April 23, Sedona Bike Festival

First annual Sedona Bike Festival.  Last ride of the trip.  Nine days in row.  Too many trails to count. It's been a great nine days, and nice to finish it off by hanging with a few locals at their first bike festival.  Organizer, Thomas, claimed they only had about 25 hardcore riders in Sedona.  No wonder some of their trails were so hard to follow!   We still have plenty of trails that we did not get to ride. We finished off the trip by getting a pair of demo bikes at the festival.  We both tried the Ibis HD 6inch travel bikes.  Went out and did about a 3 hour loop, tea cup, to adante, to thunder mt. and back.  We both really liked the demo bikes, and enjoyed riding the rocky terrain with a little extra cush.  It's been a good trip.  Now, it's back to winter at Snoqualmie Pass.

Specialized, Turner, and Ibis came to the festival with their demo fleets.  Also, the forest service had a booth, and the local bike club.  Pretty low key festival.  Sounds like they were excited to start small.

April 22, Huckaby, Wilson Canyon, Jim Thompson, Jordan trails

 Still had the Schnebly Road area on our hit list.  Rode Huckaby trail down to Oak Creek.  Took some time to find a way across the creek. The river was only knee deep.   All the hikers who took the steep trail down to the creek thought we were crazy to have bikes with us on the trail. Once we climbed up to Midley Bridge, we rode out Wilson Canyon trail to Jim Thompson trail, which climbed above uptown Sedona.  Took a little detour on another narrow social trail.  Once near the Jordan trailhead, we searched for the Secret Trail network which would take us back down to the "Y" in town.  We kept running into neighborhoods, and finally took pavement back to the car.  10 miles.  Breezy mid 70's day.

April 21, Flagstaff - Lower Moto\ Secret Trail \ Schultz Creek

We needed to check out Flagstaff and Kevin inquired on MTBR.com for some faster and flowier trails.  We found them.  These trails were much like Bend, Oregon, but slightly more technical.  We did the suggested loop, and added a couple more trails.  Rode up Schultz Creek, Fort Valley, Lower Moto, Upper Moto, Secret Trail, Schultz Loop, Gnarly, to Upper Brookbank.  We ran into too much snow on Upper Brookbank, so turned around after 12 miles to start our downhill to the car.  Rode back to Gnarly to the Schultz Creek trail.

The section of Upper Moto above the pipeline was rated black diamond, and was quite technical.  Once on The Secret Trail, it had way more flow and we were on the bikes more.  We decided to add in Gnarly with the hope to do a downhill on the Sunset Trail.  We ran into snow and had to turn around.

The descent on Schultz Creek trail was fast, smooth and flowy.  We ran into a local that said the snow had just melted on that trail, and most of the locals haven't wanted to get snow on their bikes yet.   Great ride!  Sure nice to be able to pedal without hitting a cactus.  Temperatures in Flagstaff were chilly mid-sixties.  18.25  miles.

Trail was smooth except for these little rocks.
Secret Trail

Just like home, lot's of snow!
Upper Brookbank Trail

April 20, Girdner to Two Fences

Ok, we still haven't taken a day off, and we have tired legs.  Kevin read a book all morning.  We started our ride around 2pm.  Initially, we planned on doing another secret trail that we weren't even told the name of.  (Found out later that the name is Ledges and Airy.) On our way down Girdner, we saw the turnoff, but decided to stay on the fun, packed, wider Girdner trail.  Rode out Two Fences to Dry Creek Road.    7.66 miles.

April 19, Special Ed and 2 shuttle runs each

Francine on Special Ed.
 5th day in a row riding.  The legs need a rest.  So, we planned a little 7.5 mile loop and then planned on doing some shuttling. Parked at the bottom then rode up Old Post to High School Trail, to pavement up to the Sedona High School, where Special Ed starts. It's another unofficial trail that is narrow and technical.  Had a little route finding problem.  Ended up hike-a-biking up the wrong trail.  Rode out another trail that dead ended, with cacti everywhere.   Here, Francine had a minor incident with a cactus.  One needle stuck her shoe.  Luckily it entered in solid plastic, instead of the soft mesh on the shoe.  While she was leaning down to pull it out, she acquired two more needles in the hand.  She was able to pull all three out without using the tweezers we brought.  No serious effects.  On our way down, we took another wrong turn, but made it out alive, riding around Pyramid mountain to the car.

Next we hit the shuttles.  We took turns riding Under the Radar, Under Under the Radar, Under Under Under the Radar to the car.  Then Francine rode Herkenham to Under Under Under the Radar.  Kevin rode Red Rocks Loop trail down to the pickup point.

April 18, Chuck Wagon Trail, Dry Creek, Sedona

Is it possible to bonk on a 14 mile ride?  Unfortunately with all of the mountain biking in Sedona being on National Forest Land,  it becomes very hard to create new trails.  Due to the politics, trails fall into two categories, official and unofficial.  Unfortunately that makes navigation a little bit of a challenge, since the unofficial trails cannot be signed, and on many the start of trails is very hard to find.  The flip side is that the forest service seems to tolerate these trails, as long as they aren't too visible.

The plan today was to start on Lost Watch to Touron to Mescal "unofficial trails," and then finish a loop on the signed official trails.  Fortunately we missed a turn, and ended up on Chuck Wagon-Gunslinger.  The trails in the area wander through cactus and small bushes working their way through the numerous washes.  The trail was really skinny and out near the end, tough to even follow.  We eventually ended up finding the correct road crossing after about six miles of tight sinuous singletrack.  We gave up on trying to locate the hidden entrance to Mescal and hit the signed trails.  By about 8 miles my legs were starting to cramp and my brain was barely functioning, when it came time to decipher the map.  Fortunately, Francine seemed to be keeping a cooler head, in the eighty degree heat and she got us on the right trail pointed towards our car.   Not only do we need to start earlier, but I think I may have to take my hydration a little more seriously.  Checked out Fat Tire Bikes in Sedona  and chatted, for quite a while, with owner Dave.  His shop is definitely the place for trail info, or if you need a new Ibis bike.

April 17, Lower Shady - Templeton - Lower Shady

Today is checkout day from Red Agave.  We got in a short ride, 7.6 miles, still allowing time for a shower before our 11am checkout.  Lower Shady is a fun, flowy trail swooping in and out of washes.  Kevin actually finished on Upper Shady.  On to West Sedona to check in to Sedona Pines, thanks to an RCI Timeshare exchange from Pat & Larry.

April 16, High on the Hog, Sedona Az.

Day 2:  Slim Shady-HT-Little Horse-Broken Arrow-High on the Hog-Pig Trail-Mystic-Chapel-Little Horse-Llama-Bell Rock pathway.  Whew, just a few trail names.  Good day, had a little route finding on High on the Hog.  Otherwise very nice, except for the finish on Bell rock path is lame (take the horse detour).

April 15, Sedona, Highline Trail

First day mountain biking in Sedona, Az..  We are spending our first three days, just south of Sedona proper in Village of Oak Creek at the Red Agave motel.  The motel, same ownership as the Bike and Bean bike shop, is super clean, and has excellent riding right from the motel's backyard.  Today, we rode Made in the Shade to Highline trail, then Baldwin, Templeton, and Slim Shady all the way back to the motel.  Nice technical riding.  Took about 4 hours to go only 12 miles, as we circled Cathedral Rocks.  Temps were in the eighties, so may have to get out of bed earlier tomorrow.

View from our front porch

Francine in front of our unit at the Red Agave

April 6, Tree Skiing, Snoqualmie Pass

Hooked up with Greg Louie and Crispin for a little powder skiing.  We thought we would follow a nice skin track up the Phantom side of Snoqualmie Mt.  Unfortunately, as we pulled into the parking lot,  the ski area security guy, Kent, was trying to shut down the Alpental parking lots.  It appears that a party of five skiers, that had already headed up Snoq. Mt., set off a small avalanche.  The parking lot was soon to be a search and rescue staging area.  Word was that two skiers had non-life threatening injuries, but would need help getting off the mountain.  We decided on alternate plans and headed for our favorite tree skiing area,  down the road, and managed to rack up three laps of good April Pow.

Crispin and Greg ski an old slidepath


Skier - Crispin                                    Photographer - Greg Louie

March 26, Alpental Slackcountry

Big brother, Kelly, had wanted to go for a ski tour all winter.  With weather looking crappy, but Kelly actually having the time to tour, we took the easy route and rode Alpental's lifts to the top.  Scooted out the backcountry gate and over to Pineapple basin, where we stuck our skins on, and headed to Bryant Pass.  Kelly got some good practice making steep kick turns, and after a 1,000 feet of climbing we were in the wind, at Bryant pass.   Dropped into Bryant couloir, for a variety of turns.

the crux, looking pretty easy with lots of snow