Nick's first priority while we were in Moab? Captain Ahab. He loves that trail. He would be happy as a clam just doing laps on that trail all day. I'm starting to like it even more - I get more comfortable with the exposure and drops every time we ride it. This was no exception. I felt a little sluggish on the climb up Hymasa, but smooth on all the rock slabs. Even though I felt slow, it was still one of my better rides up - I was even able to look around and enjoy the views on the climb. Made a few more things on the descent and all around just enjoyed the ride more then I have in the past.
|Everything in Moab feels huge. Just a tiny dot of color among the sand stone towers on the Hymasa climb|
|Running on the North 40 loop in the Moab Brand trails|
So Saturday morning, bright and early, we found ourselves smushed into a van with 11 other eager riders for the long drive up to Geyser Pass. And it was long. Flat at first, then gradually climbing on pavement, then steeper climbing and finally the turn onto the narrow, winding dirt road that would take us to the top. Out of the desert and into the pine forest of the mountains. It was actually cold when we were getting the bikes unloaded! I didn't need the ice in my pack at that point. We'd both frozen about half the fluid in our hydration bladders - sure it would be a hot day once we hit the UPS section.
|Making sure things are working before starting downhill. Trail repairs at the top of Burro Pass!|
|View to the east from the top of Burro Pass|
Last time we rode LPS and Porcupine Rim, it was at the limits of my exposure tolerance. This time? Much better. I still need some work on line reading and slow motion hucking (or hucking in general, honestly...) This time, I was much more comfortable and having fun trying to jump off as many little rock ledges as I could. I was also doing my fair share of searching for the easy line, but most of the time just followed Nick. Down the bumpy, chunky double track of Porcupine Rim and onto the fun singletrack. More exposure, more focus on the trail. The only thing I didn't ride that I wanted to was the waterfall near the end. Nick rode it this time - taking the big line with the foot drop at the end. I saw the slight left switchback to avoid the drop, but chickened out. I should have had Nick come back up and give me a spot so I could try to ride it - but mentally I was worn out. A lot of new trails and trails ridden at faster speeds then normal and my brain was tired. Next time!
And why was it perfect timing? Because Sunday when we woke up, clouds covered the valley. A downpour started just as we began loading the van. The La Sals were completely socked in, getting hammered. Even in Colorado, the Grand Mesa was getting soaked. Chances were that we would have had a miserable time in wet weather had we not stayed that extra day. So the Grand Mesa will have wait for another trip.