We were so knackered last night that everyone just disappeared from the party lounge real early without hatching any cunning plans. As usual I finish my blog far too late and then my square retinas refuse to allow any sleep until midnight and the one too many beers and one litre too little water meant I woke at 4.30 am with a mild hangover to shouting coming from Jeff's pull out sofa bed (yes, the lads took pity on me and gave me my first bedroom).
After a few seconds of alarm I realise that Jeff is perusing Instagrams latest add on, Instagram Story which if you are not social media savvy, is short video clips with sound. Knowing that he is awake now I facebook message him to see if any plans were made without me (I know right, you're impressed that at 50 I am so savvy myself). We quickly hatch a belated cunning plan to wake everyone at 5.30 am for another dawn raid, this time riding Slickrock which will be awesome for photos with last nights rain adding some puddle reflecting photo art.
My plan for waking everyone was very respectful....Get up, flush the toilet, turn on a few select lights and get the saucepan boiling on the stove. (What is it with Americans and no electric kettles? Turns out they drink drip filter coffee and microwave a cup of water if they want a cup of tea).
Jeff's plan,which worked better, was to plug his iphone playlist into the big house speaker and play "Party 'til we die" at high volume. The boys got up pretty quick.
We hit Slickrock at 7:30 am with the sun piercing the clouds and giving us glimpses of the snow in the high mountains where we were riding the day before.
Slickrock is a bit of a tourist trail, you only ride there once. Amazing scenery and strange rock formations with a steep up and down cross crountry trail painted onto the sandpaper like surface. Unreal grip means you can climb and descend anything as long as you have the strength and the nerve. We thought it was going to be a gentle 90 minute loop but Stefan, james and Simon wisely turned back from the high point while Jeff (I really don't like Jeff anymore) convinced Tim and myself to continue on for a full 4 hour loop of madness.
After that "adventure" we met the others in town for our first time-out since we hopped off the plane. We visited every bike shop in town and I tried to get heaps of free shit. I was gobsmacked that no one in Moab follows therodfather on social media. Such a backward country backwater. Some guy even wanted to charge me to fix my bent derailleur hanger. After leaving town in a huff we headed over to the other side of town to ride Captain Ahab. Similar terrain to the lower slopes of Porcupine Rim, we had a super technical climb and descent back to the turn off point back to the cars. Because those tossers, Stefan, James and Simon had two hours less than us on their bikes today they decided to climb up Hymasa again and tackle Jacksons, another technical descent traversing down a cliff alongside the Colorado river. Jeff and I opted to chill at the local redneck bar in preparation for tomorrows extreme mission and Tim, being 35 and of 6% bodyfat, ditched us too in case he was missing out on more fun.
Tomorrow we plan to rise early and catch dawn as we push our bikes up Portal to ride back down. Then we head to the Grand Canyon where I will attempt the first Grand Canyon gap jump on a bicycle. Wish me luck....