Thursday, November 11, 2010

Desert Helmet-Cam Filler

I’m not going to get a real post up this week, so here’s some helmet-cam filler from last weekend. Several of us- Coryalis, Clean Colin, Young Ian, Vicente, KanyonKris, Fast Jimmy, Hunky Neighbor, Thorn*, Westy-Tom** and I- spent the weekend down on Gooseberry Mesa and had an awesome time. The weekend included perfect weather, stupendous riding (including 2 new fantastic trails), world-class star-gazing and Vicente’s out-of-this-world paella.

*That’s not a nickname- his name’s really “Thorn”. Or maybe it’s “Thorne”; I didn’t ask how to spell it. Anyway, his name was the subject of several painfully bad puns when he got an actual thorn*** stuck in his foot.

**Because he drives one of those VW “Westy” vans. Sorry, I am totally running out of clever nicknames.

***Actually, I’m pretty sure it was a spine and not a thorn. I explained the difference in this post. Man, it is like I have a post for everything.

It’s a shame I don’t have more time to post this week; I had 2 good post ideas from the trip: an All About Prickly Pear post, and/or an Exposure* post, and why some people- like me- absolutely love it. Maybe I’ll get to one or the other next week. Anyway, if you want a real post about Gooseberry, you can check out the previous posts I’ve done on the super-cool geology and fascinating botany of the mesa.

*To be clear, I am talking about this kind of exposure. Not the other kind.


Anonymous said...

My feet got all tingly just watching those videos. Can't believe you are riding a rocky trail, ducking bushes only feet away from a deathly drop. I've wanted to check out Gooseberry but not so sure anymore.

BTW, I had thought about trying to invent a drinking game, such that you have to drink everytime you use the phrase "Man, I have a post for everything". However, a drinking game just doesn't work for an internet blog.

mtb w

Ski Bike Junkie said...

Yeah, that exposure post would be good. I'd like to know why I'm such a ninny.

KanyonKris said...

I agree, that was a great trip. I'm still having memories of it pop up.

mtb w - There are cliff edges, but the wide-angle lens makes them look closer than they really are. The north rim trail flirts with the edge the most, the other trails much less. Even if the edges bug you, 90% or more of the trails are not on the edge so go ride Gooseberry, it's really good.

Watcher said...

mtb w- KKris is right on. It's not really that scary and very little of the Gooseberry trail network is high-exposure. And also, to be clear, the clips aren't from the main trail network, but one of the "new" trails that I referenced in the (non) post. Nearby Little Creek does have about a mile-long stretch with repeated high-exposure sections, but even if you were to walk the hairiest parts, you'd still be riding ~99.9% of the trail.

I can't recommend the Gooseberry area highly enough. It has wonderful riding, but you don't need to be great technically to really enjoy it. It has fantastic natural beauty, light (compared to Moab or Fruita) visitation, and dozens of excellent, convenient dispersed campsites. I know it's a long drive (you're on the Front Range?) but absolutely worth it for a 3 or 4-day getaway. On every drive home I'm already thinking about my next trip.

Love the drinking game idea. BTW, my inspiration for that line came from the old Steve Martin routine from the 70's: "'s like those French have a different word for everything."

Anonymous said...

You can put me down as one interested in an exposure post - why some love and others fear it. You can safely put me down in the latter.

OK, you and KK got me interested in Gooseberry. I also checked out and its description is also enticing. From Ft Collins, CO, it looks to be about a 10 hour drive so a 4 day weekend should do it. Early next spring, I'm down there!

Ah, good old Steve Martin! Missed the reference but that is a funny quote.

mtb w

Lucy said...

I have only ridden Gooseberry once and didn't like it. After all your cool videos and now knowing there are side trails, I'll go back and give it another shot. Those trails look amazingly fun, especially because of the exposure! I would love to read a post on what is behind people's different reactions to exposure. What fascinates me is an individual's like or dislike of exposure seems not to be correlated to their risk tolerance.

Watcher said...

mtb w- you will love it. Ping me before you go and I'll give you all the beta you need for a 4-dayer...

Jube- you too. That trail in the video isn't on the map. Ping me and I'll get you the access/location.