After finishing Red Hill & Devil loop, doing my wash, buying some groceries, driving to Wenatchee to the FS office, finally driving back to Devil’s Gulch TH for the night.
I learned that the destructive Spruce Budworm is the culprit for eating the bud ends on the Doug fir trees. The caterpillar is the destructive life stage that eats the buds. The trees in studies have shown that the outbreak will run its course and most trees survive. The mountain sides are tinted rust orange from the dead branch ends. Massive attack.
Yesterday I dilly dallied waiting out the sun’s warmth b4 pedaling up the road to the Mission Creek TH way uphill on logging road from where I am. I got warm right away once moving into patches of sun. First part of road stays right against the creek, or rather the bulldozed road followed the creek bed diverting it where necessary for the road. Mother nature struck w/ a massive runoff that in some places retook the road. There was one serious scramble to cross a washout. The road closure cuts down on the mtn bike shuttle riders who were the largest rec group to ride the trail I suspect. Dirt bikes and horses still get their go @ the trails. I decided that enough wasn’t enough to just do the shorter Devils gulch but to continue another 3 miles uphill to the Mission Creek TH which is more technical. I walked some of the road just to shake the kinks out. Getting to the top took 2 hours, descent was just over an hour. Had trail all to myself. Dirtbike affected. I still enjoyed my ride as I was challenged and rewarded for my decisions. 28 inch bars are the bees knees.
Somewhere down towards the bottom I ran over a rock that kicked up and smacked my rear disc rotor destroying its flatness that caused it to rub aginst the pads just like the brake was pulled. Hard pedaling going uphill. I checked out my bike @ the TH to determine why the rear wheel made strange sounds. There are biting flies that look like a house fly that just chewed on me. I took a solar shower just advertising open flesh to chew on.
Drove back to Das Rad to buy a rotor and new brake pads. Got the dragging wheel sorted out.
Spent evening in Leavenworth planing on sleeping in the ski hill parking lot in internet access. A Sound of Music production had filled the parking lot. I bagged that moving back to Sand Creek TH where I have stayed. No pic to show what this guy has created right alongside the Mission and Sand creek rds, the collectibles just allowed me to pass unscathed. Authorities can’t get him to comply w/ laws.
So today I drove to Angles Staircase TH way back up in mtns. I rode this 2 years ago. remember the nasty drag your bike up this hike a bike section above Cooney Lake? Remember how horse & dirt bike beat the tread is? I remember the alpine scenery was worth the effort. That’s my plan.
I am parked along side the Methow river south of Twisp because I found internet access to pay my due cell phone bill. It’s in the 80s, cloudless, and little wind.