Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Up with the sun.

4 a.m. is the new 5.



Of course, the mountain is all yours at the late hour of 5 a.m. anyway.


No joke. It's nice to be up early.


A nice downhill stretch of the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route, just off the Continental Divide near Fleecer.


$1.06 worth of bolts, nuts, and washers broke on the Chariot, rendering forward progress nearly impossible. Of course, this happened 75 miles from the nearest hardware store and on the hottest day of the year, but we were able to cobble together a self-evacuation to Dillon, where cold drinks awaited.

New vs. old.


Here's the break spot to give a better idea of what happened:


One bolt on either side of the body holds the main frame tube to a down-tube coming from the push bar. Both of these snapped simultaneously while rolling over a particularly stout cattle guard (or, as they call them in Canada, 'Texas guard'). As I've written before, this Chariot has literally thousands of miles on it in every condition imaginable -- from legitimate mountain desert mountain biking to blizzards, and lots of highway miles -- so it should not come as a shock that things are wearing out on it.

The Pioneer Mountains.


The final turns of the year came, as usual, in Colt Killed Cirque, but this time at the ridiculously early date of June 20 -- and that date was stretching things. This year had just 63 ski outings -- the lowest in memory -- and only a handful of true powder days. While paltry snowfall was the headline, the truth is that this was a great ski season. Good weather, good travel conditions, excellent stability, and a lot of great ski partners meant I was able to hit big things in mid-winter at a time when I'm normally relegated to Lolo Pass.


Note the lack of snow in this photo.


Fewer ski days means more ride time.


And, of course, family time.