The first half of winter in southern Oregon was unusually snowy and cold. Most of the trails I ride were buried under snow. I am a mountain biker at heart and I typically try to ride my bike 3 times a week. But with all the fluffy white stuff everywhere that wasn’t happening. After a couple of weeks of not riding I was going stir crazy.
All I knew was I needed to ride one way or another before I went loco.
I’ve never been much of road guy as I just can’t get comfortable dealing with traffic. I sold the last road bike I had because I never used it. But I figured I’d give it a go again. I reached out to Unreal Cycles about building up a road or CX bike so that I could at least get some miles in and stay fit. The guys at Unreal were great and helped me build a sweet carbon Grammo Paru CX bike. We built it up with a unique blend of road and MTB components. Solid !
I set out for my maiden voyage in the dark. With my lights charged and dressed for the weather. I headed out into the night. It was freezing ! I left my house and went for 15 mile loop ride out to Jacksonville and back. It was nice to be pedaling again. The bike was super smooth and was much more compliant on rough terrain than I had expected. Like I said. I’m not comfortable riding around cars. So I spent much of the time on the gravel off to the side of the road. One way to stay true to my dirt roots I guess. Probably not a good idea though with all the broken glass and debris that litters the side of the road. Luckily I didn’t flat.
The bike is fun to ride and it looks really good too. I have taken it out on several different asphalt and dirt road excursions. Including a 21 mile trip from my house up and around Roxy Ann mountain that included asphalt and dirt. This has been my favorite ride so far. I love being able to just leave my house and go for a ride rather than loading my truck and driving somewhere to ride my bike.
The snow has since been melting and tacky dirt has been calling my name. So I have been riding my mountain bike a bit more lately. The Paru has mostly been used for fitness and interval training. With days as short as they are it’s pretty much impossible for me to get a mountain bike ride in after work during daylight hours. So I am stoked to have the option of jumping on the Paru and going for a quick spin.
We still have a couple more months of northwest weather. I am looking forward to spending a lot more time on the Grammo grinding out miles helping me stay fit for the upcoming MTB season.
Thank you Peter and Lewis for hooking me up with a sweet ride and helping me maintain my sanity. And maybe. Just maybe. I’ll take up cyclocross racing next season.