Sunday, January 11, 2009

Attacking the Foothills

So, today was the day for a huge ride, well 4 hours, which is a pretty good sized ride I guess. The weather here in CO has been amazing recently, well, somewhat amazing. It's been generally in the 40's and sunny most days, which means, the trails have dried out, at least the low country trails. therefore, I hopped in the car and drove the 20 minutes to the Heil Ranch parking lot with quite the ambitious ride in mind. I was going to ride up the Wapiti trail to the ponderosa loop and then take the Wild Turkey trail around the newly built picture rock trail. Picture rock was a pretty awesome build on IMBA's part, it goes from Heil Ranch all the way down into Lyons. Once you get in Lyons there is another really good trail system where you have the antelope trail, and then a bunch of other trails that I don't remember the names, but they are pretty fun to cruise around and the top part of Hall Ranch (the trail system in Lyons) is super fast and flowy but not technical. Well the bottom half is the opposite of that, it is moab slick rock on a descent. Basically it is an awesome bike handling skill test. From there once you cruise all the trails in Hall the job is to get back up Picture Rock and finish up the trails in Heil before heading back to the car. Heil is one of the places where it is technical in an slightly obnoxious way, but pretty fun regardless, so it is always worth it. The best description that I can think of is it is Jockey Hill of the Colorado Front Range. If you don't know what Jockey Hill is (Macky I know you do!) it is the ultimate trail riding in the Catskill mountains of New York. If you are looking for Technical it doesn't get more technical. The first time I ever rode there, my first coach took me there, well I was riding a 100mm front and rear travel bike, he rode a carbon hard tail with an 80 mm fork. I died a little that day trying to keep up with him. Heil is like this. The best part of this ride though is the amazing views of the front range you get to see, so hopefully, my phone did some justice, here it is:

This is from the top of picture rock trail

Here I am looking from the top of the Antelope trail up towards the top of Hall Ranch

Looking the other direction at the Mesa on the north side of Lyons

1 comment:

jason Hilimire said...

I've had a blast rocking it at Heil, but have yet to get over to Hall. Perhaps next weekend, though I need my fork reworked so I may be without a mtb for a bit :(