Sunday’s mountain bike adventure took us into the mountains above Lakeview. Our goal was to see how high we could go before hitting snow, hoping to reach old Red House up on Franktown Creek near Hobart Reservoir.
Jesse and I left our neighborhood, and picked up Jeff P along the way. We ascended Combs Canyon, and rode through Lakeview to Hobart Road. This is where the real climbing started.
I was hoping for firm sand from the recent precipitation, but the beginning of the dirt climb was pretty dry. I put my bike in the granny gear, and slowly pedaled up the hill at an average of 2 mph. Once we got up near the trees of McEwen Creek, the trail began to moisten up a bit. I was thankful, since it seemed to just keep getting steeper.
The mountain scenery was spectacular, and it was hard to believe that I was just at my house not an hour ago. Periodically we came out of the trees and were rewarded with views of Washoe Valley and Carson City.
Right before the water station the trail pitched up real steep, and forced me off my bike. My legs were cooked! Once I was able to see straight, I saw Jesse and Jeff P just around the corner, and walked over for a much needed break. I ate and drank, and watched Jeff P and Jesse covet my bagel and cream cheese. There were remnants of the old Virginia City pipeline near all the modern equipment that provided a window into the past, and provided good photo opportunities.
Pipeline Road from here was mostly flat! It was heaven compared to the climb we just finished. It was here though that the snow started to encroach into the road. You could ride around some patches, others we had to port the bikes across.
When it became evident that we’d no longer be able to continue riding up the road, we took in the grand scenery once more before heading back. We could even see the casinos in Reno from our perch above Washoe Valley.
Once back at the water station, we flew part way down the steep descent and then headed south on a secret trail. As legend has it, this trail was built during the days of the great Flume Trail Race. This steep singletrack descent is pretty overgrown, and probably hasn’t been maintained since before the waterfall fire. We had to hike through a bunch of fallen logs at the end, but eventually arrived at the top of Vicee Canyon for another fast descent down to timberline.
We crossed over to the Ash Canyon trail system, and rode up the Four Day Trail to make our final descent down the Creek Trail. The temperature really warmed up, and we shed our wind gear. The sheep had gathered at the base of the Jackrabbit Trail, and gave us the final glorious view of the day.
We ended up at Jeff P’s house for beer, chips, and salsa. Jesse had a couple beers to help numb the pain of his face plant on the 7 Steps Trail, and it was probably an hour later when I finally told him he still had dirt on his nose. It was a lot of work to get up to where we did, but the views and good times were well worth it.