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Muddy 17 miles with Jim Beyer yesterday; Fat Tire and Red Hoptober beer.

Monday, September 17, 2012 by  
Filed under Daily Blog

Me with my Fuel after 17 muddy miles at Wekiwa State Park.

Me with my Fuel after 17 muddy miles at Wekiwa State Park.

Jim Beyer, who I rode with earlier this month along with Mike Simmons when we all did the Santos 42-mile “Epic” ride, shot me an email on Saturday asking if I wanted to do a 20 mile training ride on Sunday afternoon at a trail called Paisley Woods. I’d never been to Paisley, but I knew of the place. From what I understood the terrain at Paisley is similar to Wekiwa, but more rolling and not prone to flooding during the rainy season. A hard 20 mile mountain bike ride sounded good, so I told Jim I was interested.

Come to find out bow hunting season started yesterday, and Paisley allows hunting. Neither of us were wild about the idea of possibly being impaled by an arrow, so I suggested that we hit up Wekiwa State Park instead.

I’ve not been to Wekiwa in more than two months, and that’s because during the rainy season many of the bike trails are a mess: deep mud and standing water in the many low-lying areas and endless sugar sand on higher ground. Still, we were looking for a challenging workout, and I knew we’d find one there.

Jim Beyer post-ride with his Gary Fisher 29" carbon hardtail.

Jim Beyer post-ride with his Gary Fisher 29″ carbon hardtail.

Sure enough, the trail conditions were about the same as they were when I was last there in July. As we worked our way through the tar-like mud, deep sugar sand, standing water, slick roots and small cypress stumps we definitely put our hearts, lungs and legs to work.

Along the way we saw several deer, a yellow-bellied slider turtle, a gopher tortoise and a gigantic water moccasin that slithered off the trail as we approached. I was hoping we’d get lucky and spot a black bear, but no joy there.

The trail conditions right now are challenging and provide a great workout, but I prefer Wekiwa when it’s dry. During the winter and fall the trails run much faster, and are much more enjoyable to ride. I’m hoping to do group training rides out there when things dry out, as it really is a good place to get some miles in. Having some real competition on Strava out there will be nice, too.

Here’s the complete ride on Strava and Garmin Connect.

I decided to have a cheat meal after yesterday's ride: Grilled bacon cheeseburgers, fries and a Fat Tire Amber Ale that Mike Simmons gave to me.

I decided to have a cheat meal after yesterday’s ride: Grilled bacon cheeseburgers, fries and a Fat Tire Amber Ale that Mike Simmons gave to me.

After the ride I was starving, and a burger and beer sounded like just about the best thing on the planet. I decided to go simple: grilled sirloin burger with cheddar cheese, Applewood smoked bacon, french fries and an amazing brew–Fat Tire Amber Ale. Words can not describe how good this meal tasted. 🙂

I have to say a few words about the beer. Last week after Mike Simmons and I did a 16-mile urban assault on Mt. Dora, he gave me a couple of brews from the New Belgium Brewing Company: “Fat Tire Amber Ale”, and “Red Hoptober”. New Belgium doesn’t have any Florida distribution (which makes me cry), and I’d never tried any of their products. I’d been patiently waiting for my cheat meal to try these two beers, and the wait was definitely worth it.

The Fat Tire Amber was delicious, and one of the best beers I’ve ever had. It paired very well with my burger after a hard ride.

Red Hoptober was, for me, on an entirely different level. I don’t know how to say this any other way, but the smell and taste of this beer reminded me of some of the finest, stickiest, most fragrant bud I’ve ever experienced. Of course, as regular readers of my blog already know, I gave up smoking pot 10 years ago (in fact, March 6, 2013 will be exactly 10 years since I’ve smoked weed), and so when I got my first whiff of Red Hoptober it was a huge blast from the past. I won’t ever do drugs again, but I’m damn sure going to get my hands on some more of this incredible, unique and tasty craft beer. Sorry Guinness Extra Stout, you just lost your KOM.

No time to do a real ride this morning, so I’m going to get in 14 miles on the trainer before work. Have a great day!

John Stone Fitness Comments

9 Responses to “Muddy 17 miles with Jim Beyer yesterday; Fat Tire and Red Hoptober beer.”
  1. Beer tastes are funny. I had a Red Hoptober on Friday. It was a good beer but almost forgetable, like a lot of New Belgiums beers. IMO, their best offering is 1554. That is a memorable beer to my taste buds.

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  2. Funny how you cant get it where you live but it is everywhere here in reno. New Belgium sponsors two of our local race series,, there are usually kegs at every after race BBQ. The Amber Ale is good but my two favorite beers are Blue Moon and Chimay Red.

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      • I second the Chimay vote. Chimay Blue is also excellent. Blue Moon has a great taste, but the aftertaste to me is like chewing on wheat. What fixes that is a slice of orange squeezed right into it, though I’ve found the idea of putting fruit in a beer is offensive to some. 😉

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  3. When we were kids, some friends and I once asked one of the older boys what beer tasted like. “Carbonated piss,” was his answer. To this day, I can’t think of a better description.

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      • Budweiser is utterly undrinkable. I had a swig of it once and immediately spit it out. It might be suitable as a garage floor cleaner, but it’s not fit for human consumption. There are a few beers I genuinely like. The best I’ve ever had were in Belgium and Japan, but I haven’t been able to find them at local beer importers. One German city I happened to visit had a very pleasant tasting light colored beer, but one that packed as much punch as a jar of moonshine. The waiter warned me that it was ‘strong’, but I didn’t know what he meant until I almost fell down the stairs exiting the restaurant, and couldn’t maintain a straight line while walking down the sidewalk. LOL

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