It certainly was come one, come all at this year’s frozen, but sunny All Comers Meet. An estimated 200+ people and their shiny mountain bikes descended upon the Carpenter Whypass trail system on January 15th for the annual tradition of food, MTB vendors, bonfire/social time and of course, shredding trail. To top it off, REI came out in full force frying up bacon and serving coffee throughout the entire morning.
Bikes were wheeled into the parking lot and folks huddled together in the brisk morning air. Gloved hands wrapped around cups of hot coffee or gripped handlebars in anticipation. Before long, words of welcome were soon shared from atop a rock or a nearby tree stump. Many thanks and applause were given to the dedicated trail workers who came out in the weeks prior to volunteer their time (holidays included!) to clean up the extensive mess that Snowmegeddon Eugene brought upon the Whypass Trail System so that all could ride that day. And then, ride groups of differing ability levels were assembled in the parking lot and began departing in various directions, which to this onlooker seemed like the best parade ever! Riders and their bikes riding past in a semi-organized fashion in all their colorful and shiny glory-before dropping into a nearby trail. Sounds of hooting and hollering could be heard throughout the trail system that morning, and this Disciple found herself smiling from ear to ear as she rode the now-familiar trail system taking in the views of sunlight spilling through the trees onto a frozen forest floor.
And what is mountain biking without a blazing bonfire to warm up around and share stories of the day? Eventually, as if being beconed by some sort of mothership, the different riding groups slowly rolled back into home base and found themselves surrounding the fire and eating free slices of Track Town Pizza, discussing the day or various other mountain biking events, gear or challenging one another to the highly competitive log slicing competition taking place across the way. There were plently of vendors to check out: Trek was there with a fantastic fleet of shiny new demo bikes. Isaac Johnson was there from Ding Ding Cycles, providing his mad mechanical skills, fixing flats and other services. Andy Jones from Squish Dynamics was on hand along with his expertise in RockShox-answering questions about anything from seat post hydraulic systems to giving expert advise on how to maximize your Rock Shox products. Did I mention REI was there giving out bacon?
Old friends were reacquainted and new friendships were forged huddled around the bonfire, or over handlebars or cups of Oakshire and Planktown brew….and another successful ACM is in the books. See you next year!