I completed Ironman Wisconsin two months ago and had every intention of continuing my triathlon training once I got home. The problem is, once I got home, I was so overwhelmed from the training that I just wanted a break. I didn’t want the stress of daily training. I took a full week off and it was terrible. The whole time I felt like I should be doing something. After months of training I had taught myself to constantly be going. What came of this drive to be doing something? Mountain biking.
I have ridden a mountain bike for as long as I can remember. But with my Ironman training this year, my regular mountain bike rides fell to the wayside. I tried to keep them going but I had so little extra time. I always felt like I needed to be on my TT bike instead of in the mountains. Once I got home and my drive for Ironman training wained, mountain biking picked up the slack. I began riding multiple times a week and found every excuse I could to get out and ride.
There is a huge difference between mountain biking and road biking, at least for me. With a road bike, I am constantly concerned with the data. How many miles, how fast, what is my cadence, and how much power. While on my mountain bike, I don’t care as much. If I ride two miles or twenty, it doesn’t matter. Most of the time I don’t even have a computer to tell me how far I have gone. That was the case this morning when I went out for a ride. I went to an area that I was kind of familiar with but knew I had only been so far on the trail. I decided to just go for a ride and see where the trail went.
It was an exhilarating feeling. The hills were steep, the wind was whipping, and the temperature was cold. It was amazing. Riding along, no one around, no noise, no distraction. Just the pedal stroke and my breathing. This is was what mountain biking has turned into for me. Adventure. Finding new trails, unknown routes, and unplanned expectations.
Riding where I do, I am constantly running into Camp William “No Trespassing” signs. It puts a little bit of damper on my exploration. I’m not as courageous on my mountain bike and less likely to hop their barbed wire fence than when I am running. Talk to me about the last time I hopped the fence.
As I was riding and getting more elevation the clouds began to roll in. It was crazy to watch and kind of eerie to experience. They were moving so fast and would engulf me as I rode. It made for beautiful, surreal landscapes.
I had to stop a few times to try and capture the crazy clouds. One minute I would have clear’ish skies and the next minute I would completely socked in. It was so cool.
I don’t know how far I road but eventually I came upon this trailer/cabin/yurt looking thing. I was so jealous. Talk about an amazing location and get away. I wish I know who owned this place. I would like to ask them how it came to be and how often they were there. There were no tracks in the snow, so I am guessing not recently. I sat here for a minute on my bike looking at the property and wondering what it must be like to wake up here and go for a walk in the brisk, morning air. No one around and everything quiet. It must be amazing.
I road a little further than the cabin and the trail turned to snow. I continued a little further beyond that but once my wheels started spinning in the snow I lost my will to continue on. It was amazing and cold and wet. This is what makes adventures worth going on. If it was as easy as sitting on the couch it wouldn’t be all that memorable or interesting. Bombing the downhill did not suck either. I rode up for about two hours and I got down in roughly twenty minutes. This is the beauty of riding in Utah where you are either going up or down.