Zen On Dirt

Full circle

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We got back to Tucson two nights ago. We drove from Thunder Mountain, down through Kanab, stopped at Jacob’s Lake for cookies, through the Navajo Nation, by Lee’s Ferry, into Flagstaff to get gas where we always do, by the Black Canyon Trail, through the mess of Phoenix traffic, and then the long 92 miles from Phoenix to Tucson. The same drive we’ve done seemingly countless times.

It seemed as if though no time had passed since we’d been here last, and at the same time, an eternity.

We got back in time to pick up the the van and our computers from Lee. We unpacked a pile of boxes from the back shed. We said Hi to Rufus the stray cat who came by to see if we had any treats for him. Our house still had our furniture in it, as it had been rented out as semi-furnished. Cups and plates had been moved around, but the bed, the table, the chairs, were all still in the same spots

Talk about a time-warp!

It’s been nearly a month since we got off the trail. We’re still tired, to say the least. I had this hope that we’d be able to ride the CDT “sustainably” and come back without being wasted…but I’m not sure if it’s possible to ride the entire trail in a season while still getting the rest needed to not dig a deep hole of fatigue.

Regardless of fatigue, we’ve done our best to live it up on this life off the trail.


Our first stop was Boulder to pick up my car and visit my family. Unfortunately, the trip also came with getting my car road-worthy again, which meant new tires, a new belt of some sort, and a new axle seal. This led to a drastic decrease in my bank account and many hours spent in a hip Boulder coffee shop working/people watching while the car was getting worked on. For how much I drive that car on roadtrips and how little money I’ve had to put into it over the years, I can’t get too upset with spending a month and a half of CDT living costs on getting it safe and functional. It does put into perspective how much less life on the trail costs than day-to-day living. $5 coffee drinks? Really? I’m so out of touch and not hip.


Family time was good. Both brothers were around for a bit. Dog walks were the top goal each morning. But it was good to skip town and we headed up to Winter Park for what we thought would be a night. We got in late and decided to stay two nights. Two nights turned into four as we decided that we’d rather lounge around in my parents’ condo instead of scoping out a new CDT-bike route from Rabbit Ears Pass down to Steamboat. The Lazies set in and a very minimal amount of riding happened.


We then hightailed it across the state and into Utah to see Scott’s family. We got delayed by two homecoming parades in Vernal and Craig. Who knew highschool football was so big…We went straight to a family dinner with eight adults and five kids. Now that…that was a shock to the system that is still pretty accustomed to the quiet of the trail.


We did some riding with Scott’s dad and older brother.


We rode with Phong, an old roommate of Scott’s.


We worked. Ate at Red Iguana and the Park Cafe (best potatoes you’ll eat anywhere). We went to Temple Square for my liberal education.


We went up to Logan for a short ride with Alexis and Denny and ate tacos for dinner AND for breakfast.


We headed south with enough time to stop at Thunder Mountain for an afternoon ride.


A tailwind swept us up the bike path, decent legs got us up the steepies. Then we floated down through trails that make you wonder if you’re still on earth.


Camping was sub-optimal. I think we’re over camping for a while.


Then the drive home. Full circle. Back to where we started.


Now what?


Serious question. Stop laughing.


One thought on “Full circle

  1. “Coffee Drinks” is a great term. People look at me strangely when I pay for coffee using actual coins, rather than a piece of plastic. If I have to start using grown up money for coffee, then the coffee is too expensive.

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