Words and photos by Greg
I bought some skis. Some poles and boots. Cross country skis. Used, and circa 1985 or so, which is appropriate, since that's about the last time I owned cross country skis.
Trina wanted to go skiing last winter. We went once. Up the mountain on a sunny day on fresh snow with borrowed skis and borrowed boots that chewed my feet down to bloody nubs. We didn't go again.
But now I'm fully equipped and ready to ski. There's just one problem.
Here in the valley, the trend of our season continues unabated. Mostly dry conditions and sunshine, or at least sunshine-ish. Which makes it pretty hard to justify a drive up the big mountain to cold and snow when, hey, there are mountain bike trails right here near the edge of town. And we like to ride.
I was out there today. Just me and Sprocket. We rode/ran right from home, hit singletrack in about 20 minutes, and took a loop including one of my favorite chunky, flowy trails anywhere. Beautiful weather. Amazing trail. And I seemed to "have it" today in a way that made everything about the ride feel "right". Which was an extremely good way to feel on the last ride before winter.
Well, er... IF it's the last ride before winter.
Last Ride Before Winter - Part 8
This past Monday, I rode an amazing cliffside trail with a couple excellent riders, both of whom were also packing cameras. The theme of the day was maybe 50/50 ride/photograph. Or maybe even 30/70. The light was a bit softer and grayer than we'd hoped for, but we still managed to eke some fun shots out of it.
With these particular photo-geeks, there's never really any hurry, and there's never a reason not to stop and shoot. Which probably explains why we squeezed every bit of light out of the day and made it back down the perilous trail to the bottom with no more than an orange band of light remaining on the western horizon.
Yet another Last Ride Before Winter®.