Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Trip to Tsali: September 2010

Ahhh, my favorite time of the year. The time when I start talking about making the yearly trip to the Tsali trail system in North Carolina for a long weekend of camping, riding some great trails and just trying to relax. It really sucks that this normally only happens once a year. I really need to get out of coastal Georgia! I'm a mountain person, not a beach person. I just feel at home in the mountains. Plus, where there are mountains, there is normally lots of singletrack! Anyway, my wife and I have made the trip to Tsali a yearly thing for a few years now. I love the days beforehand when I'm getting everything together and then finally loading the car. It's always a great feeling seeing the bikes on the rack on the back of the car.

This year we decided to go a little bit earlier than normal. Maybe its because I'm getting older, but I just don't enjoy camping when its in the 20's at night. We would normally head to the mountains in mid to late October so that we could have the changing leaf color to add to the trip. But the last couple of years it has been really cold and I always end up being sick after the trip. So this year we went on Labor Day weekend. The weather was perfect! I took an extra day off to get up there early, fearing that there would not be a camping spot since it was a holiday weekend. Well, I guess it worked. We got up there at around noon on a Thursday and there were literally only 3 people in the whole campground! So we picked a spot and setup camp.

Tsali is just the perfect place for us to go. The campground is right at the trailhead to the 4 loops that makeup the Tsali trail system. There can be some difficult parts on the trails, but for the most part, they are fast and smooth and a blast to ride. But before I get into that, we always have to make a little side trip while we are in the area. That trip is to Young Harris College, where I first went to college and Bell Mountain in Hiawassee, GA.

I spent a lot of time in this building!

Then onto Bell Mountain.
Now that we've done the hiking trip, its time to finally ride some trails! Do I look excited?
I even got in touch with fellow Flight Crew member Greg Heil and he came up for a day to tear up the trails on our Airborne Zeppelin Elite's!
Here's pic from out on the trail with Megan.
Ahhh, singletrack....
On a side note, we always have to hit up the Nantahala Outdoor Center to check out what they have and to get a good meal that we don't have to cook! I'm still mad that I didn't buy this shirt...
Now back to the trails!
Airborne sweetness....CHECK!
Some trail views!

I even found a couple spots to play with my Airborne Taka! (Sorry, no action shots!)

Then all good things must come to an end. I hate leaving this place! I got a lot of good footage with my GoPro camera. I am trying to work on getting all of that together! Also, I cannot Thank Airborne Bicycles enough for all that they have done. You guys made a dream come true for me! I'll get a post up soon about the trip to Sea Otter. I have a ton of pictures I have to go through for that post! My Airborne bikes handled great and never gave me a single problem. I would also like to point out that my Zeppelin Elite is not stock. The bike was great in stock form, but I shelled out all that money for the fancy parts I had on my previous bike, so why not use them? Right?

Again, I can't see enough to everyone with Airborne Bikes, Brunner, the Flight Crew and anyone else that I left out. I was starting to lose hope with keeping mountain biking in my life. The interest was there and will always be there, but I was starting to feel like I wasn't a mountain biker anymore. It sucked because mountain biking was my life for the past 16 years. That feeling has gone away now! I feel like a mountain biker again! I get all this support to go out and tell people about Airborne Bicycles and have fun with the greatest sport and people out there! Thanks again to everyone! Look for a post about the my Sea Otter experience soon!


Where does all the time go?

Wow....I say to look out for updates and somehow almost 3 months goes by before I do anything. That's not acceptable! Between work, Connor, home life and the holidays, I've barely had time to even sleep! I have a ton of pictures of my Airborne bikes and various trips I've been on with them along with all kinds of GoPro video footage that needs to be edited! My main problem right now is my computer. It's so slow and old that it takes forever for me to even go on the internet. I've been going through a bunch of my old collectible stuff and trying to get it together and start finding buyers so I can free up some space and try to make some extra money. I hope to build a nice computer if I can get rid of some of this stuff (if it doesn't all go to bills!) Anyway, not much of an update, but I'm working on some stuff. I'll at least try to get some pictures up of the Tsali trip from back in September. I promise there will be more soon!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Start Watching for Updates!

OK, it's been way too long since I posted something on here! Keep an eye out, because I'm going to start adding lots of stuff from the past 5 months and try to get this blog up date and keep it that way. I will be busy working on it! If you have any ideas or things you want to see on here, just let me know! I'm all ears!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

My Essay to Airborne

Here is a copy of the essay that I wrote and entered into the Flight Crew contest:

I have had a passion for mountain biking for the past 16 years. I haven’t travelled a whole lot in my time, but I have ridden all over the east coast. I started out riding my brother’s old road bike on trails that my friends and I built behind my parent’s house. I decided then that I needed a mountain bike. I started out on really cheap, heavy bikes, but I couldn’t have been happier. I mowed a lot of lawns to buy my first “real” mountain bike in 1997: A Klein Pulse Pro. I continued riding and racing from then on until my bike was stolen in 2006. I was heart broken! I didn’t allow this to stop me though. I was on a mission to build another bike. Nothing was going to keep me from doing something that I had such a passion and love for. After finally building another bike, my passion was even greater. I was entering every race I could afford and going on trips to ride whenever I could. I have gained such a large group of great friends and have too many stories to tell. I didn’t grow up with a lot of money, and still don’t have much, but that has never been a bother to me at all. I would show up for group rides on a bike I had ridden for thousands of miles and ride with people talking about all their new rides and fancy parts. I was just happy to be part of a group of people with the same passion that I have. That is why I would love to be a part of the Airborne Team. I would enjoy every second that I had to spend time with a team of fellow mountain bikers and spread the word of my experiences with the team. I would love to go out on a new Airborne and share every second I experienced on the bike and all of the stories that would come with shredding all of my favorite trails on it. So that’s me. A long-time, passionate mountain biker that enjoys nothing more than telling anyone I can about my experiences with this incredible sport.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Living the Dream!

I am completely new to this. This is my first blog, first post and first time ever that I will get to represent an actual bike company! I was 1 of 10 people chosen for the new Airborne Bicycle's team called the Flight Crew. I found out about all of this craziness on the cycling forum that I am on the most And a big "THANKS!" to Robina for posting up the information. Without that post, I probably would have never known about the contest. Airborne Bicycles had a contest to select 10 "Flight Crew" members to help test out their new bikes and spread the word about their comeback. I had to fill out some information: My name and all that normal stuff, my current ride, my years of Mountain Bike experience, a photo of myself and I had to write an essay on why I think I would be a good person for their team. I got everything ready and sent the email. I didn't really think much about it because I've entered countless contests and have never won anything. That all changed on March 23, 2010. I went to check my email like I always do and had an email with an exclamation point next to it that said, "Congratulations, You've Been Selected for the Airborne Flight Crew‏". I was kind of weary at first. It said that I had won a spot and needed to call a phone number within 24 hours to accept it. So I called the number, and it was the real deal! As a winner I get a brand new Airborne bike of my choice, a helmet cam, branded gear and a trip to the Sea Otter Classic in Monterey, California! I'm so excited! I've never been anywhere but the east coast, so I'm ready to show up and show off stuff for Airborne! Stay tuned for more updates!