This time last year, Ray’s Mountain Bike Park held a women only day at the park. It was on a Friday and my friend Kristi was planning on going. She and I went down together on Friday, stayed overnight and the boys came down to meet us on Saturday.
I didn’t think I was going to be able to go this year because of the MMBA annual meeting on Sunday – in Lansing this year. But, when we were at Ray’s a few weeks ago, Nick suggested I go just for the Friday-women-only part. For some reason, it hadn’t occurred to me. Kristi was game, and so I took the day off work and we hit the road at 7:30 am yesterday. A great way to spend my birthday, I say.
I just can’t seem to express how great this place is. And to be able to go there on a day when its not open to the public (read: really crowded) is just so fantastic. And then, to have awesome women instructors in every section is the best birthday present I could have asked for. I had a great time .. for a little while ..
Before lunch, I was working on the rock garden in the beginner room and after a clean run through, I went for a little more speed on my second run. Well, I lost my line and as I was falling, I put my foot down .. and my ankle twisted .. then my knee twisted .. and then the whole leg collapsed underneath me ..
Years ago, I sprained my knee while downhill skiing .. I don’t think it ever fully recovered ..
So, I was laying on the rocks, my leg collapsed underneath me, and my bike on top of me – I was kind of still “strattling” the bike – with my left leg underneath me, and my right leg still over the bike. I was stuck. And as I was trying to straighten my left leg, I felt exactly the same (although MUCH less intense) as when I was laying on that ski hill .. I was pretty sure my day was done at that point ..
So, we hung out for lunch and swag and Kristi went out to ride some more .. I was gonna use my fancy camera and grab some video .. I was heading into the intermediate area when I saw a group of women looking concerned over a women who had fallen. It was Kristi. She’d gotten caught with no momentum at the end of a line and as her bike was slowly-coming-to-a-screaching-hault, she had somehow managed to twist her ankle – one that she had sprained badly in September or October. So, she hobbled back to the table where our stuff was, and we decided it was time to call it a day 😉
Regardless – it was a fantastic day. I got to spend ~30-45 minutes in the pump track (its usually too crowded to go near the pump track there) .. and I worked on a line in the intermediate room that I was scared of – and totally cleaned it 3 times in a row. I cleaned the rock garden in the beginner room on my first shot (also usually too crowded to try). I met some fantastic women, and there were quite a few women back from last year – which was really cool.
I absolutely, highly recommend this event – its already scheduled for the same weekend next year! Nina and Dirt Rag put on a really great event and all of the women are so energetic, patient and supportive. It is really a welcoming environment for women of ANY level. Fantastic! Happy Birthday to ME!
And, the knee will be allright. With some ice and ibuprophen, I was pretty mobile as long as I was careful – walking is fine, but I have to be very careful to not twist or turn. Stairs and downhills are tough because its very wobbly and doesn’t want to take the weight of me by itself. But – it was no problem driving home (We took the pickup – manual transmission – clutch – heh). Hopefully I’ll still be able to spin on the trainer …
All in all – a great way to turn 34!