Zen On Dirt

The Spaces Between the Plans

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When we first got the Scamp back in December, one of the first Bucket List items was to spend as much time in Moab this spring as possible. Moab has always been one of those places where I never have enough time, where I show up for a 3-7 day stint, ride all of the classics because they’re, well, classics, and then have to leave before I get to branch out at all. I was determined to spend a solid chunk of time in the red-walled desert this time where I not only had time to ride the good stuff, but could really start to look more closely at maps of the area and visit places that I’d never seen.

With Megan in tow, we pointed north from the Grand Canyon, after the appropriate amount of touristing on the South Rim, and headed to the canyon country of Utah.


We were sore. We were tired. But the draw of Moab was strong. It was hard to get to Moab and not be able to go out and play right away, at least not play to the level I wanted to. But there always has to be down time, thems the rules.

Megan, the master planner, had constructed our R2R2R trip to coincide with the Annual Girls Trip to the Desert. But we had a week between play dates, and she’d convinced Steve and her little boy with the reddest hair on the face of the earth, to come down from Bozeman in their new van to spend the week playing in the sand. Watching a 2-year old first see a spider, then examine it more closely, then run in fear screaming made me laugh until I nearly fell off my chair.


48-hours post R2R2R, I was feeling okay enough to ride, so Scott and I took Steve out on Sovereign, just a short pedal from our Scamp-site. Surprisingly, while my motivation to try anything technician wasn’t really there, the legs were almost okay. I guess actually training for something has some recovery benefits…


We came back to camp to Townes learning the fine art of riding bikes on dirt.


And then a new bike showed up for me! Salsa had just released the Redpoint, their new trail bike, and after riding it on the Salsa pre-launch bikepack back in AZ, I knew I really wanted to get my hands on one. 27.5 wheels, 150mm of travel, this bike was begging to get ridden in Moab.


The Klondike trails were not only close, but silly fun.


I made it exactly one ride before I got sick again. Megan, also sick, compared symptoms with me. Based on our various sore throats, runny noses, feverishness, and general ickyness, we determined that we’d swapped the sicknesses that we’d both had before the run. Doh!

So much for riding. The poor new bike sat by the Scamp wondering what it had done wrong to be ridden exactly once and then put away.

And then it rained and the road got so muddy that we couldn’t get the van out to the highway, leaving us stuck. But really, we had food, we had water, we had power, shelter, and Internet. And the rainbows after each dousing of rain weren’t too bad either.


But still, as we sat there, both Scott and I fighting some nasty bug, van covered in mud, neither of us having ridden for a few days, we had to wonder, ‘Are we screwing this up?’

And then we looked up. Nah. Downtime. Everyone needs downtime.





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