Monday, April 10, 2017

A ride recently, Volume 78.

Low desert.

Mid winter.

Escaping gellid mud.  

Stretching legs.

Remembering which end of the bike goes forward.

Seeking sun.

Burning endorphins.

Avoiding screens.

Refreshing perspectives.

There really wasn't much more to it than that.  And that was plenty.

Thanks for checkin' in.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

West Fork Bruneau River.

Wherever the Bruneau sits on your current to-do list, I'd encourage you to bump it up at least a notch.

Gerard Ganey and I ran the W.Fork of the Bruneau into the Bruneau over 2.5 days last weekend.  Ganey had a limited window in which to travel, meaning that even though there was probably too much water in there for our own good, we committed to this amazing canyon system.  

Two ~13 mile days, heavy on scouting and portaging the many manky and sketchy IV+ and V- drops, culminated with a ~50 mile finale down the last bits of the W. Fork and all of the Bruneau in one ~8 hour romp.

Highlights included swimming bull elk, diving peregrine falcons, supersonic F-14 strafings, submerged historic homesteads, and engaging whitewater all within an incised canyon system.

The upper miles were devoid of greenery, the middle reaches featured scant succulents, the lower bits saw grasses and blossoms exploding into spring.

At the high-side-of-good flows that we experienced, I'd not personally commit to the W. Fork again.  But the Bruneau is sublime, and I look forward to future trips there, especially when the Jarbidge has enough water to convey us in.

Thanks for checkin' in.

Late edit: Ganey's vid from the trip.

Monday, March 20, 2017

Trails? Fah.

Who needs 'em?

Of late, not us.

It seems those whom would have every local trail filled with riders from near and far every waking moment of every day may soon get their wish.

What they don't seem to realize that they are also signing up for is congestion, bad feelings from said congestion, altercations (necessary or not) brought on by Stravassholes doing what they do, trail widening and braiding, sanitization and re-sanitization, and other sundry results from cramming too many people out there at any given moment.

What will it take to get them to understand the big picture, the error of their ways?

Clearly we have no idea, because they haven't listened to us.

Last week Greg and I both hit the eject button and left the trails entirely.  Lots of washes to be ridden,  none of them currently occupied.

Silence was noted and appreciated by all, er, both of us.

Aesthetically pleasing slabs and layers were present, um, everywhere.

We carried boats with us on one of these microadventures, but ended up not needing them.  Small failure there -- next time we'll go one or two washes further up and hopefully end at moving water.

The beauty of any off-piste adventure is the simple fact that you don't know exactly how things will turn out.  Is the wash even rideable?  Do pourovers exist?  Can they be hiked around, can bikes be passed down, or will we be forced to retreat?

All good questions.  The answers can't be googled, and they sure aren't on Strava.

Perhaps someday the idea that a trail has value even it isn't flooded with humanity will catch on.

Locally, that idea seems doubtful but not impossible.

Until such an eventuality comes to pass, you can have 'em -- we'll be in the washes.