Yeah I know, what is a phone book? Got your attention at least.
You know how it is, you wait and wait for something to happen, and then when it does it seems like it blows right by. It was that way when you were a kid with Christmas and your Birthday. It is that way now with vacation plans and the cycling trip that you just cannot wait for. You spend months preparing, sorting gear, planning each day and step. Then, all too quickly it is done.
Unfortunately, it is never that way with winter. Winter kinda blows in somewhere in November, settles into something that is not so bad for the month of December. That makes you say something like, “this is not so bad. I can handle this winter thing.” But, if you live here in the upper Midwest, winter is just toying with you. Somewhere along the way, winter slams you down to the ground and then drives right over you with the snowplow blade lowered. January comes and the blizzard of the century smacks you in the face (again). February comes and the weather just settles into a long grey period of cold. March comes and you get taunted with a warm week and then winter laughs at you with a 10 inch snowstorm. It is just not fun.
You spend lots of time in the garage, cleaning your bicycles and motorcycles, marking the days off your calendar that you are still not riding. You ride the stupid trainer, you go to the gym and do your workouts, you go back out to the garage and clean your bikes and motorcycles again. You mark more days off the calendar. You watch mountain bike videos, you analyze your training log from last year to find out where you went wrong, you go back out to the garage and clean your bike and motorcycles. You ride the stupid trainer and go to the gym. You put new cleats on your shoes, you go to the bike swap and sell your old clothing (that is another story in itself, people will actually buy old cycling clothing), you go back out to the garage again and clean your bikes and motorcycles. It gets really long.
But, then Rays MTB park announces that it is opening in Milwaukee. Winter mountain bike goodness is coming to your back yard. Finally, you will not have to drive all the way to Cleveland. Woohoo! Then you start the long wait and marking the days off the calendar until it opens. It is a bit like the Christmas and Birthday calendar from your childhood.
In my case, I started counting towards the opening of Rays all the way back in the summer. Ray was over there in the old Menards building, throwing up ramps and skinnies and jumps and, yep. You know, just making us all salivate. Then, the wheels came off and we hit the skids and ran into problems getting all of our permits etc..., and we did not open. Ugh…
But, I am proud to say, finally we did. And wow, what a grand opening it was. The place is incredible.
This past weekend was that grand opening. I was there on Saturday. I am super excited to say that there were about 375 other cyclists there. 375! 375 cyclists that normally have been sitting in their living room in January, waiting for spring. Marking the days off their calendar, riding the trainer, sorting their old clothing and complaining about living in Wisconsin.
Not any more though. From now on, they are riding skinnies, jumping their bikes, ripping around on the XC loop and just enjoying being on their bicycle. Eventually, we will have to build more new things to ride on, eventually there will be an expectation that things will change between your visits there. But for now, it is just great to see that if we build it, they will ride it. Thanks for the opportunity Ray.
We had a bunch of cycling media there. We had pro athletes there. Ray was there. It was crazy amounts of fun. I cannot wait to be back there next weekend. See you there.
The new phone book is here!
That is the preview video that we posted before the park opened!
That is the park on opening weekend, but before the grand opening party!
Lest we forget... There is Cleveland, and it really is a fantastic place to ride.
It had to be built