Peering down into the bottom of the canyon I said to Jon, “That looks rideable. There are tracks down there.” “Do you want to do it? I have enough time.”, Jon replied. We pedaled up to the drop in for the creek trail and began our descent into the canyon.
Like most things that you get yourself into, they start off pretty good. Otherwise you wouldn’t be getting yourself into them in the first place. The drop into the creek trail was frozen sand and provided excellent traction and a fast descent. It wasn’t until we got to the bottom that things turned slippery. The trail was snowy on the flat parts where you didn’t need much traction, but turned into an icy bobsled course when the trail pointed downhill and you needed traction most! It looked like previous trail riders had slightly melted and packed the snow, but then it froze solid after that.
On the steepest parts, we dismounted the bikes and tried to walk down the slippery slopes. We looked like a couple of geriatrics with walkers, because walking wasn’t much easier! It was hard to find a foothold that wasn’t slick!
I had some close calls, but Jon didn’t fare as well. He broke his front fender in one corner, and totally slid off the trail into the snow and rocks in another mishap. I looked back just in time to see him picking himself up out of the snow. He said the brakes were locked up and he slid for a ways before coming to a rest in the snow bank!
We finally made the half way mark, and looked at the early exit climbing up the hill. Shoot, we were half way already, and the standard exit was downhill. We chose not to climb out of the canyon, but continued on cautiously.
I had to laugh, because just ten feet to the left was dry ground. We were very close to the sun line where the snow and ice had melted, but there was no where to go but down the bobsled course.
We finally hit some beautiful brown dirt and climbed out of the canyon. We decided that this had not been the best idea to come down here. On the other hand, we got some cool pictures, have some cool stories, and we even got a blog post out of it!
We finished off the ride with a fast run down the Jackrabbit trail. Normally this trail is pretty sandy, but today the sand was frozen. It was so hard that the knobbies were having a hard time digging into the dirt in some places. The morning started off at around 10 degrees, and had only reached about 27 at this time.
We headed back for the office, but I made a stop at the Bicycle Authority on the way to order up some goodies. Hopefully I’ll get to tell you about them next week!