We were in the house, after the sun had set. Jack let us know he wanted to go into our enclosed back yard. A few minutes later, we heard Jack barking incessantly, which is unusual. As soon as I opened the door, I heard a very pissed off rattlesnake. Got Jack into the house and went out with a flashlight and iPhone. This is the 2nd one in a month. Our first discovered in our back yard. Not good.
I ordered a life size skeleton! Jack growled at first but soon accepted the new member to our family.
OK, not quite life size. We put it outside as a Halloween decoration. Maybe it will ward off snakes.
Got in three rides this week but none more than 36 miles. That too is not good, lol. Saturday morning, saw a group offering washes so pulled in. It was in support of kid's camping opportunities or something like that. The end of September is upon us and our afternoon highs are dropping into the 80's. That's good!
I'm increasing the climbing within the routes we choose, which took me by this odd display on my way to the Foothills.
Oh and the first of many Halloween displays made an appearance in the "49er" development which will draw many hundreds of children, next month.
I drove to Oro Valley to jump in with a Cactus Club group ride which included a stop for a flat tire, conveniently under a bridge.
One of my favorite views!
My bike has a Shimano crankset that is part of the voluntary recall. I called my favorite shop, Sabino Cycles and was told they provide a free inspection. I have to leave my bike for a day but during that, they take an hour to remove the crankset and do an inspection. Shimano pays them for the labor so it's free for customers. It's worth it to have a shop remove the crankset from the bottom bracket and do a reinstall. Just part of good maintenance routine.
The Van Gogh Exhibit came to Oro Valley so we made the 35 minute drive and strolled through the exhibit.
Learned much about Van Gogh and once consuming all the displays, we entered this room, took a seat and....
....enjoyed a 20 minute visual presentation. We attended with friends Kathryn & Jim so once finished....
....we dined at Harvest Restaurant from where we enjoyed the view which changes....
....dramatically in minutes.
Amy and I got out for a 36 mile ride through the Catalina Foothills. We're contemplating participating in a cycling event early next month so will need to add more climbing miles to our rides.
A short distance from our home is a small horse farm and I noted a pile of pallets had been placed. Hmmm, a text to confirm the pallets were available, a visit to ACE Hardware and we are now the proud owners of a Stihl chainsaw. Pallets are usually made of oak and pieces of them burn really hot so I've cut 6 of them and forming a pile in our backyard.
The Cactus Cycling club scheduled a 49 mile route, originating from Patagonia so I signed up and made the hour drive to.....
....the small town comprised mostly of restaurants and bars. Patagonia is a hotbed of gravel cycling and a local business....
...posted the cycling rules.
Our group rode a 12 mile climb from Patagonia to Sonoita and then more climbing as we headed to Elgin....
....where we took a break in a shady spot. So...my thighs have been unusually fatigued during rides since we returned from Montana. After researching and consulting with my favorite nutritionist (Amy) my consumption of carbs has been too low. So, I have been eating lots of veggies and fruits and especially consuming them on the day of this ride and.....
....I was good as we paused to refuel. Finished with 49 miles and approximately 2000' of climbing. Then, back home to watch the Buckeyes!
Once a month or so, I pick up a breakfast sandwich and bring it home for Jack. Like all meals, the food is placed in a container, we call Jack, give the sit command (he is a very well behaved and trained dog) and after sitting, me say "break" and he hits the food.
We headed to a friend's house, high up in the Catalinas where we enjoy the sunset.
Looking in the opposite direction, the sun casts diminishing light on Table Mountain....
....Bighorn Mountain and .....
....Pusch Peak, all part of the Pusch Ridge.
The sun continues to set as me move inside for dinner and drinks!
At the end of Speedway Road is the entrance to Tanque Verde Ranch. While on a ride, I noticed someone made way too wide a turn and crashed into the entrance sign. It's pretty solid so the vehicle surely would have sustained significant damage.
Our fairly healthy monsoon has turned the mountains noticeably greener. My legs felt awful on this ride. Maybe it was the 4 days of inactivity or a Montana hangover.
And just like that, probably a lightning strike produced a fire in the front range of the Catalinas. It eventually grew to 1000 acres and still burning but I noticed airplanes dropping retardant on the edges of the fire so hopefully it's out soon. I hopped in with the Cactus Cycling club for a 33 mile ride and my legs felt a little better but still kind of fatigued.
Cathedral Rock sticks out, above the smoke on the left.
We departed a day early from MT because rain was forecast all day so may as well begin the drive back. Fortunately, while it did rain extensively around Whitefish, we broke out of the rain about an hour south of the city.
We reached Missoula and passed the "M" mountain.....
...reached a very desolate northern Idaho....
....stayed a night somewhere which requires us to lug our bikes up to the room where sun reflected off Amy's mirror. Almost looks like the moon.
Jack loves to jump into the pillows at every hotel stop.
Back on the road for the 2nd day of driving. The total time spent driving the route home is about 21 hours but we broke it up into 3 days of driving.
Lots of great views along the way before we stopped just north of Las Vegas.
A bunch of rain overnight and this is the system that also hit "Burning Man", causing all their weather related problems.
We got a good look at Lake Meade.
Our fine day was expected to be a wet one but we got mostly lucky, escaping the brunt of the activity. So with that, our month in MT comes to an end. We'll be back for sure.
I wandered around Whitefish on a short ride. I tried to schedule a round at Whitefish GC but they were full.
Some odd lawn decorations around here.
Jack and I walk by an adjoining golf course most days and I've picked up a few balls.
Whitefish downtown is a lot of fun with very good restaurants.
We got out for a 35 mile ride on our last day which included....
....passing by a group of llamas and on our last evening we of course.....
...had a night out!