Sunday night up the Middle Fork of the Willamette

3 days of trail maintenance hosted by GOATS, the bike club I belong to, drew close to 30 volunteers for this 3 day work project camped out at Sacandaga campsite. Tents, sleep in rigs, and 2 trailers. Ben sets up a killer camp kitchen and fed us 3 squares plus 3 taps of beer kept refrigerated in a trailer powered by 2 Honda generators. Forecasted temp for Oakridge for Sat was 103. We were about 1,000’ higher, we were baked. The wet side of the Cascades is a temperate rain forest. Just amazing what water will grow. Lush and intense green color and wet. Mosquitoes are abundant. My side door screen does not form a tight seal which the nasty suckers exploit. I charged the light weight dust buster  then turned it on chasing an airborne mosquito. The sucker had sufficient umphf to suck in which improved my kill  numbers over just clapping my hands hoping wind does not send them on air current thus escaping that effort. Dunno, tonight almost dark thirty I seem to be pretty successful squashing them in the air. Special satisfaction when blood squishes on my fingers. Blood from me that she needed to lay a clutch of eggs. I just broke that lineage. I don’t use any repellant cause I don’t like it on my skin so I just accept that I will be an inviting target. Her skin penetration does not leave a bump or itch. I might be desensitized to her saliva. I recall a day on the PCT in further southern Oregon than here hiking in just gym shorts, hot and humid. My sweat ran pink from the blood she took and I killed her for that. Anyway my keyboard is a temporary resting spot for dead fliers. Doing pretty good smacking them.

Friday’s work was loping the trail corridor. So hot, I sweated my heavy duck long pants, just dripping wet. I drank quite a lot of water from my hydration pack. Drank several glasses of wonderful spring water from Indigo Springs just up the road. Then a couple glasses of beer. I hardly peed. Some of the same people from last year were back. Well fed and libated then bed.

Middle Fork of the Willamette

Sat AM I felt not right. I was dressed and ready to load up thinking that if I get started I can work thru whatever was ailing me. I finally gave in to the need to rest. I spent the hot morning laying on my bed. I decided that I did not want to convalesce in public so I drove up to Indigo Springs little camp ground. I picked a spot and leveled out my house. I carried my 2 gallon drinking jug up to where the spring gushes out of the ground to spawn a white water torrent. Just great tasting water. I discovered that I left my chair back at camp, I wanted to sit in it. I returned and fetched it. I picked a side road looking for a primitive camp spot and found one under tree canopy within ear shot of the river noise.

Today I rallied for trail work. Our work was to build up a short piece of trail that are muddy. Rock work.

rock work middle fork

Details. On the way in we passed what had been brushed the day before. I shuddered when I saw the slash piles lining the trail. The trail was clear and the piled trimmings had no effect of the trail other than it is unsightly. I walked out ahead of the others and redistributed the trimmings. Short day. Still hot. My solar shower was hung out for heat, I wanted to wash off the work sweat. My van was parked in the sun. Midday heat almost eliminated the mosquitoes. Washing and swatting mosquitoes would be no fun. I am clean and not bitten then I left later and drove back to the same spot as last night. Thunderstorm activity, hearing thunder and wind in the trees.

The Middle Fork river trail runs between the hard road and the river, I’m just a short distance from a crossing. I am debating about riding some of the trail tomorrow. Mosquito fodder.

On Wed I rode up High Prairie way and rode down Dead Mountain, 15.62 miles climbing 2717’. I was worked. In recovery, I planned Thursday for a ride, laundry, shower, grocery, propane, and water, then drive out to the Middle Fork camp. I worked out kinks feeling good enough to start my day with ATCA. I drove to the Merch to buy a shuttle with Cog Wild but he was full. Paul with the big Sprinter was shuttling with another guy who suggested Paul  might give me a ride. I asked and he did the driving.  The ATCA is 23.44 miles climbing 3599’ and dropping 6873’, 3 hours 17 mins pedaling. The Tire Mountain trail goes thru old growth: big trees and little understory vegetation.

old growth
Tire
old growth

The Jedi section of Alpine gets the raves which had been logged once and the remaining trees weren’t cut and grew big but Tire is old growth. Something special to be cherished. About 20 dead mosquitoes are scattered around my computer. Out there all by myself.

I have been a Formula Brake rider for years, upgrading to newer versions. This year’s new model, Cura has received favorable reviews enticing me to give one a whirl on the front. I ordered the brake from the Merch. On Wed I installed it. Thursday would be its test day. I use my front brake quite a lot. The brake performed well, enough to consider putting one on the back. I no longer am a preferred rider so I pay full freight of $165 a brake which is almost half of the T1s I ride now.

Alpine finishes at Red Bridge where I take over the toilet stall for a solar shower. Time is moving along. I make ST Vini’s where the laundromat is 30 mins before last load. The washers are top loading and do not display time. $1.50. I drove to propane pump then treated myself to something desirable but totally unhealthy: an A&W root beer float. Bought groceries then drove upriver.

Wed as mentioned above I rode Dead Mountain going up High Prairie instead of rd 2409.

clear cut off high prairie
why is it named as such?

This wasn’t exactly a picnic but it was shorter. Upper part is bike park stuff but then picks up the legacy single track which is  now well ridden in woods dirt. Big 2.5 tires like this dirt.

Tuesday I started from the Red Bridge in WestFir riding the river trail choosing lines to keep me away from the poison oak which is nice shiny green. My plan was to ride up rd 1910 to Windy Pass  to pick up Alpine then ride Tire and Cloverpatch. One hour 30 mins of solid pedaling got me to Windy. I skipped the longer route just riding Alpine down. 18.93 miles climbing 3466, that 183’ per mile. Sedona riding was all right around 100’ per mile. This stuff is up then down, big time.

Learned that a significant management change took place at the Pub causing most of the old staff to quit which explains why I did not see then at the Pub. Change.

I ordered a new memory foam pad shipped to the Merch. I’m held hostage or make another ship to address.

One night at the Pub I struck up conversation with a solitary man. Learned he owns a construction company. I asked him about ICF building, he said what’s better is monolithic concrete. Build the footers then our the floor on the ground then use the cured floor as the tool surface for the other walls. I look forward to learning more about this building method. He supports in floor radiant heat. Buy  propane tank to fire the boiler.

Short alpine, dead, and ATCA

Hot today. Paul shuttled me to katescutin today allowinge to ride ATCA, a monster ride of 23.44 miles climbing 3599′ but get this: 6873′ down. 3 hrs 17 mins.

Waiting for drier to finish then heading up the middle fork for 3 day work project. Not even text reception. Be back sun eve. Forecast is for upper 90s.

Indica or sativa?

I had always been of the belief the best buzz was leaving me firmly anchored to whatever I was sitting in.  A friend told me about the benefits of sativa: being buzzed but not planted. Beings how I am in Oregon and a dispensary is close by. I bought sativa then inhaled away on my vaporizer. Strange being buzzed but still able and willing to be off the posterior. So that part works. Today at the Oakridge dispensary I bought a hybrid that is to be just about 50/50 so the buzz would be well, buzzed and active but able or planted. Hard to believe that being both active and planted happens. Well, today has been long, I no longer remember what my mix was thru the day. Must be sativa for me to peck out this blog.

So, yes I am back in Oakridge, OR home of GOATS of which I am a member. The Merch and the Brewers Union is all I need to know about Oakridge.  The Merch is the bike ship and the Union is a replica of an English pub, all beers are hand pulled. Great place to hang after riding.

At Bend the forecast for last Fri was high probability of rain which would made hero dirt. Rain didn’t happen. Sat I decided to drive to Oakridge well ahead of the Middle Fork work project which is my reason to be here on that date. About a 100 mile drive going over to the wet side of the Cascades. Arriving here the effect of water is apparent with the density of green plant life. Checked in at the Merch, Richard, young Jack.

Nature’s recreation limiter:

Poison oak

Plan was to ride Larison Rock right above town. I drove to Greenwaters park on east end of town right on the river. The ride is a big hump: 2169’ climb on pavement taking 1 hr16 mins of nonstop pedaling for 6.3 miles. The descent took 20 mins lasting only 3 miles. Deep shade under the conifers with occasional patches of bright sunshine.

Larison rock trail tree cover

Then patches of slippery mud were not visible in the changing light. Slippery with maybe a root mixture. Trouble is happening when the front wheel and rear wheel pick different lines. The climb worked me. A wet wash cloth wipe down in the parking lot spruced me up for Sat night at the Pub. Quiet night. I drove back up Larison Rock road to a mowed flat spur road. Lots of mosquitoes and warm enough for the screens. The side door screen leaves gaps that mosquitoes used to her advantage seeking blood to lay clutches of eggs. My head was exposed while sleeping. At wake up time in the light I saw numerous bulging mosquitoes that when squished splotched blood.

Sunday I chose Randy’s shuttle service for a ride up to Kate’s cutin on Alpine at 11:45. $30 eliminated the long endless climb up the gravel logging road. I envisioned my ride to be the ATCA which is 24 miles climbing 3539 and sweet 6782’ down. I change my plan to just ride Alpine and save the TCA for another ride. Alpine still rocks, Oakridge’s crown trail.  The shuttle drop off point now that the snow has melted out is Kate’s cutin a short access trail to Alpine. Derick and I built this piece of trail right before a Cream Puff race. Again deep shade hiding infrequent mud suckers making for 12.75 miles climbing 1138 but dropping 4390. The finish is at the Red Bridge, parking was a short distance at City Hall. The solar shower heated the water. Took a parking lot shower.

cut blocks
travel use on Alpine

Sat night at the Pub. Oh Catrina.

Last night I parked off Salmon Creek rd. Today is a rest day. Olivia at The Merch fixed my hesitant shifting. I replaced the chain. I hung around a bit then left to drive way up Dead mtn to a spot in the sun which would keep  mosquitoes at bay in spite of sweating. Sun has gone down and the critters are back and feeding.

No internet here.

Riding here is either up or down. The ups are covered by 2 shuttle services should a rider wish to checkbook ride. I did.

I am riding under deep tree cover. Bend is open Ponderosa pine. Oakridge is all about wet green and lots of it.