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Thursday, March 18, 2010

Tourist Town

I'm still in Moab.  I have quite a few thoughts to share this morning.  I want this post to be a ramble, not a rant, so please read on, knowing it all has a positive tone.  Right.

Moab is one of those places where your eyes stop working when you try to absorb and comprehend its beauty and visual complexity.  It's too much.  Your visual cortex fills up because there is so much to see, so much that after a while you don't even see it.  Visual overload.  Perhaps someday there will be an external hard drive to plug into the human brain.  Then, we might be able to "see" such a place.  Thank you, Ron, for the photo.  I stole it from your web site.

The bicycles here, in my opinion, are so over the top.  Hardly no one pedals "up" the trail.  Most people start at the top and leave a car at the bottom.  Cars, cars, cars.  There are more bicycles on cars than on the trails.  If you are driving a car around Moab and you do not have bicycles strapped on, you are not normal.  Yes, I am guilty too, my car has three bikes on it.  My question is, "What happened to the pedal to the trail-head philosophy?" that for a time seemed to be gaining some momentum.  The answer, I know, is that the over the top bicycles that people ride and rent here in Moab are in fact not bicycles at all.  They are motorcycles without engines.  Bicycles in name only, so heavy, shock absorbing, and inefficient, they can not be pedaled up a hill.  When you visit the bike shops here and look at their rental bikes, they are all down-hill, free-ride, full on slush puppies.  If I were to ask about renting a "single-speed rigid 29er," I wonder what they would say?  Yes, I am far from the mainstream.  I'm the crazy one.  I did the White Rim Trail in one day on a cyclocross bike.

Speaking of momentum, yesterday I did go on a bike ride.  I tried to ride gingerly.  When you soft-pedal a mountain bike, it tends to fall over quite a bit.  So, "riding" did not hurt my back, and my "psyche" is quite intact.  Falling off, however, was quite painful.  I ended up doing a lot of hike-a-bike.  That was good too.


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