Last weekend a bunch of riders came down from Phoenix to ride with the Tucson crew. On Saturday they did Charouleau Gap, a ride I hope to do at some point this year, but I’m still pretty intimidated by.
I mean look at it:
I did meet up with the other riders for the Saturday night dinner to chat about the Sunday ride to Chiva. Now, there was a little miscommunication. I had thought they were going to -Chiva Falls- a ride I had mostly done before with…well with a lot of struggle but still some measure of success, but it turns out they were planning to venture into -Lower Chiva-, a trail on par with the Gap and way over my head.
Luckily a few other riders were willing to take an easier route with me, so I could still sort of be a part of the festivities.
We met at the Red Garter for some massive and delicious breakfast burritos and then headed out to the staging area.
We started out down the same road as the Lower Chiva group.
It was nice to see some familiar faces among the Phoenix crew!
I got completely soaked riding through a surprisingly deep puddle.
The nicely graded road transitioned into a series of rocky climbs and descents.
I was still recovering from a cold and really not on my game -at all-. I slid sideways trying to crawl down between two boulders, scraping my knee and banging my mirror loose. A short ways later my muffle volume increased about 20 fold…because it was laying on the trail behind me.
My ever-so-patient riding buddies helped me gather most all of the pieces to reattach the muffler, but the nut was nowhere to be seen, so we made do with bailing wire. Since it didn’t hold as firmly, they fashioned a splint using a nearby branch.
It held for quite a while until I fell over and snapped the stick, prompting additional sticks to be added for support.
Other casualties included my righ hand guard:
And front fender
I caught a bit of a second wind and decided to try the two-track with the other riders on the way back. It was really fun and challenging, the tightness of the trail really forces you to make good line choices, go slower and think harder about every move. It also gets really exhausting really fast. I fell over on a small but steep climb and let Don ride the Zeb up for me.
Everyone at the top totally saw me biff it.
I really want to retry those trails soon. I didn’t make the whole thing this time.
We all met up at the Irish Pub for some beers and greasy food afterward.