Stolen Millcreek

Got out for one last Millcreek ride before the gate opens. It felt like we stole the ride. The trail was still in good shape and only a few other riders. Mark N. came for the repeat ride (on his single speed this time), and we were joined by Alex and Mark A.

The pace was faster this ride which made me work my legs, and pant like a dog. I was pleased I could middle ring it all the way to Dog Lake, but it was uncomfortable. Mark A. and Alex handled the pace easy. The route was nearly the same as last time so I'll just roll the photos.

It was an all Fat Cyclist jersey ride.

Mark and Mark chatting with Jared and Eric.

Unplanned Saturday

I didn't have any set plans for Saturday, but it turned out to be a good day.

Friday, with the two oldest girls at youth conference, we took the two youngest to see Aliens vs Monsters at the dollar show - it was fun. After the movie Jolene and I got as far in Saturday planning as doing a little mountain bike ride together. I went to bed with three options:

  1. Help Jamie P. build his dream trail in Corner Canyon (Draper)
  2. Help repair a mud bog section of the Deer Creek South Fork trail (American Form Canyon)
  3. Join the Utah Velo Club group ride up Hobble Creek and back.
All worthy options, but Saturday morning #2 won out because AF Canyon is near and it's about time I gave back to the trails that have given me so much enjoyment.

As I drove up AF Canyon I passed lots of roadies and admit I envied them knowing how good the ride is. I was also on the lookout for Chad, a frequent commenter on this and other Utah cyclist blogs, who was out visiting from Missouri. I pulled along one rider and asked "are you Chad?" In my defense it's hard to recognize people in cycling garb, what with the helmet and sunglasses and such. And because I don't have the best memory for faces and names. Turns out it was a friend of Chad's who remembered me from RAWROD who informed me Chad was up ahead.

I should have known Chad would be easy to spot - he was wearing his beloved BYU jersey. I pulled along side and said hello. Then I went ahead and took some photos - here's your action shot, Chad:

A ways up the road I saw two cyclists working on a bike. I stopped to help and gave a tube I had in the car to the cyclist who gave his to the other cyclist, and brought out my floor pump. I was glad I could help out. A few years ago a cyclist in a car stopped to help me fix a flat and it inspired me to carry tools and supplies so I could do the same.

I arrived at the trail work location and got busy. It was a bigger project than I expected with some digging, lots of lumber construction, and adding road base. I hauled a 6 foot 4x6 down the trail, which was muddy and slippery from the overnight rain.

I got to use some of the tools the Forrest Service supplied. There were the usual hand tools like Pulaski's and McCloud's, but the highlight was using this gas-powered drill:

(Insert Tim "The Tool Man" Taylor grunt)

Here I am putting that bad boy to use (in orange hard hat, background center):

When I left at 3 PM we had a lot done.

I wrenched my back pulling the drill out of a hole so when I got home I laid down in the backyard to rest it as the kids played - the St. George cousins were over. Lying in the grass in the shade and listened to the kids play, I watched bees busily visiting the clover in the lawn. Then I heard a bird sing and looked up and watched it flitting around in the tree. Then I noticed the moon up in the sky. It was a zen-like moment as I soaked in the beauty of nature and considered the difference in scale from the moon to the bee and wondered at the order and complexity of it all. Do you have these times when you see familiar things anew? I hope so, because it made me feel good.

After the cousins left, Jolene and I went for a quick mountain bike ride up in the foothills. We went up the Water Tank road then down to the Race Course for a lap and half. The grass has grown tall and in a few places you can hardly see the trail. And the oak brush has encroached, making a tunnel in one place. The flowers are still going strong and the splashes of color, especially yellow, were beautiful. The trails were in good shape and we enjoyed pumping up the climbs and blasting down the descents.

We dropped down onto the paved Provo River Parkway trail and as we exited the canyon and crested the little climb up 800 North we saw the sunset. It was breath-taking and remarkable for intensity of color and brightness. I couldn't keep my eyes off it. The shades of pink, orange and yellow were bold and vibrant. It was a dramatic end to a really good day of service, family, wonder and recreation that seemed to come together on its own.

Millcreek Delivers

It's easy to overlook Millcreek. How can mountain biking that close to the city be any good? And there's the biking only on even days thing. And it's popular not just with bikers but hikers and dogs too.

But I'm here to tell you, the buff, wooded trails of Millcreek are like dessert - sweet and luscious. Especially right now while the gate at Birch Hollow is still closed (hurry, it opens July 1) - the 5 miles of paved road before the trail head discourages most hikers, bikers, dogs. Tonight on the upper trails Mark and I saw only a few bikers and one trail runner. And the trail is clear of downed trees with the only obstacle a patch of snow across the Great Western trail.

We did the usual route: Up Big Water to Dog Lake, part way down Little Water to Great Western then up it to the saddle, turn around and bomb down fast, smooth, swoopy, scenic, in-the-top-10-in-the-state trail.

And it's nice and cool up there. Simply a delight. Yes, I'm raving, but it really was good.

Behold the sweetness.

Tranquil Dog Lake, and the water was clear for once so I could see the bottom. More floating logs than I remembered. Some ducks paddling away from us.

Looking east from the saddle into The Canyons.

Still some snow, but it's melting fast.

For an encore we took the Pipeline trail from Elbow Fork down to Burch Hollow. It was incredibly good - tacky, smooth as glass, lotsa green and only a few people.

If anyone's counting (I'm pretty sure my wife is) that's 3 rides in the last 3 days. I call it making up for the crappy weather the last few weeks. My wife calls it being a bum.

New Trail: Brocks Point Canyon Hollow

I had an hour after work until I had to meet the family at my sister-in-law's house in Cottonwood, so I rode up Corner Canyon to see the new Brocks Point Canyon Hollow trail.

I went up South Ghost Falls and I spotted the new trail as I got close to the little bridge after the T.

The trail was cut mid May and is still wearing in. It used to be very soft, but the recent rains have settled the soil and it's now hard and fairly smooth. There are still lots of roots sticking up - I imagine they'll be cut out sometime.

The trail makes a nice climb. The grade is more mellow than Ghost Falls or Clarks. The top half has a milder grade than the lower half. For climbing I felt it flowed OK. It was longer than I expected.

I stopped at a view point and I could see the Ghost Falls trail head across the canyon to the east.

Pretty nice view of the valley.

Here's the trail head off the dirt road.

After Brocks Canyon Hollow I went down the road then down Ghost Falls. The trail is in good shape with hard dirt berms on the corners.

I took North Ghost Falls down. It was fun, as usual, but was rutted in places from water flowing down the trail (from the recent rains).

I took the Gasline trail over to BST then took it north to the road again. Getting dry and loose/sandy in places. Also had some rutting from water flow. The trail is blocked north of the road due to mud slide and falling rock danger.

I reversed course - I love going down this section of BST. The lower section between the 5-way and the bottom of Corner Canyon had one washed out section on a corner - beware.

Zipped down Corner Canyon back to the equestrian center and I was done.

It was warm, but not too hot for Corner Canyon. The grass in the open is mostly brown, but some green remains. The trails in the trees are still verdant.

Surprisingly my legs felt OK after yesterday's climb-athon. Sure, the mountain trails are opening up, but the Draper trails still satisfy.

The Wipe Of Comfort

I sent the video below to dug, since it's in his field, but he passed on it. Too bad, I would have enjoyed his review. So you'll have to make due with my treatment.

This video is a comic one-two punch. The left jab is the product. The right cross is the advertisement.

Here's my play-by-play highlights:

Over 100 years of scrunching and folding, yes, I'm so weary of it. What? There's a better way? And the name is Comfort Wipe, progress be praised!

"Sanitary paper extension arm and holder" - an apt description but a mouthful.

The first improvement to toilet paper since the 1880s? I think not. What about softness, perforations, quilting, scent, and mega rolls?

Love the arm extension motion, so graceful, but please don't point that thing at me.

Anatomically designed? Follows the contours of your body? I don't like where this is going, in so many senses of the phrase.

The release button, far from the business end, is a nice touch.

"Think about it. Toilet paper is really archaic and disgusting." Uh, the device still uses toilet paper. I think they meant to say "Using toilet paper by hand is really archaic and disgusting". Perhaps too graphic for the sensibilities of the target audience, who we will meet in a moment.

Ah, a modern solution - everything modern must be good.

Here's our first user - the big guy, which has it's advantages and disadvantages - say no more, really, please no more.

And the "mature woman" - love the overacting. Maintain dignity? There is no dignity being an actor in this commercial.

Wrap it up with a repeat of earlier claims, add that it assists those with loss of range of motion, another demo of the paper attach / detach function, a freebie (just pay shipping and handling, that old scam) Get A Grip, and the $50 value now just $19.99, call now.

Advertising hygiene products is tricky. People need to know what the product does to understand the value, but they don't want to be grossed out. Think of all the ways tampons have been marketed over the years. And diapers (more recently the adult kind, which Saturday Night Live lampooned). Toto tried some bold advertising with it's Washlet product (which dug reviewed - sadly the ad has been taken down), but happy bums and happy people while emphatically avoiding the nitty gritty of the product function was a mistake, in my opinion.

And owing to the Comfort Wipe ad, I don't think the short info-mercial approach does any better, unless humor is the goal.

If you really want a Comfort Wipe, Amazon (more precisely an affiliate) has them for $12. Amazon shows similar products: Bottom Buddy (ug, the name), Freedom Wand (please, stop), Self-Wipe Bathroom Toileting Aid (funky looking) , EasyWipe (a renamed Comfort Wipe?), Self Wipe Toilet Aid (dig the pistol grip - what's worse, euphemistic or descriptive names?). I had no idea there were so many of these products. Sadly, almost all of them have reviews stating they don't work very well - perhaps this isn't progress afterall.


The Donny and Marie musical Star Wars sketch below was difficult to watch. It's so cheesy I nearly vomited. The songs are brain-cell-killing moronically inane. I feel sorry for the guest "stars". And such sacrilege to the noble Star Wars. Just so awkward. Watch at your own peril - you have been warned.

Alex's Secret Trails

I met Alex at a nondescript parking lot where he blindfolded me and drove. After 20 minutes he stopped and removed the blindfold. I was in a mountainous area unfamiliar to me. We readied the bikes and Alex lead out. (Yes, I made this up for effect.)

He took me on a 2+ hour tour of some amazing mountain single-track. Even though I was sucking wind, every time Alex asked if I wanted the easy bailout or climb for more, I opted for more - I'm such a sucker for new trail.

Fantastic diversity - rocky / buff, wooded / open, shaded / exposed, cruising / technical, climbing / descending. I must note, if you don't like switchbacks, this area may not be for you (I estimate we hit 50+ switchbacks). Enjoy the photos, I'm going to bed - I'm trashed.

Comments Fixed

Recently I heard from Rick and MOCougFan that they couldn't leave comments.

I haven't made any changes to this blog in many months so I assumed it was some temporary Blogger problem. But it didn't go away so I changed the comment style from Embedded to Full Page and comments seem to be working again.

I don't have a good way to test comments (I've always been able to leave comments) so if it isn't working please let me know by using the E-mail me link in the About section (upper right).

Update: It seems the change worked - those who couldn't comment before can now comment. After more internet searching it seems the problem occurs most frequently (exclusively?) with Internet Explorer and blogs with javascript widgets.

Arctic Alpine Loop

The forecast indicated this would be the non-rain day for the week, so the Alpine Loop ride was on. It was also in honor of Elden's birthday, and I'm not above piggy-backing on someone else's excuse to ride.

When I checked the outdoor thermometer at 5 AM I was surprised to see 47 F. Really? In late June? Since it was going to be a nice day I was sure it would warm up so I went light - just a thin windbreaker jacket.

I met Adam and Brandon at 1600 North and State Street and we pedaled over to American Fork Canyon. We met the rest of the pack and headed up the canyon, into the usual, perhaps stronger today, head wind.

The pace was pretty mellow up to Tibble Fork, but once the grade kicked up the pack broke up. I did OK, but it was disheartening to be working the climb and hear the group behind me having a nice chat. They caught me a little after TimPOOneke and I hung on until the end when I couldn't close the gap and came straggling up to the summit, last.

It did not get warmer, but colder to the tune of 37 F up the canyon. On the climb it wasn't bad, even though my arms were cold (I took off the jacket for the climb). But going down was a chilling experience. I was all too willing to stop to take photos.

Yes, the Alpine Loop is a blight to the eyes. It's visual torture to ride. (If your sarcasm indicator didn't go off, you better have it checked.)

I stopped to look at Primrose Cirque. The waterfalls were gushing and I could easily hear them - I estimate over 1.5 miles away.

I was still getting colder and descending down the shaded canyon below Sundance didn't help. When I finally made it to Provo Canyon, I was thrilled to be in the sun and pedaling to get warm.

The canyon tail wind pushed me home where I took a warm shower (I tried hotter but my numb toes got the prickles). My toes didn't regain full feeling until I arrived at work. Next time I'll take more clothing.

Rain Dodge Ride

Before I get into today's ride, here's a photo of Electric Lake from the van rescue mission Monday:

I was going to ride with Alex after work today, but the weather squelched those plans.

And even though I hit plenty of rain on the drive home, Orem seemed to have been spared (at least within the last few hours) and the skies to the west were clear-ish, so I headed out.

Pedaling up the Water Tank Road I pondered what route I should take. I decided to do something different and went up Roller Coaster. Well, up the first 100 yards or so, then I peeled left then took a right to go up Blackbird. Normally from here I'd go up Crank, but I took a little connector trail and went down Crank. Then up Betty.

Do you think the Lupines are coming on?

All this rain has made the plants go nuts. The trails are nearly overgrown. And the flowers just keep coming.

After reaching the Altar I went left on Lament with plans to take Crank down, but when I got there I couldn't resist the urge to go longer so I went over to Dry Canyon. I know I've taken a bunch of pictures from this view point, but it's so striking I couldn't help taking another.

When I got to the rock ledges, I stopped and considered riding the pipe. Maybe some time, but I wasn't feeling it today.

I hiked up to the north cliff and found bolts on the face, as I'd read about. I'll have to come up and climb these routes some day.

Finished off the ride by taking the BST back to the water tanks.

The sky was overcast the whole time, and rain hitting Cascade Mountain to the south and Battle Creek to the north, but I didn't get a drop. The air was dead calm and muggy, so I sweated a lot. But the flowers and greenery were amazing and the dirt was excellent and non-poofy. With Saturday being my most recent ride, it felt good to be on the bike.

Jail Break Riding

With the bad weather this last week, getting in a ride feels like breaking out of jail. You keep watch on the guards and when they change shifts you make a break for it and hope you don't get gunned down before you make it safely past the last barbed wire.

With my wife and older daughters at camp, and Friday looking like the only break in the weather for 2 more days, after work I bolted for the trails. I left my house and went up the Water Tank Road, then down Cliff, cut through the Race Course then headed up Provo Canyon via the pipeline road. At Nun's park I came down on a fun little trail then a bit of the paved trail until I peeled off on the Bridal Veil section of the BST.

It's been a while since I last biked this trail. It's as fun as I remembered. The climb is just right with enough features to keep it interesting. I was annoyed I didn't make the last switchback before topping out.

Crossed the Squaw Peak road (after startling an iPod-ified trail runner) and went up trail 219. I made it over to the freeride area and hoped to find the proper trail down into the Timpview neighborhoods (Chris Holley told me about it). I've dropped down these hills before, but usually ended up in someone's backyard or horse pasture. I think I found it, but it was sure steep and loose in spots. One time I thought for sure I was going to crash, but somehow stayed up. I poped out near the tiny East Lawn cemetery. I'll have to try going up it one of these days.

I sped back home and picked up the younger two at grandma's house. Just for kicks I took them to Bridal Veil Falls then up to the Squaw Peak Lookout (aka Mt. Honor Code Violation - good one Ryan) where we played "can you spot our house?" and "annoy the amorous couples".

On the way down I discovered the special thing I do for my kids. Dug has the whoosh. And ever since I read that I've wondered what tradition my kids will remember about me. Turns out it's Crazy Driving. And Squaw Peak road is a perfect place for it. I turn the car sharply left or right randomly as I hit the brake and gas. The goal is to make the ride as unpredictable as possible so the kids are slamming into the doors and each other. And I yell excitedly that we're being attacked by ninjas, or crazed deer, or whatever bizarre inspiration hits me at the moment. It's a simple thing, and silly, but the kids get laughing uncontrollably and they love it. It just costs me some life off my tires and brakes, a little extra gas, and the bewildered looks of other drivers.

Saturday morning I went for a little road ride with my neighbor up Provo Canyon. The sky was dark and threatening rain, but we went anyway. We made it half way up South Fork when we found ourselves like salmon swimming against a flow of runners. We turned around and made our way in front of them. It was a 10 mile run event.

Back at home there was a phone message from my wife. After loading the van at girls camp, it wouldn't start and when they tried to jump start it the cables smoked and melted. She got a ride back with others and when she got home I found out she had been sick the last 4 days with a fever, chills, aches, and a bad cough. It was bad enough we went to the InstaCare where the doctor diagnosed her with pneumonia in her right lung. She went to bed and I got her some meds.

With Jolene settled I put together a plan to rescue the van. My Dad and I were ready to go when I got a call from Jolene that the camp would be closed for the rest of the weekend. Had I missed the call we would have driven all the way up Fairview canyon only to find a locked gate. So the plan is to go tomorrow (Monday). Such fun.

Rain, Rain, Go Away

It poured rain today at work. Again.

With the wife and kids gone, this was supposed to be The Week of Kris. Road or mountain biking every day after work. Instead of I've been forced to retreat indoors. Yeah, the Star Trek movie was good, but I'd rather be riding. Maybe meditation will help.

Hoowmmm, I-wish-this-rain-would-stop.

Hoowmmm, I'd-rather-be-riding-my-bike.

Hoowmmm, I-can't-feel-my-legs-anymore-in-this-lotus-position.

Nope, meditation isn't working. I'll just watch some more rain.

New Wave Treasures

Going back to the box of treasures, where I found my childhood teeth, I discovered some important archaeological artifacts:

All of these items are from the early 1980s, and reference the New Wave period at it's height.

Let's start with the upper left specimen. A yellow Rock Lobster button from the B-52's - could there be a more iconic symbol of New Wave? Note the squeezed, over-bold font used for the text and the primary colors - bright yellow background and super saturated red lobster. All an homage to the seminal song "Rock Lobster" and the band who created it. I submit there was never a New Wave dance where Rock Lobster wasn't played. Surely this is an important New Wave relic. As a reminder, view the Rock Lobster music video or this early live performance:

Let's move on to the upper right item. Another button - black background with "THE TAKE" written in a pink, urban font. Very little in the research (aka Google) on this reference, but it could be a punk/post hardcore band from Wales. There is no record of how this button came into my collection (I probably got it from a friend). A mysterious artifact from a chaotic and fractured era. (No, I was not on drugs.)

And finally the MTV guitar pick. MTV was born in the 80s and rose in fame and prominence by playing music videos, as indicated under the MTV logo. The slogan on the back, "YOU'LL NEVER LOOK AT MUSIC THE SAME WAY AGAIN" is obvious, but true. I can still see and hear the MTV theme in my head. Does MTV play music videos anymore?

BONUS: A black leather skinny tie.

These artifacts are making me nostalgic. I'm not sure I can restrain myself from buying a pair of classic checkerboard Vans.

Oooh, red!

Home Alone

My wife and two older girls are at camp this week and the younger two are at grandmas - leaving me in bachelor mode. Normally I'd be cycling, but this weather has put a damper on that. What to do?

The Movie

Several good movies out, and even though plans with my neighbor fell through, I was set on a movie so I went solo. I'll be honest, I was self-conscious about it. How often do you see a 40-something guy at a movie by himself? And what do you assume about him? I rest my case.

I did my best to shrug off the awkwardness and saw Star Trek at the still new Cinemark by University Mall. The lobby is nicely appointed with traditional and high-tech touches. Each theater is smallish with stadium seating. I chose a center eye-level seat.

OK, it's been a while (like perhaps over a year) since I've been in a nice theater. The screen seemed huge. And the clarity of the digital projection was immediately noticed. Sadly they kept looping the same lame commercials for various shows on cable. When the movie start time came, I was treated to 15 minutes of trailers. I like trailers, but they went 2 over my limit - get on with the movie already!

The Trek movie was good. There are some holes in the story, and a few things didn't work, but overall it was fun ride. Expansive scenes, explosions, action, fights, destruction, rescues, pretty good acting, OK dialog with a few throw-backs to the original series, and easy-on-the-eyes Uhura. (Sorry, but I just couldn't buy Uhura's love interest and every time it came up it bugged me.)

After the movie I walked to my car in my usual lively pace. Then it hit me: I don't have to be anywhere. No wife and kids I should hurry home to. I slowed down, took some time to look around a bit. Hey, there's a Five Guys Burgers across the way - for better or worse I ate before the movie so I was able to resist that temptation. I noticed the flowers and landscaping - quite lovely, for urban. I drove home leisurely. When I got home I watched some recorded TV and just puttered around.

Is it bad that I enjoyed being alone? It's a nice change. But I'm sure It would get old. So I'll enjoy the next few days. And I'm sure when Saturday rolls around I'll be happy to see my wife and kids again.

The Lunch

I was out of sandwich fixin's so I went to super Harmons for more. Tasted some fancy swiss cheese. Picked out some bread, meat and fig newtons. But I could not resist the siren song of the deli area. I blame my recent post about lunch for my craving. I came back with some sushi and ate at my desk. Is it possible to be addicted to sushi?

The Storm

(I'm liking this Seinfeld episode naming convention for my headings.)

As I got out of my car back at work I noted a big thunderstorm was heading this way.

It hit in less than an hour and poured down some serious rain. And 1/4" hail for a few minutes.

Then it headed to Corner Canyon. The upper trails are surely a muddy mess.

I like a good summer thunder storm, but rain every day is getting on my nerves. I'm getting jittery from not enough cycling. And I was worried I have a sushi addiction.

Saturday Foothills

Many long days this week so we slept in this morning. Around noon we headed out for a little mountain bike ride. I thought it would be hot, but it was rather cool today with a nice breeze.

We went up the Water Tank Road then down Cliff. I hadn't been down Cliff in a while. Someone's done some work to it. The two sketchy, edgy places are clean now. We rolled it with no hesitation.

Did a partial lap on the Race Course. The grass is tall making the trails narrow. And it's is still so green.

Plenty of Sego Lilly out in bloom - this one has a visitor.

At the top of the Race Course we took the easy route back up to the Water Tank Road so I could get a GPS track of it. Here's Jolene coming up with Cascade Mountain in the background.

Just a nice trail shot. Water Tank Road in the background left, with the Cliff trail below it.

Then we took Betty up and Rollercoaster down, but not all the way. We turned right onto a faint trail up along the ridge that is overgrown now. Then down Blackbird and out Ireland back to the road.

Another trail shot - bottom trail head of Ireland.

Sweet weather, sweet flora, sweet trails, sweet wife to enjoy it with.

First Alpine Loop 2009

I got word of an Alpine Loop group ride this morning. I wasn't sure I could do the 5:30 AM wake up, so just like last time I decided if I was up I'd go. I woke up (the 2nd time) at 5:40. I wondered if I was too late, but decided to go for it.

Filled a bottle with water, another with CarboRocket then grabbed a banana and Brown Sugar Cinnamon pop-tart. Threw on the shoes, gloves and helmet; stuffed a jacket in my pocket and I was off.

Thanks to the cloud cover it was a warm morning and I was comfy in just a jersey and shorts.

Spinning down State Street I chugged water and CarboRocket and ate the banana for breakfast. Up ahead I could see another rider going my way. As I got closer I could see it he was in the eye-catching green Omniture kit. When I caught him I asked if he was doing the Alpine Loop ride, he said yes. That's how I met Ben.

We rode together to the mouth of American Fork Canyon. I was surprised we were nearly 15 minutes early. I ate a pop-tart. The wind was blowing so we moved down the road to wait for the crew. They rolled by and we joined in. Back at the canyon mouth we stopped to make sure we had everyone.

The pace was fast for me, but I hung on the tail of the lead pack until Little Mill. I was chewing up too much energy and didn't want to be blown for the steeper half to come. But hopefully it will make me faster. I didn't mind riding solo - the canyon is so scenic, especially in the still of the morning. The river was running high and raucous. Just after Little Mill, Brad flew by me with an invitation to jump on - a kind offer, but I know I can't hang with Brad so I told him to keep going.

My legs complained a bit when the grade pitched up after Tibble Fork, but I kept turning the pedals over and got into a rhythm.

The switchbacks took me out of the canyon bottom and up on the side of the canyon - such a great view. All the small streams were gushing.

Up by Altamont I got into the conifers - ahh, that refreshing "pine" smell.

Past Timpooneke there was gravel where a culvert had been installed. Other wise the road was in good condition with very little debris.

I took note of the wildflowers growing near the road. Many colors and varieties. I even saw some bluebells.

I rounded the last switchback then past the infamous mile marker 18 and tried to push it a little harder.

At the top I rejoined the lead guys. And only a few minutes later everyone was up.

I headed down the Provo Canyon side with Ben, Keith and Adam. I'm not a bold descender, but it was still fun to swoop through the turns - especially snaking through a left/right turn combo. Ben is a bold descender and he was gone in no time. We flew down, but I still tried to take in the incredble views.

At the junction with Provo Canyon Ben was waiting. We soft pedaled along expecting the others to catch us, but they didn't. I should have stopped, but I thought they were right behind me. And I needed to get to work.

Ben and I rolled down the highway aided by a nice tail wind. Ben lives in Orem too and we parted ways by Cascade Golf Course. I made it home around 9 AM - showered, dressed and headed to work.

I'm not a morning person, but a good AM ride like this makes me consider changing my ways. It was good to see so many familiar faces. Just a fantastic ride.


I eat out occasionally, but usually I make a sandwich for lunch. Sandwiches are OK, but sometimes they're not. Sometimes I can't help but think of the more interesting and exotic lunches others might be having.

Dug might be feasting on sushi.

Mark is almost sure to be eating well somewhere in downtown Salt Lake City. (I bring this upon myself since I often ask him what he ate for lunch. Strangely he doesn't blog about it.)

Elden could be eating a Chipotle burrito.

At least I've upgraded my sandwiches in the last few years. I used to go cheap - too cheap. Now at least I get good, multi-grain bread. I've moved up from Miracle Whip to Mayonnaise (thanks to Elden's evangelizing). And after too many years of plain yellow mustard I use spicy brown mustard now. The meat and cheese are about the same, but with more variety than in the past. And I've added lettuce.

Even upgraded I'm sure there are many who would consider this still a very basic, and perhaps unacceptable, sandwich. Hey, I'm not asking you to eat it. I can't escape the fact that food is fuel, and not many drivers buy Supreme gas (especially these days). So a basic meal is OK, for me.

I'm not immune to the joy of food. Discovering sushi 6-7 years ago was a revelation. And even switching to Mayonnaise has been a small but pleasant new flavor.

The Happy Sumo Vegas roll

Eating well (not to excess) is one of the simple pleasures of life. Although it seems to get tangled up in cycling, as Mark explored. I just accept food for the necessity and spice of life it is.

And now for something completely different: