After riding haw Creek with my buddy Jay today, I hopped on Strava because I always like to see the elevation map, even if there isn’t a lot of elevation change on a ride. I was kind of suprised to see that during one of our loops today (most likely the first) I ended up 9th out of 29. I’m not fast, but I’ll take my kudos where I can get ’em, and Strava leaderboards have been a fun way to gauge how well I’m doing.
Here are some interesting things about this particular stat though:
- Haw Creek is NOT a hard trail by any means, it is short, wide and easy. The only real difficulty is a few very rocky sections and a bunch of off camber hairpin turns. But it is under 3 miles and no -real- climbs (IMHO). HOWEVER, we have been pounded by rain here in GA for a few days, so at the moment the trail is very muddy, slow, and has a few sections of straight up standing water.
- I did not feel like we were going particularly hard today, and would have guessed we didn’t even place on the leaderboard since it certainly wasn’t a goal.
- But the craziest thing is, the route we rode was actually about a mile (probably more) longer than the times segment! Check out the graphic below to see a comparison of our route VS the timed segment.
Why is our route different / longer?
As I said, Haw Creek is not a hard trail, or a long trail. In order to make the trek there worth doing, Jay and I like to ride the extensions marked in pink on the lap above…one is a short section with wooden bridges up to Samples Road, and the other is a climb up a gravel road then along Echols Rd and around the fire road of the high school…a section which actually includes one of my fave climbs, a short but steep “out of the saddle” hill back up from the school which I always try to blaze up as hard as I can.
So, now I am wondering…what will happen if I go back when it is bone dry, fast trail conditions, and straight up time trial it, without the extensions? I’m thinking I could move up a few places. I’d like to crack the top 5. hell, I won’t lie, I’d like to be FIRST if even for a little while, on an easy trail.
That would be kind of RAD!
Bonus: On our third loop, I used Jay’s single speed old school StumpJumper, which was alot of fun. It’s running 36/18 and I had no trouble with any of the hills. Very fun. Of course, I want a single speed now.