1200 Miles & a Cup O' Dirt & a little Mississippi Mud!

Take the year long challenge of completing a dozen or half a dozen dirty centuries and join the fun in December! Everybody who completes this challenge will be rewarded with a custom hand-made stoneware mug as well as be in a drawing for other prizes. Read the FAQ for details, and welcome to the fun!

I've increased the fun to give some more folks a shot at the cup - a bit 'watered down' - We'll have the 1200 Mile Cup O' Dirt and a 600 Mile Cup O' Mississippi Mud and new in 2008 is the 1/2 Liter O' Dirt - earned by completing 12 metric centuries in the year! A special award will be presented to anyone completing either a dirty century or metric century in each month of the year.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Grelk Earns A Third Cup!

I have 3 ways to earn a Cup... The Full Cup O' Dirt, a watered down version called a Cup O' Mississippi Mud and the metric one called the 1/2 Liter O' Dirt.

One Cup is hard to earn. Just ask me. I created the danged thing and haven't earned one yet. Ask anyone. They just don't come easy. Earning a Cup -any of em - is recognition of time spent in the saddle - intentional time. You don't just turn around at the end of the year and say "Hey! I earned a Cup!" - it is something that is sought. Earned.

Dennis took the challenge. Took it full on. The dude's blog name is short for "Never Rest". He didn't For all of 2008 he didn't rest. The dude rode. And rode. And rode.

By mid summer, he'd earned the full Cup O' Dirt - 12 full dirty centuries. Not content, he started riding metrics - and by mid-fall had earned his 1/2 Liter O' Dirt. Then he decides that that's not enough and goes after the watered down Cup O' Mississippi Mud. That means 6 full dirty centuries before December 31.

Well, he did it. With 3 to go at the beginning of December - Dennis 'never rested'!

Congratulations Dennis. you have the honor of the quickest Cup earned and now, the most Cups earned. Not only in a single season, but total. Impressive!

Now, here is his final report:

Started my weekend by hike-a-biking around in the crusty snow in the forest for five hours on Thursday afternoon. That didn't get me very far though.

Friday was forecasted for a 15-20mph South wind with 30mph gusts, so I apted for something new, a tailwind ride. Rode from home up to IA City. Started out super fast on the glazed ice, like 16mph avg fast. Then it turned to slush/mud about 40 miles in and the average died. The tailwind was still appreciated, got in to town before dark.

Saturday's Data
Todays forcast was much nicer with a 10-15mph winds and a fresh layer of ice on the gravels. Unfortunately the ice was short lived, and the mud was abundant. TI training conditions. I'm not sure I like TI training conditions. I found a bunch of new roads to ride and linked a bunch of old favorite routes together for the route. Finished just after watching the sunset, a good finish for the cup quest.

Sunday's Data
Thanks for the motivation Dave!


Monday, December 22, 2008

Two to go for Grelk!

From Thursday, the 18th of December:

So we got 1/2" of glare ice on everthing Thursday and temps in the single digits with forcasted winds holding 20mph gusting to 30 Saturday afternoon? Good time for a century!

I converted the cross bike back to winter duty with the addition of studded tires and gears and I'm glad I did. The Nokian W240s did alright on the glare ice, but the small piles of ice/snow on top of the ice were sudden death. I only lost it three times throughout the day though, so I think I did pretty well. The winds did indeed pick up about the time it got dark. Lucky for me that was about halfway through the ride and it was a headwind! It's really neat when the wind is strong enough that it can actually slide your tires sideways on the ice. And you know its a good ride when your eyelashes start freezing together.

Click here for motionbased route

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Will They Make It?

It's December 18 (dang!) and Grelk and Anderson are still in pursuit of some hardward. Or glasswear - or, well, tableware? No, no - it's STONEWARE! That's what they are in pursuit of! Stoneware! Anyway - Grelk is after his 3rd Cup of the year. He's earned a Cup O'Dirt (for 12 dirty centuries), the 1/2 Liter O' Dirt (for 12 metric dirty centuries) and now he's after the Cup O' Mississippi Mud, a watered down version of the Cup O' Dirt, earned by completing 6 dirty centuries. He's got 3 done, and two weeks and 3 to go. Will he be the first person ever to earn all 3 Cup? With a blog name like 'nvrrest' my bet is on him getting it done. After all - what else is there to do, but go for a bunch of long dirt road bike rides this time of year -eh?

Mr. Anderson, while he's earned his Cup O' Mississippi Mud, is in pursuit of the Cup O' Dirt - and not just any Cup O' Dirt, but the Holy Grail of dirty coffee transportation devices- the One-A-Month Club Cup! You may not have known that we have that.... well, neither did I.

Last January a bunch of guys around the Des Moines area, set out for a hundy - planning on doing one every month. Little by little guys bagged the effort. Some earned some Mississippi Mud along the way, some just plain bagged it. Not Anderson. Every month I'd get his report. Every month, sometimes in the nick of time, I'd get his report. Except this month.

He had a hundy planned for December 7th, but bitter cold, wind and maybe a late 'Nadas' show curtailed his effort.

Will he make it? Will he be the first, the one, the only, to earn the coveted One-A-Month Club award? (I'm still working on what that may be....)

Stay tuned - 13 days to go. I just realized - some ambitious soul could start today and earn the full Cup... so, all you kids that have been laid off from your mortgage or real estate job and have an Uncle in Pheonix, pack up your bike and head south - get a work on it - and get those centuries in! The Cup O' Dirt - MMMmmmm - doesn't it just make you drool?!

Here's Grelks latest report, from last weekend.

Another century down, and three to go.
I started out Friday at 6pm, riding off into the moonlit night on snowy roads. The moon was bright enough that I only turned the lights on for cars, beautiful. My Garmin battery died at midnight, so I had to pause for awhile to get that charged back up. In the mean time temps went up, snow turned to mud, and winds picked up to somewhere in the twenties, gustng to the thirties. Finishing it off Saturday was nowhere near as much fun as the night before. Anyway, two weeks and three hundys to go.

Friday, December 05, 2008

The Full Set

Way back when I started all this ultra nutty cup challenge you said this:

"we've got 3 cups, Cup O' Dirt - 12 dirty centuries
Cup O' Mississippi Mud - 6 dirty centuries
1/2 Liter of Dirt - 12 dirty metric centuries"

I've got the Cup O Dirt and the 1/2 Liter of Dirt. I figure if I can manage 6 more centuries in November/December, that should make for good training motivation for the TripleD/Arrowhead 135/ TransIowa/ Ect.

So here's my first stab at those last six:

40 miles of state forest trail riding and 60miles of gravel on Thanksgiving Thursday.

Another 100 miles riding from home to Jingle CX on Friday: http://I was going to ride back home after the races, but I was smoked and I'm glad I stayed to watch the mayhem, that was awsome!

One month and 400 miles to go.


Editorial by Dave: I say we're all invited to Grelks for coffee - he'll have enuough Cups for all of us!!! Keep rolling!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

David G. Is still rolling - and Nick W. wants a 1/2 Liter too!

Now, I think, with 18 metric centuries under his belt, Dave G. should be getting a 3/4 Liter O' Dirt... whaddya think? - Dave M.

Hi Dave,
Went for #18 100K ride today. Temperature changed quite a bit during the ride, went from lobster gloves to fingerless biking gloves. Light snow in a lot of places, and some places ice underneath, made riding a bit cautious. Ruts and mud in a lot of places made the ride slower paced.

The Road Less Icy!

All Hogs Go To Heaven!

Flood ravaged trail

Now Nick, it seems, isn't going for the extra large single Cup - but seems to be a generous fellow - as he's working on two cups - one for him, and a spare Cup for when company come's a visit'n. So nice of him to share! Read on:

The ride the other day went swell! (a 125mile double metric on Nov. 26th) It was cold to start, and I had a bit of wind coming from the North, but I was going to Storm Lake and once I got past Fort Dodge it went alright. I ended up with 125 - just enough to make two metric centuries. I don't think I'll have the time to finish the full on cup, but what I was thinking of was this:

6 full centuries to qualify for the Cup o' Mississippi Mud
6 (after Wednesday) metric centuries, to get me halfway to the 1/2 liter.

I'm really just chasing the 1/2 liter as a way to motivate me to keep in shape for the Arrowhead Ultra in February. I should have enough time in the next month to get 6 metrics in, but probably not enough to get 5 full centuries in. I figure it can't hurt to have both the 1/2 liter and the Mississippi under my belt. Next year I want the full 1200 miles and the 1/2 liter! I'll keep you posted over the month of December on the metrics.

Good luck Nick! To the rest of you (myself included...) We've got a month left! Tom, when's your December hundy?

To all of you - don'f forget the joys of winter running - December 6th is the 6th Annual Sycamore Trail Run- a 4 or 8 mile run down the Sycamore Trail. It's being promoted by CITA this year, to encourage use of the Sycamore Trail. Go here for info: www.centraliowatrails.com

Friday, November 28, 2008

Great Christmas Gifts!

Hey everybody - this is a helpful little commercial. My Mom is an artist, and has a shop in historic Valley Junction with a couple of my sisters.

She's opened an online outlet - and her stuff is cool - so I'm sharing it with you.

Folk Art Online

She makes super cool Santa figures out of locally collected driftwood. Her story is online - so click, read and buy! She does make custom Santas - and has been known to create a bike riding Santa or two (there might be one that adorns our mantle every Christmas season!!)

Merry Christmas! - Peace, Dave

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Bell Lap For Mr. Anderson!

"One to go! One to go!" Tom Anderson is getting close to the fullest of Cups - only one more hundy, one more month - Rock out!

"Another hundy completed. Rode most of it with Rick Blackford. The miles into the headwind sucked…but the nap I took at the Cumming Tap was wonderful!!! I did find a magical piece of dirt that was 1.5 miles long that appeared to have a tailwind in both directions. I rode it twice to get the required dirt mileage in J. This makes hundy number 11, one in each calendar month this year. One more to go for the goal. A few more details on the blog. Tom http://iowagriz.blogspot.com/2008/11/11-down-1-more-to-go.html"

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Tim and Dave - at it again!

Tim Beirbaum on Sunday:

"I went out today and headed out west to De Soto, adding a couple of side trips to
make sure I got enough distance. I must admit that the wind was pretty demoralizing at times, but the return trip home went by awfully quick. I finished up with 108 km."

He's getting close! Based on our combined math... this is his official 1/2 Liter O' Dirt! Check out the dates of his rides;Aug 10, 17, 24, Sept 6, 14, 21, Oct 5, 11, 18, and Nov 1, 2 & 16; - good things come in packages of three! Congratulations Tim!

Meanwhile, Dave Geiegerich just keeps going and going and going....

"Dave to Dave,
Took the day off work and rode. Did metric #16 on dirt and gravel. No pictures, my son snuck my camera. Enjoyed the day, drizzle, scenery and IPOD. Trek XO2 makes a for a nice ride. Will be doing more of the same soon. Appreciate your cups."
Dave Giegerich

Get on it folks - only 44 more days of 2008 left!

ed. note:
Hey - has anyone else noticed? Tim and Dave... Just like Dave and Tim.. Like Matthew's and Reynolds! That's cool! enjoy!

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Tim's been busy, while Dave G.'s been doing extra credit!

From Tim B:

"Hi Dave. The roads have been busier lately with all of the combines grain trucks
but the weather has been absolutely beautiful.

October 11th - Headed west and then north over I80. I stopped on the way back for a
quick snack and to refill my water bottles at the Casey's in De Soto, finishing the day with 102 km.

October 18th - I headed south. I didn't really go anywhere, I just headed south just east of I35. Finished up with 102 km.

November 1st - I had a family gathering in Huxley. It seemed like a good excuse for a bike ride to me. I headed south out of town, then west to Booneville. I passed within spitting distance of both Waukee and Woodward; and stopped for a refill at the Casey's in Madrid. I ended the day with 112 km.

November 2nd - There isn't anything like riding a bike to use as an excuse for not doing yard work! Headed out west, up through De Soto and back for 101 km.

Tim Beirbaum"

And from Dave G.

I would have never thought a year ago that the most expensive bike I have ever bought would be a dirt bike, a.k.a. Trek XO2. Its a sweet ride.
However yesterday I started out for #14 and I was riding down this path headed towards the gravel.

I was going about 12-14 mph, and rolled over a couple of branches about 1" in diameter, and the next thing I know, myself and my bike are doing a flip in the air. Somehow one of those branches caught my front tire and locked it, and I flipped with the bike. Not sure how it happened??? Glad I had a helmet on my head smacked the dirt good, I remember hearing myself grown. It happened so fast. Tried to keep riding my wrist was throbbing, so headed back home.

So today back on the road, with wrist brace and did a 100K on gravel/dirt/trail....:-)

Dave G."

A Full Dinner Set????

This post is from Dennis Grelk... There are centuries and then there are centuries... this is one that will go down in the old memory book - you know, one of those rides that gets told at the Telemark Lodge bar over pizza and popcorn the night before Chequammy EVERY YEAR! (You know... to the poor happless first-timer that happens to stumble past your table...) Enjoy - I know he did!

"So I wanted to get a test ride in on my Surly Big Dummy and I needed to knock out that last metric so I shot for both Friday night. Started my ride at 6:45 or so. I thought I was doing alright holding a 13.5mph avg on the longtail running Nokian Gazzalodi 2.4s, then my timing started to fail. I rigged up simple dyno light to test out my shimano dyohub and I was using my superbright modified cheapie headlamp for backup. For the first couple hours the dynolight seemed pretty weak, then it started looking brighter than my headlamp....because my headlamp was going dead. This is the advantage to the dynolight, you see. Unfortunately it was indeed a hastily assembled dynolight with no capacitors to smooth things out at low speed, so what you get is this incredibly bright and annoying pulsing light until you get up over five mph. Only a problem when starting and stopping, climbing, and bonking. Anyways, so I took a couple of wrong turns and ran into some dead ends. Got kinda bonky, as I rushed out and didn't bring any food, just two bottles, enough to get me to the halfway point. By the time I got to my halfway refuel point it was 9:45, and apparently the gas station in Bonaparte closes before 9:45. I scrounged around in my Wingnut and found a granola bar, yay! So I ride to the next town. By the time I get there it's 10:30, again all stores are closed. Ride on. Pretty soon the corners are feeling a little funny and my pace is really starting to struggle, the rear tire is flat. Friggen double wall DH tire goes flat on a gravel ride, wtf. The bad news is changing a flat double wall DH tire on the back of a longtail really sucks, the good news is you can ride a double wall DH tire flat and it isn't much different than being full. I ride it flat for awhile, air it up when I want to go faster, repeat until finished. Finished 63 miles at midnight. Thought about doing century but I ran out of October. Here's the data

So 6 more centuries this year and I get the full tea set right? Seven weeks for six centuries, hopefully mostly on the Pugsley, or so is my plan. - DG"

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Lots of miles, lots of hills, lots of dirt.

In a tie for the mostest biggest deal ride of the month (you didn't know we had that competition, did you?!)- Nick Wethington, Matt Maxwell and Tom Anderson each logged some centuries.

Nick and Matt decided enough was enough and hosted the 2nd(?)Annual TOBASCO ride, logging 201 miles - and earning a Cup O' Mississippi Mud each! Nick's first and Matts second! Congratulations! Here's their report:

Maxwell and I were both at 4
until Saturday, on which we did a very long, somewhat windy 201 miles
for the TOBASCO ride. We couldn't fool anyone else into going, so it
was just he and I this time around. I think we'll likely do another
ride of the same length about this time next year.

We went through Ledges, then North along the Des Moines River valley
to Stratford, were blown East to Gilbert and past McFarland park,
then fought the wind all the way down to Maxwell. It died down a bit
and we went over to Polk City to see my girlfriend, who gave us
cupcakes. After that, we went just north of Big Creek and then were
basically blown home by that wicked West wind that picked up about
10pm and made Sunday all windy up here. Started at 5am and got done
around Midnight. That puts us both at 6 centuries, and a Cup O' Dirt
earned apiece! When do you send those out? Hope all is going well,
and thanks so much for organizing this: it inspired me to ride a lot
more this summer than I would have.

~Nick Wethington

Meanwhile, back in Des Moines, Tom Anderson completed what many have been talking/thinking about for years - a full century on the Center trails! Sweet!
That keeps Tom in the One-A-Month Club - and in great shape for Cross season!

Here's his report: http://iowagriz.blogspot.com/2008/10/center-hundy-completed.html

Dave Giegerich fell in love with this sprot so much - he bought himself a sweet Trek XO2, and had to nail a bonus 100k! It must be lucky 13!

I'm pretty sure Fuller nailed a hundy the same day as the Dr. Bob ride - (I'll verify) and I was the only one to take me up on my offer to count the distance ridden at the Dr. Bob ride - as long as it was on a mountain bike on fat tires... 100k of pavement... and wind... and very fit people on road bikes... I was tired!

Anyway - Keep riding and enjoy the Fall!

Peace - Dave

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Ten...... eleven.......

Mr. Grelk did a couple metrics last weekend...In his own words:

30 miles of unassisted longtail from work to home, then switched to the mtb for another 35 on Friday: Details

And another pretty hilly 63 on the mtb with a little trail mixed in with the windy gravel, Sunday: Details

Meanwhile, Tim Bierbaum has been logging the dirty miles -

Hi Dave, finished up another two metric centuries over the past couple of weekends.
Way back on Sept 21st, I got out of Des Moines and headed west. Didn't go anywhere, just west and then I turned around for a total of 103 km.

On Sept 27th, I went out for another metric and had mechanical problems. I ended up
hiking a couple of miles to the Kum & Go at the I-35 and highway 92 where my absolutely wonderful wife came and picked me up.

Finally, last Sunday I went out and headed towards Indianola and then wandered around in circles just south of Norwalk for a total of 102 km.

-Tim Bierbaum

I must say that I'm pretty amazed at what people are willing to do for a chunk of clay - that being said - I'd imagine that, whether you finish out the year with one century, or a whole bunch of em - just getting out on dirt and enjoying the day was worth the chase! I know I've enjoyed each of my long dirty rides - from a couple of long gravel rides on the tandem with Dee, and, of course, Leadville, to my 100 miles of Seven Oaks - each ride stands alone as a great day on the bike. Nuthin wrong with that!

As a little bonus - I'd like to offer this to anyone out there looking to fill their Cups this weekend... Saturday is the Dr. Bob Ride - and if you do it on a mountain bike (fat tires - not cross bike, not 29'er with cross wheels.. but a real mountain bike) I'll give you credit for your distance. The ride is either 100k or 200k -
Why? Because Dr. Bob was a good friend and I'd love to see ya'll out there supporting the ride - and the cause - The proceeds from this ride benefit area trails - both paved and dirt- (Richard Brown, the DSM Park and Rec Trail Guru, is a huge proponent of the center trails - and supports CITA and it's work in a big way!)

Anyway - the ride starts and finishes at Bike World West at 7:00am Saturday. Cup O' Dirt logo designer Brian Duffy will be along for the ride - as will the girls from the All9yards Cycling Team -- and it's always a treat to ride with them! (If I DO say so myself!!) So - get those fatties out and get out and RIDE!

See you in the dirt! - Dave

Monday, October 06, 2008

Fuller Continues.... and gets a new steed!

Steve Fuller nailed a hundy this weekend: "101 miles from Johnston to Adel. With the ride home on the RRVT from Adel, 118 miles total. 7800+ ft of climb. Plenty of critters, a plethora of combines, and one shaken up pickup truck driver."

I think there is a story or two in there somewhere.... maybe he'd be willing to regail us of the stories while riding his shiney new steed -a Specialized One-Cross won at the Crohn's and Colitis raffle at the Cross Mafia race last weekend - congratulations on your great victory!

Reguarding this little cup chase - I thought I'd share with you a bit of history of the cups, themselves -

See - back in the mid-seventies my sister, Jackie, went to UNI to earn an art and teaching degree - and upon graduation, and maybe during the summers during her stint at UNI, she worked at Living History Farms - She worked in the Textile building - you might have seen it on your right as you head up to get your dognuts after the Living History Farms Race! Anyway - she met this potter, see - Russ - He worked in the pottery shop which was right behind the textile building... and they gazed lovingly into each other's eyes - fell in love and got married.

Russ continued to be the potter at LHF for many years - until he voiced his oppinion on organic farming during a Dow Chemical company picnic... and he was promply excused.. so began New Harmony Pottery!

Russ and Jackie have been creating authentic stoneware pottery ever since - selling their wares at Folk Art in Valley Junction, the State Fair and at the Covered Bridge Festival - as well as creating custom pieces for special orders, like the Cup O' Dirt! They have created awards for races such as Living History Farms Race, the Most Excellent Run and the Sycamore 8... and now these hand thrown, custom mugs for your Cup O' Dirt!

Only a limited number of these exclusive mugs are ever created - and to sip a bit of joe from one is surely an honor - an honor that the sipper had worked hard all year to achieve!

So - there is still time - get out there and ride -and share a toast with GPickle, Big John, and others - in your very own Cup O' Dirt!

Monday, September 29, 2008

Well, That was a fun weekend!

No, I didn't get any kind of hundy in - but I sure rode my bike alot....and I got to meet Mr. Freakn-ride-his-bike-a-lot-nvrest-Dennis Grelk! What a treat!

Of course, his first comment to me, when I introduced myself was "Hey, you're the guy who always looses my e-mails!"

I thought that was funny!

So - what was he doing in Des Moines, and why did I have so much fun this weekend? Well -the newly annual great dirty stage race across Polk County... or at least parts of some little parks in Des Moines - With Squirrlies Quarter Rage on Friday night and Robbie V's Capital City Cross dressing on Saturday and Sunday, it was just like a freakn stage race across France or some such thing.

Near as I can figure, only me and Kurt Benson did all three stages (like anyone even knew it was a stage race) - but the Friday night $.25 rage and the cross dressing was enough to lure Mr. Grelk up here from SE Iowa. I was a little disappointed that he A) took to lots of pavement and B) rode his little weed-eater engine bike up here - so "No centuries for you!" - still, it was good to meet him and great of him to come on up for a couple o' days of good racing!

Now - there was some Cup chasing going on this weekend - seems the good Mr. Anderson was motivated to get his September hundy in - here is his report....


Finished my September hundy this past Sunday. Did 55 miles of gravel via Dallas Center, Adel, DeSoto, Cumming and entered Waterworks park from the south. Then did 25 or so on the Center trails. Finished by heading out Booneville road to VanMeter and up to Waukee. Somewhere around 106miles. A good ride and route. I’ll have to find a way to shorten the first half and add more miles on the Center trails, although I think that 50 at Center would be my max. I was getting dizzy in Denmans after the 25 (dizzy in denman’s – sounds like a good song title).


Monday, September 22, 2008

Grelk has 9 metrics and Nick and Matt are in the Chase!

From Dennis:

"Took another crack at the Missouri metric I did a couple months ago, only this time I tried to reverse the route.
Felt good to be back on the cross bike. Weather was good cross training weather too, brisk, alittle breezy, and it rained for the last twenty or so miles.
Sure looks alot different without the flooding, but I still did alot of backtracking. I still want to know how the mail gets to those people, no street signs to be found, crazy."

Meanwhile - up in Ames...


We met at the 24-hour race: I'm Matt Maxwell's friend. I'm chasing
the 600 mile cup this year, and as of now have 3 of the centuries
done. Should have another this weekend. So go ahead and put me up on
the blog and be ready to send me some mud soon!

Also, (Matt) Maxwell and I are planning to "organize" a double gravel
century on the 25th of October. We did a shorter one two years ago,
and decided to call it the TOBASCO ride (Tour Of Boone And Story
COunties). I'll get some more info about the route and meeting place
and whatnot, and when I do I'll pass it on so that you can put it up
on the site.


~Nick (Wethington)

So I say - Rock out Grelk - 3 more and you've got yourself 2 cups!
And Nick and Matt - welcome to the 2008 chase - we'll look forward to your 200 miler in October! Hmm - with that on the calener - I might actually have a chance at a real cup this year! (ed. note: I do enjoy a daily cup of coffee from an official Cup O' Dirt - but somebody had to end up with the prototype.....)

PS - I've heard that the Sycamore Trail is in good to great shape from one end to the other! There are also rumors that, starting next Spring, more trail could be added to the area..... watch for details on that exciting bit of news! So - I've mapped out a Denman's style trail... check it out - 21 miles, one way!!! Wouldn't THAT be fun! Geez - 21 miles... Do it twice and have a metric! That WOULD be cool!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Grelk and Fuller Just Keep Riding!

From Mr. Grelk:

Another metric for the tally. Rode home from work un-assisted on the longtail for the first 30miles, than finished it off with a little quicker 30 mile loop on the cross bike.

From Steve Fuller:

I had planned on doing a double this past weekend: 100 up to the CITA
Ales and Trails event on Friday with my camping gear attached, and
the same route in reverse for a ride back on Sunday while someone else
ferried my gear for me. As you may have heard, we had a bit of rain
come through during the week which made this ride a lot harder than I
had bargained for. Two photos that sum up the day perfectly are

I had 80 miles or so done when I decided that enough was enough and
accepted a ride from a great guy named Gil. It was well worth the case
of beer I forced him to accept for his trouble. With the skies not
looking good on Sunday, I opted to drive home and lick my wounds. I
had hoped to get my century total up to 9 so I could finish out the
year with 12. Instead, I'm still sitting at 7 and trying to figure out
a way to dig out of the hole. The rest of the year is gonna be tough.
We'll see what the next three months hold, I'm not completely ready to
throw in the towel yet.

Steve Fuller

Monday, September 15, 2008

Tim's Clickin' em off!


Last Saturday I headed down to Patterson and then up through Bevington and going
north parallel to the interstate. A pretty uneventful ride that totalled 104 km.

This morning, I decided to get up early and try to get my ride in before the football games started. My original plan was to head out west to Earlham. I got about halfway there when the cold front moved through and the skies clouded over. I wasn't feeling too confident about the weather any more, so I decided that I would just stick closer to home and ride around in circles for a while. The only 'town' I visited was Orilla and I went back and forth from there to west of the interstate a couple times and explored every dead end road that goes north of there. I finished the day with 105 km.

Tim Bierbaum

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Welcome To The Chase, Tim!

Hi Dave,

I'd like to throw my name into the list of people pursuing a 1/2 Liter O' Dirt.

I did my first metric on August 10th. I didn't really plan where I was going much. I started at home, down through Waterworks and past the airport to Cumming. From there I headed west. I turned around at a rural water tower just west of 169. I finished with 100 km and change.

Number two came on August 17th. I went down through Cumming, over through Prole. I made a quick stop at the Kum & Go north of St. Charles and ended up with 110 km.

August 24th I wound my way down to Indianola where I refilled at a gas station on the west end of town and wandered on back for a total of 107 km.

I'll keep you posted as time goes on.

Tim Bierbaum

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Yikes! That was HARD!

Well, I mustered up another full hundy - but it took a toll on my body!

I signed up for the 24 hour race at Seven Oaks over Labor Day weekend - and I was kinda hoping to win the dang thing - knowing Squirrel won it on 14 laps last year, and also knowing that he wasn't racing this year - I thought that maybe, just maybe, I'd have a shot at the cool grand o' cash! My other objective was to get 100 miles in - after all, being married, with 3 kids, 3 businesses and all that -it's not often I'm given the gift of 24 solid hours just to go ride my bike - better take advantage of it!

Gun goes off in the sunny heat of high noon and the scramble for the bikes begins - I find myself with about 10 riders in front of me as we enter the single-track... and I know of only 1 who is a 24Hr soloist... causing me to think I'm in 2nd!

I roll around a few laps. Rolling around is too nice a word to describe the trail of Seven Oaks. If you love hard, technical singletrack with lots of 3-5 stroke hills (you know, those ones that take 3-5 hard strokes to muscle up over the top) - you'll love Seven Oaks! It is 8 miles of pure singletrack - no breaks for water, food or just to rest your butt or hands - all work, all the way!

Anyway - it gets to be mid afternoon, about 3:30 and I stop for a refuel and say to my beautiful bride, Dee "I think I'm in 2nd!"

As I am on the last quarter of my next lap, 3 guys roll up behind me. "You guys are riding strong!" I yell back, "What're you riding?" "24 solo" was the reply from Jesse Bergman. "The two guys behind me are 24 solo too."

Crap. I'm in 5th, at best, now - a full lap down on the top 3. Well - there goes my hope of winning the danged thing. My strategy then changes to get 12 laps in, which, with the quarter lap start and some extra rolling around after the race, would give me 100 miles.

I rode at an easy pace - not wanting to succumb to the heat that took it's toll on so many other riders - just wanting to make it to dark in good shape. I took a half hour break about 7 or 7:30 for some dinner, then back out at 8, just as dusk was settling in. I needed full lights as soon as I entered the woods - and had an enjoyable lap in the dark. I had been keeping my laps right on an hour, with a short break to refuel and refill the bottles. I ate a 1/2 a peanut butter sandwich or banana after every lap, along with a swig of Mtn. Dew. On the bike I had one Powergel each lap and would drink about 2/3 of a large bottle of Powerbar Endurance, plus 1/2 a small bottle of water every lap. This seemed to work, as I never felt even a hint of bonk.

The only thing that I really felt was just pure, simple fatigue. Tired. Those 3-5 strokers really get to you. The roots, ruts, rocks and bumps really get to you. My wrists seemed to be taking it the hardest. It got to the point that I had to hold on to my bars via the bar-ends, and only held the grips if I needed to use the brakes (which is alot!). As time wore on - my wrists really gave me the most trouble.

At 9:20pm, I did a fun lap with Kim Hopkins. Kim wanted to do a full lap in the dark, but wanted company. I was happy to oblige. It was fun. I kept her in front of me, so to keep her flooded in my light as well as hers. That was good, cuz at one point her light went out! Yikes! Light restored we continued our lap. As we came down into 'camp' I rode by the MOB squad - who yelled "HEY MABLE! CAN YOU BUNNY HOP?" "Yep." I came around the corner and Kyle Sedore was lying down across the trail! Bunny hop, yes. But over a human (I use that term loosely!)at 10:40pm, after 66 miles of Seven Oaks!?!? "DON'T MOVE!!!" I yelled, as I picked up the speed needed to clear him - JUMP! Up and over - I, thankfully, cleared him! I can not believe he did that, but I am glad I made it!

It was a fun lap - but my fatigue was setting in - and with 8 laps behind me - I decided a long break was in order - plus the midnight chairlift rides and pasta party were looming just ahead! I checked on the results and I was in 4th, as Charlie Tri dropped out. I thought that was cool, but I still went to bed, falling to sleep about 2am.

I woke up at dawn... ate and dressed... and checked the results. 7th. rats. Well, If I ride a lap, I'll move up to 6th. No matter what - one more guy was done, so If I get a lap in, I'll move up. I didn't really care. I had 100k in, and that'd count for the Cup (rather, Half Liter)... but Dee says "Well, YOU signed up for the 24 Hour race, not the 12." Geez. She's right. OK -she talked me into getting on my bike and doing at least one lap. By the end of that lap, I felt great and went for another, doing my fastest lap of the race - 55 min. I did two more, right on an hour, and got my full 12 laps in. Rode around the gravel road for a bit to get my 100 in- and I was DONE!

100 miles of Seven Oaks - that is by far one of the hardest 100 miles I've ever done - and I ended up 6th/16. I'm pretty happy with that- I could have done maybe one or two more, but that's about it. Jesse, Andrew, Matt, who each did 16, 18 and 15 laps, respectively, My hat is off to you! That's guts and discipline! Congratulations to them, and everyone else who took on the singletrack of Seven Oaks.

Now, it's time to re-hab my wrist in time for Chequamegon. My left wrist has swollen and it hurts to hold/lift stuff. It'll be OK - I'll freakn tape the thing and we'll make it through Chequamegon in 2 weeks - even if I need a cast when I'm done!!!

Thanks for reading - and anyone else wants me to post their Seven Oaks stories, send em my way!! dave@all9yards.com

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

A Nap??!!??

Hi Dave,

I rode a really mixed up slow metric with a nap in the middle Saturday. Link. Started riding at noon, piddled around riding a 15mile hilly gravel loop with my banker, then did another lap of that on my own, then headed into the forest for sixteen miles of bushwhack/buff equestrian trail, then I rode home for a snack and a nap. Woke back up at 3am and finished out the metric with another 16mile gravel loop. The 3 am loop felt really good, hope that means I'm in shape for the 24hour then. Hopefully I'll have a metric and a hundy of pure dirt to report after this weekend.


Monday, August 25, 2008

A Dirty August

Headed out from Johnston at 7AM on Sunday with Scott Sumpter (LeMond
Poprad), Rick Blackford (Bianchi Axis), and myself (Surly Karate
Monkey) in the group. We met Tom Anderson (Specialized Stumpjumper) on
the way and headed west with no particular route in mind. After
passing by some gas pipelines north of Redfield and brief foray into
adventure racing courtesy of a bridge construction project, we were in
Panora for lunch after about 60 miles. After lunch we stopped briefly
to let Sumpter fix a slow leaking tire. Tom wasn't feeling quite like
himself after lunch so he told us to go ahead to Adel and he'd keep on
at his best pace. Rolled into Adel, snagged some drinks at the Casey's
and after a rest in the shade Tom came around the corner with a
Gatorade in hand and a smile on his face. We rode by Tom's house and
then Scott, Rick and I finished up the ride. 103 miles in total. 7:40
ride time.

Steve 'Mr. DSM Register' Fuller

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

A Perfect '10'!

Dirty Man, John Adamson made it 10 for 10 at this years Leadville 100 Mountain Bike Race - earning himself, not just a silver buckle for finishing - but the BIG one for finishing his 10th - the coveted 1000 Mile Buckle!

An he did it in style - finishing in a fast 10:05:13 - a great finish for anyone - much less some old dude in his 60s! He placed 3rd in his age group of geezers - We, at ye ol' Cup O' Dirt, solute you, Mr. Adamson. You have proven that 60 is the new 30! Thank you for being an inspiration to all of us!

Now - to the Cup chase - Others who knocked off another notch on the chase include Mike Johnson, who finished hand in hand with John at Leadville, knocking about 20 minutes from his previous PR and who now has 7 on his way to the full Cup. Doug Keiser who finished in a very fast 9:34 at his first Leadville race, being the 19th fastest guy from folks east of Colorado! Paul Meyermann finished his first Leadville, coming in under the 12 hour mark. Paul is halfway to his 1/2 Liter of Dirt! Congratulations to all of you Bike Tech folks for your race - and for having the guts to sign up, especially Kat, who put all those miles in and toed the line in the Nation's toughest 100 miler!

Then there's Dee and I, who, in November, had a momentary brian lapse, and decided to sign up again, for our 3rd ride on tandem. With Dee's racing this summer, we were curious how that would effect our results, and were pleasantly surprised to find ourselves battling for 2nd place in the tandem division agian - managing to hold on for 2nd in the closest tandem race in Leadville history and shave 17 min from our 2007 time, finishing in 10:24:33. So, we nailed another hundy, took home a buckle and some swag, and are looking forward to our next race at Chequamegon.

Oakley Rob finished his first Leadville, earning a 2nd century, in 10:24:05, enjoying the day and is already looking forward to next year. Brian Benson gutted out the last half of the day, not having 'it' at the halfway point - but, being spurred on by Langer at the 2nd Twin Lakes (TL2) aid station - rode on and finished in a PR 11:28! Way to gut it Benson!

Brian Duffy and Dave Fish fell behind their expected cut-off times at TL2 withdrew - but did manage a metric century in the process - a very difficult metric century!

Again - congratulations to all for toeing the line in a historic Leadville Trail 100! See you next year?

Peace - Dave

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Grelk Adds Another 100k

Dennis Grelk and Squirrel loaded thier gear... like - everything... from trail tools to camping gear and a race bike (you gotta see this!) and headed to Boone for the IMBCS #6 at Seven Oaks. They spent the day working the trail on Saturday - enjoyed an evening under the stars and then enjoyed the race on Sunday... - Dennis enjoyed all 3 laps of it it while Squirrel, lacking enthusiasm, bagged it after one lap - and joined the crowd to watch.

This counts as Grelks 7th metric - seems he's on his way to add a Half-Liter O' Dirt to his recently earned Cup O' Dirt! This will be Squirrels 3rd either metric or full.

Myself - I'll be heading off to Leadville with a crew from Central Iowa tomorrow - including Oakley Rob, Brian Benson, Dave Fish, Brian Duffy and my bride - Dee Mable. This is Robs first attempt at Leadville, while Fish and Duffy are working to earn thier first buckle and Benson hopes to better his PR. Dee and I are hoping to have an uneventful day - and if we do - are also hoping for a PR and maybe finish top 3 tandems again. That would be fun.

Other Iowans, and Cup chasers, include John Adamson and Kat Porter from Cedar Falls - John is a longtime vet - in fact will be looking to earn his 10th buckle this year, and Kat is attempting this gig for her first time. They are joined by Pb'ville veteran Mike Johnson. Good Luck to all Iowan's toeing the line!

Big news for this year is the fact that Lance is reportedly racing this year- I guess he and Charmichael still have that bet going from last year - and Landis is officially out - so there is no "Yellow Jersey Throwdown" or anything - Lance just wants to beat Charmichael - and maybe finish top 10 along the way. This author doesn't think that Dave Wiens, last year's winner, has anything to worry about from Lance - but we'll see - I could be wrong. Reguarding Landis - he's got this little suspension thing - and Leadville is a USAC sanctioned race - so he can't do it without adding time to his suspension, which is up in January of 2009.

I will be calling the Kim West Radio Show on Sunday evening at about 6:50pm CST for a brief report - and the August 17th show will feature Leadville with full results and stories from riders around Iowa, and the country! Tune in to 1460 KXNO!

We'll see ya on the flipside of the weekend!

Peace - Dave

Thursday, July 31, 2008

One-A-Month Club

A recent (07/30/08) note from Steve Fuller:

100.01 miles. Went with Tom Anderson through Granger, Woodward and to
Ogden and back, with a side trip over towards Dallas Center and a bit
of pavement to finish it all off. Ride time of 6:48:change. Saw fox,
deer, and a lot of small frogs. - Steve "Mr Famous RAGBRAI Guy" Fuller

Sounds like Steve and Tom are still looking for that awesome One-A-Month Club prize at the end of the year. Whatever that is... Hey Sumpter - how about throwing in a few "Bikeiowa" Calenders for the kids??? Or maybe I should be asking Rick Paulous... were those from Bikeiowa.com or Bikeiowa.org? I'm so confused.

Anyway - congratulations on keeping up the streak!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

RAGBRAI, Leadville and Lance.

While Big Johny and Kat were riding gravel, racking up metric centuries - I quote, from July 24th:

Dave -
Kat, Mike Johnson, Chris Congdon, Paul Meyermann, Pete B. and myself went
over to Colesburg and did their epic gravel race course twice - 80 miles
of Leadville test - we all passed with colors.
I'm having trouble keeping track of the other guys rides, but Kat and I
should have 11 now.

And then this from July 27th:

Dave - Welcome back from the Ragu. Can't hardly beat it for a vacation
- riding your bike with 1000's of others in celebration of our sport. I
hope the weather was good and all went well for you and yours.
Kat and I have another - and last 100 - before our trip to the top of
the world. That makes 12 for each of us. Thanks for doing this.
See you at the coffee shop

To John and Kat I say - congratulations! I'll buy you a cup of coffee in Leadville! You should be VERY well prepared with all those miles! We'll see you next Thursday! - Dave

Meanwhile there was a little ride across the state - on pavement (alas) but a fun ride none-the-less. Fuller, not wanting to take the easy way out - or across - packed up the kitchen sink and rode fully loaded out to Mo Valley and then across the dang state - and picked up a little press on his way. While he did get plenty of miles in - they WERE on pavement - and he's still got to get out on dirt to maintain his membership in the ONE-A-MONTH club - Good luck Fuller! Click below for his article!

Fuller isn't the only one that crossed the state last week (ha) - the Mable's were at it too - hauling not gear, but kids. A nice wheel came by at just the right speed on Tuesday... as Lance passed buy our train. With just the right slope of road (in otherwords - none) and the right wind conditions - it allowed us to hop on his wheel. I wasn't quite sure it was him at first - he has hairy legs (gasp!) but the look from a guy riding with him told me that my intuition was correct - Never at a loss for words, I gave him a little smack talk - then was treated to "The Look". Know I know what Ulrich felt like. That being said - we went with him for another 6 miles or so. He was kind enough to make sure we hung to his wheel and even went back to chat with Dee and the kids.

Lance mentioned our rig at his speech at the Styx concert - and we appeared in a Duffy cartoon on Thursday - what fun! No doubt we'll all remember the day we rode with Lance!

Well - on to Leadville! We'll hope there are about 8 Cup entries after the little 100 mile race on the 9th - Stay tuned!

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

A few late June and early July additions!

If my math is correct - I'm giving away a couple more Cups this year- This marks our first Full Cup O' Dirt awarded this year to Dennis Grelk - and by July, no less! Impressive - that dude likes to ride! He's half way to a Half Liter O' Dirt too -let's see if he earns that as well! He could have a matching set - one for the office and one for the home!

It looks like Norbert has earned a Cup O' Mississippi Mud - The year is only half empty (or is it half-full - you decide!). Will Norbert continue on to earn a full Cup O' Dirt? Only time will tell!

From Dennis Grelk:

June edition: (he's in the one-a-month club, you know...)
"I wandered around long enough to get a century yesterday. (6/29/08)

The flood waters are receding, but they still have hold of my normal routes so I tried wondering around in Missouri a little. I don't know how those people find their way around, none of the gravel roads are marked! No street signs, no dead end signs, gravel roads pass for driveways, driveways pass for gravel roads. It was a really interesting ride on some really remote roads, but I sure made a lot of little loops.

Pics 009-024 here are from the ride"

July edition:
"Thought while I was trying to get through your spam filter I may as well add another dirty century to the list. Here's my kickoff century for July."

Pete Ylvisaker - seems though he's been recruiting! We'll add Big Al to the list!
"Hey Dave,

I put in 62 miles (almost exactly) with the single speed on Linn County gravel roads July 4... and another 45miles of gravelicious single speed riding this morning. Best riding weather in months. Anyway, chalk me up for another 100k. And if you'd be so kind, add one more rider to the list. Al "Big Al" Schmidt joined me for Friday's 100k."
A pic from Pete:

And from Norbert Koenigsfeld:

"Went for a ride yesterday and it ended up being a century...at mile 89 I crashed but was able to finsh...stupid me for crashing...hit a hole in the road."

Saturday, June 28, 2008

A Night O' and Morning O' Dirt

Oakley Rob's Nite O' Dirt featuring Rob (as himself), Fuller, Paul, Sumpter, Chuck, and Kyle, with an appearance from Matt.

Had a great ride last night. Despite the line of storms that blew
through after getting home from work, 9 of us left Kyle's bikes in
Ankeny at 8:30 AM for "Oakley Rob's First Annual Night Of Dirt". Our
route took us straight north to Ames (we literally made 4 turns
getting onto the gravel and nothing after that). After a quick bite,
Matt from Skunk River Cycles joined us around 11:00 PM and we headed
back south, with 6 of us then heading over to Huxley and Cambridge and
back on the HOINT (very nicely groomed dirt/gravel trail), then back
to Ames for a quick 2 AM burrito fix. Matt went home, leaving Mr
BikeIowa, Oakley Rob, Kyle and Chuck from Kyle's bikes and myself to
ride straight south back to Ankeny, arriving back at the shop around
3:30 or 4:00AM. Kyle, Chuck and I called it a morning with 80 miles on
the odometer. Rob and Sumpter kept rolling around town to get their
remaining mileage in. So there you have it, a quick night metric to
keep myself active in the "One 'o Month" club. Talk of doing another
one in August if there's interest (and even if there's not).

Dave and Dee's 17.8th annual early morning O' Dirt: Metric #2 for the mables and Fishy. Langer joined but only got 55 or so. Lot's o hills, lots o miles, lots o dogs - and a picture perfect Iowa morning. Ride ended with coffee at Amici - that's what I call a perfect start to a perfect day - the conclusion of the day will entail our daughter Anna's dance recital, followed by an overnight drive to mountain paradise... Estes Park - yep - a perfect day.

Peace - Dave

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Catching up and adding some new!

Our friend from the East, Darcy Sanford, got a little twinge of motivation last week when I requested reminders of missed hundies... so she joined Norbert Koenigsfeld, Sandy Kessler and Lisa DeShano for a dirty old ride. (come to find out Norbert is an old friend from my days at UNI!... GO CATS!) She logged 111 miles on the 22nd of June - well on their way to some Mississippi Mud! Nerbert added the full century to his count as well -

Steve Fuller is a card carrying member of the One-a-month club - with 2; 2; 2; hundies in May! (you remember that Certs commercial, don't you???) He ventured to Kansas for the Dirty Kanza - a 200 mile epic through the Flint Hills - middle of nowhere - Kansas... 19 hours, 6 minutes and 48 seconds of riding brought him in 36th out of the 75 starters - I can't even imagine... well maybe, but not really.. Great Job Steve! With those 2 centuries, it brings Steve to 5 hundies and 2 metric hundies - he's only one away from a Cup O' Mississippi Mud - I think he's on for a full cup, though...

I also got a note from another old friend - back in 1995 Pete Ylvisaker and some crazy buddies hosted a January 1 race in Cedar Rapids - I remember it well as it as a cold 7 mile slog through rural Linn County on gravel roads (see a theme?) and some river bottoms trail - all covered in fresh snow (geez - it is all coming together for me now - the gravel, the snow covered trail run, the craziness...). The race was the Hellinback 7, named, not for the fact that we were running to hell and back - but for a long forgoten homesteader near Cedar Rapids - George (?) Hellinback - who was lost in the snow or something... anyway, the winner got a wooden paddle for a year and got to put their name on it - My name graces that paddle to this day, as the winner of the inaugural Hellinback 7 - a proud moment in my storied athletic career!! ;)

Anyway - Pete is joining us on the chase - guess the paddle is getting lonely - and he needs a cup to sip some hot-cocoa from after his 7 mile run on New Years Day this year... He logged 4.6 hours of outdoor fun on his 46th birthday with 100k of gravel roads on a P.O.S. single speed followed up with a 4k run. Welcome to the chase, Pete!

Well, Dee and I nailed our first metric of the year - on dirt anyway. We've each got a century... but on CE-ment - so we got the tandem out with Fishy and Benson for a fast gravel grinder to Perry and back for some Leadville prep - felt good and we're hoping for another buckle this year... tune in August 9th!

And finally - I'm gunna post his email - cuz I liked it - so from Tom Anderson:

You can increase my tally by 2 to 6 total. I'm still in the hunt for 1 a
month status (the only thing I'm chasing this year).

I just finished a ride today, a new personal best of 7:14 for 100; 7:44 with
stops. Amazing to look back at the January Hilly Hundy with Squirrel,
Fuller, Grelk and Sumpter and how that one was 11hours or something like
that (and I was dead tired for days).

I've been doing most of my riding west of Des Moines, some north and some
south. Anyone that is looking for rides can go to www.motionbased.com and
do a search for Urbandale. My rides are uploaded via GPS and they will give
others a good starting point.

June Hundy: http://trail.motionbased.com/trail/activity/6046777
May Hundy: http://trail.motionbased.com/trail/activity/5765987

Thanks again for posting this challenge. I've lost close to 25lbs and am
probably in the best shape of my life.


Happy Trails - Dave

Saturday, June 21, 2008

June Cup-dates

While there was a flurry of activity in early June - it got pretty quiet for a couple of weeks as folks were busy sandbagging, pumping out basements, moving to higher ground, and generally trying, each in their own way, trying to mitigate the effects of the flooding that made the Floods of '93 look like a puddle at Chequamegon (which can be massive, mind you... but is a puddle none-the-less).

All that anti-flood work going on around the state aside - there has been some recent action, and some missed action (ie- missed postings and updates by me). First of all - about the only place to catch a mtn bike ride around here are the gravel roads, as lots of trails follow some type of stream or river, and are under water or 6 inches of mud right now. That and- it's just nice to get out and go for an enjoyable gravel ride to escape the challenges of the day(s).

So - Here's what I know...

The Cedar Falls crew, seemingly lead by that dirty old man, John Adamson, has been racking up the metric centuries, both as an escape and as Leadville training (and, it would seem, in pursuit of the Cup!). Johny, has rounded up a crew of 8 from the Bike Tech squad and have been riding riding riding! Latest folks to join the chase include Chris Congdon, Steve Bullerman and Doug Keiser (who has 2 now).

Scott Sumpter has the century that woulda-coulda-shoulda been... but alas - even he won't count it. He took off in the final days of May to maintain his One-A-Month Club status - and headed north for a gravel ride to, like Mason City or something. Well... the first 9 miles took him 2 1/2 hours.... can you say 'peanut butter'? Realizing that he'll never make his destination at that pace - he took to the CE-ment (anyone remember the Beverly Hillbillies?) and finished out the ride. 104 miles that just don't count (until 2009 and the Cup O' CE-ment... kidding.)

Dave (that'd be me) and my beautiful and talented bride, Dee broke the ol' tandem out last weekend for our first metric century. With Dee's new interest in bike racing...she is in great shape - we ROLLED! Joined on the ride by Brian Benson and Dave Fish, we spend a good deal of time around the 20mph mark... even on the way home with a bit of a head-breeze. Really - I now know who's been puttin' all the power into that tandem at Leadville and Chequamegon all these years! Dee has officially become a cyclist - just look at this picture of our living room - this NEVER would have happened - even a year ago - but get the lady a sweet pink LeMond - teach her some racing skills - and look out! Everything changes... and now, even I get to keep my sweet green Guru in the living room!! Honestly - cycling changes people -wouldn't you all agree?!

Now - I think I've got the tally correct on the left there- but I admit that I might not... so, I need your help! If, after reading this and checking the tally, if I've got this all wrong - or you have a short story about a great ride that I need to post, send (I know you've done it already... but, well....send it again!) and make your subject line 'Cup O Dirt' so I can sort through my hundreds of emails and get your story posted.

I do know that Mr. Oakley, Robbie V, is heading out for a darkened century next Friday night - leaving from Ankeny around 8 or 8:30pm - riding to Ames for some chow... riding back to Ankeny - for some chow.. then riding back out for the final 30miles and home in time for a cat-nap before dawn breaks. That does sound like a BLAST - but alas, the Mable-mobile can not make it due to a dance recital and the fact that I'm driving overnight on the next night for a week in Colorado... and two sleep-deprived nights in a row might spell disaster... so Dee and I are heading out from West Des Moines at 5am on Saturday the 28th for a 5-6 hour ride in the hills. All are welcome at each of these - send me a note if ya wanna come to either (I'll hook you up with Versteghehghehgheggehe if ya need).

In the mean time - we'll be enjoying the road bikes in West Des Moines at the Hy-Vee tri tomorrow. Robbie V is pulling some dude who cannot pull himself - as part of a team to give this guy tri-experience - Cheer them on as they cruise by - I bet they'll stand out.... it'll probly be the only trailer on the course! I am really impressed with this effort - Dee and I ran a camp for folks with disabilities prior to this whole real estate thing - and spent some time with Rick and Dick Hoyt, Rick has Cerebral Palsy and Dick, his Dad, pushes and pulls him in the freakn' Ironman, Boston Marathon and all over the freakn place. We had the opportunity to ride/run a day with them in 1992 or 1993 as they rode/ran across the entire country. We did 75 HILLY miles through West Virginia with them - a day we will never forget. Anyway - Rob - that rocks - we'll be rooting for you and your whole team tomorrow!

That's enough for now folks -

Peace - Dave

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Tour De Parkersburg

Bike Tech Racing racked up another 9 dirty hundys this weekend. Kathleen Porter and John Adamson had a long trip to Trear and back for some very fine long miles of gravel. Kat thought it was very long gravel.
On Sunday fellow LT 100 hopefuls Mike Johnson and Paul Meyermann joined Kat and John as the group continues to make the adjustment to riding their mt. bike. Riding X bikes and keeping the pace very fast were Pete Berendzen, Steve Bullerman and Robert Fry. Hoping for another cup of dirt we rode west of CF looking at the storm damage north of New Hartford, on to Aplington and back to Cedar Falls. None of us were prepared for the devastation that we saw with our stop in Parkersburg.
All I can say is that I had trouble finding the house - even the location of the house where we raised our boys and lived for 17 years.

photo by Kathleen Porter
Other than that - the day and riding were grand and we all feel like we are making progress for our trip to Columbine and back

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Holy Cow!

Fire up the kiln - We got some Cups to make!

When this year started, I'd get an e-mail now and again, describing someone's dirty century - so I'd quickly log onto my blog and cut and paste, chalk one up on the chaser list - and done.

Seems as though better weather and some folks closing in on specific events that they are training for... and maybe the quest for a Cup... has gotten folks on their bikes and logging some dirty centuries! I shall summarize the weeks events:

From David Geig
"Hi Dave,
Went out and did another 100K today. Was beautiful out, had to grind a bit a.k.a. (too many beers last night) Now I got tomorrow off, and my girlfriend works a double, so decisions, decisions, ride or work on the house.
A choice has been made, RIDE!!!!!!!, Gonna go for #11"

Next Day:

"Hey Dave,
Well number 11 completed today 100K. Was a bit chilly to start, had to shed jacket and gloves half way through. Turned out nice. Here's a couple of pics. Tomorrows hamburgers, and trees are taking over. Not sure where I will go after #12. Maybe a Mile Century. That would be a big addition for me, but these metric Centuries are getting me in better shape. I thank you.
Good biking to you.

So the man who started in March with his first 100k - is one away from the 1/2 Liter of Dirt - and he will be the first recipient of said Cup! I'm anxious to see what he comes up with for his 12th!

The Cedar Falls Crew:

With 120 days before the start of the Leadville Trail 100 ( really 104) Mt Bike Race I thought - man, there's still 4 month before the big race. My good friend and many time leadville participant, Mike Johnson has one of those countdown things to Leadville on his blog and when we broke 100 days I thought maybe it is time to dig out the Mt Bike for the season. Last week when the damn thing said less than 90 days - we said it was time to get serious about Leadville training. So Mike put out the word that the adaptation was going to begin this week end.

Four Bike Tech Racers - Kathleen Porter (first time Leadviller and my fine training partner), Pete Berendzen, Mike Johnson and I answered the call.We headed west out of Cedar Falls with a goal of riding 4 to 5 hours and earning some Dirty Cup points. The weather was fantastic, the riding was great and the convenient stores were aah convenient.
While we were riding several things occurred to me.
1. There's a reason why we like to ride our X Bikes.
2. How is this gravel grinding going to help with our preparation for the Memorial Day Races.
3. No matter what kind of training/racing you've done you are never really prepared for leadville - except, maybe in Dec and Jan.
4. But what really occurred to me is that there is no better way to spend a Saturday morning than riding a lot of gravel with your friends on your 62 birthday.
We met our goals and immediately started making plans for for the Memorial Day Races.

Dennis Grelk - Dennis politely reminded me of his hundy that I missed at the end of April - and an epic it was - read all about his Trans-Iowa V4 experience here.

In addition - he went out and nailed his 8th full hundy.
"A nice day for a ride today, so I rolled out a gravel hundy. Had to ride some shoulders and rode in circles a few times as it was point and shoot route mapping(aka aimless wandering). Stopped for breakfast/lunch at mile four and had one gut-bomb cheeseburger too many at mile 80, otherwise a decent paced ride."

Squirrel and Blackford went on up to play in southern Minnesota in the Almanzo 100 - a gravel road race in Rochester Minnesota. Read Squirrels account - A) sounds like a great race - a hundy in the spirit of Trans-Iowa, and B)Squirrel is tenacious. - however you spell that.

And finally - Booksbikesbeerbrian nailed a hundy - and went quickly form the high of his ride to the low of his cycling year - The "Fight or Flight" reaction is strong in our cycling brother. Read up.

And, lest I forget, Fullur nailed one as you can see in the comments!! Way to go!

Thanks all, for making this a great year of chasing - With Memorial Weekend looming - I'm expecting a busy busy next week logging all the hundies!

For now - Peace

Thursday, May 15, 2008

David Giegerich is moving in on a 1/2 Liter O' Dirt!

While I may have been quiet these past few weeks - David Giegerich has been busy riding his bike! Since early May he has downed his #s 7, 8 and 9 100k dirty rides!
He is also prolific with the camera and has provided us with some shots of his rides through the north eastern Iowa countryside - and if you ask me - he's found some pretty cool places to ride! At one point - on an old railroad bed he came across the aftermath of a very flooded creek - and you can see the log-jam. One never knows what they'll run across when one takes the road less traveled.

In addition to Dave's ventures across the countryside - Brian, from Iowa City, nailed his 2nd full-on century - 105 miles of windswept gravel roads. Check out his story on www.booksbikesbeer.com

Monday, April 28, 2008

Dave G Hits The Half-Way Mark - Paul Gets 2

Paul Jacobson insists I missed something at this years Trans-Iowa....I really enjoyed keeping the posting going on Cyclingupdate.com from the comfort of my own home while my wife and the pink ladies were ripping it up in Iowa City - but if you'd like to think so, Paul, you are welcome too! Read about Pauls Trans-Iowa experience here. Nice ride - nice ride. No matter what - that was a tough day!

Meanwhile, a little further south of Decorah, Dave Giegerich found some beautiful roads on which to spend a couple of days - seems as though it is easy to get lost in thought on a lonely gravel road - and based on the pictures - I don't blame him!

He was having so much fun, he nailed two this weekend - metric centuries, that is... get your mind out of the gutter!

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Duffy Nails His First

Cussin' and grumblin', Duffy nails his first hundy of the year on Saturday. Honestly, while I am impressed that he ventured out alone on this cold, windy day after heavy rains soaked the region this week... I still had no sympathy - as I am writing Trans-Iowa V4 updates throughout the weekend on CyclingUpdate.com - and those kids are attempting to ride more than 3 times as far! So, Duffy - while I'm impressed that you nailed it - The kids riding the Trans-Iowa get the official Cup O' Dirt Tough-Guy points this weekend! ;) you know I love you! - Dave

A Big Week!

I'm a little late in this posting - You all can probly tell when I'm busy at work and home, as there was little updating on CyclingUpdate and it has taken me a week to get these 4 hundy's logged! Anyway - here we go -

Dave Giegerich nailed a couple of metric centuries to bring his total to 4 - a third of the way there! Keep rollin Dave!

Tom Anderson and Steve Fuller were the only ones brave (??) enough to tackle the muddy roads at last Sundays get together - They basically followed Toms route around Des Moines - with some creative adaptations - as it became very evident that the gravel was going to be un-ridable without breaking thier legs or equipment or both - they took to the pavement - but not the pavement - the shoulder! They rode about 45 miles of shoulder! That takes discipline!

I'll post pics and more detailed stories when I have more than 5 min to post - but for now - you should know that these kids are well on their way!

Also - as I type this, 100 (or so) crazy souls are in thier first 5 hours of the Trans- Iowa. Follow along on CyclingUpdate.com throughout the weekend.

Peace - Dave

Thursday, April 17, 2008

2 Down.... 10 To Go!

Hi Dave,
Well, I did it again. Another 100K in the dirt between Dubuque and Dyersville. Took part of day off from work. Now I have to come up with a good escuse to tell my girlfriend why I should take 6 hours of "OUR" weekend off and ride and do another this weekend :-)
The Journey begins.

Was a very windy day, these things were down all over the place.

If bikes could talk this one would say. "What are you doing to me?" "I am a road bike, fatter tires and an elastomer seat post do not qualify me for this you imbecile."

-Dave Giegerich

Tuesday, April 15, 2008


OK - so we got the fact that there will be a group going for a hundy this Sunday - we just don't know where - One thing's fer sure - if ya wanna join the fun - show up at Hy-Vee on Grand and Railroad at 6:30 on Sunday for a little pre-ride feast. Then it's either off to a 100 miles of Center Trails (hoping they are dry) No complaining - it's only 8 laps. That ain't so bad! There'll probly be a lunch stop in Valley Junction or something - taco's anyone????

OR - if the trails are wet from the deluge that is forecast for Thursday - then we'll take to the gravel - and try and follow Toms route - described below.
Or - just pull a pickle and pick out some towns and try to get to em by dead-reckoning. (that is a nautical term)

"Here is the route that I created last night. It is currently 116 miles. I’d appreciate any input on route selection. As I stated before, I’m not familiar with these roads and am pretty much guessing that they are gravel. I also wouldn’t mind chopping some of that extra 16 miles off. I currently have it starting and stopping at the Hy-Vee on Jordan Creek and University and am thinking of on the bikes by 7:30 which gives some time for those that want to meet early for breakfast. -Tom

Click here for the route: Map My Ride"

Keep up the great rides - and keep logging the miles! Only a couple'a weeks till Trans-Iowa!!! Yahoo! I'm gunna try and do some 'Live" reports from the race throughout the weekend on CyclingUpdate.com - That's cool.

Monday, April 14, 2008

A Nice Note From A New Chaser - and some others logging miles!

Hi Dave,
I'm Dave, from Dubuque, 55 years old and always been a biker. However my typical milage was usually 15 miles a day 10 months out of the year UNTIL, I saw the "1/2 Liter O Dirt. Now I want one.
So today I went 62 miles on Heritage Trail. I think this counts as one, right?
I appreciate what your doing.

Here is the puddle I tipped over in, glad it was near the end of ride, because I got soaked. I thought I could ride through slowly, and my front wheel dropped about a 10 inches, and flipped me over the handle bars and into the muck.
Other picture is why Heritage Trail needs support.
Dave Giegerich

- Welcome to the chase Dave!

On some other notes - Norbert Koenigsfeld and Darcy Sanford knocked off a dirty 103 miles last weekend (April 5th) for Norberts 4th.

And this weekend - it was so cold and gross out that I didn't figure I'd get a note from anybody.... Duh. I should know better by now - Dennis Grelk did not just one - but 2 on his way to the 1/2 Liter O'Dirt. This puts him at 6 metric centuries - half way to his 1/2 Liter O'Dirt. Go Dennis, Go!

Dennis is proving that the sun does actually exist in this shot! MMMmmm warm! (right!)

Rumor has it that Tom Anderson is hosting a gravel hundy this Sunday - he's working on a route that heads south from West Des Moines. I'll post details as they are made available.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

GRAID Final Report From Grelk

GRAID was grand. Nearly every sort of gravel was experienced, lightning fast hardpack, piles of 2" fresh boulders, loamy level B's, sandy roads from Dallas Center to Ames. There were some hills, and some flats, a fair tailwind and some headwinds to finish it out. Steve had enough by Dallas Center, and chose to fight the headwinds early. Matt Maxwell, Paul, and I forged on through the sandy gravel expanse to Ames and stocked up on pizza. By then Matt had enough, so Paul and I rolled on. However the call of warm beds sounded too good to pass up by the time we rolled into Paul's neighborhood, and it was decided that we had learned what we needed to learn, the extra 12 hours of sleep riding wasn't going to improve the experience. T'was a good ride with good freinds, doesn't get much better than that.

Motionbased report

Read the full report at www.happytraining.blogspot.com

This marks the occasion of the awarding of the first Cup of the year - as Grelk's ride to Ames counts as his 6th dirty century of 2008 - earning him the coveted Cup O' Mississippi Mud! Congratulations Dennis - I have the feeling that you will be drying out the water in said Cup - and earning the full Cup O' Dirt by the end of the year (or end of April!!!) Keep rocking and rolling! - Dave

Monday, March 31, 2008

Squirrly Hundy

Saturday Squirrel Boy got a little ride in. We'll mark that one down in the record book. Click here for pictures and story.

I haven't heard from anyone who may or may not have completed the GRAID, other than Fuller. I'll be sure and give ya'll a 'Tell All' when I hear.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

GRAID Report

Steve Fuller joined a few other hardy souls for the 1st ever GRAID - Gravel Ride Across Iowa in a Day - Paul Jacobsons brain-child. Here's his report:

"Got my century in for the month. We started in Lamoni and headed north through Murray, Winterset, Adel, and Dallas Center. The other three guys contined north out of Dallas Center while I rode into Grimes. 115 miles"

Click for route

Short but sweet- we'll look for more as reports trickle in. In the mean-time, Fuller's got his March hundy in - and is still a clod carrying member of the One-A-Month Club. Go Steve, Go!

Monday, March 24, 2008

Double Metric... or one full????

We'll go with 'One Full' as Mr. BikeIowa.com is a card carrying member of the One-A-Month club on his way to a full Cup O'Dirt. Be sure to enjoy his full report on BikeIowa.com, and read on down to the bottom - where the good Mr. Sumpter talks about his quest for a coffee cup. Coffee cup??? Wha??? Coffee cup? Dude - this is no regular ol' coffee cup - this, my fuzzy faced friend, is a full on, highly caffinated, no-holds-barred, hand crafted, limited edition Cup O' Dirt! Dirt, my friend, DIRT! Dirt is what you seek - and dirt you shall find! Keep riding you sick sick man.
I can't imagine why anyone in a small-town-Iowa-bar would be scared of this guy - can you?

Easter weekend was busy- as the Nor'easters were hard at it too - Old Man Koenigsfeld was joined by Darcy Sanford for a 107 mile tour around Cedar Rapids. Norbert's 3rd and Darcy's first - welcome to the chase, Darcy! And this only 8 weeks after breaking her foot in a treking accident on her way to Everest Base Camp - You may also notice that Darcy is our first XX chaser! Way to go Darcy!

(I don't know how she broke her foot - but I thought that sounded like a great way to do it, if yer gunna anyway.)

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Commute From Hell?

I figured someone would be out there this weekend- as temps were in the 40s in the middle part of the state (a bit colder up north, I hear). As of the time of this writing (Easter morn) I've heard but from one - and now I see why he's called Nev-r-est. The dude never rests!! Discipline, I say. Discipline. Based on the photo - I would consider this commute a gift from Heaven. While the gumbo and headwind made things tough - Dennis was not stuck in traffic in his gas guzzling SUV in downtown LA for 3 hours. I'll take his 3 hour commute instead! (ed note: I must say that I, myself, have the perfect commute - a 7 min walk on a trail through the woods along a creek!) Anyway - here's his report:

"This was another +60mile mock commute to work. This time I tried taking off at the required AM start time, or something near it. I have to be at work by 6AM so I should normally have to leave home by 3:30-4:00AM. Today I left at 5:20AM, I should have left at 2:00AM as it took me over three hours to get there. To sum it up: killer headwind, two flats(via rubbing a hole in the sidewall with a misadjusted brakepad), and gumbo clay. A bit chilly too. I could have avoided the gumbo and flats, the headwind I'm afraid I'm stuck with that till I build an offroad streamliner. The ride back was nice tho." The details


Monday, March 17, 2008

Nvr-rest Hasn't Been Resting

Well, the Spoke Pony 6hour mtb race was postponed due to inclement weather this weekend, and I needed to go to Burlington to pick up a brake master cylinder for my car. I'm having a bit of a falling out with the automotive experience, so I decided to ride up to pick the parts up like a good practical cyclist should. Burlington is 45miles NE of me by pave, so I figured the gravel route should be pretty close to 100, and with a little backtracking it was. The quickcrete consistancy of the roads made for a love/hate relationship with my fenders. I'm tired and clean, which still beats tired and dirty, so the fenders stay.

Click here for the details

Sunday, March 16, 2008

A Dirty Day For Bike Tech Riders

We still have some snow.

Dave and all, The Bike Tech Dirt Racers headed out for 100 miles of dirt in search of the coveted Cup Of Dirt by All9Yards and presented by Dave Mable. With the dirty road race canceled in the Des Moines area we decided to ride our own dirt. The weather report for Saturday was not good and roads weren't looking to be much better. Mike Johnson designed a route that took us north and east of CF to Olwein and back on many roads that we weren't familiar with.

Joining in the adventure were Kat Porter, Mike Johnson, Paul Meyerman,
Doug Keiser and John Adamson who are all getting ready for the Race to
Columbine and Back - also riding were Ron Saul, Pete Berendzen and
Robert Fry.

The weather wasn't bad - 28 to 35 degrees and cool enough to keep the
gravel firm and fast. The roads were in much better condition than any
of us anticipated - with little gravel and practically no ruts or soft
spots. We ended up with 105 miles in 8 hours going thur the towns of
Denver, Oran, Olwein, littleton, and Dunkerton.

This early in the season made for a hard day on the bike, but all of the
riders seem to be very happy with their current condition.

Paul's got a 1/4 of a 1/2 liter O' Dirt!

Saturday, Paul Jacobson was joined by Paul Varnumon a peanut butter 2 loop metric century through Boone County. The 35 degree temps have turned the Iowa into a huge slice of bread, sitting in the middle of the U. S. of A. - covered with a thick dollup of super crunchy peanut butter!

Completing the first 35 mile loop in about 3 hours was encouraging - so after sending Varnum home for a nap or whatever, and a slice of pizza, back out the door for lap two - alone, and in the opposite direction. How does it always seem that the 2nd half of these long rides are always harder than the first? Left to battle a change of wind, deep sand and endless peanut butter - Paul found himself thinking (probly saying out-loud to himself...no probly yelling it at the top of his lungs...) "I could RUN faster than this!!!" No. I've never A)talked to myself on a long lonely gravel ride or B) found the going so slow that I could get off and run faster. Nope. Never.

Anyway - after passing this contraption
he found himself back home in about 4 hours - with his 3rd gravel metric century under his belt.

All this is great prep for his GRAID - Gravel Ride Across Iowa in a Day (or 2!) scheduled for March 29th and 30th. Read all about it - and join in on the fun (?) - I've certainly been encouraging him to look at a Sept. or Oct. date... Paul???

Ride on - Peace, Dave

Monday, March 10, 2008

More and more and more and.....


So Tom has a solid 3 in. He went out with Rick when I was whining about the weather. Plus he did a long lonly one in Feb, and the Squirrly hundy in Jan. So, yes, Tom, yer in the One-A-Month club already.

And Grelk - the dude's nick-name is N-ver-rest... I now see why. Click here for his latest! Looks like a fully hundy and a metric one as well - is this boy on his way to TWO Cups????

A Cold One, Anyone???

So, while I was whining about the cold and getting my zero ride in on Saturday, it seems as though Blackford and Anderson saw the temps as a benefit - not a detriment. You see, the cold weather freezes what had become a mushy road surface - making it ride like concrete - they took advantage of the conditions and nailed a hundy.

Good job gentlemen.

Just so I can save a little face - I did get out on a ride on Sunday. OK - not quite a hundred, but who can argue with the company?!??

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Happy Cup'ster

This guy gets twice the coffee as those who got the Cup O'Mississippi Mud, right?

Way to go GPickle!!!

Saturday, March 08, 2008

Frostbike Frenzy Ride Today

Today I'm inviting everyone on one of those 'Ride The Temp' rides - you know when your ride, in miles, the temp.

OK - Ready?



There - zero ain't so hard, now is it? Let's go get a cup of coffee.

Send my your pics from todays ride.


Friday, March 07, 2008

Monday, February 25, 2008

Who's In?

Click here and watch the slide show.

Now, who's in?

A Busy Weekend!!!

I am humbled! There is just a ton of action goin' on for the Cup'O Month Club! I can see that I'll actually have to find sumthin cool for those nailin' a hundy-a-month! Impressive! Here's the skinny on a weekend of fat-ridin:

Norbert Koenigfeld - 107.93 miles of dirt... all alone! 7350ft elevation gain - eat yer heart out you central Iowa flatties! 3200 feet - whateva! 10.9mph Ave. Quite impressive. In his own words:

"This one about killed me…14 different kinds of slush, 12 different kinds of ice, 5 different kinds of mud, sunburn, gravel roads that I’ve never ridden with hills throughout."

Guess who this belongs to? Yep, Mr. Bikeiowa hissef. Well, I suppose he drilled out his 2nd hundy - and on a fixie to boot! Sounds like Squirrel, Grelk, Sumpter and Rick all nailed the full hundy, while Fuller got a metric in. - I'll confirm and edit as needed. Anyway - sounds like a full-on day. Mechanicals, tacos... more tacos. Beer. Caseys. Peanut Butter. Frozen beards. Yep. A good day. Click Here for the fine print

More frozen beard pics here

Paul Jacobson was out and about for the day as well, enjoying the beautiful sites that Central Iowa gravel riding affords. Paul found his way around the countryside, completing his 2nd metric century. Jam out. Now, the thing about Paul riding around so much, all alone with his thoughts... is that he gets time to think. He dun came up with this hair-brained idea - a gravel ride across the great state of Iowa - in a day (or two!) His first annual GRAID is slated for March 29-30 - so ya best start ridin if yer gunna join him!

Great job to one an all - I'm hopin' to heal my butt enough in the coming months to actually join some a ya on these rides - but for now, 35 miles on pavement is about all I got!

Peace - Dave