SSSS @ AZ Trail (Kentucky Camp) Long with pics- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    SSSS @ AZ Trail (Kentucky Camp) Long with pics

    SSSS = Slow Singlespeed Solo Sojourn

    On Sunday I decided to finally bury the demons about riding solo. (I once broke my radius on a 28 degree day 4 mile from the truck). I took my ExploSSif out to Kentucky Camp and the Arizona Trail out in the Santa Rita Mountain in southern AZ. I have done this ride about a half a dozen times, always geared. Since switching to SS a year and half ago, I have always thought it would be a tough haul with some of the low angle climbing that I remember, it wasn't that bad, and I had a great time. So here is my little visual journal, ala Hollywood (always inspires with his pic posts).




    The view from the road on the way down there,




    You'll see plenty of Arizona Slow-Elk. The Coronado National Forest's answer to lawnmowers



    This is obviously the start of the ride, for at least where I start.



    These next few shots are from the refurbished bunkhouse at the old Kentucky Camp. This was a hydraulic mining operation that was working at the turn of last century. We'll get to ride some of the waterworks later.



    The next couple of shots come from Boston Gulch, the little canyon that the camp is set in. There are still pits left over from the hydraulic mining that took place here.


    After climbing the ridge in the background, you top out on a jeep road with spectacular views, and right turn following the signs for the trail leads you to some interesting singletrack before you have one of the highlights of the ride.



    There are people that say, that every mountain bike ride should include some sort of pipe, the ones that I like don't have any smoke involved, but to each his own.


    A really tough switchback section, I haven't even heard of someone cleaning it going up.



    This next section is a 120' descent in about a 1/4 mile. I almost made it up the first time I came out here. There are two sharp switchbacks, with rocks in between, and off camber water bars that threaten you with a Miles type wipeout down the hillside if you are not carefull, up or down.



    Looking up from the parking lot that is in the top right of the photo above.



    Not all of the trail is like this, the jeep road climbs are much easier than I remembered, even for a slow, gravitationally challenged individual such as myself.



    After a couple of miles like this, you get to the turn around point. I have done this ride at least a half a dozen times, and I have always seen water at this point.



    The way back is dominated by the flume that brought water into Boston Gulch through Gardner Canyon. The pipe you saw earlier was to get the water from the higher south side to the lower north side, to take the water further north to Kentuck Camp. The signs say that the mining company spent over $200,000 in 1903 to only get a couple of thousand dollars worth of gold. The flume was initially 6 feet wide, and several feet deep, you can ride the remnants today. The photo of the rock wall is the remains of Stetson Dam, built circa 1903, you can see parts of it on either side of the wash that now runs through it.



    This last picture is one of the view from the flume while you are riding back. It lets you see why I moved back to AZ for the second time (this is my third time living in TucSSon). While people on the east coast were riding in snow, I was in knee warmers and arm warmers.




    So this is how yours truly rides when out here, stress free and warm.

    Thanks for looking, and enjoy your bike!
    See some of you at the 24 hours of the Old Pueblo!
    veelz

    Gravity, not just a good idea, it's a law.
    The only one consistently and constantly applied, no exceptions.

  2. #2
    Skulker
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    Sorry I missed this.

    Nice pix! This is what I bagged on last weekend? Dang! I guess I'm more lame than I thought. I would have been useless on the tech stuff anyway. Besides, as it turned out, our prior weekend's ride at the 50-Year Trail left me with a mechanical that would have turned me back regardless of lameness. A.B.E. is already working the case. Better it happened now than in, say, mid-February.

    BTW, were you planning on any pre-rides of the 24 Hour course before the gun goes off?

    laters

    =Jason=
    FREE BAJA ARIZONA!

    "Live in Northern California once, but leave before it makes you soft."
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  3. #3
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    So..

    how long did the ride take? Did you do the whole IMBA "Epic" route?

    I have a old riding buddy I need to come see in Tucson. I have often wondered if I could SS this ride....

    MC

  4. #4
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    time and such

    Quote Originally Posted by MellowCat
    how long did the ride take? Did you do the whole IMBA "Epic" route?

    I have a old riding buddy I need to come see in Tucson. I have often wondered if I could SS this ride....

    MC
    MC-

    It took about three hours, but I stopped a lot to take pics and talk to people. There was the one stop of about 15 minutes where I wrecked going up the big swtichbacked hill. Stem hit me in the chest (nice hematoma) and my AA (ample a$$) landed on a rock leaving a silver dollar sized purple knot. I don't know if it is the true IMBA epic ride or not, I have done this with SDMB beofre, and they find a way to suffer more on climbing by bypassing the singletrack up to the ridge by going up and down on a lot of fire roads. I personally like my way better, and some of their route has been closed anyways.
    veelz

    Gravity, not just a good idea, it's a law.
    The only one consistently and constantly applied, no exceptions.

  5. #5
    Nat
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    Thanks for the write-up. When I lived in Tucson that was one of my favorite rides. I've only ridden it geared, but now I have a SS 29er and wonder what it'd be like on that bike. I ate it pretty good on that 120' descent once, ooof.

  6. #6
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    Yo Veelz

    Looks like you're over achieving on the QQQQ-SW training regiment. I could post a 'facinating' photo expose' of the spin classes I hope translate into what might remotely resemble fitness (and then I woke up) for Olde Pueblo.......it looks like you had a nice ride.

    QQQQ,

    g

  7. #7
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    skip pre ride?

    Don't worry about me overtraining. We could skip the preride of the course and do this instead if you want. We should let Noel go out on his first lap in the dark without preriding, should be a blast back at camp to hear what he has to say.

    scott
    veelz

    Gravity, not just a good idea, it's a law.
    The only one consistently and constantly applied, no exceptions.

  8. #8
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    Very nice !

    We were down that way last March - out of the rides we did Kentucky Camp was my favorite.


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    One Gear and going Nowhere

    Tonight's QQQQ spin contingent giving the team salute.
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    The Q Spin Bike

    We all fight over who'll get the Q spin bike.
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  11. #11
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    Artsy-Fartsy

    And finally an artsy-fartsy shot of the lonely spin bikes waiting for some love.
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  12. #12
    One gear to rule them all
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    Somebody turn on the lights
    Quote Originally Posted by LakeRaven
    Tonight's QQQQ spin contingent giving the team salute.
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    Todd............. If you can't be kind, at least have the decency to be vague

  13. #13
    34N 118W
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    Good job! nice shootin' Veelz

    looks like a cool little adventure. Nice pics, nice write up.


    Quote Originally Posted by veelz
    So here is my little visual journal, ala Hollywood (always inspires with his pic posts)
    aw shucks.

    Cheers,
    HW

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by veelz
    Don't worry about me overtraining. We could skip the preride of the course and do this instead if you want. We should let Noel go out on his first lap in the dark without preriding, should be a blast back at camp to hear what he has to say.

    scott

    Maybe we should do this ride on Sunday afternoon after the 24 OP.

  15. #15
    cmh
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    that trail _rocks_

    way late on the reply but hey...

    We did that trail with Western Spirit this year, and it was awesome. Our guide cleared that switchback climb. seriously strong dude

    pictures are great but just don't -- can't -- capture how pretty it was out there.

    thanks for "brining me back" even though your pics were over a year before we got there!

  16. #16
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    not only did he clear it. what was equally impressive was what he cleared it on. a specialized enduro all mountain bike. that's a heavy bouncy bike to climb that switchback.

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