Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Expect the Unexpected

Two old silos
The other day I went for one of those rides that just didn't go the way that I thought it would.  I was trying to ride the Canada Creek loop between Dahlonega and Suches.  I was following along in Off the Beaten Track, and everything was going great until I had to find the "hidden singletrack surprise." After riding back and forth for a while, I eventually picked up the old road-turned-trail, and followed it for about a half of mile.  And then it just ended. In the woods. In the middle of nowhere.

Yes, it just ended.  There was a field off to the left, so I spent a while wandering around the edge of the field looking for any semblance of road.  Then, I headed back up in the woods and started working my way out in concentric circles, looking for a remnant of trail.

I used to pride myself in my trail finding skills, but I could not find anything. Well, there were several times when I thought I might have picked up a trail of some sort.  But it would lead nowhere.

There may have been a trail there even as recently as last fall, but the leaves hadn't been ridden in, and there was so much dead fall in the area that if there was a trail, it could have been completely hidden under last fall's leaves and this winter's dead branches and trees.

After hiking around for about 30-45 minutes, I decided to turn around and head back.  I really didn't want to retrace my steps, because it would be mostly climbing the 10 miles back to my car, and if I could have found the trail it would have been a quick 4-5 miles back.

In the end, my quick 1 1/2 hour 15 mile ride turned into about a 2 1/2 - 3 hour 23 mile epic.

Hey, it was a good work out though!


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Greg Heil is the Editor in Chief for He's been writing and publishing online since before blogging existed.

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Mountain biking, plain and simple. Trail reviews, ride reports, and philosophical musings induced by delirium from grinding up way too many vertical feet.

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