Friday, May 25, 2007

Brevet #3: Let's See How Far This Guy Makes It


“Dude, are you awake?”

“ummh, yeah…”

Um, yeah. It was noon, so I thought I should give Adrian a wake up call to make sure we were on track for the train and the 250 mile brevet #3 on Saturday (may 19th). It was worse than I thought. Turns out he had spent the night with a ladyfriend and hadn’t even been home yet. Needless, he would not be joining me on the 1:30pm.

Bummer. I was looking forward to the companionship and deferment of boarding costs, as well as depending on him to bring my new headlight, which I had ordered the week before from Boulevard Bikes, where he works. I’d grabbed a spoke wrench, multi-tool and a fistful of bolts while Kevin carefully marked out and measured the circumference of my wheel to put an end to my cyclometer hijinx. 2120mm, remind me later.

The next possible train was 8:30pm with the rush hour restriction and given that not all trains run to the end of the line. I advised him to get his ass on it and privately accessed a 20% chance of him doing so.

I did the train and the 17 miles to the motel getting in about 5pm, rolling up on Frank and Ron in the parking lot. “So you rode up?” Frank nodded nonchalantly. Of course I hadn’t, but only a randonneur would be unimpressed with riding 100 miles to the start of a 250 mile ride.

I checked in, touched base with Adri, laid out my clothing, packed up everything else, showered, ate a double helping of tuna casserole and went to bed with a bad Dennis Hopper movie. It was 7pm and bright sunlight leaked from under the curtains. I drifted in and out of pleasant sleep. Low and behold, Adrian came in ‘round midnight.

We were up at 5 am and somehow, I was still scrambling to get to the start on time. In my haste I left large swaths of un-screened skin above my knees, making for some uncomfortable sunburn later. I put on a beat up wool sweater in a last minute decision to bring it. They never improved upon wool. About 30 riders assembled at the start and were warned about a few changes from last year’s route. And we were off.

Mike, Adrian and I rode for a spell, until I threw my chain off the granny. I took the opportunity to take a self portrait. A few riders approached from behind. Honestly, it may have been my imagination, brimming with anxiety, rolling along in my thread bare sweater, on my touring rig. But I’m pretty sure I heard him correctly: “Let’s see how far this guy makes it.”

I caught up with the crew at check point #1 in Edgerton. Adrian grabbed a coffee, unimaginably early in the game for me, but he runs on the stuff. For the next ten miles he rode one handed. As we departed, a few riders were heading back from the direction we were headed. The new course was to New Glarus, not Sun Prairie, their error saving us some mileage.

Mile 40 found me sluggish. The tops of my knees were achy from Thursday night’s escapade. I put my concerns about finishing out of my mind and hoped my body would loosen up over sometime over the next 210 miles.

It is somewhat frustrating that both times I have found myself in New Glarus, I have been unable to visit the brewery. As we sat outside the 2nd checkpoint, Adrian noted that we could easily split a 6 of spotted cow amongst the 5 in our crew, now including Mike’s friends Dave and Ken. Once again, unimaginable.

En route to Sauk City my back started to ache—another sign that I was weakened from Thursday. Goddamn track bike. Doubt crept into my mind. At the Sauk City checkpoint I ate a slice of pizza with a single oversized piece of pepperoni. I couldn’t handle the ambiance and wandered off to the nearest grassy spot—a green electrical box behind some dumpsters. Laying down in the hot sun, I let the crew leave without me.

My strategy had been questioned, but the 20 minutes prone did me right. I felt a little looser and passed up some riders. Riding alone, I practiced riding no handed—rather difficult with the slack geometry of my ride— but a handy skill to relieve back muscles. Mike materialized from behind after following an old arrow. Somewhere, somehow we all regrouped.

In Baraboo, I selected a freezer case burrito called “the bomb.” Only time would tell. Here we missed our opportunity to purchase clown noses, for a good cause, to sport at the finish. Dave lamented a lazy winter.

We rode through Devil’s Lake State Park. Struggling up the hills Mike revealed he had not used his granny ring all day. I, on the other hand, hadn’t used my largest ring. We were rewarded with an incredible winding descent through the park which delivered us to the ColSac III. Unfortunately the adjacent ice cream shop was closed.

Lodi, then Sun Prairie. We battled hills, drunks and irate cagers, sometimes simultaneously. Somewhere the temperature had dropped to around 40, giving us a span of 40 degrees for the day. Everything I had, I had on. The wind had started hard out of the west and had shifted nicely to the north east. A storm was raging somewhere, but it wouldn’t rage here. A few drizzles slicked the road.

Throughout the afternoon I worked on making my orienteering pattern second nature and it had become essential in the darkness: Locate the indicator arrow. Check the street sign for the name. Find the confirmation arrow. Check your cyclometer and compare your mileage to the cue sheet. Find the mileage of the next motion. Find the name of the next street. Find the direction of the next motion. Find the attributes of the intersection (stop light, T-intersection.) Locate the indicator arrow…

It’s important to run through the checklist each time in proper order. Compare the mileage first and you might miss the confirmation arrow. You might miss a quick turn while scanning the cue sheet for the direction of it. Knowing that your next motion is a right turn at the stop sign of a T-intersection affords you the relaxation of knowing you can’t miss it.

At the 200 mile mark, I was on fire, feeling better than I did all day, like I could ride forever. I knew this was on account of the tailwind and some endorphins, but it made me giddy none the less. When the mileage stacks up, some folks like to complain a bit about their various aliments and others prefer to suffer in silence. However, it is universal bad form to publish the fact you feel great under such circumstances. 200 miles is irrational mood swing territory and announcing such a thing around overtired people in pain might earn you a punch in the nose or, at the very least, ensure you are dropped at the earliest opportunity should the situation reverse itself. (Fuck him, he feels “great”.)

None the less, it was looking like we could sew this thing up in 24 hours. I voiced my opinion that we should hit the next checkpoint hard and fast and get immediately back on the road. A good plan, but alas, fatigue set in and our course set into the wind. By the time we arrived in Edgerton, we were all ready to sit a spell. I wandered the mini-mart in a half insane daze, purchasing a 1 Lb bag of potato chips and a tub of processed cheese food, plopped down in the abandoned Taco John’s and set about devouring it.

I don’t recall much from that last leg. My hands hurt. My back hurt. My neck hurt. My ass hurt. Worst was the sharp pain that shot through my middle right toe with each revolution of the crank. Each crack in the road something or other throbbed. We collected Adrian, who had sprinted ahead on his own second wind, aimlessly wandering the streets of downtown Delavan. The town was awakening with joggers and dogs and automobile traffic.

We rolled in to the Super 8 at 6:52 am, 250 miles and just shy of 25 hours. After the initial euphoria wore off, Adrian and I sat staring at each other, unblinking, awaiting our outrageously overpriced taxi. It would be many hours and vehicles before we lay our weary heads to rest.


Additional Ride Photos:

General Idea of the Route:,+WI&daddr=Edgerton,+Wisconsin+to%3Anew+glarus,+WI+to%3ASauk+City,+Sauk,+Wisconsin,+United+States+to%3ABaraboo,+WI+to%3AMerrimac,+Wi+to%3ALodi,+WI+to%3ASun+Prairie,+WI+to%3AEdgerton,+Wisconsin+to%3ADelavan,+WI&mrcr=8&dirflg=h&sll=43.050295,-89.211345&sspn=0.935289,1.867676&ie=UTF8&ll=43.092961,-89.181519&spn=0.934646,1.867676&z=9&om=1

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Around the World in 40 Miles

A bit behind in the ol’ blogging I know, but what can I do? Writing these things takes nearly as long as riding them.

Here’s about a ‘training’ ride from Thursday May 17. Stay tuned for a full report on the 3rd brevet, this past Saturday… well Saturday-Sunday to be more precise...


I met up with Lauren at the Buckingham Fountain, 8pm. The idea was to do a shorter ride not straying too far from public trans. I used the opportunity to bust out the fixie, a 2001 Bianchi Pisa acquired during my stint at On The Route Bicycles.

I don’t ride this machine much anymore. At 35, riding a brakeless track bike is a damned-if-you-do, damned-if-you-don’t proposition. Ride it and you’re clinging to your fading youth; hang it up and you’re too old to cope.

Really, it’s just that they’re poor for commuting. They’re dirty—no chain guard or fenders. Everything you carry is on your back. Pushing a higher gear breeds speed and sweat. The high tire pressure means frequent flats. The knee problems I was warned about never materialized, but I ride like Orrin Hatch (ultra-conservative.)

We hopped on the Lakefront Trail, north bound, stopping for a quick break to adjust Lauren’s new cyclometer. (Do these things ever work right?) We sipped my “girlie style” coffee (w/cream and sugar) while I chivalrously adjusted the mounting of the transmitter, slicing my thumb in the process. A mere flesh wound I assure you.

Taking the trail to its northern terminus, we exited at thee most paradoxical place to ride a bike in the city: Sheridan Rd. and Ardmore Av. This is the site of the infamous 2002 $250 sidewalk riding fine 1-year ordinance, sponsored by Alderman Mary Ann Smith to placate the residents of the Sheridan Road Condo Canyon— some of which came out to taunt bewildered cyclists being ticketed. It looks like she’s back at it.

Of course, it should be noted that her original proposal was an immediate seizure and forfeiture of the offender’s bike. A little known provision of an obscure legal document made this impossible.

Sidewalk riding is a serious problem here and desperately needs to be corrected. Unfortunately for everyone, the real reasons for the uncivil behavior – mainly the rational fear of being crushed to death negotiating Sheridan Rd.—were never addressed. Instead, the wrong-way bike lane on Ardmore was merely re-striped and a lame pavement marking scheme painted over the “street end,” preserving motor-vehicle access for Chinese food delivery drivers and the like. It is still entirely possible for the citizen motorist to drive up and onto the trail and, idiotically enough, for cyclists to ride up onto the sidewalk.

Meanwhile, law-abiding cyclists thought the Sheridan corridor are directed to ride a complex jumble of streets to the west—regardless of their actual destination.

I should know, I ordered and supervised the installation of maybe 100 different signs in the area, all the time dealing with the honks, swerving and death-threats while riding on Sheridan siting them. (I couldn’t damn well ride on the sidewalk now, could I?)

Yeah them problem is serious, but apparently not serious enough to remove a few on-street parking spaces on Ardmore or even ticket the vehicles parked in the bike lanes.

We continued up the “bike route,” which of course was missing key signs, and tried to find an example of the Caribbean & African culture in Rogers Park, taking a spin down Rogers Av. Touhy Av. on over to California Av., then a stop for Indian pastries on Devon Av., which would be the perfect dense combination of fat and sugar for brevet #3 on Saturday.

Lauren’s team came in 3rd in the 2007 University of Chicago Scavenger Hunt. Here she is proudly showing off her team wife beater. Congratulations F.I.S.T.

Back on California we made a brief stop at the Paseo Boricua and at my house in East Garfield Park to pet my Dog. Then Fulton St. to the Loop, back on the LFT and south to Hyde Park to drop Lauren off. The Green Line had ceased running, so I rode. Bronzeville, Pilsen, Taylor St.

This is what I love most about Chicago. You can travel around the world in 40 miles.


Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Places from the Internet, Places from the Map

Adhering to a rigorous training ride schedule involves sacrifice, dedication and a high level of level of discipline. On Saturday, I arose promptly at 9:30. PM. After sleeping 12 solid hours.

Ok. It sounds bad, but sleeping all day Saturday was rather productive in the grand scheme of things. To squeeze in 12 hours of riding before Mothers Day festivities, I was going to have to get creative with my circadian rhythm. I had stayed up about 24 hours straight, spending Friday night puttering about, cleaning my apartment and cooking numerous tuna casseroles. I was now well rested, primed for another 24 hour day.

I caught the 12:40 PM Metra MD West Line destined for downtown Elgin. Although this is rather early for us city dwellers, this is the last train out for the suburban party crowd and I witnessed the motion of the train knock more than one drunken idiot flat on her thong’d ass. (Mental note: pick up drunk chicks here later.)

Detraining carefully past the puke puddle—she even managed to coat the full length of the handrail— I reset my cyclometer, which I’m sure picked up the 63 mph max from someone or something other than me, and rode off at 2:00 AM.

Doing these distances is giving me the opportunity to travel foreign roadways and hit some places out of the normal striking range, places I’ve meant to visit for years. On this ride I wanted to roll through DeKalb, and then checkout Shabbona Lake State Park which I had pondered on the map. But mainly, this ride was a pilgrimage. My first destination would be Huntley, and the ruins of Shireland.

60 miles northwest of Chicago, Shireland was an amusement/ theme park based around Shire horses. Opened in the late 80’s by the man who invented upside-down spray paint, it was a near immediate failure. The large draft animals were unused to crowds and freaked out on opening day, which was fine as the general public had limited interest in medieval horses-of-war anyway. Shireland now sits as a testament to the sheer blindness a man’s passion can cause.

I had read about it all years ago and seen it once, to the north of Interstate 90 on a trip to Rockford. Lacking a street address or aerial photos, I decided to search for it Ponce de Leon style—wandering the area blindly based on exaggerated rumor. I carefully followed the route I had laid out while sipping coffee on the train, crisscrossing the Interstate.

Hugging the Interstate in this fashion exposed me to some god-awful exurbia. Perfect blacktop roads to nowhere. McMansions built by farmers-cum-speculators, next to their collapsing barns. An outlet mall. A skunk ambled across his former home in this new sprawling subdivision —maybe 50 ‘homes’— being built simultaneously. The rate and scope of development is truly frightening.

After a few hours of searching, stopping to check the map and retracing steps after dead ends, I was beginning to think I had missed it, but at the end of a long stretch of hilly highway the local highschoolers call roller coaster road, stood the doomed fairgrounds in all their dilapidated glory. I put myself in the right frame of mind and hopped the fence.

The place has not aged well since the photos I saw were taken (2002.) Most of it is gone, the rest overgrown with weeds. A little graffiti, a little broken glass. Pretty ok.

I was startled by the dawn. It was nearly 5am and in the first 3 hours of my excursion, I’d only gone 20 miles. I jumped on the bike and rode 12 miles or so northwest to Marengo and them headed immediately south, into the wind, which had shifting from the east.

At 8:30am I stopped in DeKalb, to eat half my veggie burger and baked potatoes with cheese and broccoli and drink some coffee. A light rain steadily increased and I was damp and a bit cold. In addition to the food and thermos of coffee, I was carrying several maps, a lock and a full change of street clothing (including low top chucks.)

I checked out “Peace Road Trail” a paved number running along the power line right-of-way but quickly abandoned it for the road. I am always extra cautious when riding any roadway who's name would lend irony to my being killed on it. If I ever encounter "Happy Bicyclist Rd." I'm walking. But traffic was still light and the rain let up.

About an hour later the engine was sputtering, courtesy of my low fat meal. I hadn’t noticed a single open convenience store on the route, but fortunately for me the filling station in Shabbona had an extended variety of the “touring cyclists 4 food groups”: fatty, starchy, salty, and sugary.

Un-fortunately for me, Shabbona was about 30 miles from Aurora, which itself was 17 miles from Grandma’s house in Downers Grove. Why I had assumed it to be closer I do not know. It was after 11am and although it was heartbreaking to have come to the door step of Shabbona Lake State Park only to leave without a spin around the grounds, I knew I was already destined to be late. I settled for wolfing down my turbo caloric food in Chief Shabbona Forest Preserve and hit the Lincoln Highway.

I have always depended on big, mean ass highways when I need to burn up the miles. They’re always labeled, whatever the map and well signed, so there’s little chance of getting lost. They’re more direct and flatter. If the town has what you need, it’ll likely be on the main road. And manipulating 60 mph traffic with your body and bike provides that little extra adrenaline to keep you at an honest speed.

While not exactly pleasant, Sunday + Holiday = Mellow and I had zero problems with irate cagers, even as traffic increased. The cross wind let up a bit too and I consistently moved the needle towards the 10mph overall average each hour, achieving it by the time I landed at Grandmas—about an hour late.

Total for the trip: 137 miles in less than 14 hours, including the ride to and from the train. Not bad, considering my initial dawdling, my load, the wind and rain.

Special thanks to Lawyer Jim for stopping by Sunday morn to release the hound.


Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Brevet Number Two, 186 Miles or Half of Halfway

Cinco de Mayo was the 2nd of 4 qualifying brevets, the 300km—186 miles—to be completed in 20 hours.

Thursday night I carefully went over my bike. I removed the front rack and a few Phillips heads to standardize my bolts. I carefully checked each to see that each bolt and nut would be reachable with the reduced number of tools I would carry. I had also scored a water bottle short enough to clear the fender for my third cage. The silkscreened corporocoffeelogo came off nicely with a bit of whittling.

Friday evening Julie, Ben, their friend Snacks and I drove up in a borrowed car and split the room. Val and Brean stopped by for a visit, then we all turned in early and I fell into a light sleep to the craziness of the cartoon network.

I set my cell phone alarm for 5am, or so I thought, but was awoken by our 6am wakeup call. No matter, nothing would prevent me from the eggs, potatoes, bacon and pancakes I pledged to devour before the ride. The instantaneous oatmeal packets of the continental breakfast just wouldn't cut it. After an underwhelming breakfast at Perkins (which opened at 6am anyway,) I returned to motel to get dressed, packed, registered and slathered with various ointments.

Yes, by the time I pushed off, the ride had departed without me. I tried not to push myself to catch riders, but given my orienteering skills it is of paramount importance to keep riders in view. I soon caught up with the rear, putting my mind at ease.

At the 1st checkpoint I guzzled some gator-juice and scarfed down a hamster pellet—despite not being at all hungry. Unlike last ride, this time I would eat every time the thought crossed my mind and would drink as much fluids as I could stand.

I left town feeling strong and quickly got off course. Confusing matters was the fact that, despite missing my turn, I was on the correct road—just going the wrong way— and crossing streets I remembered, since I was riding parallel to the correct route. I noted the mileage when I turned around and again when I found my missed turn. 3.5, or a total of 7 extra miles. Immediately following this blunder with another unwarranted double back, I was soon 10 miles over for the day, again the last rider. I was further dismayed by the kindly checkpoint staffer on ‘sweep up patrol’, assuring me that there would be plenty of food and water at the next checkpoint.

On the bright side, the wind was hard out of the east and I times I was doing 24mph without much effort. I just tried to enjoy it, telling myself that it would likely die down by the time I turned around. Meanwhile, I passed pastures where every last cow was laying down.

I rolled into the 2nd checkpoint, relieved to catch up with a handful of surprised riders, including Snacks & Julie. “Everything’s gonna be OOOOOKKKKAYYY,” I lied. Food. Gator-juice. Stretched my neglected legs. We left together rolling through scenic downtown Sun Prairie.

Not having seen the start of the ride, I didn’t know that the racing set had all but disappeared. 186 miles is well beyond the point of diminishing returns for training for anything but endurance cycling. About 5 miles to the halfway point at Lodi, WI, the first riders started trickling past, without the aerodynamic advantage of the pace line.

In Lodi we sat a spell and enjoyed the lukewarm food selection offered by the Kwiki Mart, discussing the hills we would need climb, against the wind, to get out of town. When we hit them, I enjoyed an advantage of being on a touring rig—my 30x32, which is lower than 1:1 ratio and like pulling yourself uphill with a block & tackle.

Re-gathering after the hills we created a pace line, but could still only muster 11mph into the harsh east wind. For awhile we caught up with Mike, who was trying to get the Bulls game on his walkman. A storm brewed on the horizon. Pretty country, anyway.

We were in dire need of a break when we rolled back into Sun Prairie and more than one of us contemplated heading into “Toot’s Tap” rather than the checkpoint. We sat on the curb at the filling station discussing the ridiculous nature of randonneuring and comparing knee surgeries. When I arose to leave, my left calf felt like a fist.

The wind was slowly dying and—as Snacks said—so were we. I dropped an energy bar and moved with all the grace of a gnome when trotting back to pick it up. The crosswind on this stretch was nearly worse than the headwinds. It dried my eyes and felt like a bloody nose. No matter how close I tucked in to anyone, there was no relief.

“Steak Burrito War” having broken out Taco John’s, I attempted to stay neutral by ordering some tater tots, which proved a tactical mistake of excess. During the course of the day I ate a large greasy breakfast, 5 energy bars, a can of Pringles, a bag of nuts, two bananas, a bag of orange slices candy, a bottle of V8, a bag of cheese curds, a heat-lamp hamburger and a peanut butter rice crispy treat smothered in chocolate frosting, all of which my system tolerated. But these little suckers sat in my stomach like buckshot for the remaining 30 miles.

Studying my brevet card, I was pleased to discover that I had done, unofficially anyway, 105 miles in >7 hours, 134 in >10 hours and 168 in >13.5. Even without my 10 additional idiot miles, 95/124/158, these were all records for me.

When we departed the last checkpoint, night had fallen. I hadn’t given much consideration to riding in darkness. My front lights were in the traditional position: up for motorist eyes instead of down for the pavement and markings. They were also mounted low on my fork, out of reach, so I was unable to use them to read either cyclometer or cue sheet. I relied on the bright lights of Julie and Dave to find the arrows and read the street signs, watching the shadow of my legs pounding like pistons when I rode ahead, although I spent as much time as I could hanging of Dave’s rear wheel.

Eventually, I was alone, cruising the residential streets of Delavan, thinking about the cold beer awaiting me. I rolled into the Super-8 sometime around 11:45, three plus hours before the cutoff. I totaled 196 miles in less than 17 hours.

I found Mike, who was laughing. He demanded my camera.


P.S. More photos of brevets #1 & #2 at:

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Through the Ghetto and Over the Suburbs to Grandmother’s House I Go...

Given my performance on the last brevet, I thought I best spend some time in the saddle on Sunday. About 8:30 AM I left the house and made my way to North Avenue.

Besides the old-world stretch between Ashland and Western Aves., North is a dismal street to bike, 4 or more lanes, mostly curbs vs. shoulders and FAST traffic. However, it met several criteria:

1) It is a straight shot to my first destination and a good way to across the suburbs before Sunday joy(less)riding began.

2) The route features no turns to miss or ponder.

3) The fast traffic would put a fire under me to keep up the speed.

The fist stretch was rather uneventful. Some thugs in a late model sedan passed a little to close. M plates. As I progressed, bemused and bewildered suburbanites, clutching highly branded food and beverage items peered at me from their supersized SUVs.

It was about 10 AM and 25 miles west before traffic became obnoxious to the point where I took the lane. Given some of the reaction I got, don’t think many bicyclists in St. Charles do this. But safety first, or as I always say: “Fuck Off, Asshole.”

I hit the Fox River and its namesake trail at mile 33. It must have been the annual elderly folks, unsupervised-darting-children and inattentive-persons-who-walk-five-
abreast walk for the cure, because the trail was overrun. I got back on the road, southbound.

I was sipping coffee from my thermos near the windmill in Batavia when Taryn called. She was looking to go for a bike ride, but none of her other friends we awake yet. Capitol idea, Taryn, but perhaps another time.

I rode on to Aurora, immediately turning around at Noon, as not to be late to Grandma’s house. I rode about a whole quarter-mile on the Aurora branch of the Illinois Prairie Path before I got frustrated with the surface and the intersections. I bailed and cut across a bunch of McMansion subdivisions, until I came across Liberty rd. the recommended route on my trusty CBF map.

Ordinarily, I would suffer the trails—the bad pavement, the crummy intersections, the winding indirectness, the idiotic bollards— for the single benefit of not constantly looking over my shoulder for cars. But the starts and stops and blind corners are no good for a ‘training’ mission such as mine.

Liberty becomes Jefferson and passes through downtown Naperville, which is quick to tell you it’s as old as Chicago. If you want to see some rich-ass white folks, go to downtown Naperville.

I cruised the main drag in Downers Grove, 68 miles into the ride. Both the florist and chocolateer were closed, so I arrived at grandma’s empty handed. We ate turkey and swiss on rye and Waldorf salad, a serving of which, I realize as I type this, is sitting in my pannier now. Sorry Grandma.

After a pleasant afternoon shooting the breeze, I began the journey home. The wind had been in my face until I left Aurora, from the South to Southwest, but was now hard out of the west. I made my way over 294 to the 7 mile Salt Creek trail, a joyful jaunt, but the southern terminus of which dumps you out onto 31st St. at the Brookfield Zoo.

I stair-stepped my way back into the city 26th, Central, Roosevelt, Kedzie. I wasn’t too keen on ridding through the West Side dressed spandex, a reflective vest and other safety gear and on bike lit like a tree. Things were hopping, but I had minimal troubles.

When I arrived home I hadn’t yet tripped 100 miles, so I decided to make a celebratory beer run to Wicker Park, which put me at 102.5 in 7 hours of riding. I felt strong and ready for 50 more, which is good because the next brevet is 90 more.

(Great Lakes Brewing Co's Burning River Pale Ale, was the beer but I fell asleep before I could enjoy one.)