Sunday, July 13, 2008

Dual Sporting in the Elaho

I guess I've been a bit busy the last couple of weeks and haven't gotten out much ... or at least I haven't posted much.

Today we went up the Elaho Valley for 150 km or so of dual sport riding. I hadn't been on the dirt much this season (if at all, I'm trying to remember) so doing a few hours of fast gravel roads would be just the ticket to get back into it.

A few folks from were going to meet up at 9am, but as I got the coffee shop address wrong, I didn't actually make the meeting spot. So rode to Squamish figuring I'd see them somewhere along the way.

Sure enough we managed to hook up at the North Squamish Chevron. All gassed and ready to go we headed out.

The pace was quite tame to start, there was a bicycle race and some of the lanes on Hwy 99 were closed, so everyone was going well below the speed limit.

One we got to the gravel Len took the lead and I started eating some dust. It was D R Y and dusty. After a bit we swapped the lead and I took off a little.

First real stop was at the campground by the bridge over the Squamish River. We stopped, rehydrated, chatted and stowed the jackets and swapped them for jerseys. It was too hot for the coats!

The trusty KLR

After a bit we took off and stopped at the waterfall next. For some reason I didn't feel like taking out my camera and instead just took in the views and enjoyed the amazing scenery. However, on the way back I stopped to at least get one quick shot.

We kept a real steady pace and all to soon found ourselves here:

The wood planks were quite doable, but we decided to turn back. Liz was fairly new to offroad riding and we were almost at the end anyways.

This looks so calm now, but it's what washed out the road!

We explored a bit more but encountered more obstacles. Given that we'd already done 100 km since the gas stop (and were close to the end) we didn't push down every single fork in the road. Everyone was feeling a bit hungry so we headed back to a spot with a nice view and had some powerbars and rehydrated a bit more.

If you look really carefully you can just make out the road center left in this photo in the distance

Mid-chew ;)

The river below

And the road ahead

We got hot fairly quick and decided to 'head for the hills' well, actually I guess we were headed away from the hills. No matter :)

I only stopped once quickly on the way back to get a shot of the water fall I'd missed earlier. Really I need to get back there with a super wideangle lens.

Traffic was quite busy today and I ended up passing several vehicles on the way back. The dust was thick on the passes so it had to be in straight section. Hi-beams on and a few taps of the horn and folks moved over enough for a bike to squeeze through.

I stopped when I got back to the pavement and waited for the rest so that we could get into Squamish together for some Iced Cappuccinos at Tim Hortons.

Slightly dusty, one bolt missing from the windshield but doing well. Note the incredible offroad worthy rear tire ;)

A really fun day and a good group of people :)

For larger pictures, please see the slideshow

Hope you had a good weekend.


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