All the excitement in the world means nothing if your body doesn’t want to go along. At first, this seemed the case. I jumped on my bike and went to the first climb out of the Ogden neighborhood. The first punch upwards resulted in a ginger speed and … once to a certain heart rate, a little dizziness. Whoa, Nelly.
But forget the fatigue. As in normal fashion, I pushed the warning signs to the side and just rode. Wasnt long until I was immersed in the day. Sun, dirt, and knobbies. Nothing could take this day from me. Nothing.
The sun burned down as I rode up Coldwater Canyon a 2.7 mile, 1,200-foot climb that took me to North Ogden Canyon. That did hurt, I will not lie. But the tiny decent and traverse to the canyon made me forget all perceived pain.
The big Canyon with a road that goes to the Eden Vally. I am sure all Ogdenites know this route. Especially if you ride road I figure. I headed up the gut which had a trail/jeep track route to the pass. My hopes were that once on the pass I could explore all kinds of options and trails. After climbing for an hour I ran into some cockleburs that literally stopped me from progressing. So many with such size and stick power that I couldn’t let go of my handlebars. My bike stayed upright and I did an effortless track stand. I was stuck in velcro hell. It took another hour or so to wiggle back out and extract the balls of spiny velcro.
I did make the pass after hiking the bike up a trail with a sign to stay off when wet. Well, it was frozen and I did not ride. I hiked. When I got to the top it was apparent that my progress was all over for this climb. Too much snow. So I took to the powerline trail and bombed down stage 1.
2.3 miles 1,200-foot drop down stage 1 was a total treat. I crossed the pass road near the bottom to climb North to the end of the Bonneville Shoreline Trail. It ended in a parking lot near the town of Pleasant View. I had run out of water and unfortunately, time was ticking off as well. I almost missed my cutoff to start the big stage 2 decent. Mostly downhill but it felt flat with tons of turns, jumps, and berms. Took me no time at all to get back to the North Ogden Canyon Road. I sat down to take a break and sip some water obtained, and steri-penned, from some stream I had crossed.
I was sipping on the cold earth beverage and taking a little pull from a fruit snack when I was asked where I had been riding from a bystander. I rattled off the names I knew and pointed in the direction of the trails I didn’t.
“Wow … gosh, do you want a ride up the hill or something?”
“Naw, but thanks … I’m going to savor the rest of the ride back … um, just have to climb back over that beast”, pointing towards Coldwater Canyon.
The little tag of fruit chew and the gulp of water did the trick and I was suddenly feeling spry and rehydrated. One last big climb … and the best stage of the weekend was awaiting me at the top.
The last stage of the weekend and the 3rd on the day is a 1,200-foot drop over 2.6 miles back to base camp. I perched at the top and reflected over my trip to Ogden. What a marvelous place to ride a bike. And what a great break from the winters up north. The best birthday present ever.
The stage was a ripper. My new knobbies biting into corners of pumice and rock. I got safely down and took first place in the screaming-with-excitement category.
The epic weekend of adventure and dubbed Ogden Endro in my inner world was a total success. And my birthday the next day. What could top the last two days? So far this year … nothing.