Park City Overdose

I hadn't been on dirt in over a week and I needed a fix bad. So after doing some work in the morning I loaded up the bike and head to a place I knew I could score: Park City.

I started with Spin Cycle from the Jordanelle side. After a short pedal up the paved road I peeled off onto some luscious single-track in the trees. Ahhh.

I took the turn onto Pipeline then changed my mind thinking it would be nice to ride a little more. I got more than a little. I went up Village then turned onto Lower Gap - ha, there was nothing "lower" about it, up and up it went. Then I went down to Gap Bypass and up Deer Crest so I could get back on Pipeline. Brilliant. It was actually pretty fun riding, just more than I bargained for.

Pipeline took me to Outlook (more climbing) which dumped me onto a service road. I was happy to see yellow arrows spray painted on the road and a few markers to help me find Spin Cycle.

The top of Spin Cycle had some tight, steep, loose switchbacks. Then some cruising through trees. Then the bottom was banking side to side down a gully, which was fun. Some of the bottoms were sharp and near wheel traps - looks like some water flowed there.

Next I drove to Trailside Park for some play time. I pedaled up the access trail and played on the stunts - some skinnies and a teeter totter.

Then I warmed up on the downhill pump/flow track. It was a blast. Hard-packed dirt, bermed turns, round humps to pump on and a few short tabletops. Very good flow and fun to pump.

The newest addition to the park is a bigger, intermediate flow course. It opened a week ago. After a drop off a skinny it snakes down the hill with big bermed switchbacks and mostly tabletops with a few whoops. A big wood slat wall makes a 180 degree turn - I got half way up it at best. There is also a wood step up - I didn't see it on the first run until it was right in front of me, good thing or I may have balked, it rolled easier than I expected. I could only hit the first of the two wood slat walls at the bottom. I am no freeride air rider but I still had fun stumbling my way down this course. I got a bit faster on each of my 4 (or was it 5?) runs.

Sorry, no photos, I was having so much fun I forgot about the camera. If you want to see how it should be ridden, watch this video (with old school rap soundtrack).

The last ride was Lost Prospector. I started at Solamere which took me to the east side Lost Prospector. Nice views.

Then across Skid Row (with an unintended out and back on Fox Tail, oops).

And around to Gamble Oak.

With a nice downhill run on Solamere Connector back to the car.

It was all good riding on some trails I've been meaning to ride for years. I got my fix. I hope my legs can move tomorrow.

First Alpine Loop Of 2011

I tried to get to the Alpine Loop before the gates opened, but didn't make it. So I went for the Saturday after they opened. You guessed it, lots of cars. But lots is relative and I still had a good ride.

Just a few blocks away from my home I spotted another cyclist who had just turned onto 1200 North. He asked where I was headed, I told him the Alpine Loop and he joined me for the ride. Thanks for the company, Todd.

We went up the Provo Canyon side. I was off the bike most of last week, but surprisingly I rode pretty good.

With the wet Spring it's super green. And with way-above-normal snow pack and the Summer temperatures finally coming on, there was water running everywhere (the American Fork River is raging).

Views like this make the ride so much sweeter.

Saw several cyclists along the way.


And how about some video?

It was strange too look around and recognize places I skied just back at the end of April. Now the undergrowth is so thick it would be a hassle to hike, but back then with the snow I could go anywhere.

Not much more to say than it was a fantastic ride.

Man Camp 2011

With the girls in St. George to watch The Little Mermaid at Tuacahn it was time for Man Camp (a registered trademark of Josh McCarrel).

Tuesday we loaded our packs and headed up Dry Canyon around 7 pm.

The shade in the canyon was welcome for the hike up.

We arrived at the meadow around 8, setup the tent and started a fire to cook dinner. Everything tastes better cooked over a fire, even the lowly death tubes (hot dogs). Kade roasted a Cheeto and had me taste it - it was awful, like scorched styrofoam. Some scouts down at the first fire pit gave us some smores supplies as they were heading out, very kind.

Note: Those giant campfire size marshmallows do not work for smores. They're so big it's nearly impossible to get the center gooey without burning the outside. Stick with the normal size.

At dark we walked to the edge to look at the city lights.

As we settled into the sleeping bags some animal crashed through the brush, it was probably just a deer but it didn't help Kade get to sleep. I didn't get much sleep either. But it was a perfect Summer night - chilly but not cold, clear sky, just the faintest breeze.

In the morning we started the fire briefly to warm up. We went for a little hike around the area. Then returned and packed up.

The hike down was quick. A few mountain bikers went by, getting in a ride before work.

We finished off the day with a 3D movie (Rio) and miniature golfing at Trafalga.

Thursday was spent at the Lindon pool.

We had a good Man Camp and I enjoyed spending time with my son. He's a great kid and I like being reminded how simple and joyful life is as a young boy.

Bike, Canyon, Bike, Bike

Got away with Mark and Alex for a packed 1.5 day trip.

Thursday afternoon we drove down to Price and did the same loop as I did at the Price Trailfest (May 10th) minus YooHoo. I enjoyed the ride more this time. The Price trails aren't the greatest, but the decent single-track with a unique flavor.

After the ride we drove down to Green River then south of town to camp by the San Rafael River, which was flowing at 500 cfs (normal for this time of year is 200 cfs).

In the morning we rappelled into Three Canyon and hiked down to the Green River (or as close as we could get without having to swim the last 100 flooded yards).

The rappel in added some fun.

Red walls.

Sporadic springs make a for a surprisingly green canyon.

Even a few pools.

The exit climb out was a little spicy. Good thing we fixed a hand line for the 10 foot crux. I would have climbed it with a spot, but nicer to have the line.

Pretty deep canyon.

We had dropped our bikes at the exit and rode them back along the slickrock rim of Three Canyon. It was fun at first with a fairly wide rim of slickrock, but as it narrowed the navigation got trickier. A short push up a wash put us on the dirt road and back to the car.

After some rehydration (it was more than a little warm), Alex took us to a cool slickrock playground. We were like kids zooming around the bowls and domes.

A burger at Rays capped off the trip.


With the freeway under construction in Utah County, my kids invented a new game: Spot-A-Potty. Count the porta potties as we drive. On a drive from Orem to Spanish Fork they counted 35. I'm looking forward to 2012 when we can go back to the old standby alphabet game.

Jolene and I went over to Alpine to catch the tail end of Elden's 100 Miles of Nowhere. We went up the south side of Suncrest for Jolene's first real road bike climb. She did OK on the climb but didn't like the descent.

After Suncrest we wandered around Alpine a little. Back on High Bench Drive we ran into Karl V. and chatted for a bit.

Back at the park in Alpine we ate some food and enjoyed talking with everyone there.

It feels like Summer is finally here.

Let Me Sum Up

A bit of a blogging drought. You'd think I'd have plenty of time to blog while unemployed. Ironically the job made it easier, I had a routine and nothing much to worry about after leaving work for the day.

So here's the recap:

My oldest daughter turned 20 this week. I'm still reeling from this mind-blower. How is possible for me to be this old? I can't complain, she's a good person, in spite of her father. She finished her Associates degree, is working this Summer, and hopes to get into ultrasound school next year.

Saturday, May 21st, I did the Salt Lake Century. I like the route and it's kind of a tradition, a get-together ride with my cycling buddies from Linux Networx, even though none of them could make it this year. But I did happen to see Bruce (he's ridden with our group several times over the years) at packet pickup so we rode together. We had a great time chatting, enjoying the sunshine, warm air and the most rare cycling miracle of all - a tail wind out AND back.

(Note to self: Never do that pose again.)

The next Saturday I rode up in the foothills. I had some new route ideas and was excited to try them out. I went up the GWT past The Altar to see the avalanche I'd heard about. I found it about 150 yards past the 051 trail fork. It was still over 2 feet deep and right over the trail. I'd never been up GWT past 051 so it was fun to explore. When the snow melts I'll try going higher.

On the way down I turned onto 051 (Area 51 to many locals). It was all dry and in pretty good shape. I made the tight switchback in the gully and all three climbs, so that made me feel good.

I took 051 over to the west face to see if the Arrowleaf Blasamroot (thanks to Alex' blog for the ID) was still in bloom. I think the bloom is even better than a when I rode by a little over a week ago. Better get up there soon to see them, they don't last long once the heat comes.

I was tempted to go down Dry Canyon, it's so much fun. But I wanted to try something different. So I turned around and went down Crank, not a bad downhill ride at all. Then I took Rollercoaster which always has tall grass, but this year it's nuts and will only get taller.

Then I took the little ridge trail over to Ireland and down, because I like the two jumps on Ireland.

I could have taken the road back down, but it's been a long while since I rode Cliff so I took it down and finished off going down the Race Course. I had to take the paved trail back, but it was worth it to get some more single-track.

Nothing on this ride was big news, but simply seeing a little new trail, going the opposite direction and adding on a little more single-track made this a good ride that reminded me why I love mountain biking.

Now I'm down with a cold while the weather has cleared up. It's killing me.