Monday, August 30, 2010

South West Utah Bike Trip

Well, there was supposed to be a wedding this past weekend up on Gooseberry Mesa. And for those who have ridden Gooseberry Mesa know that it is a destination for mountain biking. When my friend Kevin Talbot called me and invited me to his wedding a month ago there wasn't any hesitation on whether to go or not. The only question was how much riding was I going to get in. It turned out the wedding was cancelled due to travel issues for the groom and bride from British Columbia so it was game on for a full weekend of biking in the Hurricane area. TR Larson came along for the ride as he has never ridden in this area and he was not to be disappointed. We left after work on Thursday and arrived at the Jem TH at 1.30am where we hooked up with Paul Adams from Cortez (a coincidence he was traveling in the same area) for a Friday morning ride on the Jem Trails outside of Hurricane which lie below Gooseberry Mesa. We ended up riding it both directions in two separate rides that day. The loop is 21 miles with fast flowing single track mixed with some rocky techy climbs along a few rims. The plan was to go to Gooseberry that night and camp but the torrential rains that afternoon made the access roads to Gooseberry Mesa impassable until they dried out so we went back to the Jem TH and rode the second time. Saturday TR and I met my buddy Adam Pace from St. George for a ride at Little Creek which is a short drive from both the Jem and Gooseberry Mesa trail systems. Little Creek is a cross between Phil's World and Gooseberry Mesa trails with fast flowing single track and fun slick rock areas made for playing around on. It was my second time at Little Creek. We also found another loop we hadn't known about previously. The Little Creek Trail system is 15 miles total with 2 hours of pedaling. Now it was onto Gooseberry Mesa and TR and I set up camp and got to riding about 4pm on Saturday and rode the Gooseberry Mesa loop clockwise in just over 2 hours and 14 miles of riding. It is fun slickrock and both technical and fast single track all mixed about. The wind was howling out at The Point. My favorite trail on the mesa is Hidden Canyon or as originally named years ago; Rats in the Maze. I never get tired of this trail system. It was probably my 25th visit if not more out there in the past 12 years where Laura and I first discovered it in 1998. On Sunday morning TR and I went back out for some more pedaling time and went to the North side of the Mesa and rode the Windmill Trail over to Bowls and Ledges where we cut over to Hidden Canyon to the South Rim (Rattlesnake Trail) back to God's Skate Park and back to the camp where we reluctantly packed up not wanting to leave this mecca. We were all smiles all weekend. No crashes and no mechanical issues to boot. So, with 5 rides and 3 locations under our belts we traveled back to Colorado where we were greeted with rain. Looking forward to the return trip at Thanksgiving. Oh, thanks for the wedding invite Kevin. If it wasn't for you this trip wouldn't have happened.
Lots of pictures to come tonight of all three rides.

The mobile man cave on location at Gooseberry Mesa.

I was having a great time with smiles abound.

1 comment:

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