asheville; where the parking garages look like subaru dealerships and even the homeless are a north face wearing eco-friendly bunch asking for your restaurant leftovers instead of cash. this past weekend i drove down to the carolinas to ride the issaqueena trails (clemson) with another skorted friend (and former evacuee of louisville). we resumed our natural riding patterns; me upfront collecting cobwebs with my face, she listening to me spit and gag from behind. unfortunately being first also means navigating (have i mentioned that i have directional dyslexia?).
we got rather lost.
while i did remember the "hotel-with-purple-sign-by-the-traffic-lights-at-the-bottom-of-the-hill-on-the-strip-with-all-the-apartment-buildings-leading-up-to-the-park", my brain became flatulent upon entering the trail. unfortunately these trails were not "colour coded for idiots", nor were they nicely taped and marked "for my conveniance" as they had been when i rode the course prior to a mountain bike race several years ago. fortunately there were many equestrians depositing steamy trail markers for us to follow. however, these rugged, ruddy, outdoorsy folk also yielded and greeted, and did not throw cigarettes, cans of bud light, or flip their mullets at us, as i have experienced with some of their kentucky counterparts. the trail really is shared.
the trails were (as i remembered) fun, fast, singletracky switchbacks with many, many moments of "oh god, oh god, dont look down, dont look to the right, ignore the abyss 2 centimetres to the left where i could potentially tumble, uninterrupted, until i baptize myself and the bike in the lake, at which point nessy, with incisors of steel, will come and chew on my limp, twitching form".
unfortunately the weekend drew to a close and i was asked to leave; i do not drive a subaru.