Tuesday, May 8, 2018

WATA Gravel Ginder

waterbury area trail alliance gravel grinder vermont 2018
And then at about mile 9, I knocked my wife to the ground...

That was just one of the highlights along the WATA gravel ride in and around Waterbury, Vermont.

Ever since we did the Muddy Onion a couple of years ago, Jean and I have been fans of gravel rides. Great routes, great vibes, and great views have pulled us back for more and more rides, and this was our first year at the Waterbury Area Trail Alliance Gravel Grinder.

We opted for the shorter "traditional" loop which included about 27 miles and 2800ft of climbing and it was filled with--as promised-gravely goodness.

Saturday, May 5, 2018

ECTA Spring For The Trails Half Marathon

"You're kind of a big guy for a trail runner..."

That comment came at me at about mile 4 while I was chatting with another runner, and I didn't know what to say. I just kept on running, smashing trees and scaring the wildlife like a woodland Godzilla.

Truth be told, that comment came from a really nice woman whom I chatted with for a couple of miles, but I thought it was pretty funny.

This was the second trail marathon of the season and the weather was markedly better than the one in April. While the race in Falmouth skirted freezing temperatures, early May in Ipswich brought bright sun, clear skies and temps in the high 60's. Toward the end of the run, I was so warm that I ran shirtless for a bit. With that said, I should apologize to all that were blinded by pale white skin that shone like a beacon. Squirrels had to avert their eyes, and I covered up before hitting the finish line.

Friday, April 27, 2018

Muddy Onion 2018, Montpelier, VT



Jean and I have ridden in the Muddy Onion in Montpelier, Vermont for the past couple of years  2017  2016), and the event really set the bar for gravel rides. Great route, great support and an amazing apres ride bash all made for memorable rides. Sadly, the organizing shop, Onion River Sports closed its doors, but some dedicated people are working to keep the dream alive and Onion River Outdoors is being born. And while the doors are not open yet, the Muddy Onion lives on!

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Cape Cod Trail Race 2018

cape cod trail race half marathon racer-x david alden
It's officially race season! I'm excited that I've got a bunch of events on the calendar--running, mountain biking, gravel rides, and hopefully some cyclocross this fall. I enjoy participating in these even if I toe the line woefully unprepared. In fact, that's my typical strategy, and my race results usually reflect that.

But hey, I can have just as much fun sucking wind in the middle of the pack as I would if I was standing on the top of the podium being deafened by the roar of my fans and burdened by medals and trophies.

With all that said, Jean and I, and Liz and Dan combined the first camping trip of the season with the first race of the season and de-winterized the campers for a weekend at Bourne Scenic Park. That put us in close proximity for the Cape Cod Trail Race in Falmouth. The race was fun, the camping... well... (see below after race pics)

Saturday, April 7, 2018

10 Tips to Better Mountain Biking

tips for better mountain biking
I originally wrote this article about 15 years ago. Apparently it's been circulating on the Interwebs ever since because I recently got an email inquiry about it from a content developer in Australia. As I had a chance to review it, I realized that all of this still holds true today so I've dusted it off and made sure that it works with the latest iOS while also being ANT+ and Bluetooth compatible. Additionally, the tips below work with ALL hub spacing standards, all BB standards and all MTB wheel sizes, 26, 27.5, 27.5+, 29, 29+ although, if you want the fat bike tips, you'll need to send in $20 for the retrofit kit.

10 Tips to Better Mountain Biking  

Friday, February 9, 2018

Fat Bike FakeNews


I’m not going to lie, I’m not a fan of fat bikes.

I had one but I just couldn't drink the Kool-Aid...

Read just about any fat bike propaganda and you’ll see statements like, "and you can ride them everywhere” or “any trail, any time of year.”

You’ll also read that the wider tires float on surfaces where other tires would sink.”

Bicycling Magazine (which is pure drivel), even boasted that "staying fit in the winter is hard, but fat bikes make outdoor exercise possible."

Friday, December 8, 2017

GPS WTF

I've been using a number of different mapping systems to record my rides and runs, but to also try to collect tracks to create a library of trail maps.

I've been using Strava, Wahoo Fitness, Trail Forks (all on my iPhone), and Garmin Connect through a Edge 520 head unit. It's somewhat surprising how different the stats are between these various services on the same short loop...

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Multiple Multi-Tools

I remember being a care-free kid spending long days on my bike in the woods, miles from home. It's kind of interesting to think about what I and my friends used to do through today's perspective of helicopter parents and the fact that kids rarely venture out into the world on their own.

My friends and I would be out in the woods, again, miles from home; no cell phones, no spare tubes, no bike tools, no helmets, and our parents really had no idea where we were.

I'm pretty sure that sort of thing is gone forever.

Friday, September 15, 2017

Unboxed: Wall To Wall Freestyle Collectible Package



I wasn't expecting this to show up today, but I was home when the FedEx guy dropped this off. I grabbed the box, my GoPro and opened the package... I only had enough time to see what was in the box, but I'll go through everything in more detail shortly! http://www.davealdenBMX.com/

Sunday, August 27, 2017

2017 Rose Mountain Rumble Gravel Ride

The 2017 Rose Mountain Rumble in Lyndenborough, NH was a blast.

The RMR was one of the rides that I did last year and I had been looking forward to the this year's edition.

And, as the weather forecast got better and better as the day drew close, it seemed like it was destined to be a great ride. And it was.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

NEMBAFest--Day 2

Thanks to Bear Cieri and Clif Bar for the pic!
After a cloudy start, Saturday turned out to be a truly amazing day.

Ralph played camp host and brewed coffee for the crew and after we all scarfed down some breakfast, it was time to hit the trails.

Mike Lawless made the day trip up from MA to join us too, and after a quick shock check at the SRAM/RockShox tent, we were rolling.

We hit many of the favorite trails, Harp, Coronary Bypass, Pastore Point Loop, Coronary, Troll Stroll,  Eager Beaver, Webs, West Branch, Hog Back, Sidewinder, and Old Webs before heading back to camp for lunch.