Tag Archives: Coyote Ridge

No Thoroughfare Trail Colorado National Monument

Sunrise Shift

“The night is the hardest time to be alive and 4am knows all my secrets.” 
― Poppy Z. Brite

Melinda and I hit it early today so that our husbands could go out later. Upon arrival at the parking lot, there was this man sleeping on the ground by his car. It gave me some ideas for providing a place for people to stay that’s not in the parking lot.

We had a fun climb up Pet-e-kes, crossed over to Miramonte Rim, rode it both counter-clockwise, then clock-wise. Both ways are super fun! We even had some fun working on climbing up some of the ledges- they had been easily manageable for us before, but after all the rain recently they’ve been rather washed out, offering us some challenges.

Melinda’s always nice to chat with so all in all, it was a good ride. I told Dennis I’d be home before he was to leave for a SAR training at 9. I know what you’re thinking: I’m an awesome wife. Well, it’s true.

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elisa jones mountain biking

Lunch Loop Adventure (due to totally crazy wind and washed out trails) with a bonus Jeep drive around the Magellan Loop

“Disaster is a natural part of my evolution toward tragedy and dissolution.” 
― Chuck PalahniukFight Club

No big deal, just another early-morning ride at the Lunch Loops with my peeps Melinda and Dave. It was a little chilly and a lot windy, but we headed out anyway.

We climbed up 3 Sisters trails, which had altered with all of the rain lately, but were rideable for the most part. Or would be if I was wearing my flat pedals.

We took a left onto Leftover Lane and Dave had a spectacular crash due to attempting a little 2-wheel-off-the-ground move and the wind catching him…. He survived to continue to ride. We dropped down to Miramonte Valley and despite my desire to ride up to Miramonte Rim via the second-half of Leftover Lane, I was out-voted and we headed up the valley. Which was when things got even MORE interesting.

The erosion was ride smack-dab down the middle of the trail and the rut was 6″ deep with another foot of washed-out trail on top of that. It was virtually unrideable. And when we got further into the drainage it was even worse- no trail at all. Just a rock jumble where everything had washed and shifted. It was hike-a-bike. All of it.

The climb up to Coyote Ridge, though, seemed to survive, and Coyote Ridge was a nice climb. We continued up it, connecting to Raven, and Dave had another crash at the top of the steep climb. Poor man is going to be hurting for days.

Yet, this was opportune as it allowed us a few moments to enjoy the sunrise while he recovered his senses and assessed the damage. It was beautiful (the sunrise, not his crash)

We attempted a descent down Moto, but it was also a gutted mess and my confidence was very very low. I’ve ridden that better packed in snow.

We all made it out alive, though, having taken twice as long to do those trails as it would have typically taken us.

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Later this morning, I picked up Tim and we took the Jeep and a whole bunch of route-marking flags to stash them along the Grand Junction Off-road course. It was relatively uneventful, other than we got some really nice pictures.

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grand junction sunrise


“We shouldn’t be here at all, if we’d known more about it before we started. But I suppose it’s often that way. The brave things in the old tales and songs, Mr. Frodo, adventures, as I used to call them. I used to think that they were things the wonderful folk of the stories went out and
looked for, because they wanted them, because they were exciting and life was a bit dull, a kind of a sport, as you might say. But that’s not the way of it with the tales that really mattered, or the ones that stay in the mind. Folk seem to have been just landed in them, usually their paths were laid that way, as you put it. But I expect they had lots of chances, like us, of turning back, only they didn’t. And if they had, we shouldn’t know, because they’d have been forgotten. We hear about those as just went on, and not all to a good end, mind you; at least not to what folk inside a story and not outside it call a good end. You know, coming home, and finding things all right, though not quite the same; like old Mr Bilbo. But those aren’t always the best tales to hear, though they may be the best tales to get landed in! I wonder what sort of a tale we’ve fallen into?” ― J.R.R. TolkienThe Lord of the Rings

It feels so good to be home again, with the dirt and rocks and overall technical goodness rolling under my wheels, with Yampa the trail dog kicking up dirt in my face as I chase Dave IMG_4985 IMG_6912 photo 1 photo 2 photo 4down the trail.

I wasn’t perfect, but I applied my refreshed skills and felt confident. I didn’t go nuts trying new stuff, but I was happy. The sunrise was immaculate and I felt strong and that feels pretty good.