Wednesday, October 31, 2012
|Pocket full of shells and time to myself|
|Late season duck surprise|
Friday, October 26, 2012
|Soup town morning|
|Dtown slick rock!|
Monday, October 22, 2012
Friday, October 19, 2012
|Buffalo Creek burn out|
|Buff Creek rocks become strange bedfellows|
|Morning drive to Monarch Crest tour.|
|High, cold and endless: Monarch Crest|
|A-Rog feeling the warmth of the Colorado sun down in Salida.|
So like I had mentioned we hit a lot of trails on our recent trip out west. I had also mentioned that shooting was unfortunately not a priority.
Our rides were long, at altitude and had (at least for me) high exertion levels, especially with a full camera pack. So many times I just chucked the 5D Mk2 and went with the point and shoot, and of course not being super inspired by shooting the point and shoot I just rode my brains out!
Our trip started out with one hell of a lot of driving. We left on Friday night from Duluth at about 6pm and arrived at Buffalo Creek just outside of Denver at about 5pm the next day. Fried does not describe it and after what happened to us at Buff Creek I have to also use it as an excuse. First off let me say that as a photographer Buffalo Creek is by far one of the most interesting visual places I have ridden in a long time. I could have spent a season shooting all that I witnessed there. Unfortunately for us, we only had a few hours. We used all the daylight we could, and the bummer was that even that was not enough! We got caught out on trail, at the highest point no less in total darkeness. What was going to be a fun fast and well earned descent turned into a hike a bike and "strider" crawl in the inky black darkness to our car. Our bloodthirsty need to ride had overcome our need to be prepared and we paid for it, luckily however we did not end up spending the night out, as that was a very real possibility.
Once fed and back on our game, we once again hit the car and drove as far as Fairplay so we could hit Salida early in the morning and ride the Monarch Crest Trail with my buddy Nate Porter. The morning dawned cold and frosty and the Crest started out that way as well. Special thanks to Nate for the tour, we were not the speediest of riders, but we got the job done and ended the tour with beers and chile at Nates.
Both the Monarch Crest and Buffalo Creek were eye openers for our crew. We have grown so spoiled by purpose built bike trails that we had to pull ourselves back into the head space of riding backcountry and multi use trails. We loved em going down, we hated them going up and we saw nothing but lost opportunity in both directions. Ultimately we realized the luck we have here in the Midwest in the fact that we are able to work more independently of horse and motorized use on our projects and thus create extremely high quality MTB trail experiences.
No doubt though, the views were worth the work and we will never have those back home....
Wednesday, October 17, 2012
The trip had it all. We rode, Buffalo Creek near Denver. We hit the Monarch Crest Trail in Salida (with my buddy Nate Porter) and we hung with my bro in Durango and both fished the Animas river and rode in Overend Park.
Then we hit NM and survived the World Summit festivities and responsibilities and also had some great rides at Dale Ball and of course Winsor Ridge. After the summit we hit the road and checked out the Angel Fire Bike park. After a full day of riding we headed north and east to Bentonville, Arkansas to check out the Slaughter Pen trails.
I guess the take away is that we are home now, we are exhausted and yet fully inspired. I will try and drop some photos on the blog here the next few days to cover the trip. Unfortunately I did not take many, we were always moving and always busy with other things, so dont expect much!
Tuesday, October 09, 2012
|Buffalo Creek, CO|
|Heights, vert and Altitude|
|Cold Starts in the morning|
|Snow and mountain biking?? Already?|
|Frosted Shredded wheat|
|Icy Spokes, icy breaks=equal slow stopping|
Tuesday, October 02, 2012
Monday, October 01, 2012
|Ryan Nelson reliving Saturday morning cartoons.|
After being gone over the weekend I decided to check out the progress on the new Duluth Flow Trail at Spirit Mountain (which needs a damn name by the way) and was super stoked on the progress. However it is obvious that people are poaching it despite the fact that it is as soft as a new fallen snow and the damage is a bummer. Please folks, I know it is hard but please wait for some water to fall and harden the trail! Then come out and help us shape and compact it, if you can do that then we will have some insane riding for years, versus your one slow assed descent on sugar berms.....If you need to ride something, go to the Harbor and ride Bullwinkle!
|Watching and waiting to see what happens|
|A worthy Mississippi view|
|Pelicans heading for Mexico|
|Funny looking ducks around here|
|Heading home to check out the trout streams|
It has been a great fall. Great for work that is. A lot is getting done and I have to say, never complain about success. However I am grieving the fact that I am missing a lot of my fall hunting and fishing time because of it. This weekend I was able to scratch that itch a little bit. Duck hunting in the morning with my father (despite the summer like weather) and then due to the early stop times (cant hunt past 4pm early season here) hitting the trout streams for the evening hatch. I was also able to hang with my parents and of course my own family as well. In fact Margaret and I paddled across to the Trempealeau Hotel for a G&T, one of our first dates and then the site of our wedding.
I love where I live and what I do, but I have say I could just chuck it all, move back to Winona and become a river rat without any problem or regrets.....