Thursday, May 30, 2013

Muddy Jr Girls Rip Sam Braxton Trail

Meet: 6:30 at Upper Trail Head (top of Pattee Canyon Drive)

Super fun time with the girls on Tuesday night. It had rained all day and I wasn't sure if the trails would be ok to ride, but they were good and nappy.

The girls loved getting muddy, right away they wanted to have a contest for who could get the dirtiest.

The girls were squeeling and yelling with happiness on the downhill. When we got to the bottom, Zoe said she could hear us down in the parking lot (mile below).

Miles: 3.4
Elevation gain: 350 feet (from 4,100 feet to 4,450 feet)
This trail is named after a well-known Missoula skier, bicyclist and outdoorsman. Cool Dude.
This trail is super flowy and is a rollercoaster ride around the southeast portion of Pattee Canyon Recreation Area.
Look for giant old-growth western larch and ponderosa pine, Montana's state tree, near the beginning of the trail.

The trail begins four miles up Pattee Canyon Road, just off the south side parking area. Bear to the right beyond the gate in the parking area and follow the roadway to the trailhead.


 I am Specialized

Monday, May 20, 2013

Bike Wreck & Rescue

I had been trying to get my husband John to ride with me for weeks. He was stuck in his "Deer Creek Loop" and had not done one Missoula MTB ride with me on single track. We headed up to ride the "Three Larch" ride starting at the Linclon Hills trail head. On the way, we dropped off our son Alex at the Gravel Pits to work on his new trick jumps.

It was a beautiful evening and for some reason, nobody was out. Ellie was at a friends house and John and I were set to enjoy a good 2 hour ride.

After a fun hammer-sesh to get to the top, we dropped down for the fast single track descent.

John covered in pine needles and dirt to keep warm
It was just a little ways down from the top after the fun little log drop, and short little uphill that John hit a graded chatter section of the trail. He hit a deep divot and flipped over the handlebars. He was not wearing bike gloves, so with sweaty palms from the long uphill, his hands simply slipped off the bars.
Right when I got to him, John said "I broke something" - and then he passed out.

John covered with Pine Needles to keep warm - Search and Rescue crew arriving to assess John's injuries.
John has Vasogagal, which is an extreme fight or flight response.
His body simply shuts down when he gets injured and he passes out. The bummer is that he also has jerky muscle spasms, dilated open eyes, sometimes foaming at the mouth and shallow breathing mixed with sharp inhales that sound raspy. Sorta scary if you have never witness it. It looks like a seizure, but it is not one. John has had these episodes with me many times, my job is to stay calm and if we are skiing powder, keep his face out of the snow so he can breath till he comes back.
Usually it is about 30seconds to a minuet. However, this time John was out for over 10 minuets! This was not fun. I called 911 and my son Alex after a minute. I could not explain the location of our wreck to the 911 operator, but I knew that Alex could guide them to us. Alex was awesome. He told me later that when I called, he just knew that something had gone wrong. He road his bike all the way up to the Woods Gulch Trail head to meet with Search & Rescue.

The Life Flight Helicopter
While that was happening, 911 also set up a team from the other side of Marshall Mnt with 4 wheelers. Within about 30 minutes a St Patricks helicopter was zig zaging slowly up the mountain looking for us. We were in a pretty wooded area, so when it got close to us, I ran to an open area and waved with my white bike jersey like a mad-woman. Then it followed me to John I knew that they had our location.

It was pretty cool when the Helicopter was above us. It was only like 40ft from the ground and the trees were all swaying from the force of the propellers.

After it left I thought, GOOD! They know where we are and folks are coming from either side to help. It had been 40 minutes since the wreck. Now I had the problem of keeping John still. He wanted to get out and walk. He did not want the fuss of all the rescuers coming to help. I had just taken an HHP class at the University, so I used facts from my class to keep John still. He is a logical guy being a Math Professor, so it worked. I was worried about his back, neck or head injuries that I could not assess.

We all hear about guys wrecking and breaking a bone way back in the woods. Adrenaline kicks in as natures helper and people just hike out injured. But, I was there - so I said, "no way" - this became an issue because John started lose the adrenaline and the pain was sinking in. He was still in shock, but he was starting to get cold and his whole body started shaking. I took off my shirt and covered him, then looked around for my options.
I could not lay on him for body warmth since he had broken a bone, so I started covering him with dirt and pine needles. It really worked! I put about 8 inches of forest compost all over him from head to toe.

It was comforting to talk to Alex and get updates of where Search & Rescue was on the trail. We were WAYYYYYYYY up there! Alex broke away from the crew once they were finally on the right trail, and biked up with extra blankets. It was so great to have him arrive. Alex is the kid you want when things go bad. He is level headed and does not freak out. Many times we have run into bears, been in crazy lightning storms, been caught in a flood while backpacking (Milford Track), underground in caves, and caught in rips in the ocean - and he handles himself like a Pro. Of course this is good thing since all his sports are extreme in nature. It is comforting that Alex is so good under pressure.

When Search and Rescue arrived things moved quickly. This was good since it was 2 hours later. John wanted to walk, but after taking 3 steps he passed out again. So they strapped him into a cozy rescue bag and put him on the board. Alex went with 2 other EMT's with our mountain bikes down the trail, and John and I started up the mountain too the logging road above us since it was closer. The Six-Wheeler was awesome! They started up the trail, but ended up just plowing straight up the mountain taking out bushes & small trees. We finally got to the ambulance on the Marshall Mountain side with the sheriff waiting. Since they open any gates, the sheriff has to file a report with the country why the action was taken place. So we are on record now. :)

A big thanks goes out to Kurt Kuger for hiking up to check on us and helping Alex with our bikes at the bottom.
Also, my MT ALPHA Women's MTB Team was ready to come save us - they were ready with riders to jet up the mountain too. They sent food to the ER (yummy soup & salads from the goodfood store!) And Sarah Castle brought me home from the ER so I could change quickly and get cloths for John since sweaty spandex is awful 5 hours later.
Also, my Knitting group drove up to help too, we were gone already on the other side of the mountain, but they sent a delish blueberry dessert to the ER and Monica contacted one of my Professors since I had an Ethics final in the morning. *Also, thank you to Kylee's mom and dad for taking care of Ellie and letting her stay the night. We were at the hospital till midnight, so Ellie spent the night at her friends. Of course, Kadin - John's brother was a awesome being on call to drive us home from the hospital and help me get John upstairs without him passing out at midnight.

In the end, John broke his clavical (collar bone) into 3 sections. Heal time is pretty quick for that injury, so in 3-4 weeks he should be good.

Here is an edit Alex and I made in New Zealand - a spoof on "Born Survior"
Remember - this is joke.......

Jr Moutain Bike Girls on the Trail

Tuesday Night ride with Jr Girls

 goofy girls being silly



I Am Specialized

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Tuesday Night JR Girls MTB Ride - Rattlesnake May 14, 2013

Ellie (13) Clara (16) Allison (15) MAMA Jen (38) Skye (13) Baylee (16)
 We all agreed that mountain biking on Tuesday night was better than texting, facebook and netflix.
Such a great night, the girls showed up to ride! We road up Spring gulch, back down Curry, then up to Sawmill gulch to ride down Ewok twice!
Sweet Allison did not get the memo to look tough - However, she kills it on the bike and knows how to ride hard. She is the kind of kid that you don't have to teach inner strength too, she is tough when she needs to be.
*All these girls are AMAZING skiers too. I have found that girls that know how to negotiate tree skiing in the winter have the same "body awareness" on a bike.
  • They drop their shoulders naturally on corners
  • They keep their eye on where they want to go
  • They are aggressive when moving over obstacles
  • They feel comfortable moving fast through the trees 
Only a little carnage - Baylee road her dad's mountain bike with clipless pedals (her first time in clipless). She has a stellar wreck with dirt all over her back, bloody leg and arm.
She was excited to bring home her dad's Specialized MTN Bike with her blood on it. (Seriously - look below)
What a great attitude Bay! She was ready to ride again and got back on the horse (bike).
MT ALPHA Jr Team Members
Ellie and Clara
Ellie and Clara always bring their Passion of riding to any trail.
Clara is a scary fast downhiller and Ellie knows how to push her limits. Both girls have great skills in hill climbing, negotiating technical rocky sections and bombing descents.
I LOVE RIDING WITH THEM. It is a joy for me to watch them kill it on the trail.
Plus, they are super fun to hang out with too.
 These Girls Mean Business!
Watch out boyz - we like dirt too!
I am Specialized

Monday, May 13, 2013

Bike Mamaz in the News - Mother's Day Missoulian Article

Bike Mamaz in the News - Missoulian Mothers Day Article
This photo was taken just a week after Tanner's Passing - We started brainstorming right away about the Park
Betsey Cohen of the Missoulian contacted me to do a story on Mothers.
She heard about the "Bike Mamaz" and our efforts in helping fund raise $$$$ and support for The Tanner Olson Memorial Bike Park while interviewing me about my Specialized Women's Ambassadorship.
Tanner was my son's buddy that died tragically n
early 2 years ago in a car crash near Arlee, Montana. The tragedy brought us all to our knees and we all wanted to help support Kathy in the loss of her youngest child Tanner.
Click here for the website about the Bike Park efforts and Tanner Olson.
We were excited to meet with her and Missoulian photographer Michael Gallacher on May 8th to discuss all the work we have done thus far. The Missoulian Article came out on on Mothers Day - front page!

While this news article will be focused on "Mothers", there are MANY MANY MANY other folks (not mothers) that have worked tireless hours towards our goal.
Thank you for your time and energy!
Besided just selling I Ride For Tanner Gear - Our Fundraising Projects thus far include;

2011 Momentum hosted a Hill Climb, Snowbowl Mt - Missoulian Newpaper Article
2011 Chamberline Rail Jam, Missoula, MT -
2011 Hopin to Be Open Rail Jam - Lost rail pwder mnt
2011 Ride for Tanner Rail Jam, Missoula, MT - Rail jam website
2012 I ride for Tanner Leprechaun Launch Slopestyle
Lost Trail Powder Mountain, Montana

2012 Summer Concert Series with Big Sky Brewery - Beer Sales go to Bike Park! -Big Sky Brewery Concerts
2012 I Ride For Tanner Rail Jam, Missoula MT.
2012 Chamberline Rail Jam, Missoula, MT
2013 The Helmet Project - Missoula Bicycle Works
2013 Momentum Hill Climb - Snowbowl MT
2013 Summer Concert Series with Big Sky Brewery - THANKS BIG SKY! WE LOVE YOU!
I had an "ah-ha" moment during the interview.
We really have been rocks for eachother over the last 2 years since Tanner's passing.
I know that I can rely on you all.
What is equally remarkable is how Kathy has such deep reservoir of love and strength.

Jennier, jen and Nancy at Momentums Hill Climb 2011

Mama Nancy & Kathy

Yes, that is Tanner Hall's Mom Darla at the I Ride For Tanner Rail Jam 2011

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Tuesday Night Ride | The Rattlesnake Wilderness | May 7th, 2013

Tuesday Night was gorgeous up the Rattlesnake Wilderness outside of Missoula.
Few communities enjoy a place quite like the 60,000-acre Rattlesnake National Recreation Area and Wilderness just north of Missoula.
Here, you'll find girls that love dirt - and sweet biking opportunities a few miles from town.
We rode up Spring Gulch then dropped down sawmill gulch.
The southern boundary of the Rattlesnake National Recreation Area and Wilderness (RNRAW) is four miles north of Missoula, Montana.
A well-developed trail network in the Rattlesnake's lower reaches gives you a variety of options for day trips – or you can pack overnight gear and venture farther into the high-country wilderness.

No motorized vehicles are allowed, and bicycles are prohibited within the wilderness boundary.

Don't worry! The Rattlesnake has no verified sightings of rattlesnakes in this area.
You will, however, find ample opportunities to view many other wildlife species, including beaver, deer, elk, mountain goats and black bear.
During spring and fall, you can see more than 40 bird species

Mary and Riley rocking the single track