Riding the Rim roads


Sunday. My riding day. When I am back at work, that’s all I get, one day. Today was the day, and Hal and I had agreed to trailer our dirt bikes again, this time up to the coolness of the Mogollon Rim, and exploring, much as we did in the Hannagan Meadow area. Was that only last week? I thought.

As we left town, we saw two planes overhead. They were close together and it reminded me of how Hal and I ride together on our motorcycles, me behind and slightly to his left. If we were pilots, we would fly just like that, high and free, our planes close together in the sky. It was a beautiful sight, and soon the two planes were lost in the haze of distance. I thought about trying to take a photograph, but there was no way to capture the beauty and freedom of those two planes in the wide expanse of sky.

Meanwhile, here on Earth, Hal and I arrived, towing the two bikes, at the Woods Canyon Lake turnoff where we parked the car and unloaded the bikes. After a few moments of doubt when Hal’s DRZ didn’t start, we started down FR300. We hoped to explore some of the roads that are peripheral to 300, and we found some right away. Again, we rode deep into the back country where there was no other traffic and the roads were narrow. And, I found more trees to photograph!

Stately trees

Yes, I love trees. I wish I worked for the forest service. Seriously. I would love to ride around and check on the trees, on the forest roads, and look to make sure there were no problems with campsites, and whatever else those guys do. I would be so happy to be outside all day.

While we were exploring one of the smaller back roads, I happened to flip up my face shield for a minute. During the short time it was up, a bee flew into my helmet and stung me! This has happened to me before while out mountain biking, but it still hurts! It felt like a hot needle, and since I got stung on my left temple, it gave me a headache for the rest of the day.

The next road we found was FR100, which turned out to be rocky in places, twisting, and interesting. I shot this photo of the best part of it, where the road curved through a canyon:

FR100:

Yes, those are power lines at the top of the photo. There is just no escaping signs of “civilization.”

Around the corner from where I took that photo, Hal said there were some burned trees that “looked like warriors.”

Tree warriors:

I was thinking something more massive and Nordic, but okay. They still look cool.

We returned to FR34 after trying to get to Chevelon Lake, which we found to be elusive once again. I had hoped to see it last time, and was disappointed again this time. We had been on the other side of Chevelon Canyon in June when I took my F650GS on the roads near Heber. So, again, familiarity with the area let me know approximately where we were.

FR34:

An afternoon thunderstorm was brewing over FR300, and it was time to head back to the car anyway. So, we joined a line of traffic kicking up dust as we rode back to Woods Canyon Lake and the scenic overlooks on top of this part of the Rim.

We loaded up the bikes then headed down the 260 toward Payson. We took a slight detour to Creekside restaurant at Christopher Creek. We were hungry by then and wanted something more substantial than a few peanuts or a granola bar. So, we split a sandwich and a piece of chocolate cream pie to tide us over until we got back home. I even got a piece of cherry cobbler to take home and share!

Before we left, though, we noticed this new business in the same parking area. We found out that the proprietor is planning on specializing in putting bicycles together from assorted parts, then fitting them with small engines. I was a little disappointed that he wasn’t a mountain bike mechanic, but it was still good to see something to do with bicycles there.

At Creekside:

The official “grand opening” of the business is August 15, which is a Wednesday.

We headed “down the hill,” on the way home. No trailers were flipped on the 87 today for a change; the pickup drivers were behaving, and we were later than we usually are. That means most of the crazy drivers were home already, which was good.

It was another great day of dirt riding. I am really enjoying this trailering the dirt bikes thing for now. It allows us to enjoy riding in the cool areas of Arizona, and when we get back to town and the heat, we are in the air conditioned car!

Speaking of which, the bikes were talking again on the trailer behind the car. I could see their fenders moving when I looked at them through the rear window of the car.

***

“What’s up with this?” asked Little Beast.

“What do you mean?” answered Dizzy.

“We are going home already!,” exclaimed L.B., dismayed.

“I know, it sucks,” said Dizzy.

“Last time we got to stay up in the cool forest for five whole days!”

“I feel the same way. I loved being in the mountains and feeling free for that whole time,” said Dizzy.

“Yeah, well, think how they must feel today,” said L.B. sympathetically, referring to their riders. “They have to go to work tomorrow!”

“We’d rather be riding!” said both bikes simultaneously.

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4 thoughts on “Riding the Rim roads

  1. Actually, I could go with either of your choices for the burned-out trees. Warriors or an older Nordic name. For me, though, they are more like heroes since they gave their life to save those trees behind them. This gets my POTD designation, though.

    • I suppose I could have made it more dramatic by making it a black and white photo, which I may do at some point.

      I am getting you thinking about trees too, Randy. 🙂

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