Hanging and riding in Wood River Valley

Hailey & Ketchum locales.

Thurs night I made the shop ride. Meeting place was Greenhorn gulch parking lot. Everybody took off smoking up the road. Not me, I was way off the back pedaling for what I could get but watched the others  disappear.I go into O2 debt so quickly. I lost what ever I had.

I was so far back their dust settled on the trail. My proposed plan was to maybe make the hi point and then ride down so as not to hold the others up. I pedaled and pushed and caught up w/ group. I was told I was not harshing anyone’s buzz and that i was not too far back. Next stop was the high point. From here it was all down hill. I made the downhill down red Warrior creek w/ the rest. Mark parked his truck @ bottom TH to shuttle 6 of us back to Hailey as trail dropped out on Warm Springs creek road that made its way into Ketchum.

Skies darkened while we were @ TH drinking post ride macro beer. Lightning lit up the ski, more flashes, then some spectacular flashes as we drove out after dark. Little rain w/ storm. Dry lightning storm.

Back @ TH we rallied for some more beer drinking. I lasted till 10:30 then drove back up Deer Creek to camp.

Friday was a rest day. I drove back into Hailey and did  my wash, dropped my Time ATAC pedals @ Chip’s to replace the bearings, and the community pool for a shower. New bearings in the pedals. Stopped @ Powerhouse to talk to Mark about the bottom bracket. he called King and believes that maybe some replacement might occur so I left it w/ him.

Drove back to Ketchum. On a recent Bob Edwards show he interviewed Carl Hiiason and talked about his new book, Starr Island. I  bought it from a local shop then drove out to Corral creek road and buried my nose in it. Sucked in to his story. Almost too comical to be real, but is a lot real.

Today I was going to do a big ride but the forecast was iffy and I wasn’t really feeling well anyway. Plan B is rdie out off Warm Springs up Pacer Creek then down Castle creek. Encountered 3 dirt bikers, that’s all.

Breathing problems left me walking uphill. Elevation topped out @ 8,000′. Can’t believe the elevation is a factor.

On way back to Ketchum I stopped and soaked in a hot spring right along side the road. Very hot but found a slightly cooler spot. I finished it off w/ a quick dunk in a fresh h2o pool fed by creek h2o. However, the hot spring didn’t cook me hot enough for the creek h2o to feel warm. Ouch, cold but I rinsed off the sulphur smell.

Back into town for groceries then out to Corral Creek for camp and no cell phone. I am cooked from the hot spring.

This Fri I will join a group of Spokane riders for labor Day ride @ Curley Lake. I will leave here maybe Wed morn.

Mtn forecast has possible snow in it.

Tomorrow will try the big ride.

Settling in

The King bottom bracket on my bike makes creaking sounds. Mark @ Powerhouse told me to see him @ shop opening of 12:00 yesterday and he would check my bike.

Tues night I hung in Hailey, first for bad Mexican dinner then over to the Powerhouse hoping to visit w/ Chopper after his Bike Oregon adventure @ Oakridge. I parked my van right @ their door step. Being a bike shop /  restaurant it and me became sources of conversation. I am doing what I want while others are wanting to do it.

Chopper did arrive almost @ my departure time. He remembered me and gave me some more ride ideas, one of which I rode the next day.

Drove out Deer Creek road for night. 3.2 miles of sometimes wash board gravel road to campsite 2. FS controls camping to created sites which concentrates the degradation to small specific areas. Somewhere a full moon lit up the landscape.

Yesterday AM woke up again to almost freezing temp. Turned on heater, valve worked. Enjoyed the heat ubtil sun crested ridge warming me up. The van metal expands as it warms making small popping sounds.

Drove into Hailey. Visited w/ Chip. Learned details for Thurs shop ride.

Turned me & bike over to Mark @ Powerhouse. Bike shop is a former room in a house converted to a restaurant. A bike stand is hung from the ceiling.  A couch is in 1 end. Bike parts hang from hooks along the walls. In the bar the bar has a bike parts display case built in under the glass top. Mark went thru the BB. I followed his defect  detection & resolution process w/ what i would do. Ended up w/ a new King BB because first one was installed incorrectly w/ an extra spacer. As a result the crank arm needed to be reefed onto the axle. This side loaded the bearing which toasted it. New BB rides sweetly as in my bike is quiet again.

Kyle called to invite me on a Cameron’s b-day ride up Prairie lake for 5:00 meet time in Ketchum. I’m in. This is also a Chopper suggestion. Meeting place is Ketchum pump track. Drive way out of town towards Galena Summit lodge. Rec map shows the trails as black dashed lines which means they are not recommended for bikers. the up was a single black and the down from Miner is double black. I get freaky when trail difficulty becomes a black. We started out riding up2.6 miles of gravel road to actual ST TH. Good to warm up. Again, I am last. I can’t kep up w/ these youngsters, for that matter most anyone my age. Most number of riders I have encountered on a trail here, and they were almost all women.

Made the Prairie Lake just after 8:00. I was concerned out making it out w/ enough light. I was told downhill was right here except for a climb, no, maybe 2, we were @ the top. Dropped down, someplace weird babyheads, then steep fall line loose, some w/ that plus loose rock. I walked some of the steep loose stuff again because of brake drag dragging earth downhill. Challenging ride. I am better than I give myself credit for.

Made road as light failed. Road was almost all downhill. Mtn bike tires can stir up dust clouds.

Drove Kyle back to his house then drove downtown to Wise Guys Pizza where rest of group riders were debriefing after ride. Eating pizza and drinking tap beer at outside table right on sidewalk till we broke up towards 11:00. Cameron turned 30.

Nick is from Spokane & living here for just a year. He took up mtn biking here first. He asked me about Spokane riding, he might be in Spokane while I am there. We might hook up then I can be the local guide.

Drove out to Corral Creek rode outside Sun Valley for primitive spot. 1st 4 spots were occupied. i drove 1 spot further up the creek for an open spot.

Slept till after 8:00, partially waiting for sun’s warmth, mostly because of 12:00 sleep time.

Visited w/ Kyle @ The Perch in Ketchum then drove down to Hailey. Bought propane.

Tonight’s Chip’s shop ride is out Warrior creek.

How I spend my day is dependent upon who I get involved w/. When i ride by myself I am usually done by midafternoon even riding in the heat. Then I take a shower, buy groceries, fix dinner, work on internet, then bed around 10:00. After work rides rearranges my norm and revises my living tasks, usually no shower, eat prepared food, drink more beer.

Rant: Bike riders behavior on streets: Bikes are a street legal vehicle. They are accorded the same rules and responsibilities as vehicles. rant is riders disregard rules to their benefit then piss when vehicles don’t respect them. Riders who become pedestrian to walk their bikes at a cross walk, sometimes causing traffic to yield because they are in a cross walk. Legally, they are to cross intersection as a vehicle would. Or blow off stop signs and / or lights.

Parked in a piece of shade right off Main  street in Hailey. Red flag warning for most of southern Idaho.

Planning on meeting a group of Spokane folks @ Bozeman for Labor Day.

Done for now.

Stiade the ber stop. Just a bunch of male riders drinking beer, scratching & ll Sawtooths

Back in Ketchum and cell phone land. Time moved on w/ me in it but not captured here. Loose ramble of days & events to follow.

Friday I drove out to greenhorn gulch for a ride. I took off but just lacked the desire & snap so i gave up and dropped back to the trail head. I took a solar shower in the parking lot.

Oh, but I rode Thurs night w/ Chip’s shop up here in Ketchum. Bunch of guys rode. I learned that this ride is a guy’s only ride, the first one I ever rode. We rode same trails that Kyle & I rode which is OK I still suffered on the climbs. One guy had 2 flats and another guy 1. Back @ TH the beer flowed; it was after sundown when we made the beer stop. Just a bunch of guys scratching, spitting, and drinking cheap beer. Mark organized a Sunday ride on the other side of Galena Summit. And I got invited.

Friday I did my wash & loaded up on supplies in Hailey which has an Albertsons, Ketchum has Atkinsons which has better but smaller selection of food stuffs. Visited w/ Chip then drove back to Ketchum where I have been camping out past Sun Valley on Corral road primitive camping sites.

Sat I drove towards Galena Summit stopping @ Galena lodge to meet Don Sheppler, one of the original Hugh Ass team riders from Shenandoah Bicycle Company in Harrisonburg, VA. Other members were owners Tim & Thomas. Jeremy joined later. The team’s idea was racing was too serious so they injected fun along w/ their excellent riding skills. Don told me that they found this pair of pants that somebody sewed additional padding on them to make huge ass. The shorts were exchanged to the next rider. Rode Galena Grinder trail. And that it is. Starts out on flat for maybe 3/4 mile then climbs up on loose wood dirt. Loose and it sucked the energy out of me. I walked a bunch of it. The trail crossed several avalanche gulleys that look like they run every winter. Snow was melted out eliminating an objective risk.

Continued my drive over Galena Summit. Camp spot is Decker Flats @ intersection of 4th of July road.

Drove a bit down stream on Salmon and stopped & Redfish Lake campground. Tom told me about the Sockeye salmon adults returning to Redfish lake, named because of adult males turn bright red before spawning after their 900 mile swim up the Columbia river drainage. This year the adult count is 682 as of Sat eve. I peered over the bridge railing on Redfish Lake creek for 45 mins looking for returning fish. No spot. Later I visited the fish hatchery where I read the placards. No human to ask further questions.

USFS camping facility @ Redfish Lake has $2.00 for 5 min showers. Scored.

Camped @ Decker flats. AM temp was 34 degrees on Sunday. Drove short distance to Williams Creek TH, the meeting place for 9:00AM ride start. 6 of us started out wearing  extra clothes for warmth. At 4th of July road the sun had warmed us enough to slough off the layers. We rode 14 miles on pavement and gravel road to 4th July Lake TH where the ST took off 2154′ elevation gain.

Then the fun started. We shared the trail w/ hikers as we negotiated the tech features. A big hike a bike got us to a pass over looking Ants Basin and a full on view of the White Clouds:

White cloud mountainsAnd looked over Ants Basin:

Ants basin, white cloud behindSteep loose rocky trail switchbacked down to basin. Dropped down warm Springs creek to The Meadow then climbed up Williams creek. Much of the forest was burned back in like ’07. Lodgepole pine.

I rode in my customary last place spot, back where the dust had settled, the rocks quit moving, and the tree branches returned to natural position. Guys waited every now and then. they got a longer rest than me. I wasn’t far behind, they must pedal on downhills.

Turned up Williams Creek for a gentle but relenting climb to divide that dropped us for long last downhill back. Oh, there was a grunter uphill down towards bottom. Williams creek is part of famous Fisher creek ride. While the trail down warm springs was technically challenging, Williams down was smooth and fast. My bike just floated over the brake stutter bumps. Way fun. Excitement came from riding fast.

Mark, the leader, likes to finish a ride @ the TH instead of completing the car shuttle. We rode the 14 miles of road that a shuttle would have covered. Much Millers, Coors, & PBR were consumed while we recalled our ride. Ride data was 36 miles, 5 hr ride time, climbed 4774′ and per the Edge I burned 3244 calories.

Mark is from Raleigh area of NC and speaks w/ a slight accent.

Sat driving almost to Stanley i saw bilious clouds of forest fire smoke and it was blowing up big time. i learned that a lightning strike started it and the winds fanned it big time. Sun the wind blew the smoke away from us. Today much of the lower valley was smoke haze & fire smoke. It is N of hwy 21.

During last night the temp dropped, colder than my doubled down blanket could keep me warm. just b4 7 I crawled out as the sun was striking my van @ Decker flats right on the shore of Salmon river. Outside temp was 21, inside it was 34, just flat out cold for late August. Finally started the heater which needs a new control valve to replaced in Spokane. The valve has problems so I have not used it since Sedona. Chance paid off.

Drove back to ketchum seeking a parking space close to E perch for potential wrench help as I am replacing my chain, cluster, and jockey pulley on my derailleur. No place behind store so I scored a street side on the corner. I set up the bike stand, put my bike in it, and opened up the tool box. Intended to make it street art should anyone stop. If nobody stops is it still art?

Finished up and walked over to E perch to visit. John, the wrench, greeted me by name and reported on our Sunday ride. During the visit people walked in & out some visiting. Rebecca Rausch hangs out here. She just won the Leadville for the second straight time. The new issue of BikeMag had a 1 pager on her including her pic. I was about to ask John if she might be around when she walked in. Cool. I introduced myself and asked her to autograph her article. Score.

Been hanging @ street side parking for internet access.

Tomorrow I will drive down to Hailey to Chip’s where he will rebuild my Time pedals.

Today was a rest day after yesterday’s hard ride. My heart rate maxed out @ 148 bpm, I spent 51 mins anaerobic which really taxed my body. Last night I had a sharp pain in my right upper chest. I feared that I might have damaged my heart. I diagnosed it as heart burn which causes the same pain and ate antacids. This AM when i woke I was cured.

My right hip pains me less and my shoulder just hurts now and then. I am more able to sleep on my right side.

So, over Labor Day some Spokane buddies are riding Curley Lake near Bozeman, MT. I might make the detour East to ride w/ them and then ride several spots as I make my way West on I-90 to Spokane for my 9/13 dental appointment.

Sawtooth mtns are pretty spectacular, quite a relief.

Caught up w/ Grace during our weekly telecon. We made an appointment for an in depth conversation. She earned the finisher award for finishing the leadville but missed her buckle.

Fri I met the honeymooning young couple w/ the sick VW camper. Today I met them by chance @ this great bakery restaurant in Stanley. They live in Bend, OR.