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  1. #1
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    Reputation: ionsmuse's Avatar
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    The Whole Enchilada

    Trends rules in this here little world. Bike Magazine tells us that Moab is back, and I must lamentably agree.

    It started with vague rumblings of 10,000' descents at the Crested Butte Classic, and really got rolling around 3 pm last Tuesday.

    Me: It's Dave, is Fred there?
    Susan: He rode over from Telluride last night, I'll go wake him up.
    Me: Uhhhh, are you sure? I can leave a message.
    Susan: Yea, he'll want to talk to you.

    A very sleepy Fred Wilkinson was soon on the phone, confirming plans. He had been dropped off at the start of the Telluride-Moab hut route at 6pm the night previous, and ridden through the night to make it home to Moab by noon. 18 hours to ride 200 miles at 17,000' of climbing?

    Be afraid.

    As I should have been. Chad Brown and I rolled in from AZ a bit before midnight, and a vague 6 am departure was confirmed. The goal (with the casual, 540 addition of Flat Pass, backwards) was as follows:





    The descent suite, as it should be known. Burro Pass to Hazard County to Kokopelli to Porcupine. 11,000' pass down to the river at a bit over 4. Add our route up, and you get around 11,000' of climbing, the same amount of descending, and a bit over 80 miles (counting the road back to Fred's place).

    Who's idea was that extra 2k of climbing on Flat Pass, just to avoid some pavement? Not mine.

    The crew (me, Fred, Chad, and Castle Valley closet hardguy Craig Tuttle) was off. The others heading up towards Pack Creek Ranch.



    Craig using grit and a uniquely utilitarian sense of riding style to push up some tough dirt road climbing on the La Sal Pass road.



    Taking a break at 8800', where we can leave the dirt road climbing behind the begin the singletrack hike-a-bike of the Trans La Sal trail.



    The views along the way universally sucked.



    We plodded along, yoyoing as each of us felt weaker or stronger. Nothing to do but enjoy a day of perfect weather and keep the small gears turning. Did I mention I was glad I wasn't on a singlespeed?

    Fred and Chad beginning the final 1.5 miles push up to Burro.



    Fall was very much in the air, welcome change for an Arizonan. Downright chilly in the open pass.



    No pics of the descent. Long day, blah blah.

    The descent is far too much fun to take pictures. The descent is everything.

    You can break it into four distinct parts: the mountain section goes from steep and tight switchbacks to technical roots and creek crossings to open aspen groves. The high desert section, separated by a bit of a road and a short singletrack climb, is fast and twisty, with enough bumps and rocks to keep both eyes wide open. The third, brilliantly technical desert singletrack (shhh!), and the fourth is Porc Rim itself.



    The views remained ok throughout.

    By section four we were in efficiency mode, racing the daylight down. The Chad snuck ahead while I took photos and chatted, and then the Moab boys put hammer to ledge garden and dropped me. I puttered along, afeared of pinchflatting, enjoying the ability of suspension and big wheels to make up for the foibles of fatigue and haste. Chad did pinch in the final singletrack, and we picked our way down, four riders and two small lights.

    Craig was feeling clever for dropping his truck and riding the road section before dawn. He gave us a few lights and sent us on our way. Moab continued to provide, in this case a headwind gusting to 20+ mph as soon as we turned on to 191. Fred and Chad traded pulls in the wind, and I sucked wheels and tried my damndest to not get dropped. That bit of dark road went by fast at 15 mph.

    A clean, well lit house (with soda and popsicles) awaited.

    While not too many may be inclined to partake of our climb up high; some thing being like dark chocolate and raw oysters only for the refined of taste, every serious mountain biker should do this ride. If only from Geyser Pass on.

    And by should, I mean must.
    Last edited by ionsmuse; 09-18-2007 at 07:40 AM.

  2. #2
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    Dang, I thought you were kidding when you asked me if we were planning on riding that as a loop without a shuttle. That's a big day. Congrats.

    I had trouble loading the pics but I'm sure they are good.
    I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth...
    Isaiah 58:14

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  3. #3
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    You are THE man. Killer ride (would be the end of me).

    PS: you have got to try this new bike I have...
    Quote Originally Posted by buddhak
    And I thought I had a bike obsession. You are at once tragic and awesome.

  4. #4
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    Reputation: ionsmuse's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KRob
    Dang, I thought you were kidding when you asked me if we were planning on riding that as a loop without a shuttle. That's a big day. Congrats.

    I had trouble loading the pics but I'm sure they are good.


    You guys will have a KILLER time. It just keeps coming and coming, better and better.

    Eric; so I here, so I here.


    Sorry everyone, no clue why the picture thing isn't working. My technical director (wife) is not around, so it will have to wait. Errrrr.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by ionsmuse
    Eric; so I here, so I here.


    Sorry everyone, no clue why the picture thing isn't working. My technical director (wife) is not around, so it will have to wait. Errrrr.
    D - I herd you was hear, their and everywear.



    Now get that technical director to save your sorry a$$!

    Ed

  6. #6
    Tucson, AZ
    Reputation: chadfbrown's Avatar
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    I pulled the GPS track up today.

    Here are the stats that I have on my loop that we did:

    13907 feet of climbing
    70.59 miles
    12 hours of moving
    5.8 avg speed
    36 mph max speed

  7. #7
    Tucson, AZ
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    Dave,

    Looks like my numbers differ a bit from the original that we had. When I put the track into my PC, I found we climbed a lot more than I originally thought. Check it out.

    Here is the link for the Map of the ride we did. If you want to see the GPX formatted file, click here. I think these will both work.

    Edit: I posted my report on my blog, snagged a few of your nice pics. We going to Taos this weekend for another adventure?
    Last edited by chadfbrown; 09-18-2007 at 12:34 AM.

  8. #8
    The elusive M
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    The Technical Director has Spoken...

    Quote Originally Posted by edemtbs
    D - I herd you was hear, their and everywear.



    Now get that technical director to save your sorry a$$!

    Ed

    Yes that's right. I may have finally gotten off work, but my work is never done...

    though I swear I showed Dave how to handle pictures about five minutes before I left this afternoon.


    Details.


    Thank you sooooo much Ed for calling him on his homophones... I think I aged three years, from grief, when I read that post of his!!!


    -The Elusive M

  9. #9
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    Reputation: ionsmuse's Avatar
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    You grammar nazis can kiss my a**. When I'm off duty I'm off, darn it. In almost every way. At least I don't have a technical writer verbally flogging me for my deviant recreational habits.

    I find the GPS variations interesting. At some point on Porc my watch reset, so I don't have a complete log. It did say a bit over 10k of up, but the bigger number makes the possibility of this weekend more palatable. (I'm trying to find out about maps, but I'm pretty enthused about the prospect.)

    And graph just makes us look sooooo cool.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  10. #10
    brg
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    cool ride...

    yeah - I can imagine that Porc Rim would have been *interesting* on that rigid SS - i guess there is a time and place for gears and suspension.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by brg
    cool ride...

    yeah - I can imagine that Porc Rim would have been *interesting* on that rigid SS - i guess there is a time and place for gears and suspension.

    Yea, the Leviathan is my friend. I did put a freewheel back on the monkey last night...

  12. #12
    abnormally aspirated
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    rode it from geyser this past saturday and thought it was big.

    good on you guys. that's HUGE.

  13. #13
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    12 hours.

    I get leg cramps just reading that.

    From the profile though, it looks like I might be able to do this one.

    I'm really curious. What was the avg to about mile 36? And what was the avg from about mile
    36 to the end?
    -- Evil Patrick

    Some of my Music

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    The trail...shall set you free.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Evil Patrick
    e.

    I'm really curious. What was the avg to about mile 36? And what was the avg from about mile
    36 to the end?

    We left Fred's house (mile 0) at 0620. We topped out Burro (mile 36ish, though I think Chad's mileage is short) at around 1500. Down to the base of Porc (mile 62ish) by full dark at 2000.

  15. #15
    Tucson, AZ
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    Quote Originally Posted by Evil Patrick
    I'm really curious. What was the avg to about mile 36? And what was the avg from about mile
    36 to the end?

    Not sure the average for the sections, but here is a great way to see how each section of the trail corresponds with my speed Elevation vs Distance picture from Motion Based. Again, I was going a bit slower on some of the dh sections when compared to the rest of the group, especially Fred and Craig who seemed to bomb through everything.

    It was an amazing ride, I am still hesitant to believe my GPS since it did not feel like that hard of a ride (14,000 feet of climbing 70+ miles).

  16. #16
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    Reputation: ionsmuse's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chadfbrown
    It was an amazing ride, I am still hesitant to believe my GPS since it did not feel like that hard of a ride (14,000 feet of climbing 70+ miles).

    I knew we should've thrown you in the river. Obviously a swim was needed. Freak.

  17. #17
    Tucson, AZ
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    hahahh. Nice.

    I really thought that we did about 10-11k of climbing, not 14k. That is my reasoning for saying "that hard of a ride"

  18. #18
    frejwilk
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    Quote Originally Posted by ionsmuse

    Who's idea was that extra 2k of climbing on Flat Pass, just to avoid some pavement? Not mine.

    You know, I suggested the Flat Pass idea to Craig earlier in the week. He remarked that it was a great idea, and that he was looking forward to riding it. Plus it could have only added an extra hour... I blame him.

    A few things that stand out from this ride are: Chad asking what tire pressure I was running in the sand at the beginning of Flat Pass (I did feel a tiny bit bad for bringing us that way then). Watching Dave's (fully suspended) big wheels roll off the endless Flat Pass ledges (now the trail seemed like a better choice). The difference between our little break (at beginning of trans LaSal) pictured above, and the hunter's parked just around the corner. The excellent section of trail mid way along the trans LaSal. The perfect weather. How strong Chad was riding considering the uncooperative drivetrain he was dealing with. Those damn beavers driving out all the cattle. The lack of beer or soda in Craig's cooler at the bottom of Porcupine Rim. Craig's enthusiasm for more the next day!

    It was good to meet you Chad. Dave, thanks again (to you both actually) for coming up and getting us out on the ride. I'm already looking for ways to 'eliminate' the extra few miles of pavement before Pack Creek for future attempts.

    FW

  19. #19
    Tucson, AZ
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    Those damn beavers driving out all the cattle. I laughed out loud when I read that one.

    Great ride. Great hosts in Moab. Thanks Fred.

    I'm already looking for ways to 'eliminate' the extra few miles of pavement before Pack Creek for future attempts.


    I was looking at that earlier when I downloaded the loop onto topo, there seems to be a faint little trail just south of the road La Sal Road. I can send you some aerial shots if you want to scout them out.

  20. #20
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    I rode this last Wednesday from Burro Pass, we got a shuttle up to about 10,400 feet. That was a big day, you guys are animals. I agree that this is MUST ride.

    Climbing to Burro Pass.



    Start of the BIG descent.



    From the top of Porcupine Rim with the La Sals in the background, about halfway through this 7,000 foot descent.



    Final drop off porcupine rim down to the river.


  21. #21
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    Reputation: ionsmuse's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by frejwilk

    Chad asking what tire pressure I was running in the sand at the beginning of Flat Pass
    Funny! I think there was more than just fat v. skinny going on there. You locals are sand snakes by necessity.

    Those damn beavers driving out all the cattle.
    Ah, the beavers! Watch out.

    Dave, thanks again (to you both actually) for coming up and getting us out on the ride. I'm already looking for ways to 'eliminate' the extra few miles of pavement before Pack Creek for future attempts.
    My pleasure. I look forward to being able to climb faster, and hitting the rest of Trans La Sal and Moonlight.

    Next year, I suppose.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by chadfbrown
    Here is the link for the Map of the ride we did. If you want to see the GPX formatted file, click here. I think these will both work.
    Wow, cool data set! (cool ride too ) Do you have to use a particular GPS unit to do this or can any that will sync with a computer do it and do you have to pay to use that website?

  23. #23
    Tucson, AZ
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    Motion Based is completely free and can be used with any GPS (at least that I am aware of). Did you check out all the options under summary that you can analyze, like speed, distance, heart rate, laps, weather, etc....? It is a great website and uses Google also. Let me know if you need any help

  24. #24
    Tucson, AZ
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    Ops. Posted your response below. Just got off from working late. Look below to find info about Motion Based. It is free and sweet to store .gpx formatted tracks.

  25. #25
    Not here to cause trouble
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    Wow! Thanks for the write up and for making me ponder the chance of ever doing a ride quite like that. Right now, my modest goal is for 25 miles, all-day pace, and a fair amount of climbing with lots of fun downhill to feel nice and easy.

  26. #26
    Really I am that slow
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    Looks like a very sucky

    ride....

    Put a freewheeel back on your pet monkey?

    Man I had high hopes for you
    Read my BLOG!

    just a guy who loves bikes and exploring

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by chadfbrown
    Did you check out all the options under summary that you can analyze, like speed, distance, heart rate, laps, weather, etc....? It is a great website and uses Google also. Let me know if you need any help
    I did see that, I love it. I'm going to look at it this weekend and mess with my gps to see if I can do it. I'd love to be able to use this to track some of my....more meandering rides to share with some folks.

  28. #28
    Occidental Tourist
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    Mmmm, that looks like a tasty ride. Nicely done
    This is just need to know information: Am i supposed to enjoy the irony or pity the sincerity?

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