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Most memorable mountain or bike ride

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

Me? A Mtn bike ride

 

About 11 years ago I organized a club ride in the Mendocino National Forest. It was a 41 mile loop starting NE of Lake Pillsbury then headed north to Hull Mountain (el 6950) and then continued north and then east and south around the back side of Hull and then west- back to where we started.

 

There was about 12 of us and we camped at Lake Pillsbury the night before, getting well hydrated on microbrew.

 

The ride started at elevation. 3300 feet. Now mind you, we all lived at elevation 600-700 feet so 3300 feet made us a little short of breath. Most of the ride was over 5000 feet in elevation which made us more than a little short of breath. The first three miles was a nice warm up with a mere 500 feet of elevation gain. The next four miles had a lung busting and leg burning elevation gain of 3000 feet.

 

But the view at the top was fantastic and after a half hour rest we were good to go. Over the next 15 miles we dropped to 5000 feet and then climbed back up to over 6000 feet. A notable event: during the last part of that climb, I announced to the three guys that were with me that I was going to walk for a bit (thought it might be a good idea to conserve my legs since the ride was only half done) I thought it was funny that the other three guys did the same.

 

The last five miles were quite interesting. We were sooo tired. We stopped to rest at one point and when we got back on our bikes one of the guys had a miss shift and we all went into hysterics for a good five minutes.   We were gone mentally. Riding back after that I was in a zone of zones. I felt like my head was separate from the rest of my body, flying at an elevation of four feet.

 

We were still tired when we got back to the cars-imagine that.  The ride took 9 hours with about 7 hours of saddle (and walking) time. Total elevation gain of 7300 feet. All jeep trail and dirt roads, but we only saw two cars during that entire ride. I had no desire to ride again for over a week, but boy it sure felt great to have done that ride.

 

Would I do it again? Yep. I did two years later.

post #2 of 9

While not epic by any stretch I'd say my most memorable at this point was when I finally tried the single track by my house for the first time (I'd been around here for a few years). It was my first official single track. I always thought Mt Biking was fire road type stuff, and had grown up doing BMX trail riding. When I first hit the trail here I was surprised to find out what I grew up riding and missing so terribly all these years was single track. Years and years of muscle memory came flooding back and throwing the bike around under me during all sorts of tight, twisty, technical single track was the most natural thing in the world. I was instantly in the zone pushing through straights and reacting to every twist and turn like I had ridden it many times before. The feeling was amazing.

 

I was completely hooked. I had found my summer gig to balance my winter gig. A few months later I bought a single gear 29er from a guy in my hometown as my first real mountain bike. Turns out he was one of the guys who cut those first trails I rode on as a kid (I remember him being one of the older kids). It felt unbelievably right.

 

Rode for the first time this season yesterday and again the same thought "What took me so long?"

 

Damn, now I want to get back out there. :)

post #3 of 9

Last year I completed the Psycho Century 200k. It's not my longest ride, but the weather combined with the organization and SAG stops made for a perfect day.

post #4 of 9

Mine was the Bicycle Tour of Colorado last year.  6 days of riding, 520 miles, 36,000+ feet of climbing.  The best day was the trip over Grand Mesa.  About 94 miles, with a monster climb to the top of the Mesa.  The best thing about the day was the descent -- unbelievably fast (55 mph+) until we hit the wind.  Then it was a hot slog into a 20-30 mph headwind for 25 miles into Grand Junction.  But still, an epic day of cycling.

 

Mike

post #5 of 9

Ride the Rockies back in 1998.  I've done Bicycle Tour of Colorado since then (unfortunately, my route didn't include Grand Mesa, which I've always wanted to do), but Ride the Rockies took us up Trail Ridge Road in Rocky Mountain National Park.  An 18-mile-long climb to the top.  It was late June and there was about 12 feet of snow up there, just a wall of snow on either side of the road.  Soooo cool!  Even cooler was that my cycling hero at the time, Davis Phinney, was leading that ride.  I was riding my beloved Serotta with Phinney's Coors Light team paint job, so yep, I was sort of a pathetic fan.  I rode up Trail Ridge with him and his father.  The descent down the back side (into Granby, I think) was wild...very twisty, lots of gravel and ice and water on the road from all the snow, so kind of scary.  We also did Rabbit Ears Pass and then the long descent into Steamboat Springs, which was pretty awesome, as well as Tennessee Pass into Leadville. 

 

My training ride to prepare for that was a beautiful ride from Nederland into Estes Park that I did nearly every weekend.  Man, I was spoiled......

 

I've always wanted to do the Triple Bypass in CO....but I am not as fit as I used to be........

post #6 of 9

A rolling xc loop near me that has a lot of g-outs.  Initially two of the g-outs gave me fits because I seemed to not be able to get enough speed going in.  Then one day things just clicked and all of a sudden the trail just flowed.  It's objectively a nice trail with some nice views, but nothing special, but for me it's now always like going back to an old friend.

post #7 of 9

I rode a rigid MTB from Aspen to Crested Butte and back, in a day. The end was not pretty and even with the new bikes, I don't think I will ever try again.  

 

It was getting dark and we were still 20 miles from Aspen when we came upon a couple of Basque  Shepperd's with a big herd of sheep going the same way on the trail.  We just had to ride through them, we really had no other choice.  

 

We finally arrived back in Aspen at 11pm, just beat to death and totally covered in sheep shit. 

post #8 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SHREDHEAD View Post

I rode a rigid MTB from Aspen to Crested Butte and back, in a day. The end was not pretty and even with the new bikes, I don't think I will ever try again.  

 

It was getting dark and we were still 20 miles from Aspen when we came upon a couple of Basque  Shepperd's with a big herd of sheep going the same way on the trail.  We just had to ride through them, we really had no other choice.  

 

We finally arrived back in Aspen at 11pm, just beat to death and totally covered in sheep shit. 


That reminds me of the time we rode behind a small herd of cows on this jeep trail. We freaked them out and they ran ahead of us shitting the whole time. Problem was, they stayed on the jeep trail for over a mile before scattering.

 

Gads! What a mess! Us, the bikes.

 

And I can report that cow pooh isn't the worst stuff I've tasted. 


 

post #9 of 9

Probably about 15 years ago, we rode into ranch land at about 7000 foot level on slopes of Haleakala here in Maui. No trail really, our intention was just to ride whatever the land presented us with back to our house at 1500 feet. had some interesting challenges along the way, including fences, cattle, and of course lots of cow shit. It was really cool though trying to figure out how to get back to civilization approx. 5000 vert feet down.Although it was obvious we needed to head down, how to do it was not so obvious. I've also ridden Skyline trail on Haleakala (backside dirt trail, not the street ride that the tourists go on) down from 10,000 feet to 2000 feet. Pretty cool, but it was a trail or road all the way down, so not the same sense of adventure of just bushwhacking your way through pasture and forests. 

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