Random Canyons in Anza Borrego

By Forrest Smith - Drempd.com

I made it out to the desert yesterday for a little solo bike ride – it’s been a long time since I’ve been out on my own ride, I think the last time was in October. I’ve noticed that over the years the time between each adventure stretches longer and longer, which is a troubling trend. I’m hoping I’m at the peak of my adventure slowdown, and from now on, things will start going the other way – towards more and more adventures, more often.

It was great to get out, although the drive-to-bike ratio isn’t too great when I go out to the desert for those rides, so that moderately dampens things a little. I was however able to explore a couple of different canyons that I haven’t been up before, which was kind of fun. I followed one canyon mostly towards its end, as the walls steepened and the creek-bed forcefully turned through the bottom. It then mellowed and became more shallow a bit as I climbed up. I turned around before reaching the top — I wonder if I should have kept going until it opened up on top of the mesa. Perhaps next time.

Up another canyon, found a burnt-out-car probably done within the past few years. It’s always sad to see junk in the desert, especially up a cool canyon. I must admit, it was also kind of eerie, and I didn’t want to stick around for too long. It had a slight shimmer to it, from the mix of rust and melted paint, that gave it a weird sense of not actually being there (plus, probably the fact that it shouldn’t be there)…like if I were to try to touch it, my hand would go straight through. I stayed for a moment, took a couple pictures of it, and turned myself back down the canyon.

I can feel myself losing endurance and physical ability these days. Most people would blame it on getting older, and while that may play a small piece, the greater issue is just not getting out enough. So yesterday was a nice return to pushing my bike up hills and through desert sand. A return to breathing heavily and sweating under the desert sun. I wore myself out, which is great. I slept the best I have in a long time last night.

I am hoping to turn things around a bit this year, see if we can get back to a better level of adventure. Perhaps this is a start – a return to who I am.