Friday, May 28, 2010

From Busy to Sick.

Due to a combination of keeping myself busy, work, riding, and general laziness, (you may mix and match at will) I've been very obviously silent. Unless you only check here at the first of every month, in which case you haven't missed much. I went from busy building and riding bikes to being sick enough that I probably should have been riding my motorcycle to work, not a bicycle. I'm feeling better now, and hopefully I can do some light riding this weekend. As it is now, I may go for a walk/hike later today, we'll see.

So. Despite my lack of activity on the blog, I've been busy, but I've been too lazy to post what I've been doing. So, the rest of this post is largely a photo dump with explanations. First off, HUGE BOX!

Just about 6 feet tall... what could be inside?

A Big Dummy appears! Polar Bear uses Build Bike!

It's Super Effective!

It figures that the first load the Big Dummy carries is to bring parts of itself home. I decided to build my own rack system for it, which required conduit from Home Depot. The Big Dummy frame replaces the Giant frame I had Henry the Packmule built around. So, this bike is still Henry, or to be thorough, Henry the Big Dummy, AKA Henry the Third.

I guess it's two weeks ago now, TC, Alex and I went out to Meadview to visit grandparents and spend TC's birthday there. They took the car with the bicycles in it, I took the KLR. My goal was to ride as much of Route 66 as I could, as well as cut across the desert between Kingman and Meadview using Antares Road, a 40 mile stretch of dirt, gravel and sand.

Breaktime near Valentine, AZ.

Antares Road was a blast. I think there are a total of three turns on it in 40 miles, and is all loose gravel and sand, which made it fun to blast down at 60+ miles an hour. It was so flat that I could see the rare cars coming at me from 5 or more miles away. It also cut about 30 miles out of my trip, bypassing Kingman altogether.
The sunset on the cliffs east of Meadview.

The next day, TC and I went on a ride down a canyon we had found the last time we came out. We had turned around fairly early, and this time we were determined to ride all the way to the river. However, the roadways were all sand, and was much more suited to Pugsley tires, not the skinny MTB tires we both had, even aired down, so we made slow progress and eventually turned around a lot later than we should have. Alex and Grandma Norma were riding around on quads and found us, and gave TC a lift home. I opted to finish the ride, and ended up getting back not too much after them. Despite the sand, it was a really fun ride.

See the ship?

The day after that, we headed down the road to Pierce Ferry, and did a bit of hiking. The landscape here was REALLY weird, because when the lake is full, the entire area is under water. With the lake having been below capacity for years now, the lakebed has exploded with growth, due to all the silt, sand, and minerals deposited by the lake.

The trail wound through sand, hardpack, and rocks. The plants grew upwards of 10 feet tall, and were so dense in places you'd need a chainsaw to get through.

You know how when mud dries up, it cracks and flakes? This is the same thing, on a lake scale. Those cracks are over 3 feet deep.

Peirce Ferry Rapid. That swirl has about an 8 foot drop.

TC playing with the Colorado River clay.

Sunday, it was time for me to head home. I did a lot more exploring on the way home than on the way out, and found (and rode on) some of the REALLY old alignments of Route 66, most of which dead ended where it was buried beneath I-40, or other right-of-ways. I should have taken more pictures, but I was having fun.

Breaktime at Crookton Bridge, on Rt. 66, between Ashfork and Seligman.

Crookton Bridge, the side that's closed. I really like the architecture visible on some of the old bridges on 66. They don't make them look as elegant anymore.

Mileage: -

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