Most people don’t understand when you try to describe the magic of riding trails at night. The typical response is, “why would you want to do that?” That reply says they will never understand, so I let it go at that and anxiously plan my next trip out……
The alluvial fans that characterize the mountain fronts in these parts make for great trails and great riding. There’s just something fresh and good about a narrow ribbon of trail that hasn’t been over-used and over-loved by the masses. I was anticipating some snow to fall over the weekend during my ride, but it bypassed completely. Fortunately, this morning we woke to about 3 inches of the much-needed precipitation. Expecting more to fall later this week. We need all we can get to dig out of this drought. Makes me wonder why I’ve held on to my snow boarding gear the past few years………..
We had a great time exploring the Gila near Silver City, NM for a few days. With highs near 60 degrees and bluebird skies, it was hard to believe it is January! There is very little snow now and trails are overall in great condition. There are some icy and snowy spots on the usual north facing slopes, but not enough to prohibit riding/hiking. We hit up some of the trails around Signal Peak one day, and our last day did a long jaunt on the Continental Divide Trail. The thing that always strikes me about the Gila, is the quiet and the vastness of the area. In nearly 3 days, we didn’t even see an airplane overhead. A worthwhile destination for anyone, whether you want to hike or bike the CDT, or backpack in America’s first designated wilderness. You could spend a lifetime exploring here.
I’ll say the weather has been fantastic for January, but it has me wishing we’d get out of this extended drought and get decent snow pack again. The daytime riding has been good, but the night time riding has been fantastic. I spent some time last night while riding taking pictures of the full moon over the mountains. Used a tripod and still got bad results. One of these days I’ll get it figured out…..
Found the dry, narrow, uncrowded singletrack I was looking for over Christmas break. Hadn’t been to the far north foothills for several years. In addition to the great singletrack I rode years ago, there is a substantial amount of great new tread in the mix. Some really good work has been done out here and I hope there will be a lot more done in the future. There was even a Royal Wulff sighting one of the days I rode. May your 2014 be overflowing with goodness!
Waking to snow Saturday morning was a nice surprise. Thought about going to the gym briefly, but the mountain was a better choice. Not ideal conditions for running with a leashed dog, but was a good, fast-paced hike. Paid a visit to the Wilderness Tree too and my yearly present of an energy gel was waiting for me. Merry Christmas!
|mike on take time|
|stagewest on The Gila|
|bubbasuess on The Gila|
|susielindau on mundane winter….|
|stagewest on mundane winter….|