The winter did not seem to give up easily so I ended up doing a quick trip south to get some riding instead of freezing in the mud in SLC. The plan was to ride as much a possible to take advantage of a break between storm systems.I left SLC promptly at 6am on Sunday and at 10.15am started riding off the Cottonwood trailhead in Red Cliffs Preserve. The trailhead serves as a middle point to Prospector trail. I rode on that to Church Rocks, and then explored how to get to Broken Mesa Rim trail from there, and back. This turned into 7 hour epic which concluded that the connection is not very easy, but doable. Clickable map and fotos are here.
Monday morning wakeup was quite unpleasant, it was overcast and during breakfast even came a drizzle. I checked the forecast and weather maps on my cell phone and concluded the sun may show up later. It indeed did promptly after 9am when I took off from the Bearclaw Poppy trailhead. I rode the whole set of trails in the area (Bearclaw Poppy, Green Valley Racecourse and Stucki Spring) and then up to Blakes Lambing Grounds and down on the "invisible" road that I found last time to Virgin River Gorge and on the ATV track along it. It got quite windy around noon but it was not too cold so I was pleasantly tired at the end of the ride about 3.15pm. Clickable map and fotos are here.
Then I set off for what turned out to be an adventurous drive home. I hit the well advertised storm before Beaver, it rained till Cove Fort, from there it was solid snow till Scipio, rain after. It was not too cold so at least it did not seem to be slippery, but, there was occasional slush on the road, which made driving and especially passing difficult. I averaged a good speed mainly thanks to the new tires (carefully researched at tirerack.com) and the all wheel drive. I must proudly say that noone passed me in that highway stretch.
I was quite tired when I got home and the adventures did not end then. The rats were quite excited so I let them run around. Beavis kept trying to climb on my shoes and I managed to twice step on his foot or tail, he squeeked a lot. He must have remembered that because after I picked him up he rewarded me with a solid bite in the finger. That was more than enough for me so I was glad the day was over and I ended up in bed.
Still, a great hammer weekend, went more-less as planned. 13 hours of riding vs. 9 hours of driving is not that bad at this time of the year.
U of U / CHPC / Cuma / Travel / English / SW Utah Spring 2005