Mountain Biking in Colorado Part 1: Hall Ranch
I’m just back from Colorado and my first taste of Rocky Mountain-Mountain Biking. I was a little high coming off LIVESTRONG, but knew my technical skills had grown rusty in the months I’ve spent training for LIVESTRONG. The last time I was on a mountain bike was Mother’s Day.
My hostess paired me with a childhood friend of hers, Bridget, whom I liked immediately. She was warm and friendly, and we bonded over being moms to toddlers and struggling to find time get out to ride. She took me to Hall Ranch with the intent of riding the whole thing. It was about 5:30PM when we set out, and the trail became pretty hardcore pretty quickly. I hiked-a-bike it often, but didn’t feel too bad about it, since nearly everyone was in varying degrees. The landscape was beautiful, and within the first 20 seconds on the trail, we saw our first deer. Several more followed, for a total of 4 deer having dinner trail side as we pedaled past.
I had some issues with my rental bike–a Giant Yukon hardtail with disc brakes. My seat kept falling down. I was constantly getting off, pulling it back up, and tightening it–to no avail. Finally I just stood and pedaled as often as possible.
One particularly ridiculous part of the trail I nicknamed “The Bike Trench” because rock rose up on either side, allowing about 12 inches of clearance and 2 and 1/2 feet of rock to pass through. Everyone was getting hung up on that 🙂
As light started to fade, we turned around. The descent down was MUCH faster than the hike up. I find my line a lot easier when I’m descending and usually roll over just about anything. The setting sun lit up the valley and we met up with a few more deer before hitting the gravel of the parking lot. It was a great introduction to Rocky Mountain riding. Thanks Bridget!