Thursday, January 7, 2010


Last Sunday morning I got a call from Jeff Burnard. I haven't seen Jeff for a few years, I think it was at a cross race in Portland in fact. Jeff is one of the founders of Mrazek Bicycles. Though they haven't made any bicycles for a few year most of us locals know the name from one of our most popular mountain bike trails.
I keep track of Jeff through is uncle who I have been racing with for the last 10 years. When Jeff comes to town he likes to call his friends and go for a ride. What a better way to reacquaint oneself with old friends than doing something we all like to do.
So bunch of us showed up, Mike from Hutches, Phil and his son Eric, JP, Alex and Carl, who both used to race with Jeff on the Mrazek pro team. Out to Horse Ridge we went. It was quite balmy for early January, almost 50 degrees. The trail was in perfect condition lower down and then there was a bit of ice, not bad just enough to make it interesting. Sand Canyon was in perfect condition. Of course I see Carl out riding all the time. It would be a lie to say I ride with him but our paths cross frequently in the woods, at races etc. I do get out with Phil from time to time. Us old guys have to stick together. I haven't ridden with Alex since he was a teenager (now he is married with children). He still flies down the hills. I don't know if he remembers but I once taught a mountain bike class at COCC that was enrolled in. I wonder if he learned anything that day. It was a fun day, good to get out with some guys I haven't been with for years.
I was telling this story to a friend and he asked if the Phil I was riding with is the famous Phil. I said if you mean the guy who's name is on our most popular trail system, yes.
I have know Phil from the beginning of our central Oregon trails. I had the honor to ride Phil's trail a day or so after he built it. He called a group of friends to check out his latest project. I have had the honor to help him build a couple of trails. Yes Phil is a real guy. Next spring we are going to have a meet Phil night at Sunnyside Sports . Deschutes Brewery with supply us with some Phil's Trail Ale and you will get a chance to talk to the mythical Phil.
Take care,

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