Location = Cibola National Forest Distance = 14.53 Time = 1:46:26 Ave. Speed = 8.1 Max. Speed = 20.5 Monthly Dist. = 124.84 Yearly Dist. = 1433.33
The Thursday night group ride was scheduled to leave out of Pine Flat, up S337, not too far from the other house. I got up there early, parked at the trail head, and took a spin on the Pine Flat Loop. It was still early, so I explored a very faint foot trail, heading up toward Oak Flat. That eventually disappeared, so I turned back after about three quarters of a mile. I got back to car, and there weren't any other cars there. I waited until a few minutes after 6:00, and I decided to head out on my own. Before I went on the trail, I rode back through the picnic area, and everyone was parked at a different place. I joined up with the group, and a few minutes later our wheels were spinning.
The ride started out very slowly, as we waited at each intersection for the group to catch up, and there were a lot of intersections. We eventually made our way into the Albuquerque Open Space Area, which is now more open than ever. Crews have been working in there to thin out the forest. Lots of trees have been cut down, and turned into wood chips, and roads have been created to get the work done. It looks a lot different from last year.
The group stopped somewhere in the middle, and someone had a flat tire, causing more delay. After a few minutes, the group leader decided that time was running out on finishing the planned ride, so the main group turned back. A couple guys continued down the trail, and I wanted to go with them. I looked at a guy next to me named Eric, and I convinced him that we had enough time, and that I knew the way. Another guy joined us, and off we went. At the end of the road we caught up with the first two guys, who were standing there scanning the landscape, trying to find the trail. I knew right where it was, so I led the way out of there, and back up toward Oak Flat. I wanted to refresh my memory as to where the trail from Oak Flat joined in to the Pine Flat trails, so we went all the way to the Oak Flat parking lot, and then headed down to Pine Flat, where we had started.
It was a nice evening for a ride, with temps probably in the 60s. It was a bit windy early on, but then it died down, and wasn't a problem.
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