9 Hours of Cranky Monkey Report

I (and most of the Burgh’s mountain biking world.. worrrd) went to Rocky Gap State Park, Maryland this weekend to partake in 9 hours of cranky monkey.  I was not confronted by any irritable primates during the weekend, but I spotted a few banana peels on the course.  How original.  The park, campsite and lake were absolutely beautiful and I spotted the very snazzy looking lodge through my tent window.  I can definitely see me roughing it in there next time I decide to hit these trails

EX2 Adventures put on this superbly organized event.  The timing system was top notch, but they still have boatloads of volunteers taking manual times for back up.  (as well as all OVER this course!)  That is awesome.  When your out there flying solo, duo or trio and giving it 110% for 9 hours the last thing you want is realize a lap was missed somewhere!  Then who’s the cranky monkey!?  You are!  No, YOU are!! 

I didnt get to pre-ride the course, but all rider reports talked about how flat and fast it was going to be and one long ass technical downhill.  Ok, so I’ve never heard about a long ass downhill without some type of corresponding uphill grind to get there, so this ougtta be good.  Overall, I would have to agree there is minimal climbing compared to the average race, BUT can we please NOT discredit the kicker of a climbing switchback and then littered with rocks, not terribly, but just enough to make it a tough ascent, for a good mile or two PRIOR to that long downhill.. oh yeah, that!)  Once you did hit that delicious downhill it was very sweet, twisty, rooty, piney fastness back to the start/finish!  So fun!

I tagged team this madness with the world’s bestest friend in the WORLD, Lauren Mika.  I seriously could not ask for a better friend and teammate!  She kicks my ass and makes me laugh all at the same time.  We share equally plump apple bottoms (potential team name in the making!) and struggles with low rise jeans, but  I digress..

The laps were pretty short and just over 8 miles.  Mika and I opted for a single lap rotation throughout the day.  Some teams doubled up and a few even tripled.  It was a strategic game day decision to make here.  Do you go full throttle for a quick 45-50 minutes or do you double it up and try to maintain your pace and keep everything warm and moving?  It did not rain on us as predicted but we did seem to literally hang out in a cloud all day.  Occasionally misty and damp, but a more than acceptable weather option in lieu of the potential and torrential rain predicted and discussed in our pre-race meeting. Whew!

When it was all said and done Mika and I (Pgh Bellas) finished 2nd to the SIB/Highlands Training Bitches (I honestly mean that with the utmost love and respect!)  A shout out to the Crank Whores and Hot Flashes who battled it out in our Duo Female catagory also. 

I’d love to give a shout out to all my yinzer freak friends, as well as those from afar, who rocked out this race and camping weekend o’ fun, but I’m very happy to report there are too many to name.  You know who you are!  *squeeze*  A final and favorite moment of the entire weekend is being around the campfire with everyone post race.  Cracking jokes and talking smack.  I cant believe nobody brought smores, but still…   SO!  MUCH!  FUN!  🙂

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