Quiet night back @ Sand Hill parking lot poaching the $5.00 rec fee. Cold down in creek bottom. Warmed myself w/ heater over bfast.
Today is a planned hurken day, maybe 40 miles. Headed up Sand Hill trail. Recent rain filled dirtbike ruts, its the whoops like a small pump track except the trail is narrow rutted hampering pedal strokes. Can’t stay out of most of them. Soil is like sand clay mix offering good traction. I rode the outside edge of ruts that I could. Others I slipped thru on the high side. Many no choice but down the gut. My drive train was coated like thinned wet concrete. A noise from the chain gears told me they were not happy. Conditions improved when hit sign for USFS. Thought they owned the below land also. Dirt bike hacked!
Plan was to ride Sand Hill up then down to Devils Gulch, ride up, exit @ upper parking lot and ride the road to upper Devils Gulch TH down to junction w/ Devils Gulch. Devils down to join Red hill for traverse back to van. Didn’t happen. Rode very strongly. The mud was such a bitch slowing me down. Took almost 1 1/2 hours to get to bottom of Devils gulch. More of same on ride up Gulch. Made junction w/ Mission ridge trail short of upper DG TH. Second bail point and I took it. Years ago I rode the Ridge and swore it off because downhill mtn bikes were beating it up and it was steep down. I remember turning around a ridge outcropping and loosing it over the low side jamming my right quad into the bar end as I went over the bars. My leg was almost useless as I negotiated the rest of the pretty tech trail. AT the van I pulled myself into the van. I pulled my right pant leg to move my foot to the brake. Today, I just cussed the dirt bikes that have just ruined the trails: they are narrow, deep and bumped out. Switchbacks cut for fall line trail.
Devils gulch trail crossed Mission Creek 2X. Both times I waded into the stream and hand washed the drive train.
Made lower DG TH. From here down to Junk man’s “spread” the road is washed out from flood spring of ’09. Right where road bed was washed away I came upon 2 track hoes moving dirt. Fortunately I was able to get around them as opposed to having to ride back and around. Made it thru the junk man’s many dogs.
Big ride, rode strong and well.27.22 miles in 4hrs 32 mins, Climbed 5869′, burned 4872 cals. Pushed my cardio system to 1 hr 49 mins above, hit 154 beats per min.
Headed out of the mtns on way back to Spokane. Found shower @ WA Confluence state park. Continued up US RT 2 leaving Columbia River @ 785′, climbing up a side canyon to sky to sky dry land acreage on the flats @ 2762′ Turned S on the first side road. Turns out it is a county road, unmaintained that drives between fields. Up top, exposed. Sunset over foothills over the Columbia. Big moon tonight.
Tomorrow is back in Spokane. Shoes are in. May the spitter valve be also and it gets replaced.
Trails in Mission Creek drainage were some of my favorites. That was then. Now the miles I rode were hacked by dirt bikes and need to be rebuilt.