Skip to main content

When Pedaling Downhill Is Work

A mountain range in the Mesquite NV area offers a mountain biker a welcome relief from the tourism of a few miles upstream, closer to Zion. It's not that people are doing anything wrong up there, it's just that there are so many of them.

Since it is so nice around here, what keeps people from realizing it? We are protected from the Zion hordes by a simple hangup that Utah tourists are prone to. Think of the cinematography of the movie, "The Wizard of Oz". The movie starts off in Kansas in black-and-white, not unusual in 1939. But when Dorothy's house is carried off by a twister and gets plopped down in the land of Oz, everything is in color. 

It is exactly the reverse of that when a Zion-tourist gets swept down through the Virgin River canyon and is deposited in the grey world of Nevada. They are disappointed. I love the shapes and shadows of Nevada mountains. Let the red, tourist-attracting colors of Utah be damned. 

It was a long climb up to a radio tower on the way to the high peaks. The approach-ramp was over 5 miles long  -- it was yesterday's ride. Today I drove up the correct dirt/gravel/rock road to the point where a road and arroyo spill out of the sharp area of the mountains.

Two thousand feet of climbing. And yet there were silly cows up there near the top! On the way down it was important to take it slow and lower the seat post. On the way down, I was at leisure to admire some of the geological features, like the one that reminded me of the Flatiron Building in Manhattan.


Perhaps the reader doesn't see the resemblance with:



But remember that a person's brain is so relaxed on the descent that it plays free-association games. Anything and everything seem to work, and give the cyclist pleasure.

Isn't there an easier way to make a living when you are a fat lazy cow?


The road goes up through a slot canyon. Water was being piped down from the highlands.

Joshua trees where the rugged stuff begins