Igor and I left my house at 6:10 and arrived in South Lake Tahoe at Big Meadow camp ground just after 2:00. This is a great campground it is quiet and the sites are spread out. There are pit toilets, trash cans and picnic tables. There is no running water but the stream is near by and the price is right, its free!
We had a stop at whole foods market in Folsom for lunch and groceries. We set up camp and were riding around 3:00.
We rode the Christmas Valley Trail. We took a side trail to Dardanelles Lake. Which also had some challenging rocky sections. Once back on the main trail we headed down and I crashed and hit my knee cap. Igor had asked if I was going to bring my pads and I said I did not need them. Big mistake. Getting injured on day one of a six day riding trip is a real bummer.
Once back at camp we set up Igor’s shower tent. Unfortunately the sun shower did not have adequate time to heat so the water was still cold.
Camp fires are prohibited at this time due to the high fire danger so that was a bummer not being able to have a fire.
We rode from camp up the TRT to Toads then up Corral, Armstrong connector, Armstrong trail and back to the TRT to camp. The ride starts off with a technical climb which we both struggled trying to ride difficult sections of the trail. My knee was hurting and the elevation and smoke from the Rim fire in Yosemite also made things challenging. I would loose site of Igor at times but knew when a challenging section was coming up when I would hear him yell out as his efforts of ride difficult sections maxed out.
We had a nice dinner of Salmon corn on the cob and rice.
We got up around 6:00 am to eat and break camp. We met up with Ed in town and headed
over to the trailhead near the Corral Trail. We rode up the Cold Creek Trail, Powerline, Star Lake, TRT and then down the Armstrong Trail, Arstrong Connector, Sidewinder, Incense Cedar Trails. Then back to the cars via a loose double track. It was nice to go down the Armstrong Trails. I have ridden up them a few times but this was my first time going down them. After the ride we stopped in town at the Brewery for food and drink. After dinner we drove to Squaw to meet up with Mike, Robin, Steve, Ross, Brad and Dean.
We spent the night in the upscale Squaw Village Condo that Mike and Robin had arranged. We awoke to Mike getting busy making a huge breakfast for all! After a great breakfast we rode from the Condo down the paved bike path a few miles to the Western States Trail. We regrouped and then began our climb up the trail. We had a few miles of single track and then a
very steep old logging road that they called ” The Wall” We regrouped at the top of the first summit and this was the last time we would all be together on this ride. We dropped down the trail to a paved road and Mike, Robin, Brad and Dean headed down the road to Watson Lake. The rest of us stayed on the TRT and had planned to regroup at the Lake. We made a wrong turn and headed up to Watson Peak instead of Watson Lake and missed Mike and Robin on the trail. We did find Brad and pointed him in the right direction. He would later hook back up with Mike, Robin and Dean.
The rest of us stuck together for a while until some of us started to run low on water. Ed, Ross and I split off from Steve and Igor so we could head down to town to get water. We found a fun trail that took us down to Jackpine Street in Tahoe City.
We rode the TRT from Mt Rose Highway, around Marlette Lake to the Flume Trail. We had great views of the Lake and surrounding mountains. We stopped for a break at Marlette Lake where Brad and Steve took a swim.
After the ride we stopped for food and drink at the trailhead near the Ponderosa. Igor and I then headed south to spend the night outside of Mammoth Lakes at a free campground off the 395 called Glass Creek. This campground has pit toilets, tables and very roomy sites. After two nights in the condo it was nice to be camping out again. The sound of the creek and the hoots of a distant Owl made for a good nights sleep.
We got up around 6:00 am, had breakfast and packed up camp. We then drove over to the Village and started our ride at 7:45 am. The legs were a little sore but the elevation did not seem to be a problem. We headed up the Town Trail to Paper route. We did a loop of Paper route and then we were stopped for some lift maintenance so we back tracked on Paper route to Juniper and then the Lakes Trail. From the Lakes we rode the Panorama Mountain Bike Trail to Mammoth Rock Trail. We kept a good pace without to much stopping and finished it up in just over two hours.
Ride states: 17.9 miles with 1923′ in elevation gain