So it all started on a very cold dreary winter day. Out of nowhere, I received a PM from H14XL and a idea that we should go a on a ride-about on the Trans WV trail sometime in spring. I think we all needed inspiration of something to get us through the thick of winter. His inspiration for the route was from the work that Chip had done. So, the colder the months got the more people signed up. I think at one point, we were about 18 strong. The months dragged on, and finally spring had sprung. You know the old adage, April Showers bring May flowers. Well, shower it did on Saturday. But with 13 smiling folks we didnt let the buckets of water falling from the heavens ruin our weekend. We had 3 days and about 750 miles planned. With the exception of the home to rendezvous point and back, there was no flat slab. The trail meandered through the hills, and over the valley through the dirt and mud, but it was all fun. Day T-1, the majority of the herd gathered at H14XL. From what I heard, the hospitality was wonderful and the stuffed shells to die for. Some trailered in, to preserve the knobs on their new dirt tires (this will be a very important point in 2 more days). Some slept in the trailers, and other like myself, blaster and blooch rode in the morning of Day 1. Poor blooch had his fate was sealed when the riders were up, and he was lucky number 13. His radiator was leaking something fierce. Being a superstitous man and not desiring to meet the kind the folks at 1-800-Tow-my-ass home, he made the better judgment and headed for home. I half expected to see him on Day 2 with his other steed, but alas no arrival. The riders: Badguy Blaster Blooch Dorito EOD3MC H14xl Jax Krotchity Mtnflow Pomo Twohawks ScottP Stacey VaCommuter Day 1, as I learned to hear in the Shane Watts dirt riding class (as the weather got progressively worse), to describe the deteriorating conditions as EPIC. Oh my, how epic the water was. But, 12 riders eagerly launched down the gravel driveway to our new adventure. The torrential downpours made helmet fogging a beast all day. The dirt roads held up well enough, with the exception of the Alternative track. By the time we were within 30 miles of the hotel or the alternate, the group had divided in half. The one group headed to the hotel and the second for the alternate. On the way to the hotel, we stopped at this pretty rock formation, even found a poorly hidden geo-cache! However, I knew that the alternate would be formidable H14XL had ridden it a few weekends previously. The water holes get progressively worse, until the last one which was described as a 40ft pond. But as soon as I hit the tarmac for the hotel which followed the river, I knew the alternate riders would be ill-fated. The river was gushing and rushing and very brown with silt. It was somewhat an angry looking river. The alt riders soldiered on, and down to the first water crossing. H14XL noticed the water was at least 12 inches higher than a previously, but someone still decided to do the correct thing and get a measuring stick. Sure enough, there was no traversing the alt today and they would soon arrive back at the hotel. Day one was from Harrisonburg to WV almost exclusively on dirt. I dont think we had a dry soul by the time we arrived at the hotel that night. Gortex gloves filled with water and were much like fish tanks. Dinner was quite night at the hotel pub, then off to dry off clothes for day 2.