The 36th Mount Taylor Winter Quadradthlon is today.

Don’t look for me in results — it’s been years since I raced the Quad, but I was pretty OK at it a time or two. The bike and run legs, anyway.

Hal’s wife, Mary, and I used to race it as a mixed pair, and we won in 1990, 1992 and 1993.

I was usually in decent shape, being tanned, rested and ready following a long cyclocross season. And Mary was always tip-top, living at altitude up Weirdcliffe way and running around with jackasses, some of them four-legged (ho, ho).

Quadware included Nambé medals and platters.

Hal, of course, did the whole thing solo, which always looked a bit too much like work to me. I was only so-so on snowshoes and an outright hazard on cross-country skis.

This was and remains a toy-heavy pasatiempo, and Hal’s truck would be stuffed to the topper with bikes, wheels, tires, skis, shoes, snowshoes and a ridiculous amount of clothing suited to any and all weather conditions.

Running shoes were augmented with sheet-metal screws in the soles for traction, in case there was ice on the run leg (there usually was).

Clip-on aero bars? Sometimes. Once I used a set of Scott Rakes to good effect, aero bars giving me The Fear on the descent back to Grants.

The bike was usually standard road. In 1990 I was rocking an aluminum Trek 1500 with 53/39 rings and a 13-24 freewheel.

I know I’ve written about the Quad before, but whatever I cranked out is squirreled away on a Zip disk somewhere or in an actual magazine, and I don’t feel like diving down those rabbit holes this morning.

However, I did find a reference to my first Quad in my 1990 training diary, and that reads as follows:

“Big-time pain. I don’t think I’ve felt this bad since I got the shit kicked out of me at Alamogordo last year. Bike leg was slower than I’d hoped for … and my uphill run was fucking awful. Downhill run was better — but not much — and the downhill bike was spiked by the Headwind from Hell.”

Yeah, good times. The Quad will never be the new golf.

• Editor’s note: Hal “Mr. Awesome” Walter notes that I lifted his faux curse “Quadammit” from one of his own works. This explains why a Spotlight search failed to turn it up on any of my hard drives; that, and an admittedly casual approach to petty theft. Give it a read.


32 Responses to “Quaddammit”

  1. Pat O'Brien Says:

    Once again, I am impressed at your athletic feats. You must like to suffer. By the way, nice review on the Jones Plus SWB in the last issue of Adventure Cycling Magazine.

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      Thanks, Hoss. I was young and strong once. Not at all like the geezer who glares back at me from the mirror.

      Jeff Jones does good work. He’s deep in the weeds on the details. It’s as though every bike he sells is his own personal bike.

  2. GeekonaBike (@GeekonaBike) Says:

    I remember wanting to do this one, thinking I only need the snowshoeing skill. However with age brittle bones, after watching the terrifying XCski downhill, I believe I’ll leave this one in the bucket lists Unfulfilled column.

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      It’s fun, kinda, sorta, if you do it as part of a team. That’s the only way I’ve ever done multisport. Except for duathlon; that I’ve tried by myself.

      I think it would be interesting to do a short-course triathlon, but damn, I don’t want to get back in the pool. I spent way too many years marinating in chlorine.

  3. Dale Says:

    Ha! Zip Disk. I had one of those things for “archival storage” and now I can’t even find it.

  4. Kat Hardt-Holoch Says:

    There’s this thing called “the cloud.” 🙂 We just did a marathon weekend of uploading all old photos from CDs into safe storage.

    • Pat O'Brien Says:

      After a loss of bunches of pix, the only copies I had were low resolution ones on a iPod Touch, I now archive them on DVD. But, we don’t have that many. I do have a bunch of 35mm slides I need to convert to JPG files. Always something with these damn screens.

      • Herb from Michigan Says:

        Ah the old photo quandary. I digitized a ton of old slide photos with most of them looking pretty bad once on the laptop. Turns out those old slides deteriorated a lot. Still, if you are gonna do it, get a Mi Pix Star screen and put right on your breakfast table. Mine clicks on every morning and not only a great trip down memory lane, but photos we or friends took yesterday. What’s the point of archiving if you don’t look at them? We used to play our photo albums off thumb drive on the TV screen but that was cumbersome and overkill.

        • Herb from Michigan Says:

          I also want to say that despite having digital technology and gizmos up the wazoo, I too eschew The Cloud and many on-line payment functions. Damn it’s hard to do but the only security breaches here have been a few Jehovahs Witnesses that slipped by the No Trespassing signs.

    • JD Dallager Says:

      Kat: “Safe in the cloud” is a relative term. My friends who work in that arena tell me that most security breaches are caused by people (humans) who work at/inside these so-called “cloud” mega-server locations; not the tech. The tech is pretty good….the human factor and human motivations “inside the cloud” (money, coercion, jealousy, etc.) less predictable.

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      We archive right here at El Rancho Pendejo. SuperDuper and Time Machine backups for Herself, likewise for me, but into a RAID setup.

      I should really do a weekly offsite backup, but I don’t trust the cloud. Maybe a RAID rig in a safe deposit box.

      Although, really, to be honest, we’re not talking Hemingway/Picasso-level stuff here. If I somehow lost every bit of work I’ve ever done the world of Arts & Letters would spin merrily on. And I would yell “Fuck!” a few times and then make up some new shit.

    • Dale Says:

      Can you say “cloud” and “safe storage” in the same sentence with a straight face?

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      I think the cloud is composed entirely of Jeff Bezos’ weenie pix.

  5. David Rees Says:

    2TB + drives are cheap now. Buy a bunch of them, back them up every week or month as needed for a device or info, put ’em in a safe place off site and you’re covered.

  6. larryatcycleitalia Says:

    Saving all this digital stuff makes me laugh. If the gizmos to read ’em are gone, the stuff’s pretty worthless, no? Pretty much like an ancient language but with no Rosetta Stone to help figure out what any of it means. Centuries from now, will they dig up a CD along with a gizmo that can read what’s on there? And then find out it’s just pics of some wrinkly bald guy’s wiener?

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      So far the Mac stuff time-travels pretty well. When I started free-lancing back in 1989, I wrote on a Mac SE using (I think) MacWrite II. Later came Microsoft Word, because all the magazines I worked with were on Word and Quark, and then AppleWorks, and finally Pages and TextEdit, because I hate Word.

      So far, I can open just about everything I wrote Back in the Day® in a “modern” word processor. That is, of course, if I can locate the hardware to run the storage medium.

      I shitcanned the internal floppy and Zip drives in my 1999 AGP Graphics Power Mac so I could install more hard drives. But I kept external drives that hook up via USB, so I’m good to go … as long as the media don’t degrade.

      I still cartoon the old way, using pencil, pen and paper, so analog versions of the ’toons are close at hand, easily accessible.

      • Pat O'Brien Says:

        We are trying not to be data hoarders. I am not one to take 400 pictures on an outing, just because I don’t have to buy film or pay for processing anymore. Patrick, on the other hand, has the problem of saving his art and writing, his works, in digital form. And, nobody want to see an old guy’s wiener unless it belongs to a billionaire or a guy named Wiener. Then it’s big news. Oy.

      • larryatcycleitalia Says:

        Yeah man, s–t still can be read after 35 freakin’ years! Another couple thousand years should be no problem. I’m sure the folks living on this planet then (assuming there are any) will be read and understand English.

        • Pat O'Brien Says:

          The might learn to read English, just like we learned to read Egyptian hieroglyphs, to find out why we would shit in our beds for decades after noticed the stench. Then they would chance upon a paper written by a famous philosopher of the time whose premise was that people are stupid.

      • Patrick O'Grady Says:

        I didn’t write it in English. I wrote it in American. Everybody understands American, even the Vulcans, Klingons and Romulans.

    • JD Dallager Says:

      Larry: Sorta reminds me of the obelisk at the start of the book “2001: A Space Odyssey”. All that info and knowledge there, but no way or clue as how to access it……much less use it.

    • Dale Says:

      Cuneiform on clay or stone lasted a hell of a lot longer than my Zip Disk, floppys, wood pulp paper, and nearly everything else. Pardon me while I get my scribe and chisel.

  7. Libby Says:

    I thought speed golf was the new golf. http://www.speedgolfinternational.com/speedgolf_rules

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