Ah, the joys of having time on my side to consume as I wish. I want to ride but I am not driven to do it every day. And some days that is all I do.

Friday was the drive from Price, UT to Fruita, CO. I slept Fri @ the Price trails head near a pumping oil well. The walls of the van get the motor noise @ bay.  Noticed that price has many laundromats contrary to Sedona that has only 1. Pick one. Put my clothes in the front opening washer and immediately detergent suds filled the drum, strange, the detergent I use doesn’t produce suds. On the final rinse suds were still coming out. I called that fact to the attention to the attendant who said sometimes someone loads the machine w/ soap. She gave me change to run the wash again. Same results w/o detergent only slightly less. Either their h2o comes loaded w/ a suds head or the washer plumbing ran the wash h2o back thru the rinse cycle.

Visited w/ Fuzzy @ Bicycle Works b4 leaving. I learned from him that he marks his trails w/ carsonite posts that are about 2′ high. If he uses the full size height they get blasted by firearms. Too short and the “sportmen” can’t find them.

Stopped in Green River for a shower @ KOA. Bought a cantaloupe @ a roadside stand. World famous melons. I was told these were the last picks b4 frost kills the plant and the melons rot. Choice melon turned out to be past ripe. Ech.

Drove to camp spot above rabbit Valley just inside CO border. I have camped here many times. BLM land where they have taken a stand on care free primitive desert camping by requiring self contained toilets. No more shitting on the desert. Policy keeps the desert tidier including road litter. America can be really clean.

Sat AM I watched a red sunrise out the windshield just b4 the sun cleared the earth. Red sky in morning, sailors take warning. Forecast is for storms in late afternoon. Plan is to get ride in b4 rain.

Drove to the Kokopeli TH off I-70. Arrived late AM, a few cars were in the lot. Sun is warming up. I rode Marys. Lyons, Troy Built, Lyons climb up to Mack Ridge then Mack Ridge down to Mary’s & out. There are tech features that I am still unable to ride and will remain that way. I know when to walk. I rode the climb up Mack ridge all the way which is a grinder, some places I saw 22% gradient when I could see my Edge 305 screen. Saw hardly anybody way out back. As I rode closer to the TH I saw more. I stopped @ an unrideable for me tech feature and watched 3 riders also walk. One guy complimented me on the mag article. He said it was great to put a face to it.

I stopped @ cattleguard @ top of Horsethief where i fell last summer and took several staged pictures of the crash. Today, almost 3 months later my ribs & shoulder still hurt from the landing. I noticed last week when I didn’t ride for 4 days i could sleep on the sore ribs. Once I started riding the pain returned.

Back @ the TH it was plugged. Beautiful day, temp reached 71 in GJ.

Drove into Fruita and parked just outside the Hot Tomato pizza and beer restaurant owned by Jen & Anne. I met Jen last summer. I carried an MBA article on their eatery and the newest cover of Bike Mag, photo credit to Anne. I wanted their autographs. It’s Halloween and the staff is in costume. Jen unknown to me greets me from last summer. I don’t recognize her in her mustache and big glasses. I get both their autographs before the place starts hopping Jen tells me this is the place for fun.

I walked over to Over the edge bike shop. i learned that Troy sold the store but still owns the franchise. New heads.

I walked back to the “Tomater” for beer & pizza pieces for dinner. Jen made the TV broadcast the World Series. I scored a bar seat w/ a good view. Customers arriving all the time almost all in a costume. Place got crazy. Rangers won. I drank 3 pints of New Belgium 1554 beer @ $2.00 a throw, 2 more than I am accustomed to consuming. Shades of hangover. I went for beer & pizza and ended up in a costume party w/ no costume. I was wearing my cowboy hat w/ flowing hair. I tied my red bandanna around my neck to appear like a cowboy. Somebody called me “Willie” and that’s who i became.

Rain fell in early evening. Weather radio stated .02″ fell, humidity this AM was 92%.

Last night I selected a vacant lot to sleep in. There were mud puddles from previous rain. I was a bit affected amking my choice not the sharpest. The soil here has bentonite in it and when it gets wet, you stay until it dries out. i drove across the lot seeking a level spot just off a motel parking lot. I parked where sand had been spread thus I was on an island of firm ground. I drove across some sinking soft mud w/o getting stuck. Today i would retrace my tracks and hope not to get stuck. i needed to turn around in the sand b4 the mud w/o getting stuck in the sand. I gingerly cut turns to turn around then purposefully drove thru the mud spots. Caution prevailed and I made it out. My tires were loaded w/ clay. As i drove on the pavement the clay spun off.

Today i plan on an easier day back out @ Kokopelli’s because the trails are the least rain affected. The forecast is for continuing clear warm weather. Tomorrow is road 18 Book Cliffs north of town after drying out today. I am @ the TH watching rigs w/ bikes pour in. I am counting on the sun drying the trails out more for my later ride.

Yesterday researched showers. There is a CO state XG almost in Fruita. If I ride my bike in I pay for coin operated shower, driving in costs $6.00. Across the road is an RV park charging $5.00. The RV showers are nicer than state showers where usually the h2o temp is fixed &  poorer nozzles. $5.00 is for comfort.

2 aspirin b4 bed staved off the hangover

Desert riding

Slept in this AM waiting for sun to clear front range mtns for warmth. Quiet night.

Today is shorter drive to price, UT on US 6 and over Soldier summit. Strong down canyon wind hit me head on. Road has been much improved since last i drove it back in ’07.

Found Bicycle Works shop. Met owner Fuzzy. His motto is if there isn’t at least one long hair and a dog, turn around and leave. I stayed. We chatted for quite awhile as he had no customers and was enjoyable to talk to. He is having success w/ BLM accepting his built trails. He created the stickie I saw @ Hurricane and he knows Fixie Dave and Quentin & DJ from Over the edge. Stickie is for his shop: “Crappy bikes make baby Jesus cry… Bicycle works making Jesus happy since 2006.”

The trail system is on BLM land above town in the desert. Fuzzy said no freeze thaw because there is no moisture in dirt. The trail doesn’t pack down to a firm surface albeit it firmer than off the trail. It was soft that just sucked energy from me. Riding @ 6000′. Fuzzy said the trail was laid out by following his dog’s interests as he checked out the desert. Twisty & windy. Branches of junipers were cut out enough for him to clear. i am smaller but none the less much attention was paid to what was above the ground. Almost rake & ride trails. He kept rock features to challenge. Rode down a wash for short stretch, add h2o to this dirt and it turns into gumbo almost as bad as freeze thaw. Good to get on some rocky tech challenge like Sedona. I made some moves gaining confidence.

Camped @ TH.

Tomorrow I believe I will head back to Fruita & Grand Junction, CO for a bunch of days then down to Moab. No T-Day plans yet.

License tabs expire on 11/9, renewed them on line tonight. Need to pick a location to have them mailed to before the 9th.

Freeze thaw myuk

Full day planned. temp was 32 @ get up. Out of door about 9:30. North face trail is still frozen but softening. Hand built trail using lava rocks. Crested lower north facing slope and started down a south face. Sun thawed the freeze out of the ground which made the dirt into slime. Rode down aways hoping either trail would be drier or would get into shade. Not so. Drive train slime saturated. Turned around and pedaled a short distance b4 tires were loaded w/ mud such that wheels would not clear the frame and fork. Pushed back to top then coasted down the gravel road back to van.

Packed up muddy bike & muddy tights & headed out for Price,UT. Stopped in Kimberly for h2o and washed off the Turner. Lots of mud which was rinsed off easily. Mud really damages parts. Took my first truck stop shower: pretty posh for $7.00, included towel & wash cloth in tiled bathroom.

Drove interstates to south of SLC, American Fork. Found same place where I stayed last fall.

Tomorrow is Price. Forecast as week progresses is above freezing nights which will prevent the freeze thaw.