Went to Capitol Reef over the weekend and rode my first honest to goodness mountain bike trail. A few observations:
- My ideal bike trail is probably somewhere in Nebraska.
- Forward momentum is essential to a vertical orientation.
- Two inches of powder fine silt is not conducive to the aforementioned forward momentum nor the accompanying vertical orientation.
- @&%#@$! clips! Granted it was my first time out and they are probably too tight. However, if you've never ridden using clips you have no sense of what too tight is until you feel like you are falling over in slow motion desperately trying to get your foot free before you hit the ground. Fortunately I landed in the previously mentioned silt and the only thing injured was my ego.
- Have you ever been driving up a mountain road and passed someone toiling up the mountain on a bike and thought, "Man. That just does not look like fun." You know what? It's not.
- At some point it becomes a competition between you and the ground. "I'll be #@#$ if I'm going to &(%#$ me into the dirt!" I begin to understand the appeal this sport has to some folk.
- There were a couple of points where we contemplated turning around and heading back to the car. If we had we wouldn't have enjoyed the above vista from the top of the cliffs. I have to admit it did help ameliorate some of the frustration generated while getting there.
- Was the reward worth the effort? Yeah. Will I do it again? Most likely. Still...I have three letters for you. A. T. V.
- Here is an elevation profile of the ride. It's not terribly accurate as I didn't have the GPS recording our progress at small enough intervals, but you get the idea.
Needless to say, the ride back to the car was much more enjoyable. Skiers have the right idea. Get a ride to the top and skip the hard part.
D has a book of 100+ mountain bike trails here in UT. He tells me I have only 105 more to go. Keep dreaming, love.