Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Mountain Biking at Big Bend Ranch

Wonderful desert vistas on the Horsetrap Trail
Our bike leans against the min-maze on the Horsetrap Trail, allowing us a rest from our ride
Big Bend Ranch State Park's mountains in the distance...lovely views everywhere!
Confession time:  we're complete novices when it comes to real mountain biking.  Sure, we've taken the bikes out on urban pathways marked as mountain biking trails and rough ranch roads, but our first singletrack experience came this weekend at Big Bend Ranch State Park's Sauceda-Horsetrap Trail Loop Ride.  And it was a SO MUCH FUN! 

Never have we hollered, "Wahoo!" and "I did it!" more than we did on this trail, heading out from the historic Sauceda Ranch in the center of the park.  Rated "easy/moderate" we found it plenty challenging AND satisfying as we tackled rock and sand, getting a few minor cactus scrapes along the way.  We took the 5 mile trail clockwise, getting the sandy road out of the way at the beginning, and then a gradual uphill climb and then a challenging rocky descent.  We were surprised, frankly, at how quickly we caught onto the challenges of the trail, and felt we were building skills every minute we were on our bikes.

Our route is the first ride in the park's Big Bend Ranch Biking Guide, which you can download here, or purchase a hard copy at the park's headquarters at Sauceda Ranch.  Take a look, it will conjure up dreams of future adventures!

We can't wait to get back to the park to tackle a few more trails and build up our skills.  The description of  12 mile  Sauceda-Chilicote Springs-Sauceda Loop ride in the park's biking guide is inspiring us!

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