Friday, June 09, 2006

Into the hills/ Sierra City

Today, 60 miles (5 hours, 30 minutes) from Nevada City to Sierraville. We're definitely in the mountains, I'm very roughly estimating that we climbed a total of about 4000 feet altogether. Tonight we're camping just outside of Sierraville at a campground on the Yuba river. Great weather today, lots of fantastic scenery and many miles of gently rolling highway next to the rushing waters of the river.

I love being in the mountains, so it was a real lift to see the beginnings of real dense forests and smell the pine trees. Exciting to come around each new bend in the road.

Another joy of mountain riding: coasting down giant hills!

The Yuba river. Spectacular. We got to ride alongside this amazing waterway for many miles today. Here's a VIDEO I made along this beautiful stretch of road.

At mid-day we reached an old mining town called Downieville. We saw two bike shops. At Downieville Outfiitters we met Greg, who gave us some more good information on how to navigate the pass ahead and which road to take to make the final descent into Reno.

Here's Greg and his workbench. His shop was full of military grade mountain bikes. These guys run tours where they drop you off on top of some mountain and let you ride a rented bike down many thousands of feet of steep trail. Apparently Downieville is a real center for extreme mountain biking. Note: Greg's cool t-shirt, the piano next to him (I'd never been in a bike shop that had a piano inside) plus the groovy bike jersey on the wall behind. (clicky for big viewing goodness)

Amanda makes a new friend at the Outfitter's.

Leaving downtown Downieville, lots of cool old buildings here.

As we continued along the river, we saw some rafters cruising down the rapids.

Boo joined us for the last 15 miles of today's ride. She kicked butt on her new bike, climbing over 1000 feet to our site at Wild Plum campground.

Lots of cool little cabins and such along the river.

My first glimpse of snow at the base of the cliffs high above. You may need to click the image to see it bigger.

Rolling into Sierra City, we're almost there...

My bike passed the gravel road test for the first time, dirt and gravel leading out to our campground.

Greg whizzing around the campground on the mountain bike (he's already talking about getting himself a bicycle when he gets home)


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