Thursday, January 8, 2009

Dancing In The Desert With Brenda

There was no dancing. There was no Brenda, unless, of course, you consider the name of the town where we went riding in the desert with our friends, Lynn and Judy Yoder, who we met at the gold camp in Chicken, Alaska in 2007 ( and some of their friends). It is, rather, a metaphor for a day of touring the desert by "bike." We rode just a bit fewer than 50 miles over a 7 1/2 hour tour. The "dance" seems a good metaphor to me. We waltzed over flat terrain past magnificent scenery, jitter-bugged over some rough mountainous terrain, rock n rolled over some big boulders and tippie toed around all the spines from the cactus along every step of the way. The day, the trip, the company was a thing of beauty. Scenery. Active and working mining claims. Old mining shafts and tunnels and abandoned operations. Wildlife watering holes. Burial sites. Our first participation in group geocaching ( a world wide "treasure hunt" craze based on a combination of clues, computer research and gps navigation). Gullies. Washes. Dry Creeks. Even a bat or two along the way. Oh, and a humming bird, even though only the first signs of the desert greening up were appearing. A ballet in the desert!

Photos for this slide show were all taken with the wide angle lens. I had the telephoto along, but anyone who thinks that riding the bike at an average speed of 15 or 20 mph over rough loose terrain lends itself to changing lenses and or getting a more well framed shot has got to give it a try themselves. Oh, and the dust! Nothing kicks up fine dust like a bunch of bikes tearing across a dusty path through the dry desert. This being our introduction to desert biking we hadn't come prepared with "bandannas" to cover the nose and mouth. The others looked on occasion like the Brenda Banditos, but they are probably not requiring large glasses of ice tea to wash out the dust like I am tonight. Actually, I jest! A whisk broom on the bike and the jackets and the boots and the thick cover of brown powder was pretty much dispensed, and only the memories of a great day filled with new vistas and good friends remained.

Slide Show: Dancing In The Desert With Brenda

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