Biking More Dangerous than Bears

My first bike ride of the year turned out to be a bit more challenging than expected.

I realize you use different muscles to bike then you do hike, but seriously, I felt as if my training wheels had just been taken off.

I have a fairly new Cannondale Quick 3 cross bike. Not a surprise that I chose a cross bike since I could not decide between a road bike and a mountain bike. So now I have neither. This might explain why riding on single track technical trails felt like a bucking bronco ride. I have not spent enough time on my bike to trust it to do what it’s built to do. Fair enough to say it was not built as a technical trail mountain bike. So, ergo, I was correct in not trusting it.

After surviving the bronco ride, the trail led to a smoother trail – that is until a left turn led me down a steep cindered hill. My faith in my bike already about gone, and my faith in my bike riding skills long gone, I found myself applying the brakes with constant pressure. My bike was slipping in the cinders, so I tightened my grip on the brakes full force. That’s when my bike slid out from under me and I did some amazing gymnastic move to not tumble all the way down with it.. using my left leg as a hook to stop the bike.


More bruising is showing even as I type this. It would have been a lot worse had I been going fast. Cinders can rip up your skin. This was just my bike marking its final landing. Perhaps a handle bar, a pedal, or maybe my chain had left its own mark. Not mortally wounded I continued on.

The trail then led to a dirt road through a neighborhood. I cranked it up along an upward stretch of the road and pushed myself so hard that I had to pull over at the top to catch my breath, which seemed almost impossible. Ahh… my first asthma attack in over a year.

The rest of the ride, with only a fraction of my lung capacity, was enough to promise myself to get in better cardio shape and build my endurance.

Upon finally making it home and finding my inhaler, I celebrated surviving my first bike ride of the year.


FUTS …say what?

Tuthill Recreation area
light Training Ride
Distance: Too ashamed to say

I may be biased, but I sincerely believe we have a rockin’ trail system in this city of ours. Can I get an amen from any of my fellow Flagstaffians??

Check out these pics (all taken in, on, or immediately surrounding the Tuthill segment of the FUTS trail) and see if you agree:

(p.s. you might even see a caption or two on the photos)


IMG_20160602_171104856_HDR IMG_20160602_171637881_HDR IMG_20160602_171853894_HDR IMG_20160602_173801703_HDR

All of this within a mile or less of each other. And yes, I did get permission from everyone I took pictures of… mostly. 🙂

I may not be willing to disclose the distance of my ride, but I will tell you that I not only took pictures of the above activities, I actually rode a track at the bike park and – though not on this trip – completed this adventure course, and it was amazing! If you’re ever in the area, you should definitely try it.

Flagstaff Extreme: Click here for more info

Happy Trails!