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Saturday’s Ride

Sunday, November 4th, 2007

Saturday’s ride…

Click on photos for full size and description. (when that page opens, you can then click the photo again for larger size.)

Out for a nice ride in the piney woodsBridge over a swampSlight error in judgementOut of the muck!


Friday, October 19th, 2007

Today was a trip for me, Emily and William to head to Gatorland.  In case you didn’t know, World Famous Gatorland, established in Orlando in 1949, and in the opening collage of photos in Chevy Chases VACATION movie.

We had a blast.  Photos at

Emily wrestling a live alligator

On a running note, I’ve got a few nice short runs in.   I’ve only ran one 4 mile run between Badwater and Furnace Creek, and I’ve been surprised now good I feel on some short, fast 3 mile runs.  They’ve been very fun.

Tomorrow I’m going to try to get out and paddle my kayak for a couple hours. 

Saturday, October 6th, 2007

By Crew, (Steve and Willy) 

The race started on time, 7:00am, the riders rode the first 24 miles without crew support. When David arrived  he looked in great shape. Fed him a banana and changed water bottles. He climbed the short uphill and then he has been going great guns. The temperature was cold when he started but by 11:00am when he reached the windmills sun was shining the sky was
California blue. 34

Furnance Creek 508 October 5, 2007

Friday, October 5th, 2007

By Crew, Steve and Willy.

Dave and crew packed the support vehicle and headed for race check-in arriving around 3:30PM. The parking lot was beginning to fill up with support vehicles ranging from two door hondas, mini vans and trucks. The cycles were nothing but the best and fully loaded. Anyone rookie would be impressed with the competition. Dave appeared relaxed and cool. The weather was windy and cold. Just before leaving the freeway we had a small sprinkle. Upon arriving the van was decked with all the required safety equipment and the photo is of Dave and the Furnace Creek official reviewing the van safety compliance.


If you’re goin’ through Hell…

Monday, October 1st, 2007

Weekend before last, The Harper Clan all made a trip over to Tampa for a country music concert.  We went to see Brad Paisley, Rodney Atkins, and I forget the 17 year old girls name that opened for them.  I’m sure Ashley will comment here and tell me.  It was awesome.  Some rain just as we arrived, but turned into a wonderful night.  We were Jammin!  Rodney’s song, “If you’re goin through Hell…” brought back those Badwater Memories.  Every time I hear that song it takes me right back to 2006 Badwater, and William Ansick playing that for me in the van.  Details of that stroll through the desert, and the verse of that song are on my 2006 Badwater race report.  Brad Paisley was great too, it’s always fun to see people live, so much more impressive than hearing them on the radio. 

Click photos for full size.

Just arriving at concertAre we prepared for anything or WHAT!?!   Good job TAMI!2007sept-223.jpgBrad Paisley.  He does most of his lead guitar also, very good, William was impressed.

 Next night Ashley had a friend over for a sleepover, and we did a bonfire and Smores.  Kids ate those things till they were almost sick.  We also ended up baby sitting some friends Golden Retriever for the weekend.  She LOVED swimming in the pool.

I wonder just how many calories were consumed this evening?2007sept-295.jpg2007septshannon.jpg

Lastly, I got a couple really good bike rides in on Sunday and Monday.  My last of the long rides.   Furnace Creek coming up soon.  I think I’m ready!

Cycling Update

Sunday, September 16th, 2007

Time is drawing near for the Furnace Creek 508.   Three weeks away.  Training has been going great, I’ve got several 100 plus mile rides in, 130 today and finished feeling strong.  My legs feel good.   The heat/humidity here is causing problems, just making it difficult to train as hard as I’d like.  In the humidity, the profuse sweating does no good, it doesn’t evaporate, so it’s not cooling you, it’s only depleting your body.  I manage it, and am getting good workouts in, but I so wish I could spend a couple, three weeks out West in the dry air.  Oh well.

I got my Cervelo time trial bike put together and it’s working well.   It’s very fast, but also pretty exhausting to ride.  My neck gets very tired because of the very forward, low position.  But it’s good.  I’ll be riding it for most of my rides between now and race day, and will actually raise the front about a 1/4 inch right before the race, to relieve some of the steepness.  With the Cervelo for the flat/rolling sections, and the Cannondale Six-13 road bike for the big climbs and decents, I think I’ve got the equipment part covered.   And my training has been good, so hopefully, I’ve got the physical part covered.   The race itself is going to be so difficult though, I have no illusions that it will be easy.  I expect the most difficult event I’ve ever done.

 I’ve had interviews last week with two different publications, that are doing stories on my Badwater/Furnace Creek races.  As those come out, I’ll post them.  

Friday Funfest

Sunday, September 16th, 2007

I managed to get out with some buddies on our motorcycles, one of which has been bugging me forever to start riding with them.  So Friday was the day with my new bike.  What an awesome machine, and what awesome trails these guys took us on, gravel roads, fire roads, jeep trails, gnarly single track with roots, water and BIG mudholes.  About 70 miles of riding, and WOW, what a great time it was.     Biggest incedent of the day was when ‘DirtBikeMike’ got pulled off his Honda by a 1/4 inch thorny vine that caught him across the neck.  See photo, click them to enlarge.

The Boyz        70 miles of deep woods       DirtBikeMike showing us now NOT to do it!

My mighty KTM handled it all, couldn’t have asked for any better. 

Out with the old, in with the new

Tuesday, August 28th, 2007

KTM 625 SXC (and Emily)

My new toy, to replace some that I’ve grown tired of.  I’ve got a couple of very nice motorcycles, the blue ones) that I’ve enjoyed but they are just not as high performance as I really want. 

Vstom 1000cc and DR650 (and Ashley and Emily)

So, I added a new KTM(orange one) beast of street-legalized dirt bike.   To put it in perspective, the blue dual-sport bike weighs about 350 lbs, and makes about 33-34 horsepower.  The Orange KTM weights 290 lbs with 55-60 hp.  50 lbs less weight with nearing twice the horsepower, QUITE the difference.

It’s a fully capable race machine, having won the DAKAR rally in Africa (3,500 mile offroad race over 17 days, through the Sahara, Morocco, Senegal, etc) multiple times.   Hmmmmmm, interesting.