It's been a while since I've been on a good MTB road trip, and with the recent move of our renters in Colorado coupled with a brief gap in a crazy summer schedule of work, I took the opportunity to get out into the desert. With a friend to ride with, as well as to help move furniture and "assemble" IKEA's line of mediocre furniture, we left with a u-haul trailer in tow for Durango and the spaces in between. 30 minutes from home, it was clear that the trailer would be a serious nuisance if not downright dangerous. With a new plan, we drove straight through to Cortez and dropped the sketchy beast in a gated lot for the better part of week. Less then a mile from the lot was one of my favorite trails anywhere, and thus did the real trip begin.
My buddy, not in riding shape and unadjusted to the altitude, made it a short, yet fun, ride
A few hours of driving back west brought us to one of my favorite hidden camp spots, surrounded by booming thunderstorms of the wettest monsoon I've seen in awhile. We'd see a lot of them over the next week and a half.
There are four states visible in this shot...
And woke up to this at sunrise
We kept driving west the next day dodging rain or trying to find shade from 100 degree sunshine. We eventually ended up at the day's destination just in time for rain, in the last place you that want it to be raining
We knew the rain was short-lived and that it was dry upstream, so we dropped in just as the sun came out
After camping near the bottom of Red Canyon that night, we started riding Thunder Mountain early to beat the inevitable thunderstorms
The storms built and we raced the approaching rain and lightning
A rare shot of yours truly
After just beating the rain back to the car, a few hours of driving brought us to Moab. In 25 years of camping and riding in Moab, I've had maybe 2 or 3 non-eventuful nights of sleep and this time met my expectations with an exceptionally windy night of camping, followed by perfect conditions for an early morning ride on Slickrock before the heat built
After a good lunch and some resupply, it was on the road southbound, with a stop at a future campsite
And then to this night's campsite, surrounded by the usual monsoon storms
Which we were required to re-sight as the lightning moved closer, but gave us an amazing light show before we climbed into the tents. The morning was equally spectacular
We took a day off of riding and instead had the displeasure of picking up the beast of a trailer and driving the last 45 minutes to Durango. We got a workout emptying the trailer and hauling furniture into my place; not so fun...
My wife arrived the next day and we got out for a spin around town.
The Dutchman gets a taste of Durango single track
To be continued...
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