California Dreamin’

February 16th, 2008

All the leaves are brown and the sky is gray.
I went for a walk on a winter’s day. – The Mamas and Papas

Veronica spent the weekend in Maine, while I stayed in California. January was a wet and cold month for us, but February is shaping up to be much nicer. When we talked on the phone, we compared weather. I went mountain biking – she made snow angels.

  • Tandemhearts' photo

  • Tandemhearts' photo

This was my first mountain bike ride in months. When I was out of work, we just didn’t do a lot of mountain biking. Injuries, weather and other commitments conspired against us, so the mountain bike sat in the garage. I pulled mine out today. It had some mud on it, that I think came from Moab, but I can’t be sure. No, we do not clean the bikes as often as we should. The chains are clean, the tires have air, the brakes work – let’s ride! The Ridge Trail is our reference trail ride. We can tell if we are out of shape by how hard this trail is. This fire road stair steps its way along for about 2.6 miles to climb about 1200 feet. That means sustained sections with grades above 12 percent and short pitches to 20 percent. This is hard to walk up, let alone ride. When we are in good shape, it is much easier, but it is never easy. On the other hand, the views on each side are some of the best and it isn’t far from the house.

  • Tandemhearts' photo
The first serious section isn’t too steep and gives you a taste of what’s coming.

  • Tandemhearts' photo
View to the left. If you click on the image to open the full sized version you can see the trail continuing on the ridge top.

  • Tandemhearts' photo

View to the right

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Looking back from near the top.

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This area is cattle grazing range in the winter and the cattle really tear up the muddy trails. The top narrow tracks are where bikes have ridden through the hoof prints “frozen” in the dried mud. It’ll take months to work the hoof prints out after the rains end.

  • Tandemhearts' photo
  • Tandemhearts' photo

  • Tandemhearts' photo
One more from Maine.

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