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Old 11-01-09, 10:51 PM   #1
nachomc
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My Rocktober, 2009!

October of 2009 has been one of my best mountain biking months yet. I planned on three group rides outside of my normal riding with friends - one on a trail I have ridden quite a few times, and two rides on trails I hadn't ridden before but had always wanted to ride.

Riding the familiar trail allowed me to meet new people. That led to new rides on old trails and an awesome lasagna dinner. Later in the month, riding the new trails gave me sights and sounds I'd never before experienced, along with some incredible single track and great memories.

My Rocktober, as I decided to call it (along with a bunch of others I'm sure), worked out great!

On to the pics!

The first ride was Hole In The Ground. This trail is beautiful, and we did about 15 miles. There is about 2000 ft of climbing on this trail, but it's all between 7000 and 8000 ft!

A view towards Tahoe, CA from Andesite Ridge:



This is Castle Peak:



The group I rode with. You can see my Jabberwocky in the middle of the group. They wanted to include it because "it was so cool" :cool:



Me riding on some granite on the Hole In The Ground trail:





The end of the Hole In The Ground trail has a half mile section of steep stairs. The dirt is loose and there are one or two tight switchbacks. This is at the top:



On Hole In The Ground, I made two new riding friends, which exploded in to a whole new group. This new group does mostly road riding, but there's a regular evening/night ride on a "cool" loop, in Cool, CA. The loop is called the Olmstead Loop, home of many awesome races throughout the year! This trail is 10 miles long - we rode one after-work loop and followed it with a pitcher of beer and some kick ass food at a local eatery!

Sunset over the Olmstead loop.



The second new trail I would ride is the Pioneer Trail. This trail is above Nevada City, CA, which is the start of the Amgen Tour next year. The trail parallels Hwy 20 between Nevada City and Truckee, CA. The trail is an out and back - 15 miles each way and climbs from 3500 ft to 5000 ft elevation over that distance, with a bunch of short steep ups and downs along the way, and a decent climb with grades of 15-20% for about a mile.

Beautiful fall colors outside of Harmony Ridge market above Nevada City, CA, at the start of the Pioneer trail. This place had excellent deli sandwiches and pasta salads, and an assortment of High Times products:



Our group for this ride:



The start of the ride was loose single track, that opened to double track and narrowed back down.

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Old 11-01-09, 10:52 PM   #2
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A few miles of this trail is along an old flume. On the banks of the flume, this beautiful, rolling single track was built:





I love the look and simplicity of a single speed:



This section was pretty fun. Little bit of loose, little bit of rock and a steep, technical climb at the end:



Riding through this was incredible.



Me on the Pioneer Trail:



At one point, my friend and I were stopped and looking in to the tree's. All of a sudden it sounded like rain falling all through the forest and on our helmets. When we looked up, there were hundreds of pine needles falling from the trees. The slightest breeze - one we hadn't even felt, pushed these out and broke the silence ever so subtly:



Heading back to the start of the trail, we ran in to this guy. A drunk hunter on a quad. He looked like Santa, only this Santa had four rifles on his sleigh. And he was stuck between two tree's on a trail where motorized vehicles were prohibited. We helped get him unstuck and sent him on his way:



The final new trail of the month was at the Bullard's Bar Reservoir, very near Downieville. When I was in high school, a friends family had a houseboat here and we would stay on the lake during summers. I hadn't been back since, and riding through here brought back a lot of great memories from summers past. The lake was beautiful, as was the trail. It's not very technical, but for about seven miles it's very narrow and there's some decent exposure to the right. The trail has a lot of tight switchbacks and steep climbs over small rock steps and roots.

Here, on the 8ball trail, you can catch your favorite episodes of "Mama's House":



A long downhill section ended here before we rolled in to the tight, twisting single track:

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Old 11-01-09, 10:53 PM   #3
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With views of the lake like this, it was hard not to fall in:





There were a lot of downed tree's along the trail. We've had some pretty high winds lately:





Playing with the low light in the forest:



A friend of mine who just started riding. I helped him pick out his first bike and have been showing him the trails. Seven rides in, and he's doing 30 mile rides right along the rest of us. He loves riding and he's kicking ass. It's awesome to share the sport with friends.



Me riding through the lush forest:





"You got purty lips!!!!" This is my second favorite "in the sticks" pic - my favorite is near this area, and of a guys awful shack with a confederate flag and "Don't Tread on Me" flag hanging outside.



I hope you enjoyed looking at the pics as much as I enjoyed taking them! By the end of this month I'd ridden over 200 miles of trails, about 70 of which were completely new to me. Here's to every October being this awesome!
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Old 11-02-09, 01:49 AM   #4
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Very, very neat pics! Sounds like a blast!
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Old 11-02-09, 06:10 AM   #5
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Super jealous, nacho...very nice! Thx.
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Old 11-02-09, 10:50 AM   #6
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awesome pictures!
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Old 11-02-09, 11:15 AM   #7
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Great post. great pictures.
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Old 11-02-09, 11:27 AM   #8
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So awesome...I could practically smell the forest.
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Old 11-02-09, 12:00 PM   #9
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Wow! great pictures, I have to plan a trip up that way around spring. I'll be up in Lake Tahoe in late January for some snowboarding I'll get some info when I get there.
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Old 11-02-09, 01:09 PM   #10
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Wow! great pictures, I have to plan a trip up that way around spring. I'll be up in Lake Tahoe in late January for some snowboarding I'll get some info when I get there.
Hit me up, I can direct you, or possibly show you around!
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Old 11-02-09, 01:59 PM   #11
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Hit me up, I can direct you, or possibly show you around!
I will contact you for sure, it is always fun to go with someone who knows the area.
Thank you.
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Old 11-02-09, 03:59 PM   #12
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Hmm. Maybe I should spend a week at my cousin's in Cali. Awesome pictures; I'm definitely envious.
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Old 11-02-09, 10:09 PM   #13
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an exemplary photomontage!

thanks

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Old 11-03-09, 12:03 AM   #14
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Great adventures; thanks for sharing.
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Old 11-05-09, 10:11 AM   #15
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Love your pics Nacho. Olmstead is one of my favorites...along with Cronan Ranch, Salmon Falls, etc. I have probably ridden with a few of you as some look familiar. Ride safe and oftern. Jim in Sacto.

Just got back from a Mexico trip..pic is just right for you.
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Old 11-06-09, 12:22 AM   #16
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WOW, I really need to head up there, beautiful trails/view. I think this is what MTBing is all about. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 11-06-09, 10:59 AM   #17
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Awesome, thanks, Jim!!!
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Old 11-06-09, 06:44 PM   #18
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Great pics. Awsesome riding areas. Thanks, man!
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Old 11-09-09, 08:57 AM   #19
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Love that log flume trail!
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