Yesterday I reclaimed my long standing internet identity, and the name of this blog: mehugtree. No, this wasn’t some new-fangled identity bidding war.

I simply hugged a tree.

Well, to be precise, I tackled a tree.

Went mountain biking yesterday at Big Creek aka Mansell Road trails. The back half of the trails are a free-riders paradise, lots of jumps, rock drops and the sweet gully run. There is one big rock up the hill that is easily a 5-foot drop at it’s highest point. I hit it years ago on my mountainboard, but I was a young ‘un then. You know, like 33 or something.

So I figured I’d hit it up yesterday on the bike. I took a couple looks at it and then went for it, hitting it where it was only about 3ft high. Of course I didn’t consider TOO much that it was angled up like a jump, or that the ground dropped away downhill quickly. Whatever. Details. 😉

I hit it, and the rock kicked me up pretty good. Combined with the slope of the hill, I was at least a good 5 feet in the air. Initial landing was pretty good, wheels down and all that. Except for bottoming out both shocks the full 5″ of travel. Which, you know, was followed immediately by the rebound which bucked me forward on the front wheel. Tapping the front brakes to slow down didn’t help matters much: A 10-ft nose wheelie down slope followed, ending abruptly as I tackled a tree about as big around a grapefruit.

That poor tree was no match for my girth and a loud *craaaa-aaack* echoed through the forest.

Somehow that was the only thing that cracked, as I was able to shake off the smack-down handed to my by that rock and go on to hit the OTHER jumps.

I’ll get you next time, rock.