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Mountain-Biking in the Black Hills (pics)





ocalhoun
I went for a very difficult 10-mile bike ride through the black hills a few days ago, and I thought I'd share a few photos.

Early on, I had to ford a stream, the first of several. Crossing streams on a bike is fun, but if you loose momentum, loose traction, or hit a rock that can't be seen because of the current, then you're going to get very cold and wet.
With a combination of luck and skill, I made it through dry.

There were plenty of other obstacles on the trail, like:
-Downed trees (small branches can be run over, but sometimes big logs forced me to get off and carry the bike.)
-Grueling up-hill slopes (I'm sure some of them were more than 1 mile, and the broken terrain just makes it harder.)
-Scary, rocky down-hill slopes (Bouncing down a rocky slope is fun, but you pay a hefty price if you're not careful.)
-Very scary sideways slopes (I discovered that the bike could stay stable on a grassy, 45 degree side-slope!)
-Ditches both across and along the path (Sometimes the path was at the bottom of a narrow ditch, making the pedals hit the ground on either side.)
Together, they all tested me and my bike up to (and sometimes beyond) the limits.

It was worth it though; riding the bike through that rough terrain is very fun, and the trail is a beautiful one that winds its way around a mountain lake.


Besides the obstacles, there's another difficulty; it can be hard to find the trail sometimes, especially when racing by on a downhill section. Sometimes the markers like the one on the tree to the right are the only indication that there's a trail here.


It's amazing how much harder riding the bike is in dirt and rocks, as opposed to pavement. It requires more attention and a lot more strength. After 10 miles of that, it took me 3 days to recover- I think next time I'll try a trail that's a bit easier!
alvarorojas4
Love the landscape and specially the 3rd pic Smile
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