Tomorrow we check out of Moab and move on to the second leg of our western adventure. I must admit that this trip did not go according to plan!
We arrived late on Saturday, so Sunday was our first day in Moab, UT. We woke up to dark clouds and drizzle. Our plan was to meet Haley of Climb Run Lift Mom and her family and go for a morning hike, then grab some lunch and Marc and I were going to grab our Mt. bikes and hit the trails. Well, the rain canceled the hike and we met Haley and her family for breakfast. It took us so long to get our food (well over an hour) that it ended up being lunch. It gave us plenty of time to chat and get to know each other. Haley and I started a great friendship only to be rivaled by new BFF, her daughter! You can read about Haley's weekend in Moab on her blog, HERE. After Marc and I went to Arches National Park, the rain subsided enough for us to get in 2 great hikes. First, we hiked Double O, a "primitive" hike, which is now my new favorite type of hike. I have always found hiking kind of boring, it was just like walking. But on the primitive trails, you need to climb over big rocks and scramble. So much fun! After that we hiked Windows which is beautiful and breathtaking.
I have pictures from the hike, but my SLR camera is giving me trouble, so those will be for another time.
We started the day off with a Mt Bike ride on a trail called Klondike Bluffs. It is rated a blue square (just like skiing) so Marc thought it would be a good way to get my feet wet. I asked if there were any green trails we could ride. Marc's answer, "yeah, in town" meaning the sidewalk. Let me put it this way, I spent about 20% of the 9 mile trail on the ground. My first fall was a the trail head (it should have been a sign), where I was caught in about 4 inches of sand. I don't have a lot of practice riding in sand and was in WAY too big of a gear. So at least it was in sand and I was still in good spirits. Falls 2 & 3 are a blur, but I have 2 nice bruises on either knee and huge one on my left calf. Fall 4 was the worst! Riding out on to a rock I missed the "step" and bashed my front tire into the rock. I guess I was hoping that if I smashed the tire into the rock hard enough I would go over it. Instead, it tossed me off the bike and I landed in the only puddle in Moab. NO KIDDING, we are in the middle of the freaking desert and my tush lands smack dab in the middle of a puddle. Fall 5 was on my left and I have a nice bruise on my palm, thank goodness it wasn't my right hand (I broke mt right arm last year). Fall 6 was on nothing, I think at this point I was so frustrated I was just doing stupid stuff. BUT there were glimmers of hope. I made some great technical descents, I just need a lot of practice. To my credit, I have not spent any considerable amount of time on the mt bike in about 2 years. It was decided right then and there that I was done with mt biking for this trip. Marc's exact quote "You should stop riding (mt bike) before you REALLY hurt yourself." After the ride we had lunch and then switched our shoes and helmets and grabbed the road bikes. Moab has a cool bike trail out of town that goes over the Colorado River and in and out of the mountains. It was a 22 mile out and back with just under 1000 ft of climbing. Nice, fun ride.
Marc has commandeered the Yeti, to be honest I gave it to him. The bike is too big for me. The top tube it too long and I wasn't able to get over the handlebars. I would like to blame all of my tumbles on the size of the bike, but it was only half of the problem. So Marc took the Yeti (now known as Bumble - the Yeti on The Rudolf the Red Nose Reindeer cartoon) out to the infamous Slick Rock trail and I grabbed Pinky for a road ride. My plan was to do the same out and back I did the day prior, but this time do it twice giving me over 40 miles. This was the hardest ride of my life. The way out I was in a head wind that had gusts over 50 mph. I have never experienced such a strong and consistent head wind. It sucked. The tail wind on the way back was awesome, but not fun enough to make up for the brutal out, so I stopped at one round. I met Marc back at the hotel and we got cleaned up and went to lunch. Over lunch I heard the tales of Slick Rock and it was not for me! Very glad I stuck to the road. We were going to hike after lunch, but the winds were still so strong we decided to play tourist. We visited one of the most highly regarded attractions in Moab, Hole N" the Rock. Yes, a 5,000 sq.ft. home built into a rock. It was so strange and cheesy!
After that we shopped in town and picked up a few souvenirs. Overall it was a great trip and I can't wait to come back. But next time I am going to have a lot more time in the mt bike saddle before I attempt a trail in Moab. Tomorrow is the Escalante Plateau, Capital Reef and Dixie National Forest!