Saturday, March 28, 2009


So, Josh and I decided to go for a ride, since the lower Elden trails were supposedly dry. So, the first mountain ride of the season in the local Flagstaff vicinity took us up Lower Oldham Trail to where it meets the Elden Lookout road, which we took to the top, then blasted back down the same route. It was a very fun ride, especially after I decided that I should have worn shorts, and that jeans were a bad idea, and I cut them off at the knees to make shorts.

Overall, I think I did well, much MUCH better than the last venture into Sedona, in part due to the fact I had Sobe in my camelbak, not plain water. (*snugs the lizard*) I think that the Sedona rides have helped me with navigating the techical portions of the trail, as it overall seemed much easier to climb, and I was able to roll up and down parts where I had to walk before. In the end, we did about 2200 feet of climbing in an hour and a half, then came back down it in 30 minutes.

Going... up? Elden Lookout Road.

Made it! Looking northward from Elden at the Cinder Lakes area, with Sunset Crater, Sacred Mountain, and other hills in the area.

Looking east, over Doney Park, with the Painted Desert in the distance.

Made it!

This wasn't exactly a great fork to begin with, but after 4 years of me, I think there's not much life left, especially after the downhill blast off the mountain.
Mileage: 29.9

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Evening Shots

Not a whole lot to say... TC and I went on a short, relaxing ride around Buffalo Park and across McMillian Mesa this evening, and I took a few pictures.

I like reflections in the water... this is looking east from a pond at Buffalo Park.

Looking north from the same pond. The San Francisco Peaks poking out from behind the Dry Lake Hills.

Sunset from McMillian Mesa.

TC wanted a picture, too.

This was from a few days ago. I took a trail home that was still muddy and snow covered at points. Check out the mud and snow packed around the tires, it looks like Bi's jealous of the Pugsley!

Mileage: 21 or so

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Sedona Some More!

So Josh convinced me to go on another ride in Sedona. It was 70 degrees, no clouds, the trail was dry... beautiful riding. We went past Chicken Point and out around Cathedral Rock, as well as we got lost.

Well... not really. Aside from where they built a neighborhood since the map Josh had got published...

Anyways, it was a really fun ride. I conquered a few climbs that I botched before... as well as finished the slickrock climb that I flopped over on right at the top. But, the biggest thing that sticks out in my mind, was the fact that I bonked. In cycling terms, to bonk is to run out of energy. It's when your body runs out of carbohydrates, sugars, and/or whatever else it needs to metabolize into fuel. It also can be used to describe dehydration and a lack of electrolytes, blah blah blah.

Anyways, this has never happened to me, and I've been on longer trail rides than this. But, this was the first time I'd also put plain water in my Camelbak. Usually I fill it with Sobe, but I wanted to try something different. (and cheaper.) I have since decided, never again. The last 10 miles or so of the ride I was dragging myself along the trail, not even fully consious of what I was seeing. It's a wonder I didn't wipe out.

All in all, a fun lesson-filled ride I want to do again with Sobe instead.

A hoodoo along the trail.

This looked cool to me.
Mileage: 26.2

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Spring is coming...

...and I don't care what they say about it.

On my way home early this morning, (around 1 AM) I saw five skunks wandering around. Most of them were on NAU campus. One of them was walking down the bike path like he owned it, and refused to move.

As a result, I discovered that the bell I put on Bi is useful for warning skunks out of the way. My rationale is that skunks typically spray you when startled or in self defense. (or so I hope!) So, as soon as I saw a skunk, 40 or 50 feet away, and near where I was going to be, I gave the bell a few rings. Usually the skunks moved a fair distance away and watched me pass. Smart little things.

The skunk waddling down the path, however... He moved off to one side, and kept on trucking along as I rang the bell. I moved as far over as I could away from him and passed him slowly, then sped up in case he changed his mind. No stinkage.

I still say they're cute.
Mileage: 14 (yesterday's and today's.)

Thursday, March 5, 2009

The Homeless Bike

I see abandoned bicycles all over the place when I ride. For example, the same 4 bikes have been locked to the bike racks outside the store for over 6 months now, and they never move, except when they get kicked over when someone else locks up. Most every abandoned bike I see is nearly always the same: Typical cheap department store bike, with flat tires, occasionally with the front fork turned around backwards, and in varying states of decay as the rust bugs eat at the bicycle-shaped objects. Nearly always, they are locked up with a cheap department store cable lock that can be cut with a butter knife.

The above is what I thought when I took pictures of this bike below, as it meets none of the typical abandoned bike stereotypes. This bike has been at the racks underneath TC and Exegete's office building every time I've gone there for the past month.

An older Specialized Hardrock. Note the impressive amount of rust on the chain, and how the bike lock is doing it's best to ensure no one steals the seatpost, and not the bike.

Chopped riser bars... Looks like someone wanted the fixie look that seems so popular nowadays... but wait, what are those...

Yes, brake levers and shifters mounted on the curves of the bars because there wasn't any room on the flats!

The other guy who parks his bike down there said if it's still there in a few weeks he may start pulling parts.

...I call dibs on the frame.

Mileage: ~19 or so.

Monday, March 2, 2009

A Good Day for a Ride!

So, I decided to take the afternoon off from work. It really was too pretty to be in the shop. After taking an hour or two to relax (While I watched Trinity and Beyond: The Atomic Bomb Movie...) I took off on a ride on Henry. I ended up going from pavement, to mud, to snow, to dirt and rocky trails... all in all a nice variety of surfaces to test my Frankenbuild on. And Henry performed well. The gearing was a little too tall for some climbs, and I had to hop off and walk the rest of a hill, but all in all, I'm very happy with my bike. All it needs is fenders and racks.

Henry got a little dirty...

East Flagstaff, from McMillian Mesa.

Looking southwestward, across the mesa.

I picked up a hitchhiking cactus! It bit me when I took my shoe off.

Mileage: 31.3