Dan celebrates after a tough climb.

Eight intrepid riders showed up for this ride despite a wet pregame show. It rained all day Monday and it rained off and on Tuesday, even right before the ride start. But nary a drop fell on us during the ride!

Still, we could have gotten wet. We had to get from the Vallata restaurant to Old Murphy Dome Road somehow. Eric offered several options, including (with a gleam in his eye) O’Connor Creek Trail. He insisted it would be great, considering what a dry year we have been having. Dave would have none of it. He claimed co-leader veto power. The group backed Dave and the coup was complete.

We biked over to Jones Road and made our way via roads and trail to the Moose Mountain power line trail. Quite a few puddles and some mud, but mostly the MM trail is in great shape. The sun even came out a bit as we neared OMD Road.

We rode OMD to the Treasure Creek Trail turnoff. After discussing TC Trail, we re-saddled for the next part of the ride. But first Dan, the only one with clip-less pedals (you know, the ones with clips), entertained us by failing to unclip as he lost his balance. (We’re sorry, Dan, if some of us snickered. At least one of us showed concern, right? That’s pretty good for MTB guys.)

After Dan righted himself, we regained the fuel break trail along OMD and then crossed onto the power line trail until we finally got to the start of the trail that makes this ride this ride. Officially, the trail is called the O’Connor Creek East Ridge Trail. Bleh. It was nicknamed Spanky’s by former FCC legend Rocky Reifenstuhl. Rocky rode it many times and was spanked sufficiently to give the trail an appropriate name for bikers. That is one rooty trail!

Our group was spanked sufficiently. A few of us had fatty bikes and were loving the cushioning the fat tires gave. Dan had his full boinger and was enjoying all the boings. Eric gave a little history of the trail at one break and then we were off for more spanking.

As we neared Vista Gold subdivision at the top of the Pandora Road complex, Eric (a resident of the area) gave the group a choice. One route would use subdivision roads before reconnecting with the trails. The other route had more spanking. Eric tried to be judicious with his words, but the meaning came through loud and clear. Ken called it. Do you want to be a wimp or a tough guy? The group voted to be tough guys!

We rode trails around the subdivision and finally attained the top of the last downhill. There, Eric gave more choices. More spanking or less spanking? Tough guys or wimps? Jon save the group by rephrasing the argument. The “less spanking” route he labeled “more logical.” Others jumped onto his bandwagon. Let’s take the more logical route!

So, we bombed down the last part of Spanky’s (which isn’t quite as spanky as the rest and is a rocking’ downhill) and finally came out on Skyflight Road above the Vallata. From there it was easy (I mean, logical) riding back to the cars.

The ride was given a big thumbs up by the group. Tough guys. Even if they are logical.

Report and photos by Eric.

Next ride is the Waterford Trail Plus. Check the ride schedule here: https://www.fairbankscycleclub.org/rides/tuesday-night-mountain-bike-rides/