Topsail is a long island
(updated: Apr 28, 2014)
Sunday I rode Topsail Island, and when I say I rode Topsail Island, I mean I rode the entire island, out-and-back. Specifically, I start in middle, ride to South end, go back to middle, ride to North end, go back to middle for finish. Surprisingly, the reading on my gps was 47 miles, less than the 50 miles I had expected. Let me tell you, when you finish this ride and you're thinking that felt every bit of 50 miles and more and you look at your gps and it says 47, it's a little disappointing. Maybe it was the gps. Typically these average out small directional changes, which is why they are not accurate on the trail. But on the wide open beach it should be fairly accurate – it’s more or less a straight line. Regardless, it was a long ride. 50 miles is a long ride regardless of what terrain you are on.
A couple of things to note … Firstly, no one better ever Strava this ride, because that will start a chain of events leading to the banning of bikes from the beach. Plus I will hunt you down and beat you senseless with my fat bike. There are lots of people on the beach, and although I still somehow managed to average 13 mph over the 47 miles, I went very slowly where there were families with kids. And there are lots of kids. And they move erratically. Because kids are f---ing nuts. I know, I am one. There are patrol officers on the beach as well. In addition, sometimes people flag me down and ask me about my Pugsley. Yes, they still do this, and I must have also overheard at least 50 comments about how big those tires are. The fat biking craze still hasn’t hit the masses here off the beaten path we call Wilmywood, Nouvelle Caledonie. That's because we’re the last to hear of anything.
Where there were stretches with hardly anyone around, I went anywhere from 15 to 18 mph, which is as fast as most roadies go around here. I was just trying to keep a steady pace, but I just can’t help myself, which brings me to my second point: Have fun. Please. Stop acting all serious with your training and racing, because I got news for you: it’s not fun. For anyone. Go to the gym and ride a trainer and be miserable like everyone else. Oh, and you suck. I suck, you suck, we all suck. If you think you don’t, watch a Danny MacAskill video.
So play around a little. After all, most people ‘round these parts think bikes are playthings anyway and could never possibly be used for serious transportation. On the beach I like to see how big of a tide pool or stream I can bunnyhop across, and sometimes I fail miserably and get wet. I also like to hit sand drops, launch off small lips and ridges of sand, and ride anything that looks rideable. I even bunnyhopped a dead stingray. Being Danny MacAskill's long lost cousin Timmy Lackaskill, someday I intend to make a video showcasing my lack of talent.
But regardless, goof off once in a while on a bike and do silly things. Otherwise find another hobby. Don't be like the Strava-douche on the Airstrip trail at DuPont, getting angry at everyone for messing up his Strava time. I mean, seriously? You want rewarding? Teach a kid with Down's Syndrome how to ride a bike. You'll realize how lost you've become.
And thirdly ... I forgot what that was ... Oh yeah, KEEP OFF PIPE!!!
Onto the best part, photos with captions...
I started to ride some more so I could get it to read 50, but as I looked ahead toward the pier and saw how crowded it was getting, I just said f--- it.
South end evidence, with Lea-Hutaff Island in the background with the lone house and angry hermit who probably lives there:
North end evidence. Vehicles were stacked like logs here. I could have ridden across the tops of them.
The dead Stingray I bunnyhopped. There was another one not too far away. Brought in by fishermen? Maybe he just had a night of heavy drinking.
I may have posted this before, but this is kinda creepy ... pretty self-explanatory too with the shark and the sand voodoo doll with the missing arm. I didn't know you could do voodoo with sand. He just sat there, staring at me.
Evidence of serious beach erosion, completely undoing the recently completed beach renourishment project last year. Entropy at work. Like Sisyphus pushing a rock up a hill, only to have it roll back down again, you can't win. What's next, taxpayer-funded rock jetties, until the next major hurricane comes along? These are barrier islands. They move around.
Summer fireworks teaser:
Night sky photos. I am all over the place. Sometimes I do midnight rides. The camera is even able to capture a loose globular cluster of stars.
The Milky-Way Galaxy is clearly visible. We are in one of the outer bands. If you look at this with a telescope or binoculars, all you see are more stars. It will blow your mind.
This is Wrightsville Beach from a few weeks back.
Remember ... KEEP OFF PIPE!
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