That was fun.
I had heard about KT, knew Vermont well enough to know that I would be heading into an oasis of green, blue sky and quality microbrew…but I don’t think I knew it would be this good.
This was my first NEMBAfest, my brother and nine year old nephew made the trip from Baltimore, scooped me in CT and we pushed up 91. There’s a certain joy in going to a mtn bike festival with your nephew, particularly when he’s nine and starting to shred… even if he won’t stop talking and uses your headrest as a punching bag.
Kevin, of course, is the first person I run into when we arrive, it’s late, tents in the dark, beers, sleep. The morning shows what KT is all about, the views, the trails, the smell of coffee and an overly excited child poking me in the head.
This is where #kevinsfakingit started. Friday was the intro ride to KT; me, my brother, my nephew and Kevin. We collectively decided to go mellow, it had been a long drive the day before, we’re riding with a nine year old, Kevin is apparently confused by gears and is wearing some sort of carbon fiber splint device on each wrist. We’re off… the trails are amazing, it’s a beautiful day and there’s so much to be had. Rolling, fun, single track, berms, church, fun. We get about 8 miles in and my brother and nephew peel off, Kevin and I continue… suspicion has arisen.
Another 9 miles of decent pace, it’s technical and Kevin is moving, the clicks of gears are seamless… I’m following as he knows exactly where he’s going (you could tell by the lines). Some tight downhills and over the roots and rocks, he decided to lay down once on the trail on a tight switchback… clearly a move for sympathy, I rolled past him and may have asked if he was OK, I knew what was up. Road climb back to camp and a cold libation, so fun, such a beautiful spot… I called him out – we cheers. #kevinsfakingit.
NEMBAfest is a must. The team ride on Saturday was short for me as I wanted to hang with the nephew and brother… and my brother in law posted late Friday night. Mark led us through some of the good stuff and Emma, as Kevin mentioned, has no sympathy for you on her home trails. The trails there are second to none, you can ride for days and keep it on the tightest singletrack. Head down to Mike’s when you finish, beers on tap on the back side of the mill, food truck adjacent to that… it’s a huge success. We wrapped up our trip on Sunday am with a few hours at Burke Mtn, riding the gondola and ripping down the mountain, I need a full suspension.
Beyond that, it’s the people there… everyone is good. We had a recurring theme at our camp of how nice everyone was (and #kevinsfakingit). 50+ land owners and KT and NEMBA combined to put on a fantastic event. Congrats to all of those folks… PK, you all did one hell of a job, it’s an amazing event… I was proud to park cars and sign people in.
Can’t wait til next year… until then – next week, 35 miles at the Patapsco 100.