Woke up early to another extreme heat warning. To escape the heat and with a tiny head start in my favor I determined I could make it up Logan Canyon for a quick ride up Jardine Juniper. The Ripmo was already cleaned and loaded in the truck. I checked the air pressure and set off to spend the morning blaming my Ripmo for my ineptitude.
Long ago when I was a boy scout our leaders hauled us into the hills above the South Fork of the Snake River. It rained on the way there, on the hike and through the night. We hiked in slipping and sliding the entire time. Growing up in a farming community lots of people had horses. Our leaders had horses and brought them along. One horse in particular was relegated to packing gear. None of the leaders would ride him – for good reason. The horse had a tendency to get distracted and wander back and forth across the trail. On this rainy, muddle trip the horse as always wandered and rolled off the trail and down the mountain, gear still strapped to his back. It took an hour to untangle horse and gear and get the beast back on up the hill and on the trails.
I had a couple of wandering horse moments. At the start of the ride I told myself to ignore the wheel slop and let my body naturally adjust to the behavior of the Ripmo. That worked really well and for most of the trip up the mountain I and the mountain bike came to an accord. However, Juniper Jardine is a reasonably steep trail with some steep drop offs that end with you six feet under ground. On one such section I found myself grabbing the brakes and bouncing the bike back on the trail. The adrenaline from that moment invigorated my heart for the rest of the journey up the mountain.