Well, I had an adventurous weekend.....
Man, life's been crappy, too much work and the fallout of a failing relationship had me looking for a way out of here. I finally managed to schedule a Fri and Mon off and took off from the back door for places unknown, really, I had no plan and no one knew where I was going.
I had packed the bike the following week for a warm dry route. Friday morn arrived and the forecast was for thundershowers and rain in the Sierras, crap, out came all the wet weather gear and my bike magically gained 5 pounds.
I figured I'd head for Tahoe via Soda Springs. I figured if I got dumped on I could bail to my cousins house in Tahoe Vista. Sure enough, after heading out Foresthill Road, up to Robinson Flat, out through the Cedars and up to Soda Springs and cresting Donner Pass I got hammered. All the way across Truckee, Martis Valley and up 267 to Brockway Summit I got caught in the worst T-Storm I've ever ridden through, that includes some pretty nasty stuff on the Western Slope of Colorado.
I crested Brockway summit and the sun was shining, literally in the space of a 1/2 mile the weather changed 360 degrees. I figured I'd head to my cousins anyways, it would give me a chance to pull everything out and get my gear and myself dry for the next 3 days.
Sat morn arrived with a few showers. I was dressed and off by 7am for the long day over to Luther Pass or Scotts Lake, whichever I could make before dark. After yesterdays rain out, I wasn't going to do that again, my ass was pretty chafed from wet chamois.
So I guess I did the super punisher with a bonus Hwy89/Mount Rose/431 climb but no Marlette Peak, so I'm not sure what that gets me...
Trails were awesome from the previous days rain, maybe the best I've seen the Spooner and Kingsbury sections. Simply an outstanding day, perhaps a top ten day on the bike.
Bonus shots of all the stuff that spills out of the bike plus what I wear when off the bike.
Sean, great thread - love seeing adventure pics! Where did you find the saddle bag(s)? Those look super light - in fact your whole setup is very compact! Does the back bag ever end up hitting your rear tire or is it all clear? Really cool trip! Keep posting updates.
Never use your face as a brake pad.
After spending the night just off of Luther Pass I was off to ride the Scotts Lake Connector so I could go down Scotts Lake trail to Big Meadow Trail and then down Christmas Valley to start the day off, pretty stellar way to wake up!
After a spending spree at Lira's market in Meyers I was off to climb to the top of Echo Summit and the Pony Express Trail. The Pony Express trail had seen a bit of rain as well and was in great shape, certainly not many folks riding this gem.
After a lunch break in Strawberry I was off to conquer the dreaded paved Wrights Lake Road to make my way up to the Barrett Lake OHV trail. This is a tough little climb, especially on tired legs. I finally made it to Barrett Lake OHV and rode/walked this trail for 4 miles till I reached the Two Peaks Trail.
I have been looking for this trail for a couple of years and finally found the top of it a couple of months ago( hours of bushwacking to find it!) This trail is essentially a stock trail, they use it to run cattle from lower elevations up into the high country. They had already moved the stock up so the trail was totally beat in, real easy to follow and apart from being a bit loose a really fun but tough trail. I averaged 3 MPH over 10 miles on Barrett/Two Peaks
From the end of Two Peaks I slogged/pushed up to the Tells Creek Equestrian Camp and then it was a road ride from there to the Rubicon River on Eleven Pines Road off of Wentworth Springs Rd. I set up camp below the bridge on the mighty Rubicon River.
Last edited by Sean Allan; 08-20-2012 at 08:41 PM.
Killer trip! I'll be moving to Sacramento in about a month. I'm looking forward to heading out on some trips like yours...inspirational!
I was awakened by logging trucks going over the bridge at 4am, WTF, I guess these guys get paid by the load and they are going to get a full days runs in!.
I was off at 6:30 for the long road climb up to French Meadows Lake and then on to the Western States trail for the remainder of the day. My water filter had broken the prior evening so I was in a pickle. I had enough water to make it to the spring just before Hell Hole Rd but I was reluctant to drop the Western States without a filter, I had Iodine tabs with me but really didn't want to jack my stomach up for the next week. As I made my way up to French Meadows I decided that as long as the pump at Deadwood was working I would be fine, or dead if it was broken
As I dropped down the WS towards the swinging bridge the temp was really beginning to rise, I was starting to think I was a dumbass for thinking this was a good idea. For those of you lucky enough to have done this section from Last Chance to Devils Thumb( or Middle Finger as I like to call it) you know what the deal is.... 1.2 miles and 1,800' of hike a bike
I made it to the spring at Deadwood in a respectable 58 minutes. Man it was really hot in the exposed sections though, I knew it would be even hotter on the way to Michigan Bluff.
I ate pretty much the remainder of my food at the pump (which was working thank God) and headed off for Michigan Bluff. The WS flowed out as usual, excellent. No one was out on a hot Monday so I had the place to myself (also had to be careful since no one would find the body either!).
At the bridge over El Dorado Creek I dunked my head in the creek and hit the trail. I rode most of this section to my surprise, I was at about 300 miles so far and had figured this would be pretty ugly, 56 minutes later I was sitting in Michigan Bluff . Crap was it hot. I had slurped the last gulp out of my Camelbak coming into town so I blew off the idea of dropping down to Volcano Creek and instead hit the pavement for the slog up to Foresthill Rd.
I beat it down Foresthill Rd to Wortons Market and bought the biggest cheeseburger and fries they would sell me. Man was I a stinky mess though, I hit myself up with some AXE body spray before I fouled up the store. The smell of 3 days of B.O. and Axe body spray must have been a sensory overload, although it is Foresthill so......
All in all a great few days, a good time to ponder the road we could have traveled and the road we traveled down. Thanks for reading
Last edited by Sean Allan; 08-20-2012 at 08:44 PM.
People who say "epic ride" should be reading this thread. Sounds like a "Ride the Divide." Seriously, you have freakish stamina to go so many miles and so many feet in 4 days. And here I am *****ing about a 15 mile ride.
Props, bro... I'll remember your post the next time I start getting whiny. Oh, what's with the roses? I hope the ride gave you some sense of perspective.
what an awesome adventure....thanks for posting!
fantastic trip report sean!
What did the setup weigh and was it hard to get used to the loaded down bike in technical sections? Care to share your food/water fueling?
Congrats on a very extreme and awesome 4 days of riding!
Wow, that's impressive. Takes epic to a whole new level.
Faster is not always better, but it's always more fun
Wow! Very amazing trip.
The setup you have is pretty cool. When I saw how your bike was loaded up I couldn't imagine that you could actually completed a 4 day ride with what appeared to be "very minimal gear," but was packed very compactly. Major props to you.
Someday I would love to do an adventure like that. I bet there was some major soul searching going on.
Thanks for sharing!
my take aways:
1. You're pretty damn beast.
2. I really *really* want that burger at the bottom.
Great ride, thanks for the Write-up. I'm also curious what you brought. I've done some ultralight backpacking trips and would like to try something similar on the bike.
I think I can nail that ride. Just need to substitute Year 1 for Day 1, Year 2 for Day 2...
Seriously, it's fun to live vicariously through your post. Thanks for sharing!
That's a hella big ride.
But was it therapeutic? Have you punished yourself enough yet to get over it?
wow, now that is impressive.
Wow is all I can say too... mtn biking is definitely therapeutic...something that some of my non biking friends will never understand.
Originally Posted by Sean Allan
Nice! The complete package...adventure, sweet trails, photos, gps, cajones... More bikepacking candy: bikepacking.net > Trip Reports
Holy Shite--You are the man!
Live to Ride, Ride to Live
Dammit I knew I saw you Saturday, I was between tunnel creek and Tahoe Meadows riding up towards the meadows when you passed me coming down hill, it took 60 seconds or so to register in my head it was you, by then it was to late.
Tahoe: Mt. Rose down Van Sickle!
Amazing journey Sean, I hope the mountains brought you some much needed solace and peace.
I'm toasting you with a beer right now.