A Friday evening phone call. This late in summer? More or less a hail-mary.
Doom actually answers, immediately apologizes for being "booked solid".
A casual inquiry into said plans reveals that we're thinking alike, and could easily meld two plans into one.
In the name of Jaybs' going away party, we do.
Early Saturday morning we find ourselves in the alpine, inhaling deeply not only to ingest more of the place, but to get yet higher. No easy way home from here, work will need to happen.
Upward we toil, sometimes pedaling, sometimes walking, always with attention turned outward, soaking in the bigger picture.
"The bigger picture".
A month+ of rain has left verdant meadows, heroic dirt, lush jungles of aspen.
Where gradient and exposure combine just so the earth is exposed, open, actively shifting and eroding. More often our tires roll across tender brown soil.
Jeny and Pete are often out front, motivating each other uphill and down, showing the rest of us the best lines.
Man of the hour regardless of day, week, or month, today we celebrate Jaybs leaving to study for a few months, and anticipate the time when he'll return and bring so much light, joy, laughter back to our lives.
Look to the horizon or gaze beneath your feet -- either way there's a whole world here to appreciate and savor.
Hafta come back and 'splore this'n some day...
Brett tied the group together with his unique blend of what-me-worry optimism and backcountry savvy, along with a pile of engaging stories told on-the-fly.
I expected nothing more than aster and browning skunk cabbage. and was frankly stunned at how many and diverse were the remaining flowers up high.
"How many knuckledraggers does it take to screw in a lightbulb?!"
One minor mechanical and one tiny crash seemed only to highlight what an exceptional day it was.
Thanks to the crew for making the day 'So good'.
Thanks to you for checkin' in.