Like Old Times

I promise I was trying to be more consistent.  Truth.


But, when I was forced to wait nearly 2 weeks for my new internet service, I had to bail on last week’s report.  I’ll try and make up for it today.


I only had the chance to ride twice last week, but both rides proved to be quality experiences with some of my favorite riding partners.


The weekend got off to an awesome (and sorta early) start when Jacob, Destry, Jared, and I started rolling up Scenic just after 6 am and just before the sunrise on our way to Kane Creek.


One of our goals was to finish most, if not all of our ride before we saw anything close to 100 degrees.  Thankfully, the  road that follows Kane Creek kept us cool and in the shade for most of the first long climb.  The sun hadn’t been up long when we reached our first clearing.


1 Morning
A warm morning under blue skies is never a horrible thing.


Another 15 minutes or so of climbing and we were approaching the backside of John’s Peak.


2 No Team
Some good riding buddies right there.


Continuing around John’s Peak, we made our way up a steep rocky road that was a creek in the middle of a rainstorm the last time Jacob had ridden up it.  Of course, that was back in February.  It was a lot colder then.  I’ll take the heat.


3 Rocky
The sometimes road, sometimes creek. A quarter mile up, it empties out on a ridge from which you can see Timber Mountain and Mt. Isabelle.


4 Crash
Jared didn’t realize a ditch had been dug to prevent motorized traffic on the road we had just climbed until it was too late. Not really. He just wanted to get dirty.


Having revived Jared, we welcomed his knowledge of the area as he pointed out a short cut to the road we were hoping to take back to civilization, Foots Creek.


5 Short Cut
One of my favorite things to find while exploring is a lightly traveled gravel road in good condition. There’s nothing quite like blazing along riding a CX bike on smooth dirt.


Having successfully found our way back to Rogue River, our next mission was a lap on MOTR.


6 MOTR climb
The switchbacks seemed a lot easier on the gravel bike.



7 Side
Coming down the trail was a bit more teeth-chattering than when I use the mtb, but it was a blast doing something a little different.


8 Crazy
Just Jacob being Jacob.


After MOTR, it was a simple hammerfest full of pavement back home.  5 hours and 50 miles later, we weren’t too overheated and we had a solid adventure under our belts before it was even time for lunch.


Trying to fit as much fun into 2 days as possible, Sunday found Ruth and I at Crater Lake ready to ride the Rim.


Parking at the Annie Springs Trailhead, just inside the park, we had a nice warm up before making the 3 mile climb up to the lodge overlooking the lake.


Neither of us had been to the lake when the sky was so free of smoke and we were treated with the deep blue water we always knew we were supposed to be seeing when visiting the park.


9 Bikes
You’re legally obligated to photograph your bikes next to the wall if you ride the rim. Maybe not. But, we did just in case.


10 Wizard
I didn’t even use a filter on this shot. It really was that blue.


Deciding to enjoy the ride instead of suffering just to finish in a set amount of time, we chose to stop at several points in order to take in the views.  We also took the time to interact with some of the tourists.  It was kinda fun to hear where people were visiting from.


2016-08-21 19.20.39
If you spend any amount of time with Ruth, you quickly find that people like her. And, she usually doesn’t even have to bribe them with a piece of a Snickers. The same doesn’t necessarily hold true with chipmunks.


While there’s plenty of gorgeous views of the lake all along the rim, there’s also plenty of other vistas to take in if you’re able to pry your eyes away from the blue goodness.


11 Thielsen
Mt Thielsen is in the distance just right of center.


12 Mount Shit
Of course, there’s Mt Scott, whose trailhead is right off East Rim Drive.


13 Klamath Lake
And, Klamath Lake on the horizon.


Having done the mile out and back to the Cloudcap viewpoint every other time we had ridden around the lake, we passed on it this time in favor of getting an In N Out burger a little sooner.


14 Masi
But, look!!! We did stop long enough for me to get another shot of the Masi!! Yeah! This time with Thielsen in the background. Winning.


After the Phantom Ship viewpoint, there were no more chances to see the lake, so we pushed up the last big climb with 12 miles to go.


15 Almost
There were still decent views to be had even if the lake was behind us. The cliffs and waterfalls and such.


No offense to my other buddies I’ve ridden the Rim with, but this was by far my best Crater Lake experience.  Like I said before, the air has been very hazy with smoke on all my other trips.  Plus, the company was a tad bit better.


What can I say?






Aaron Mock

Local cyclist, crazy mofo, and good-natured masochist, Aaron Mock, is a Team Cycle Analysis rider with a penchant for taking the road less traveled. Sometimes, that isn't the best choice. Follow his weekly blog series for the latest on his never-ending escapades and exploits!

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