Bianchi you are my Valkyrie

Years ago after I picked a road bike and had tried my hand at mountain biking I knew that what I really needed was a cross bike. I found a Bianchi Cavaria frame at just the moment when I upgraded the Dura-Ace 7800 on my Madone 6.9 to Dura-Ace 7900. I combined that with some Stan’s tubeless rims matched with American Classic hubs. The Dura-Ace crank wouldn’t work so I found a Sram Red that would. I added a pair of cantilever brakes and the result could be viewed as a bit of a Frankenstien. It’s a touchy bike. The first cross tires I tried would explode off the rim with the decibel range of a gunshot. The bike shop could never quite get everything adjusted quite right so I stopped bothering with tune ups. They once replaced the entire groupset and couldn’t get a brand new groupset to work quite right. No idea what demons reside in that bike.

Exploding tires and failed tune-ups aside, the Bianchi is a piece of art. Nothing says heritage and beauty like a bike adorned in Celeste. The Bianchi is my Valkyrie. It is stunningly beautiful and yet fierce and powerful. It is not a mountain bike per se, but on the days when my wrists and back can take a pounding we journey into the mountains together. The Logan River Trail is my go-to trail for enjoying a ride on the Bianchi. The first section of the journey is a service road for the city’s main water supply. It is gravel, but it is wide and smooth. The Bianchi goes fast without even trying. I see a rider ahead. We approach. It’s a Ripmo V1! It’s the rider who warned us about a snake just a few days ago. We fly past (politely). On the uphill the Bianchi eats mountain bikes and spits them out like they are sunflower seeds. 

Sometimes I dream about mountain biking. In my dreams the trails I know by heart magically connect to new, perfect trails. I ride for hours alongside mountain lakes and meadows then through the trees as I’m transported around the world to idyllic locations.

This year my dreams came true – literally. At the top of Spring Hollow where I would normally turn around what should appear but a new trail! I did. It didn’t care where I would end up. The chance to ride new dirt is like Christmas morning. Turns out the new bit of trail connects up with a section of trail that I commonly climb. Now my ride can be a loop. Cool!

New trail above Spring Hollow campground
New dirt, still wide from the trail dozer
I wonder if anyone heard it. The wind here can get nasty and this is new since I rode a few days ago
Sun beating down on a rock slide above Spring Hollow campground in Logan Canyon
Moon dust maker burning the dirt. It’s hot.
View from the climb up to the rock slide. Opposite side of the canyon can be seen in the distance.
Proof of the climb

The ride – Logan River Trail