Monday, September 8, 2014


Ever since riding up to Masonic with the crew two years ago (click here) I have wanted to explore the region north of the Bodie Hills along the East Fork of the Walker River and beyond.

I figured the wide gravel roads would be a perfect spot to "get acquainted" with my new cross bike and I'd get to see historical sites, big scenery, and, hopefully, some wildlife.

I parked along the East Fork of the Walker River eight or nine miles before the dirt turnoff figuring it would be nice to get a little spinning before and after the gravel grinding. In no time I found myself at "The Elbow" which would be last I would see of the river before it ventures into a narrow gorge. 

Beyond The Elbow, the road climbs steeply for a short stretch and then descends into this broad valley with Mt. Grant in the distance. 

To my surprise a little ranch quickly came to view. A check of the map confirmed it was Nine Mile Ranch (named because it is nine miles from Aurora).

Apparently Mark Twain stayed in this fine old brick house for a spell (reference).

Not long after Nine Mile Ranch I came to this junction and decided to head up into the hills for a little change of scenery.

I took the fork into Del Monte Canyon and rode up a few more miles on a pleasant road.

Heading back I noticed a patch of Cottonwoods and Willows just east of the above junction, so I decided to check it out. This is Fletcher Station  established as a stage stop and way station in the late 1860s. Best of all there was a nice spring there to top off my water bottles and freshen up.

Heading back I saw this fine Pronghorn Antelope by the side of the road who seemed a bit wary and a bit curious.

Finally, the last stretch of gravel with the east side of the Sweetwater Mountains in the distance.

Good one. Gotta come back for more someday!

Monday, September 1, 2014

Birthday Mountain Bike in the Sweetwaters

Been way too long. Apologies!

My great friend Jim hooked up with me for another incredible adventure ride. This time in the Sweetwater Mountains.

Started it out with some terrific single track along Desert Creek.

Then some cool rock formations along with some rugged hike a bike.

Crossing the line!

Amazing terrain with springs and meadows galore.

Then some more hike a bike. One hell of a crazy trail here!

At the end of the trail was this nice columnar basalt outcrop.

On the way back the road ran along a ridge with fine views and leg breaking pitches.

Here are the stark high peaks of the Sweetwaters with our ridge road in the foreground. Jim tackles one of the many steeps (click to enlarge).

Nearing the end in idyllic country.

Unreal! Gotta cook up some more routes in this area!
Thanks Jim.