July Pilgrimage to Bend – Dutchman to Mrazek

In Ride Report by Hawkens

For our second ride and boy did it turn out to be an adventure…..was Dutchman to Mrazek. The original plan was Dutchman to Phils, but I had forgotten that Flagline is closed until August 15th. Rather than shorten the ride and start at Swampy we stuck with Dutchman and head for Mrazek ending in Shevlin Park.

Loaded up the bikes and drove out to Dutchman Snow Park.

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Once at the Snow Park grabbed our bikes, gear and off we went. That 1st climb to the Happy Trails intersection seemed easier this time, must be the bike commuting finally paying off.

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It was certainly hot and joked it would be nice to maybe roll in some snow………We soon came across some snow figuring this would be the worse of it.

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Then a bit more snow…..

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Then it was back to dry trails again some of steep and some rolling

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Then back to more snow. Between trail memory, maps and the map on my GPS we were always able to locate the next section of trail on the other side of the snow field.

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This snow can’t go on forever can it? Well, I knew for a fact that Mrazek was snow free we just needed to keep pushing on in that direction.

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Views like this and what is around that next bend kept the ride interesting.

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At least we are not post holing into the snow it held our weight and if you could keep the momentum could actually ride over some of the sections.

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More snow and we ran into a guy that came in from Mrazek heading to Dutchman so we were not the only Adventures our for the day.

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Looks like a great place to stop for a snack.

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Hey I think we are done with the snow

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Hey what’s that I see…..

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The views though made this adventure worth finding what was around each bend or ridge

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Water Crossing are fun and easier to bike through than a snow drift

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Five maybe six miles after leaving Dutchman we no longer came across large snow fields. There were still a few spots of snow here and there and then nothing. We finally arrived to this spot for Lunch and would not run into snow again. Chatted with a few riders on the conditions that we just hiked through while eating lunch.

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After eating some lunch we pushed on another 15 or so miles to go.

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Prior to this point I was lagging a bit must have been that great lunch my daughter packed for me this morning that got the energy levels up and legs ready to do some climbing. After a bit of rolling trail we hit the start of Mrazek this is such a fun trail and all that hiking is a distant memory.

From this point on the camera did not come for the next 10 or so miles. Really it was over 10 miles of fast trail that weaves back and forth through the forest.

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Some of us needed to have a little break. Walt the slave driver said only five minutes then we move on. After the snack break we were greeted with a little climb my legs were saying enough of this already and happy once over the top and back to zipping along the trail. When we finally rolled back to the cars our total mileage was 28 miles and 13 twinkies expended. Great Ride and Fun Adventure.

I love the adventure spirit in the folks I ride with, while it was tough going never once did we even mention or talk about turning back. We just pushed on and probably cursed under our breath a time or two as the next snow field came up. The effort was worth the many rewards and great stories that come from a trip like todays.

Photo Credit: Brian Holsclaw, Erik Alston, Milt Kageyama