Showers, showers all around, but none fell on us for the Circle-Fairbanks Trail Tramp version of the Tuesday Night MTB Ride.
Did we stay dry? Heck, no! Puddles. Then more puddles. Then even more puddles! Huge puddles! Long puddles! Slippery puddles! Deep puddles! Everyone ended up with wet feet and legs. Well, Carl got wetter than that, but he insisted on swimming!
We drove through several rain showers to the Circle-Fairbanks Trailhead, but the six of us took off under dry skies. We rode 4 miles of mostly down the Fairbanks Creek Road. Then 2.5 miles of mostly up, including a couple of really steep parts. But it they were really rocky and eroded, so it was OK. All that was just to access the Circle-Fairbanks Trail. No one wanted to go to Twelvemile Summit, so we turned back toward the trailhead. Then it was another nearly 1.5 miles of up with a really, really steep part and even more rocks and erosion. Sound fun yet?!
Then we rode the ridge line the trail is on. Ups and downs, but don’t worry, there were still some steep, rocky ups, though bike-able.
We stopped at the highest viewpoint, taking in a gorgeous 360-degree view. Ken was amazed. He’s lived up here 30+ years and didn’t know this was in his backyard! From our vantage point we could see Fort Knox Mine, the Skiland area, and Pedro Dome and much more.
Finally we got some real down. Time to ride and relax? Not hardly! That downhill is at the roughest, rockiest part of the whole ride! We got to the bottom and shook out our cramping hands. Now does it sound fun?! (Did I mention the mosquitoes?)
From there we had ups, downs, and flats. The flats were the most fun because of all the puddles, puddles, puddles! We finally intersected the trail down to Chatanika. No one wanted to head down there. (I guess we’re just a bunch of wimps.)
It was only a couple of miles back to the cars. Along the way the theme for the night continued – incredible views and puddles, puddles, puddles. The last two were the deepest yet! What’s it called when every pedal stroke is accompanied by a loud splash? Dog pedaling?
Then back to the cars for snacks and drinks. (And the experienced smart people got to change into dry shoes. I won’t name them here. Don’t want it to go to their heads.)
While on the ride we had a discussion about the term Burnsiding. If you want to know more, check out the end of the document “Doug Rides” found here: https://www.fairbankscycleclub.org/lore/legends-of-fcc/
Report and photos by Eric.
Next ride is the Pipeline Viewpoint Vacation. (We’re altering this ride and eliminating the shuttle due to the pandemic.) Check the ride schedule here: https://www.fairbankscycleclub.org/rides/tuesday-night-mountain-bike-rides/