Winter Palo Duro With Randy

I met Randy in Palo Duro canyon outside of Amarillo Texas last weekend for a day of riding the canyon. I’m happy to get dinner and a drink or pedal around with one of my favorite people whenever possible.

We rode most of the “Baby Grand” loop and I was reminded how nice Palo Duro is. It’s not huge but you can spend twenty five of more miles pedaling a mix of rocky climbs and some flowy cross country. My critiques of the trail include sparse signage, abrupt turns after fast or twisty bits, and the downs not matching the statue of the climbs.

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Winter Texas MTB Tour

I joined one of my best friends this past week for a tour of some of Texas’s MTB offerings. We rode some trails in Austin and then headed to Palo Duro Canyon. It was a fun week of car camping and riding some tech in mostly sunshine.

We started in Austin Texas riding at Pace Bend. It was a neat place with some rocky riding. It’s nice to be able to start and end rides from your campsite. There’s about 13 miles of trail that weaves around the peninsula that varies from windy rocky fun to smoother dirt and flow.

Our second day in Austin we opted to explore the city because it was cold and rained some. We spent some time with a friend who moved to Austin a handful of years ago. We then checked out Mt. Bonnell, the Graffiti Wall before they tear it down next month, the S.R.V. memorial statue, and finished the day with some local pizza and brewery stops. We also dropped by Mellow Johnny’s Bike Shop. It’s a shop with some heritage and association with Lance Armstrong. It’s got some historic bikes and yellow jerseys inside. Form your opinions on him but the shop and seeing some of his stuff was neat from a historic perspective.

The other trail we rode in Austin was Reveille Trails. I had a great time riding this trail system. It’s got some unique rocky terrain that I really enjoyed. It was also a sunny and beautiful day.

We ended the trip by driving to Palo Duro Canyon, a really neat rather large canyon in Texas. We had great weather there in the 70º’s. The riding varied from windy smooth ribbons of fun to off your bike tech. I really liked this place and will be back.

I rode my 2018 Epic for the trip and it was great. I like that bike a lot so far. This trip did however add to me thinking I want to put a dropper post on it. I’m also thinking of a slightly more aggressive and larger volume front tire.

My Element was a great car camper vessel for the trip. With a flat flooring and full-sized air mattress and a sleeping bag, its comfortable when it’s time to rest. I made window covers last year for the non tinted windows for privacy. I can charge my laptop and things. I’ve got a cooler. Life is alright on the road in that little weird all wheel drive car.

It was a fun trip with lots of good moments. 70º’s and rocky mountain biking with a great friend is an alright way to spend a few vacation days in February. Next year we’re planning on going to Big Bend for the Texas Mountain Bike festival in February. That should be rad.

It’s about that time of the year for me to start shaving my legs and joining road bike rides. That with a weekly mountain bike ride should balance to a good year. Good times ahead.

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Today On A Bike

Hairy legs, no fitness, and smiles in the sunshine. I rode Northshore Sunday and had a good time. Early season feels. It’s still a little weird to be riding in shorts and a jersey in January but 65º and sunny is easy to get used to.

It’s fun to see how trails weather over winter, some lines becoming easier, some harder. Erosion, moved rocks, downed trees. It’s like getting to talk to a good friend after not seeing them for a while.

The Epic continues to be a great bike. I enjoy it. The ability to carry two bottles and all the needed things like tubes on the bike are freeing. No pockets full of stuff. Jump on the bike and have a great time. The tires do surprisingly well in the rocks. I’m considering a stealth dropper post though.

I’m figuring out what weekly rides I want to start attending. I think I’m going to aim for the Tuesday and Thursday Pop Rides, but opt for the B group to avoid the recklessness and unnecessary risk from measuring egos in dangerous ways on a group ride. I know I want to also ride the Wednesday McKinney Velo ride too, I like that ride a lot. Great people and great country roads.

Mid February I’m joining one of my best friends who is coming from Illinois on a Southern tour for a few days. We may check out Arkansas, and in Texas area Dallas, Austin, and Big Bend for the mountain bike festival. The plans are loose but I’m sure we’ll have a good time. I hope we have good weather.

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Today On A Bike

I went out for a quick ride around the Southern loop of Northshore yesterday. The weather has been really nice this week. It was 80º and 70º the last couple of days, I think that’s above the norm down here but I’m still acclimatizing to Texas winters.

Looking ahead to the winter, I hope to ride once a week and explore a few locations via two-day (or so) car camping trips around TX and OK. I’m planning on going to Big Bend TX MTB festival in February with a good buddy. That should be a fun trip.

I hope you’re having a safe and relaxing fall. Thanks for reading.Enjoy what you read? Subscribe to be notified of future posts via email by either clicking the Follow button at the bottom or the Subscribe section on the right!