Time and the Thin Edge

I would not say that the stretch of dirt maintenance road where I stopped to snap this photo is indicative of Powerline, neither is it far off the mark. The opening third is more rocky, its surface marred with sand traps, there is even a pseudo stream crossing - not that I have ever seen water flowing through it. Last evening I decided to switch things up a little, head out on the cross bike, rather than the roadie, allow me to ride a little dirt and gravel. While I will often tack Powerline, and the trail beside Thompson Creek Trail, onto the end of a local mountain bike loop, it was the first time to have ridden either on a less beefy rig. 

I am still dialing in the cross bike, discovering and adjusting to its geometry and the nuances in the way it handles. Mostly I spun along the thin edge separating loosely-in-control from careening-wildly-out-of-control. Slipping from one side to the other allowed me to pick up speed and weave between rocks on the one hand, and forced me to squeeze the brakes and shake like a dachshund on the other. Bouncing from rock to rock, sliding through sand and gravel, it was the conditions of the trail that determined my line ninety percent of the time, not me. Clearly I need to move that percentage more in my favor, something that is going to take practice, miles of riding under similar conditions, time, and an entirely new way of thinking about riding a bike.