Thursday, April 6, 2017

Day 2 of Pretending to be Mountain Bikers

We had this plan to haul the mountain bikes out to Bar M again for a warm up, then reload the bikes and go up to Deadhorse State Park when it got a wee bit warmer (it is about 10 degrees colder at 6000+ feet). Deadhorse had a reasonable selection of easy to moderate singletrack. At the bike shop, it took about 30 minutes to get the bikes loaded, and that was with the bike shop guy doing most of it! Also, we had to put one bike in the back because only three mountain bikes would fit on a 5-bike rack. We all looked at each other and said, "We're just going straight to Deadhorse." The temperature wasn't to bad at the top, so that was a good decision. We managed to get the bikes off the rack, and figured out where we were going. Right away, on the trail that was considered easy, I thought it was similar to the Lazy EZ (which was easy to moderate). We kind of wondered, if this was easy, what's easy/moderate going to be like??? We would soon find out. First we stopped at the Colorado Overlook. It is a spectacular view down the canyon to the Colorado River. We did our usual photo shoot.
Notice how I'm closer to the precipice of death? The others wouldn't get that close. I don't know why not. After all, we had our helmets on!
Just lounging on the edge.
As we were riding along the trail, I came to a, I don't know what a real mountain biker would call it, but it was a ledge of rock that was about 10" high. I, of course, chickened out and stopped. Karen decided she was going to give it a go. I got my camera ready. Then this couple came by. It was the same couple we had seen yesterday (now we know their names are Sharon and Ken). Ken rolled up to the "ledge", stopped, got off, and picked his bike up. Sharon did the same. Karen goes back to get a running start. As she comes around the corner, and sees the rock again, she squeals, "I can't do it!" I laugh, and tell her Gail is coming, we'll get her to do it. Gail comes around the corner, sees the rock, and rides up it like a pro!
Gail--doing it like a pro!
So now, Karen has to do it! She goes back, and comes at it. She hits the ledge and comes to a dead stop. Fortunately, she didn't crash.
Not quite
Then Cindy gives it a try. She makes it up with the front wheel, but can't get the back wheel up.
Karen goes back to try again. This time she makes it pretty good, only put a foot down a little.
Just a little helper foot
Gail, who was totally successful the first time, goes back to do it again. This time, unfortunately, she overthinks it, and doesn't make it up.
Nope nope nope!
Cindy tried again and mostly made it up.
Karen, bound and determined, tried one more time. I videoed that one. She made it! As for me, I didn't even try. I'm such a chicken!!! We stopped and did another photo shoot at the next overlook (see, this is why we only go 10 miles in 2 1/2 hours).!!!
Nice bit of a drop there
Sure, I'll sit out on the edge of a cliff, but I won't ride up a little ledge!
The riding was trickier than yesterday, but we were doing okay until we got on a trail that was more moderately technical. Had we been going the other direction, we might have been able to ride it. As it was, it was too steep, and too much step-like going up. We walked. As we continued riding, we would catch up to Ken and Sharon (they would get ahead of us because of all our photo shoots, but we were the better riders). We'd stop, chat for a bit, then move on. At the Big Chief Overlook, we took a longer break, talking to Ken and Sharon, and a mom and her two boys. We were at the outer end of Big Chief Trail
We were at the top of the green line (Big Chief) at this point
We decided to continue on Big Chief. It was actually pretty fun, and we were really beginning to get the hang of riding up rocks. Then we came to another tricky looking one and, again, my inner chicken came out. This time, however, I did give it a try. I almost made it. Gail had no problem, and neither did Karen. Cindy did better than me. 
Once again, Gail rides it like it's nothing!
No sweat for Karen!
There were a couple more tricky spots that were too difficult for us to even try, so we walked. Otherwise, it was a pretty fun ride. When we got back to the Visitor Center, we all decided we were good with being done. Besides, we still had to load up the bikes, and who knows how long that would take us! Turns out, not so long!  It was another great day of adventuring! We may not really be Mountain Bikers yet, but we're pretty good at pretending!

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