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  1. #1
    "Ride Lots" - Eddie Mercx
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    Bootleg Canyon ~Video~

    As Spike Lee says, Do the right click thing here to avoid the following monologue or check out the web page and other videos at my site here



    Last weekend some friends and I had planned to head to Las Vegas for some
    riding. We figured March would be a good time temperature wise and we found a
    weekend that worked with all of our schedules.



    The trip was actually going to include a long day trip to St. George Utah as
    well so we were very excited to hit some new trails. My father lives in Vegas so
    that became our base camp. Although we knew there was plenty of riding to do in
    Utah for a 4 day weekend, we also wanted to ride some trails in Vegas too. In a
    perfect world I'd stay a week everywhere but this trip would not be that
    generous to us.



    At any rate, we pull into Vegas around 7:30 Friday evening and unload the car.
    After very little discussion, we head towards the strip for a few hours of
    entertainment before we hit the trails. Around 11:00, we decide to head back to
    the house for some sleep. We'll be getting up at about 7:00 for the riding the
    following day.



    At about 6:30 I begin to smell somebody cooking breakfast. At first I think it's
    coming from outside but then I realize it's coming from downstairs (I had a
    guest room while two others had the sofas in the living room). Knowing that
    neither of the sofa sleepers would start cooking breakfast, I roll downstairs to
    find my father happily serving up bacon and eggs. Can't get that kind of service
    at Motel 6!



    Anyway, we get everything together and head to Boulder City. I'd heard a lot
    about this place from the online boards and such but most of what I'd heard was
    from the DH crowd. After reviewing the map I knew they had plenty of DH stuff.
    But, they also had a wide variety of XC stuff too. Of course, the danger/fear in
    riding someplace new is that you do a loop in a direction that would be more fun
    going the other way. I made a few inquiries about directions to ride certain
    sections and had a plan for the day in place.



    As I said, we figured that mid March would be a good time to ride temperature
    wise. Well, as luck would have it, the weekend we were there Vegas was seeing
    record temperatures! Oh well, there seemed to be a good breeze blowing through
    the canyon even at 8:30 in the morning.



    We start riding and pick up the trails that were very clearly marked at each
    intersection. I immediately notice that the riding, while similar to San Diego,
    is also quite different. There are a rocks everywhere but not the same that we
    have back home. Back home we have a lot of baby heads all over the place. In
    Bootleg Canyon, the trails are essentially covered with sharp, shale like pieces
    of rock and the occasional larger lava type rock that you must ride over. These
    made climbing challenging at times. I'm glad that the riding I do regularly is
    rocky though because out of towners who are used to smooth buff trails will take
    some time to adjust.



    As you will see from the video, there isn't fock all out there in terms of
    vegetation. But, the scenery is quite stunning at the same time. The trails are
    all well palnned and thought out. They put care and time into planning where the
    trail would go.



    The loop we did was to climb Mother to West Leg to Caldera to Boy Scout to Lake
    Mead Overlook to River Mt. Trail to Lake View Loops back to the car. We then
    went up the main dirt road all the way to the top and picked up Skyline to Girl
    Scout for a final descent.



    All in all we estimate we did about 26 miles and in the neighborhood of 3,500
    feet of climbing. it's 1,000 feet from the parking lot to the top so we did that
    twice. the rest was miscellaneous up and down type climbing with one other
    sustained climb out of the Caldera valley to the Lake Mead overlook.



    There were a couple of mishaps out on the trail as well. I had the first one in
    a spectacular low speed uphill dismount. Basically, I was busy sightseeing and
    wasn't watching the trail. the trail had a very well defined 4 inch ledge (major
    exposure I know!) on the right side and both tires just fell off of it. Smacked
    my knee pretty hard. I looked down and saw the flap of skin hanging there. I
    thought to myself that it'd be better to yank it off while the knee was still
    throbbing so that's what I did. it took a few minutes to work out but it felt
    find the rest of the day.



    Keith, pictured in the video, seems to have fallen for no reason. He thinks his
    chain fell off but we're still not sure what happened. Another buddy endoed on
    Skyline later in the day but that was entirely due to fatigue and ability.
    Skyline is actually a bit technical he's not the most technically skilled rider
    in the group. I didn't get to see it but he said it was pretty exciting.



    We didn't get to go as fast as I would have liked and we probably walked a few
    more sections than I would have liked too. But, myself and Miles (purple jersey)
    are the better riders in the group so I was following him most of the day.
    Unfortunately, this was Miles' second ride ever on this bike and only his third
    back since his famous half gainer at Carrizo Gorge.Click here if for
    some reason you missed that exciting video clip. So, Miles' wrists are
    still feeling the effects and he was unable to hit bumps and rolling down/up
    transitions at speed.  He said that a few times the bumps were so bad that
    he felt like he was going to lose his grip on the bars.



    All in all though, we did a lot of riding and had a lot of fun. Miles
    said that he was pleased that although the wrists were bothering him on the
    ride, they didn't seem overly sore after the ride so it seems to be more a
    strength thing now.  Hopefully they'll only improve as he gets more saddle
    time





  2. #2
    If you have to ask...
    Reputation: miles's Avatar
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    Nice right up. No homework today?

    Or are you just goofing off when you should be doing something productive?

    miles
    It's 7:09 California time

  3. #3
    Perpetually single track
    Reputation: ibmkidIII's Avatar
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    good write up...where's skyline at?

  4. #4
    I HUCK WITH CHUCK
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    I really want to go to boulder city (although I am one of the DH crew you refer to), I fly in there for my utah trip, so I may be able to convince my dad to go. Nice vid.

  5. #5
    If you have to ask...
    Reputation: miles's Avatar
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    Skyline leaves the upper lot

    immediately to the left of Boy Scout Trail. It's a new trail, so it isn't very well bedded in yet, which is part of its difficulty. Still, it was plenty fun. I'm grateful that Yeti Rider left out of his video a bit on Skyline where I was flailing badly. As I yelled out "Damn! I suck!" Mike said "that'll make the edit." I was not riding well at all.

    miles
    It's 7:09 California time

  6. #6
    If you have to ask...
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    By the way, when will we get the Gooseberry video?

    At least, what there might be of it?

    miles
    It's 7:09 California time

  7. #7
    "Ride Lots" - Eddie Mercx
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    well

    Quote Originally Posted by ThoughtfulPirate
    I really want to go to boulder city (although I am one of the DH crew you refer to), I fly in there for my utah trip, so I may be able to convince my dad to go. Nice vid.
    from the pictures you post, you're as much XC as DH so you fit into both groups.

    But, I'm twice your age and half half the skill so if you do make it out there you'll do just fine.

    YR

  8. #8
    "Ride Lots" - Eddie Mercx
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    you mean this one?

    Quote Originally Posted by miles
    immediately to the left of Boy Scout Trail. It's a new trail, so it isn't very well bedded in yet, which is part of its difficulty. Still, it was plenty fun. I'm grateful that Yeti Rider left out of his video a bit on Skyline where I was flailing badly. As I yelled out "Damn! I suck!" Mike said "that'll make the edit." I was not riding well at all.

    miles
    R rated for Adult Language

    and it wasn't "Damn I suck" ;-)

    YR

  9. #9
    If you have to ask...
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    Yeah, that's the one.

    I would have edited it a little differently, though- slightly more lead-in, and not quite such a rapidfire repeat in the middle... but I guess it is all up to the film's director, right?

    miles
    It's 7:09 California time

  10. #10
    Artist formly Poop
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    nice video.
    Pirates are the S

  11. #11
    I HUCK WITH CHUCK
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yeti_Rider
    from the pictures you post, you're as much XC as DH so you fit into both groups.

    But, I'm twice your age and half half the skill so if you do make it out there you'll do just fine.

    YR

    Yeah we just kind of ride whatevers fun. Its just the whole 40+ pound bike thing. It looks like cool terrain out there.

  12. #12
    mtbr dismember
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    Nice, distances?

    I caught the sneak preview on your site several days ago. None of the trail maps for the area have any mileages on them. How long are the XC trails? I've been considering riding there but have to consider the knees. Are there many really steep climbs or is the climbing fairly gradual?

    On one of your recent posts you indicated you still hadn't removed the plastic lens cover on the lipstick cam. I took mine off a year ago and I've never had a problem with it since. The lens is recessed quite a bit. I'm sure I fall a lot more than you.

  13. #13
    "Ride Lots" - Eddie Mercx
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    we talked to one of the guys running the shuttle

    and asked him about the mileage.

    As a rough guide, the Caldera Loop is about 4.5 miles in length. So use that approximation to gauge other distances when looking at the map.

    as far as climbing goes, there are some short reasonably steep sections on Mother and West Leg but only a couple. Girl Scout would be a good gradual climb. after you drop down Caldera, you do a very gradual climb out of the valley. But, the connector from Caldera to Lake Mead Overlook is pretty steep and technical due to some strategically placed water bars. The climb up Lake Mead Overlook is also kind of steep at times. But, that's about it. Nothing too heinous and nothing that just goes one and on.

    You should be okay out there. I actually didn't feel very worked after our day of riding so a nice steady pace was a good thing.

    The descent down River Mt. has some difficult switchbacks (that we walked) but it looks harder than it really is from the top. its a pretty gradually sloping descent. But, you lose a lot of elevation in a hurry with those switchbacks.

    Michael

  14. #14
    I am lost, I'm no guide
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    Thanks for the contribution. Bootleg Canyon is definately on the radar screen for road trip destinations and that vid may have bumped it up a few notches. Thanks!

  15. #15
    I am lost, I'm no guide
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    Thanks for the contribution. Bootleg Canyon is definately on the radar screen for road trip destinations and that vid may have bumped it up a few notches. Thanks!

  16. #16
    "Ride Lots" - Eddie Mercx
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    oh yeah

    I left the plastic cover on but finally took the o-ring out to eliminate the seal. seems to work so far. The color in this video came out a lot better than some others so it may have helped. But, I'm using a loaner DV Cam while my own gets repaired under warranty so the new camera may have contriubted some too. I'm sure that if I had left the o-ring in I would have gotten fogging out there since it was in the mid 90's. I would have been pissed to have driven all that way only to have lost footage.

    we'll see if it keeps working. I have no reason to think it won't.

    Michael

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