20080401

Location =  Albuquerque NM  
Distance =  11.46
Time =  1:53:01
Ave. Speed =  6.0
Max. Speed =  24.5
Monthly Dist. =    11.46
Yearly Dist. =  943.82

I took the mountain bike out for a ride to the short, steep, climbs up to the water tanks. I'd climb up to the tanks at the Tram, and then turn around and ride down to Juniper Hill, and do it again. I did a total of five climbs in all, and I never did make an entire climb without have to get off and walk, at least once.

Starting at Juniper Hill Rd., there is a fairly flat section, then it leads into an arroyo that is filled with deep, soft, sand. Luckily, there is not much incline to it, and with enough momentum, I could make it through that section every time. After the sand, the trail becomes rutted and sandy, before turning upwards for the first steep little climb. With enough power I could maintain traction in the loose rocky section, and then I needed to avoid the soft sand as I neared the crest. I cleared that first steep hill, four out of the five tries.

The first climb tops out, and the second one begins. This is quite short, but it is also very loose as it crests, and I only managed to clear the second climb on two out of the five tries.

After the second steep climb, the trail heads downhill briefly, and then you have to cross an arroyo that has about fifty feet of very deep sand. I never did make it through that section without having to dismount. Once out of the sand, I would attempt to get back up on the bike, and ride up the third little climb. This climb would be the shortest and easiest of them all, except for the fact that the trail is very rutted, with some tricky rocks to negotiate around, and cholla and prickly pear cactus lurking to snare the unwary rider. On one of my attempts, a cholla cactus did manage to grab my hand, and jab me with several needles, right through my glove. Ouch! I'm going to come back with a saw, and take revenge.

The third climb lets you out onto the road from the Tram to the water tanks. This is a medium steep grade, with a couple of sandy spots thrown in, just to keep you honest. One of the spots is a sandy berm built up to stop water from rushing straight down the road when it rains. That spot tripped me up on one of my tries, but I managed to clear it on the other four attempts.

This was good practice to help me get ready for the Dawn to Dusk Race, which is less than two weeks away. That trail doesn't have anything that is as hard as this was.

It was a nice sunny day, with temps near 70.



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