Trip Report – April 2019

Enough with the Rain Already

As soon as we thawed out from the snow trip, we all started checking our calendars and working towards a lengthy group trip once Spring had sprung.  Initially it was looking like we’d have a half-dozen rigs or more and had plans to split up for a night or two for some of us to do some major trail miles while others did some hiking and heavy base camp setup.  In the end, personal health issues, difficult work schedules, and sick pets had reduced our convoy to just Allen and me, and we cut things short because the weather degraded from occasional sprinkles to full-blown thunderstorms.

The weight of what was being endured by those who couldn’t make it sat on my chest the whole trip.  I didn’t fall into my usual deep level of relaxation, so this was not one of my more enjoyable trips.  Not that we didn’t have a good time – we certainly did – I just held on to stress I’m usually able to shed while we’re out there.  With over 70 days exploring that area over the last few years, statistically there has to be a bad day or two in there, right?  Since it’s out of the way now, I’m sure the rest of the year will be incredible!

Anyway, the Wednesday we rolled out was beautiful.  I was packed the night before, needing only to grab some clothes to be ready to hit the road.  I went in to work for about 3 hours that morning, just to hand off a few things of importance so that they would be taken care of while I was gone.  The mid-day drive was an easy one.

I pulled into our site with plenty of daylight for setting up camp and gathering firewood.  The site was in great shape, the river was low enough to enjoy, and things were great despite the troubles in my mind.  Allen was about 6 hours behind me, so I had some time to kill.  I explored camp a bit, made a silly video for my nephew, got my tent setup, and built up a ready-to-light fire for when Allen showed up.  That took about 3 hours.  (I don’t know why I didn’t take any additional pictures the first day, but I made up for that later.)  After that, I grabbed a couple slices of pizza from my fridge for dinner, cracked a beer, and settled in to watch the sunset, and maybe a movie on the laptop.  Allen showed up when expected, and we had a quiet night of talking through our concerns while turning wood into light and heat.

The next day was beautiful.  We considered running some trails, but instead we decided to do some hiking and sight-seeing on foot.  We love moving through an area slowly with an eye for whatever happens to be around.

The next day was a rainy one, so we opted to explore somewhere dry.  We ventured into town for breakfast, and for finding weird stuff at antique stores in the middle of nowhere.

The rain continued off and on once getting back to camp after our day in civilization.  We made a quick camp, called it a night right at sunset, and each retired to our vehicles to read and relax before falling asleep.  An impressive thunderstorm rolled through overnight, but we’d chosen an elevated, rocky site, and we were able to pack up cleanly and without issue the next morning.

We took the scenic route before heading home, riding a short stretch of trail and stopping to water a cyclist, see a reservoir, and awe at a cliff face.

Until next time!

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