The folks in the Black Hills have a demented sense of what is a "short climb".
Today I rode the Centennial Trail in the area of Pactola Reservoir. There were 8 of us Festival riders and 3 guides. When I was discussing a potential singletrack ride, everyone told me that this one ride for beginners was a good ride, mostly downhill with a couple of short climbs.
As I was riding, and then walking, my bike up the climb, I took this photo. now, it looks like the climb ends just up the hill. WRONG- when you turn the corner, it keeps climbing.
Yes, there were some nice downhill sections. On the first downhill, I seemed to have forgotten about watching up the trail, not my front tire. After a break, I got myself back on track. With that, I started riding better and enjoying the ride.
Then came the next climb. Once again, it was "hike-a-bike" time. I was getting frustrated with the climb. When I got back to a downhill section, I had problems ride any kind of line. I was losing my confidence. Worst, I was getting frustrated with myself - to the tune of thinking singletrack in the Black Hills is something I should give up on - stay on the River Trail or the Mickelson.
Then, one of the other riders told me that he felt I was doing very well - handling the bike well. Don't give up. That encouragement helped me.
Now I have to decide if I want to just pack up to head home, or train this trail one more time tomorrow.