Reluctantly I met her a few weeks later to take the bike for a spin to get used to the bike and remind myself how to ride a mountain bike. This bike was much bigger than my hardtail (26” vs 29” wheels is MASSIVE), had a dropper post and so. many. gears! Hannah was lovely taking me around, giving me hints and tips (I needed them, I hadn’t used a dropper post before and the last time I rode my mountain bike had been literal years earlier). By the end of the lap I was so annoyed that I’d had so much fun (I know, I know, that doesn’t sound right, but I knew what was coming). Hannah was happy for me to borrow her bike for a few weeks and for the race.
Turns out I had accidentally double booked myself so I couldn’t do the race… but the seed was planted. And quickly sprouted leading to a trip to the bike shop and a new mountain bike… I didn’t know anything about mountain bikes and let my trusty bike shop advise me, which led me to getting a Specialized Stumpjumper Evo, which has lots and lots and lots of suspension, making it great for going down - which, for those that have ridden gravel with me, know is my absolute favorite thing to do!
This is where Darcy Grimes comes in. She realizes what bike I have and that I like downhill, and therefore suggests an enduro race. “Fire Mountain Enduro is a baby enduro!” she says. I roll my eyes, sigh, and eventually say yes (if you don’t know Darcy, she is a ball of adorkable energy that is really hard to say no to!). She and her hubby kindly offered to host my hubby and I for the weekend as they’re a lot closer, making the entire weekend even more enticing. Plus, $70 for 2 days of racing, plus food plus a t-shirt is really a great deal!