Here is my blog of the awesome, six-day bike tour with Lizard Head that I did in and near Death Valley in March. Among the adventurous group of 14 guests and 2 guides were my son Gordon, brother Jay, and nephew Brian Cornwell, as well as friends Barb Schreiber and Mike Smolin with whom Mary and I biked in 2007!
I biked EFI (every fricking inch) of the offered rides, and the following itinerary reflects that.
Day 1 (March 13): Red Rock Canyon -> Blue Diamond + Old Spanish Trail -> Shoshone (49 mi & 2,600 ft of climbing) Day 2 (March 14): Shoshone -> Furnace Creek (77 mi & 3,900 ft) Day 3 (March 15): Furnace Creek <-> Dante’s View + Furnace Creek <-> Beatty Junction (63 mi & 4,200 ft) Day 4 (March 16): Mile 12 -> Ubehebe Crater -> Stovepipe Wells (74 mi & 4,300 ft) Day 5 (March 17): Stovepipe Wells <-> Emigrant Pass (46 mi & 5,400 ft) + 4-mi hike in Mosaic Canyon Day 6 (March 18): Stovepipe Wells -> Rhyolite (41 mi & 5,300 ft)
This was a very well-photographed tour by me and others, so my blog is longer than usual. Also, check out Annette’s poem at the end.
Multi-talented Annette wrote the following poem to commemorate the tour.
A fond memory by Annette Orella
I’m here to tell you all a quick rhyme Of a trip by fourteen once upon a time To Death Valley they rode Bicycling their mode To partake of all possible sweat and grime
Of great import were the guests on the trip Not just anyone can take on this ***blip**** It takes true guts Or perhaps be a little nuts To ride through the desert at a clip
From Oregon came Mike with Barb by his side Three cross country trips a source of Mike’s pride But she’s got a new plan E-biking to catch up to her man So up the hills her legs won’t be fried
From San Diego hailed Rebecca and sweet Lou Up and down the dunes they both flew Not a pool did they miss And with push ups found bliss Through the trip their broad smiles and good karmas grew
From Kansas and San Diego came the clan Bikers all through and through to a man Wayne a true EFI Gordon sturdy and spry Jay and Brian never opting for the van (at least that’s the way I’m choosing to remember it!)
Next from New York came Patti and Steve Whose laughter was truly a reprieve She cranked up each hill Pulling others by pure will And keeping all entertained by your leave
Partway through we were joined by Richard and Lee Sadly only one biker would they be But Lee carried the flame Riding hard all the same While Dear Richard patiently did a look-see
And last but not least Chuck – none too slow Whose love for cycling continues to grow As Annette tries to catch him His sights never dim As he continues to go go go go (go go go go go)
Now this story could not be complete Without the people who enabled this feat Our guides were the best Keeping bellies full, minds at rest Peter and Wylie thanks so much – what a week!
You might ask about our intrepid guide Wylie Of whose praises we sing very highly On each road he would dash With tattoos and a stash Providing care and encouragement kindly
This poem’s not complete without mention of Peter Jersey born, a man of skills hard to beat(er) Soft hearted and kind Helping us out of many a bind Having him guide was really a treat(er)
Now before we all say goodbye And return home with a bit of a sigh We’ll pack up one last time Jump on bikes, turn on a dime And drink in the desert landscape and sky.