  The Creeper Trail was littered with bikes, kids, senior citizens and couples in love.  What a mix!

It was the rare exception, but some riders had the fortitude to ride the Creeper in the opposite direction, which put some shame in my soul.  As I glided down they were putting torque to the crank on the way up.

Life isn't meant to be hard on all occasions, but this Creeper experience was not a sweat equity event.  Is this what downhill mountain biking is all about?  This may become an annual happening, but I wouldn't count on it.  My jersey was bone dry at the finish, and that just ain't right.  I'd rather opt for my finish at Kerr Scott Dam, when a puddle pools up around me feet.

I'm home and winding down.  Looks like my 20 year old Scott mountain bike shoes are separating at the soles, so I'll try and glue 'em up for a bit more use.

Let's all work together to keep the aerobics on the increase.  And in my case, I'll accept a few less rides to the top of the hill.


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You have to look closely (click and enlarge photo if needed), but when you do, check out the 5th metacarpal (bone furthest from thumb).

The diagonal break is symbolic of what happens when your mountain bike handlebars snap around 360 degrees, and those bars catch your hand against the bike frame during the rotation.

Well there you have it. I got up after my ride over the bars and knew something was wrong, but didn't want to admit it. Rode about three miles back to the car, then went a week with some ice and heat. Thought it was good, until I smacked the same bone on the bars during a road ride the following weekend.

Time to stop the charades and get to urgent care.

For the past three weeks, I have been in a formed splint that kept the pinkie and ring fingers immobilized in a hooked formation. Don't want those tendons to move across the bone. As the doc stated, it's a "forgiving" break, but nonetheless you don't want to give the bone any excuse to shift; that…