Thursday, October 8, 2009

Now Thats a KOKOPELLI!!

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At our campsite on North Bever Mesa and my favorite shot from the ride.











Unable to shrug off the upset of not 100% completing the Kokopelli supported last April Mike and I gave another attemp this time self supported and in the last week of September. I really got my pack weight down this year. My pack weighed about 12 pounds dry. Last year it probably weighed 20 lbs. 8 lbs makes a Big difference over 150 miles.
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Here we are at the start. We stayed in Moab the night before and got up at 0 dark thirty to take a shuttle back to the trail head in at Loma. There was a group of girls that were getting ready to ride the Kokopelli the same time we were at the trail head, they were from Taos NM. One of them took this shot. Thanks! We never saw them again.

This year my pack consisted of the following.
1 Down Summer Quilt
1 REI Minimialist Bivy
Big Agnes Air Pad
Katdyn Hiker Pro Water Filter
Silk Thermals
Hat
Tools
3 water bottles (one on bike)
Food

My Bike Preformed unbleivelbly well. My suspension was soft the first day but after I gave it several shots of air from my new uber light shock pump it made for a perfect ride. We had 0 flats no broken chains nothing nada....









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Here we are in Rabbit Valley already. Seems like we are making good time but it is HOT!! Its has to be in the mid 90's and water conservation was a must.








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We had made a costly wrong turn in Rabbit Valley getting about an hour off course. We were already low on water and had the toughest part of the day ahead of us since we take the Western Rim option. Western rim is a blast but there is a tough hike a bike out at the end. I cramped on this one since I was out of water by the time we got to the hike a bike. The first day was the most difficult due to the wrong turn and heat.







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Releived we arrive at our night one campsite at Westwater. Westwater is a drop in point for rafters on the Colorado River. Lots of rafters camp there and its always an intersting crowd. Plust there is a water spout there. This year we got offered free beers and and some of the best brownies I have ever had by the rafters.










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I had my first rattlesnake encounter. There were tons of lizards and snakes on the Kokopelli. We camped night 2 at Cowskin Campground about 4 miles up Entrada blufs road. It made for a nice slog finish for day 2 but was well worth it. Cowskin was peaceful and very beautiful. We had stashed water food and some cans of Old Chub. It was one of our better improvements made vs. the self supported trip in '08








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Les Grills says we have reached the national forest boundry. I rode with my helmet in my pack most of the trip. It was just so hot and the bandana kept my head cool and the sweat out of my eyes.









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This is the third day. Even though it was a full day of climbing it was probably the best day.









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One of the zillion lizard friends I made on the trail.











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At the top of Fisher Valley looking out at sundown. This was our night 3 campsite. We ended up getting rained on and I was not prepared for it and ended up getting wet in my bivy. Should have brought the rain jacket oh well.








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So it was a great Kokopelli adventure. Self Supported is way more fun. The elements were the most challenge on this run. Scorching Temps, getting rained, Hailed, sleeted on made it that much more interesting. We made it!

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