1. Build a boat
2. Build a bike trailer for the boat
3. Put the bike and trailer and supplies in the boat
4. Float the boat with the bike down the river for 30-40 miles, camp along the way
5. Exit the river, put the boat on the trailer and attach it to the bike
6. Tow the boat back through the desert behind the bike for 35-40 miles, camp along the way
7. Eat a burger at Ray’s
Took a three-day bikepacking weekend and did a late-season ride in southern Utah. I’ve wanted to do this ride for a couple of years- was worth the wait. High 30’s to low 40’s at night, mid 60’s during the day. Short days meant starting at sunset the first day and riding on a moonless night for ten miles. Lights on I crawled up the Reef to camp at 6000 feet. Windy, cold but made for a stunning view in the morning. A true Slope Oak start to the day.
February was datacenter migration time, which meant a few trips to Las Vegas. The last one would require renting a giant SUV to haul some IT crap. Since I had to drive that thing back home, there was enough room for my bike and gear, and we would finish up work Friday morning the scene was set for my first bikepack of 2018. In the sixties during the day, high twenties at night. Not bad for wintertime.
Silver Island Mountains Register
I wanted- no, needed another bikepacking trip before the snow. Threw together a quick overnighter just outside of Wendover, UT. Between low-end desert casinos and the Bonneville Salt Flats lay the Silver Island mountains, with Floating Island right next door. My plan was to do a figure-eight around the island with a side trip over a causeway seen on Google Maps to camp on Floating Island. Being an isolated mountain range with one road around it I forsook Navigation Devices. Just need to look for a left turn somewhere around 30 miles. The satellite photos made it look so clear. Oddly enough, things don’t always look the appear with the same clarity at ground level.
In which I take my youngest on his first bikepacking trip through the Cathedral Valley- also the first non-solo trip for me. A seasoned backpacker and both youthful and strong, the ride resembles my solo trips as he disappears ahead. I lag behind, alone and happy.
August is not what you’d call a prime desert riding month in Utah. With the Wasatch and Uinta mountain ranges in my backyard there are ample opportunities for more elevated exploration. Temps in the nineties during the day drop to the forties at night. Moose and mule deer appear along the way, our paths intersecting for a moment, each sizing up the potential threat of the other. In the fullest acknowledgment that the encounter is serendipitous, not sinister, we turn our backs to one another and continue on.
Visiting an old friend, having ridden through the Cedars as part of the The Wild Horse. Taking the short course route I come upon the junction to Hastings Pass, the road continuing around the mountains the bastion between the dry high desert landscape and black ash.
This is the first outing on my shiny, roll-y, rubber and steel new ride. What better way to christen it than a solo overnighter on the White Rim.
Desert build, lots of water storage.
arches by backroad
I found myself with an open weekend and a desire to revisit Arches in the style of Ed Abbey circa Desert Solitaire. No, not barefoot, drunk and dressed like a ranger. Well, maybe two out of three. Anyway, heading in to the Park using the original entrance. Still remote, dirt and a road-less-traveled way to bikepack into a place that saw 1.3 million visitors last year.