Wow. Just wow. Southern Utah is no joke. For 25 days, I have been biking and hiking through one of the most amazing places ever.
This, for example:
Do you even see that road? Can you believe that shit?? Every single day, something like this but spanning the whole spectrum of landscape would reduce me to a puddle of happiness, so crazy amazed that this exists in the world and that I was lucky enough to be biking through it. Gosh. I spent a lot of time feeling like there was no way I would be able to keep myself from exploding with joy.
I’ve been composing various blog posts and stories and anecdotes in my head for about 3 weeks now, so I’m sure I’ll have more details to come, but in the meantime some stats:
- Number of biking miles: somewhere in the vicinity of 1300-1400 for the whole loop, including side trips (see my map, below. It doesn’t have all the detours, but it’s a good overview)
- Number of hiking miles: I have no idea, but I went for some pretty epic hikes:)
- Number of days with snow: 3
- Number of days with crazy wind: oh my gosh. Almost every day
- Highest point: 9600 ft above sea level on Highway 12
- Number of times someone offered me a ride: 4
- Number of times I accepted a ride: 2–one because I literally couldn’t bike into the 50mph, sand-everywhere wind to get back to Moab; the other because I’d just dropped off my bike to be shipped back to Portland and the shop mechanic gave me a ride to the airport (super sweet!:)
- Most ridiculous campsite: inside a vault toilet on the way to Island in the Sky. More on that later;)
- Worst road to bike on: Highway 191. No shoulder and lots of trucks! Even the few miles I spent on Interstate 70 were better, since at least there was a giant shoulder on that one
- Best road to bike on: basically any other roads in Utah:) But maybe the White Rim Road (see picture below)
- Bike issues: Only one flat tire. Super good luck!
I started in Grand Junction, Colorado, since it’s the closest somewhat largeish airport to where I wanted to be, but most of my time was spent in Utah:
And now here I am back in Portland. I really didn’t want to leave Utah, but now that I’m back everything is so lush and green and exploding with spring, James is here, I’ve been riding my super-light, unloaded racey bike, and I remember all over again how much I love it here, too.
I’ll be working on getting pictures up and, yknow, remembering what “normal” life is supposed to be like (what? showers??;), so stay tuned for more epic craziness:)
EDIT: Pictures are up! Find them here! :)