We start off with, I am once again slacking a bit on BLOG posts. I will try to catch up at some point, but for today I have to talk about the Condor Peak Trail in the northern bits of the San Gabriel mountains. I first rode this trail in in 2007 and thought it was a fantastic trail. I was quite saddened in 2009 when the station fire tore that area and the trail up. After thousands of volunteer hours put in by the dedicated folks of the Lowelifes Respectable Citizens’ Club the trail was officially reopened back in July.
Those folks did an amazing job of rebuilding that trail. It is in fantastic shape and they did not sacrifice any of the narrow twisty exposed nature of trail which make it such treasure to a single track connoisseur .
My buddy Bill and I revisited a point-to-point ride we did that included a 12 mile climb up Mendenhall Ridge and a connection over to the top of the Condor Peak Trail. Condor Peak can also been done as an out and back, but I don’t like the idea of trying to climb some of those narrow exposed sections when you are momentum deprived. No matter what method you take to get to the top of Condor Peak you are going to put in some work.
A while back I revisited the Santa Margarita River Trail and shot some video.
The placed has changed a bit with the primary thing being some “improvements” to the south side that has “tamed” some of the trails a little and made them slightly wider. To the east of the preserve the Red Mountain and “Hills Loop” I used to describe have been cutoff due to an property acquisition by an environmental group. There is still plenty to see out here and while summer is not the best time to be out here it was still a nice outing on the bike.
I had planned to add pages to my website about the my killer 24-Day MTB road trip last year. I ended up putting on the backburner as I got busy with putting together the video from that trip. I finally got around to finishing them up.
Well, its complicated but the short answer is I have been busy. I have been doing a lot of utilitarian things with the site to make it mobile friendly and to allow for some other things I want to do in the future. The site is over 20 years old and some of the HTML needs some freshening up. Over the course of those 20 years I have had numerous revisions and code conventions that have changed resulting in genres of pages that need to be standardized before I can really move forward with things. While much can be done with scripts, I basically need to touch every page and I have over 200 hundred trails on the site.
One particularly time consuming bit is fixing thumbnails. Back in “The Day” the drop shadow effect was not an HTML/CSS function. I generated that using a custom Photoshop action script. The shadow and the background on that shadow were part of the the thumbnail image itself. Thus my site’s dirt/sand colored background is baked into the cake of all the thumbnails. Part of the project is to get rid of those baked in shadows and replace them with modern CSS/HTML functions. Once again scripts, actions, find/replace and batch processes help but I have to touch every page.
While all of the pages are now viewable to some degree on mobile, a little over 100 of them have yet to fully converted. It is an ongoing process and not one I do all the time. I still like riding my bike and I really enjoy spending quality time with my lovely wife. So that is the happenings with the site’s pages.
Now this BLOG. You may have noticed I have not done too much with it since my big trip last year. Social media plays a part in this and I have not figured out if they should supplant this or not. I have settlef on I think not. Social media has its place but I think the BLOG is going to stay around. I intend go do some “backfilling” of content from the last year. So I will be publishing some new content with old dates to when they occurred.
But hey, all of this takes time and I think it is time to go for a ride instead of banging on a keyboard.
Doing the Caballo trail out a Daley Ranch requires a bit of a commitment as it will add some climbing to your day. The Quail trail is a much easier sell as it just adds a little work to your day. Both are worth the price of admission in my book.
So I have been eyeballing up checking out Lusardi Truck Trail for quite some time. I heard that it was “just” a dead end but I wanted to see for myself. I know I could have drove my truck this forest service road, but I wanted to investigate with two wheels.
It is mostly a climb over six-miles until it does indeed dead-end at a locked gate to some private property. I can’t really say this is much of a trail but if you want to see this back corner of the Cleveland National Forest it is well worth a visit. In the near term I have added this to Trailforks and I will probably add this to my site as well.
You have to pay to play with this loop. 4,711ft of elevation in just under 26 miles will have your legs feeling it on the climbs and your grinning muscles feeling on the descent. You will probably stress some pucker muscles here and there as well. This route has you climbing Harding Truck Trail up to Main Divide and then down Joplin following back hooking up with the Santiago Truck Trail and the Luge.
I recently got back out on the Palm Canyon Epic after a couple year hiatus. I have took the RV out to Palm Desert and setup basecamp for the weekend. My wife took us up to the top and it was quite nice to not a “commute” to do after the ride. It was a great day out of the bike.
Some fresh video content from Iron Mountain. I also got the related page on my site cut over to the mobile friendly format. That new format project is taking on a life of its own. I have not be doing too much blog posting as of late other than the video updates. I will probably catch that up at some point but hey, ride bikes or slap code on key board?
But for now, enjoy the video. It was a good ride even if I did roll out of there with slight case of PTSD from from the chunk!
How time flys! MountainBikeBill.com turns 20 today. When this thing started it were no smartphones, high speed data, GoPros and YouTube. Even a hand-held mapping GPS was a tough thing to come by in those days.
Thank you all for the motivation to share my love for the outdoors and mountain biking over the last 20 years!
The site came about as more of a progression of information vice a thought out plan. While I do consider my time in the 80’s riding my 10 speed on old logging roads and game trails of North Carolina mountain biking (Or should dare to say Gravel Biking), I got into I got into modern MTBing in the late 90s here in San Diego.
I love the exploring aspect of the sport and it was much more exploratory in nature back then. Bringing along a guidebook on a ride was very much a thing. Before long I was checking out places “not in the books” and friends would want me to lead rides or explain to them how they could get there. This lead to hand written directions and maps that got photo copied and passed around. Then came scans and me putting hosting on my cox.net personal account. Somewhere along the line I picked up the nickname Mountain Bike Bill. On Feburary 6th, 2002, MountainBikeBill.com became a thing.
If you want a historical chuckle you can check out these historical nuggest of the site that I’m probably going to leave as is and make a whole next page.
GPS and TOPOS! https://mountainbikebill.com/GPSandTOPOs.htm
Best Viewing Methods HAHAHA https://mountainbikebill.com/BestViewing.htm
The FAQ section is horribly outdated https://mountainbikebill.com/FAQ.htm
The site has gone through four major revisions over the years, and while I should have moved to some type of content management system long ago, I will probably keep the old school html thing going. I latest bit of work involves migrating all the pages to a mobile friendly format and tweaking the GPS files to work better with more simplistic mobile applications. Moving videos to my YouTube channel is also another thing to do when I am not doing life stuff like you know, riding a bike and loving on wife and dogs. Then there is that whole pesky work thing.
So thank you all for the motivation to share over the years.While social media in its various forms calls into question the relevance of websites and blogs these days, I plan on keeping this thing going for the foreseeable future. So if you like bad grammar, misspelled words sprinkled with some MTB blabbage stick around.