Zen On Dirt

Getting High

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Jeny came to town last weekend.  We had one simple goal for the weekend: Ride lots of trail in beautiful places. Anything else was just a bonus. Our first ride went something like this:

We parked at the Engineer Trail trailhead and proceeded to climb straight up. Warmups are for suckers.

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The flowers at the top were just as good as I’d remembered them the last time I was there a handful of days prior. This area had been the catalyst for making a new camera happen.  Imagine riding here and not being able to take pictures…it’s blasphemous. This time around, I made full use of my little red camera.

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Someone looks happy. I can’t imagine why. Nothing to see here, keep on moving on.

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My two favorite riding partners. They both kick my ass on a regular basis.  The only difference: One knows how to piddle pedal, the other has no concept of riding at anything less than Mach 17.

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Up, up, up…to inhabit that scared place where the heavens touch the earth and everything below seems trivial.

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We took the long way over Rolling Pass. The storms threatened, materialized, and then disappeared, only to reappear. Life is pretty simple at 12,500 feet on a bike. Breath, pedal, and when you can’t breath or pedal anymore, walk. Except this trail is so good, there’s very little walking to do be done.

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I’ve never seen a wildflower explosion like the one that is going on up there right now. Coming around every corner blows me away…to the point that I’ll stop in the middle of my current favorite descent to take a picture. It takes a lot for me to do that.

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It rained, but it only made the roots and rocks more exciting. Following the two best descenders I know and trying to keep up got the adrenaline levels dangerously high. Giddy high. I can ride a bike again! By the time we finished admiring the view at Cascade Creek, the sun was well on it’s way out. I told my pony that this was going to be one of it’s last rides, so it should enjoy it before going into retirement. It responded with a flat-ish tire. Thanks Pony.

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We went down forever and because we were under orders to lay in the flowers at some point during the ride, we stopped a couple hundred feet shy of the car to celebrate the day. When it started raining on us again, we loaded the bikes as fast as we could and hightailed it to town for burritos.

We rode for nearly six hours with 99% of the route on singletrack. Good singletrack. Beautiful singletrack. I’m not really sure I have the words to explain how special a ride like that can be.

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One thought on “Getting High

  1. Your little red camera has captured some amazing colors up there. I’ve never visited that area and am now thinking I’ll have to head that way soon.

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