It is July and I am am back in Oregon again. My trip has two objectives:
- to cheer for my daughter as she runs steeplechase in the 2016 USA Track Olympic Trials in Eugene, Oregon
- to mountain bike in the Bend, Oregon area for one week
My daughter Rachel did not make the Olympic Team. As a father, I can do nothing but cheer, and be amazed at the talent, the competitive spirit, and the work ethic that God has given her. She competed against some amazing athletes who deserve to represent the USA in the 2016 Summer Olympic competition.
Rachel’s races (preliminaries and finals ) were a few days apart. So during the “off-days” between races, my wife (Susan) and I traveled to Crater Lake via car. I showed her some of the places I went on last years bikepacking trip and thoroughly enjoyed sharing the time with Susan.
Tomorrow I will be taking a bus from Eugene, Oregon to Bend, Oregon to enjoy my trip’s second objective – a week-long mountain biking trip in Bend.
This year’s mountain biking trip will differ from last year’s mountain biking trip in several ways:
- Operate from a base camp
I will set up a base camp in Tumalo State Park, located a few miles from Bend, on the Deschutes River. Last year’s trip was a bikepacking trip – breaking down my camp each day, packing and carrying all my supplies via my mountain bike to the next day’s camp, setting up camp, and repeating the same packing, riding, unpacking process each day. This trip, I will set up a base camp once, and return to that base camp each night to rest and refuel. Rather than carry 35 pounds of food, supplies,and gear, I will carry a relatively light pack with food for lunch, water, and bike repair gear. All the camping gear stays at the base camp each day, waiting for me as I return from the day’s mountain biking adventure.
- Have cell coverage
Last years trip I operated without any cell coverage for a majority of the week-long trip. I relied on pre-downloaded maps and on my orienteering skills (reading maps, recognizing landmarks, and understanding my location, in order to stay on course, and to keep from getting lost in the wilderness). With the exception of some areas around Mt. Bachelor, the majority of the area where I am riding around Bend, Oregon has cell coverage. So I can just download some maps and look at the little blue dot on my phone that tells me my location (assuming I have an operating phone).
- Have resupply points
Last year I had to pack all my food and supplies for a week’s ride – there were few resupply points. This trip, I can bike a few miles into Bend and get food or other items (if needed). Yay for resupply points!!!
Needless to say, this trip will be less arduous and less risky than last year’s solo bikepacking trip. But this year’s trip will be filled with amazing trails and adventure. My heart is brimming with anticipation for all that Bend has to offer!
Below is a short video of a trail called “Slalom Loop” in the Bend area trails system. Amazing!