Tuesday, September 13, 2016

fall is pretty much here

The nights have been cooling down so nicely in the last week - and it's been eight days and counting since the A/C kicked on.  It's terribly dry, of course, with less than .7" of measurable rain in the last three months, but the sun is definitely lower in the sky which keeps things from heating up too much.  We usually have "monsoon season" in August and September and thus far it's been a bust.  That's not good for water-watchers but it's enjoyable for those of us who like to hit the trails, provided we don't mind all the dust.

We got the latest start of the season on Saturday and it really felt strange.  We went to Round Valley to MTB because we wanted to do a hike in Big Cottonwood Canyon but that canyon was closed/restricted Saturday morning due to a marathon.  But the late start was due to the fact that it was in the mid-30s F in Park City as the sun came up; with my cold finger issues on the Echo ride, it just made sense to let things warm up a bit before hopping on our bikes.  It was still chilly at 10:15 a.m. when we got on the trail, cool enough that I started out with my arm warmers and long-fingered gloves.  But the sun was out and it wasn't windy so I warmed up as soon as we started climbing.

Charging up a roller

We had no idea what to expect for crowds on the trail: yes, it was much later than we usually go out, and yes, it was Saturday, but it was also September, with kids back in school and the bulk of tourists gone home.  We were pleased to discover that it was not at all crowded.  We saw no MTBers on the first third of the ride, just walkers and dog-walkers; there were a few people riding in the middle section of our ride but not as many as there have been some days; and then it was sparse again for the last bit.  It was a very pleasant ride, despite my being completely unable to find my groove (although I did climb all my hills.  We really enjoy MTBing in the fall - and once the leaves are off the scrub oaks (making it easier to see people coming), it will be great.

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