This past week I got to Sweetwater Reservoir for an after work cruise. It was been quite a few moons since I had been out here and I had been itching to give the place another go.
Spring is in the air and the hill sides are nice and green.
Miguel Mountain in the back ground as I head out towards the Steel Bridge. (The Rockhouse trail is still on my to-do list)
The bridge is where I normally turn around, but today I was riding with some zip so I decided to explore further “up stream”
I did find some nice trails both in the valley as well as up along the hillside . I had a commitment later in the evening so I was watching clock trying to maximize my ride time. A flat tire shortly after my “turn around time” ate up some of my time buffer so after fixing the flat I had had to get on pedals fairly hard.
On the way back there are a couple of options on this otherwise out and back route. Staying to the right will keep you near the reservoir and over to the tiki hut and the left option will take you up to a saddle on the opposite side of the hill. On this return I saw a third (new since my last visit) option that looked like it might split the difference and do some nice contouring. Thinking I might be able to save some time, I took this option and soon found out that while this would be an awesome trail coming down, it was a bit of a bitch in the uphill direction. It was a bunch of work and I am certainly going to hit that trail in the proper direction up on my next visit. It did not save me any time at all, but getting on some dirt I have not been on before is always good in my book.
I was feeling whooped at this point and all the undulations were putting some pain in legs as I was still trying to press the pace.
Just as I rolling back into the camping/staging/playground area parking lot I spotted my first rattlesnake of the year. It was a baby without even a single rattle yet. Considering that he was in a area where an encounter with a camper or kid could easily occur I rolled over to the nearby entrance gate where a park ranger was and asked if they relocate them when they find them in this area. The ranger did confirm they catch and relocate the ones they find in the immediate area. This was not the ranger’s first rodeo and within a couple of minutes he was over with his snake wrangling gear and soon had the snake moved into container. In in the next few hours the snake was to have a new home out in the back forty of the park somewhere. I ended up being just a couple of minutes late for my appointment that evening but felt good about getting in a good ride and doing a good deed.