Known for riding off the front of group rides only to be caught in the first mile, CJ got back on a road bike and realized he must win the Donut Derby at least once in his life. Regularly pledging he's "not a climber," he can be found as a regular attendee of Trexlertown's Thursday Night Training Criterium or sitting on the couch watching Paris-Roubaix reruns. CJ has been a constant rider of the Hell of Hunterdon in New Jersey and races the Tour of the Battenkill before going into seasonal hiding on cross-country ski trails.

Review: Untapped Lemon Tea Mapleaid ($25 USD)

Review: Untapped Lemon Tea Mapleaid ($25 USD)

It was with the utmost anticipation to save the Untapped Lemon Tea Mapleaid sticks for a special event. There could not have been a better way to try out the first of two maple-based drink powders, and having experienced their Ginger Mapleaid good things were expected. 

 

With the recent Hell of Hunterdon inheriting good weather, preparation came in the form of the aforementioned sticks of Untapped Lemon Tea Mapleaid. The temperature was forecasted to rise throughout the day meaning kit selection was important. The start temperature was around freezing; the finish temperature was forecasted to be in the sixties. Prior experience dictated to dress warmly and expect to sweat intensely in the later hours. Hydration would be key.

 

I am a victim of my own consequences. Rides that failed revealed full water bottles upon return. Hurrying out the door to meet up with the gang meant forgotten nutrition. There were times when I convinced myself not to take the fuel because I could not be bothered to open something while in a group. My best chances at in-ride calories are in the bottle. If I find items that taste so good I want to come back for it, I stand a chance at satisfactory performance.

 

As the Hell of Hunterdon became sneaky in its early season conditions, I applied one Untapped stick per water bottle. When the moment came to take a swig I let out a relieving sigh and then sipped again. This stuff is great. I resorted to using the bottles filled with Untapped mix as a reward to prevent guzzling a bottle in one shot. I had several hours of taxing effort in front of me. At one bottle per hour, this stuff was motivating. 

 

The flavor tastes sweet, but not cloyingly sweet. It doesn’t leave a sticky mouth. It tastes somewhat like iced tea powder we had as kids when parents allowed one scoop of the stuff. Then we’d sneak in five more and fire ourselves out of the sugar cannon. Memories of childhood came back as I went forward with a mission. Every five minutes I would happily squeeze the bottle to refresh the memory.

 

For the day I wore the Belgian Crew Boom Thermal to ward off the morning chill. I anticipated switching to the team jersey after it got too hot but the base layer had been too soaked to be comfortable. I kept the black jersey on. Only toward the end did the dreaded salt stains materialize. I took this as a sign that Untapped delayed the onset of the sweat stains. The 110 mgs of sodium mixed with 25 mgs of caffeine was just the combustion needed to plod through the second half of the 80-mile spring classic. This mix is so good I was making plans to take to work for a little hydration flavoring.

 

For the Hell of Hunterdon I was able to use two single-serve sticks. Untapped sells a one-pound bag of the mix for $25 USD. This is an attractive aspect considering the Ginger Mapleaid bag was recently plundered of its contents. It is not often I find a product that has me coming back for more while in the middle of an event. It’s even less often I consider the nutrition for everyday use because I liked it so much. If you see a creakybottombracket.com rider on a Bucks County road, assume the bottle is topped off with Untapped. And why not? It’s maple tapping season in the northeast.

Review: Backyard Beans’ Nitro Punch in the Face

Review: Backyard Beans’ Nitro Punch in the Face

Events: Hell of Hunterdon 2019

Events: Hell of Hunterdon 2019