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Another Mountain Biker is Born April 26, 2011

Posted by Dave Of Prescott in Day Hiking, Just Stuff, Mountain Biking, orienteering.
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One of the biggest thrills I get from my job is taking people to places that they would normally never see, and seeing their face light up from the experience.

My second favorite thrill is when I see that someone is hooked, whether it be on mountain biking (like this great story), hiking, orienteering, adventure racing, or climbing.  To turn someone onto something that will perhaps change their life for the better is really, really cool.

Regarding the story that I linked to above; I do not know this girl at all, but her story is all too familiar to me…..and I love it!

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The “B” is for Blowout October 27, 2010

Posted by Dave Of Prescott in Adventure Recreation, Mountain Biking, trails.
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Wilderness B.  The B is for Blowout, as in the escalation of feelings about this issue.

I am not going to go on and on about it, or even define it.  Look it up.

I will say that I wholeheartedly agree with the move for the new designation to allow mountain bikes in some parts of the wilderness.

Outside magazine addresses it in an article this month too.  Take a look.

Orienteering Meet at Coon Bluff October 13, 2008

Posted by Dave Of Prescott in Adventure Recreation, Day Hiking, Events, orienteering.
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Yesterday Tracie and I went to the Coon Bluff Score-O that the Greater Phoenix Orienteering Club hosted.

I have only ever been to one O-meet, and Tracie had never done it before.  We got there and saw our friends Rick and Kim were there too, so were Jonea (my AR teammate) and her son Brock.  Tracie and I got our map and headed out with thoughts of trying to get to some of the 50 pointers as quickly as possible while picking up some others on the way.  We got the first 10 pointer in about 2 minutes, then headed up a steep gully toward another control on the top of a ridge overlooking the Salt River.  We hadn’t done anything to warm up, so the sudden load of intense cardio was tough as we trudged up the steep gully.  One we got the next point, we realized that it had already been 20 minutes (we were only allowed to be out on the course for 2 hours), so we modified our plan and decided to stay a little closer to the start/finish.

We headed up the ridge and over into a little saddle.  We went down one side of the ridge about 100 yards to aquire another point, then back and off the other side down to a deep trench where there was another control.  Tracie wanted to learn to navigate, so we spent time at each control looking at the map, orienting the map, and getting a bearing toward the next control point.  Tracie was doing well at reading the map, but having a hard time determining the bearings.  I told her to not worry about it, that I have to remind myself how to do it almost every time I am out.

We headed down a wash then around some big boulders and over into another re-entrant to the next control.  5 down with one hour to go.  We headed up to a marked trail then followed that all the way up to the highest point on Coon Bluff where we found our next point.  On the way down the other side, we crossed paths with Ron the race director who was running it solo (no, he didn’t know where the points were, as someone else set the course).

We picked up our 7th point in another re-entrant partway down the hill.  Then we crossed over into a wider flatter valley and found another control.  We now had only 40 minutes left, so we looked at how we could maximize our effort and still make it back in time.  We skirted around the side of a hill and located our 9th control in a narrow gully.  Then further yet around the same hill to get another.   We had only 22 minutes left now……oh the pressure!

From there we went up and over the next ridge to point 11. We hiked down a narrow wash that was filled with big boulders to get our last control point, we now had only 8 minutes to make it back without incurring any penalties.  We made it down to the wash that paralleled the road and followed it down until we could cross the fence and get onto the roadway. We jogged across the parking area and made it back to the timing station with 37 seconds to spare!

We ended up with 300 total points out of 750 possible, but felt good about the experience.  We had a nice hike together, and Tracie got to see what navigation and orienteering is all about.  It was a great way to spend a day with the one I love.

Hiking with Haley at Pioneer Park October 8, 2008

Posted by Dave Of Prescott in Just Stuff.
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Today was a real treat.  Because school is on fall break, I had the opportunity to take my oldest granddaughter for a hike.  We went out to the Pioneer Park/Brownlow Trail to hike the 2 running legs of the upcoming Go! Off Road Duathlon (GORD).  The first leg is 1.5 miles that includes some of the wide smooth trail, and some less traveled single track.  I wondered how it would go when about half a mile into it Haley was asking how much longer it would be!  My response to that was that we were doing great and would soon turn back toward the truck.  This seemed to satisfy her, and we finished the first loop without much trouble.

We took a potty break (that’s Grampy talk), and had a CLIF bar while we were at the truck.  Then we headed out to do the 2.2 mile loop.  This loop also uses single track and the wider smoother trails that are out there.  When Haley kept wanting to stop and “rest” (we were going at a very easy pace even for her), I had to break out the story of the tortoise and the hare.  After that, it was smooth sailing!  She just wanted me to keep telling her stories while we hiked.  This worked fine, as she had her mind on the story and not how far we had gone or how far we had yet to go.  When we completed the second loop, she was surprised that is was already over.

All in all, it was a great way to spend the morning.  I am extremely proud of my little hiker girl, as we covered the 3.7 miles in about 90 minutes of hiking.  She is a trooper, and I hope to get her out again soon, if not hiking, then on her bike!

Rocks Lurk Below September 15, 2008

Posted by Dave Of Prescott in Adventure Racing, Adventure Recreation, Day Hiking, orienteering.
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Kent and I were joined by our buddy Pat yesterday as we vetted the freestyle navigation portion of the GAR.  It was an absolutely beautiful afternoon. The sky was a bright blue doom from horizon to horizon and the temperature was about 75°F.

The grass and weeds that have grown so well this year due to all our monsoon rains are now turning from green to yellow-brown.  What looks like a nice smooth hillside as you approach it is really a rock strewn, ankle-twisting nightmare masked by the grass.  Not only are there rocks lurking below the “surface”, but there are also shin high catclaw bushes that grab at your legs, ankles and shoes with every step.

Now that I am done whining about the hiking conditions, I can tell you that despite a few scratches and pokes, we had a great time on our walkabout.  We spent the better part of the afternoon on hilltops, in canyons and amongst the trees, spotting several deer and other creatures as we hiked.

It will be interesting to see if any teams can actually clear the freestyle nav. portion of this course.  It will require someone that is good with a topo map and compass. It is pretty spread out, and in some tough terrain.  We will know on Saturday!

The GAR is Almost Here! September 14, 2008

Posted by Dave Of Prescott in Adventure Racing, Adventure Recreation, Mountain Biking.
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Less than a week now to the Gilmore Adventure Race near Prescott, Arizona.  Kent and Bob and I did a mountain bike ride on the short course yesterday, and everything is looking good.

Teams are coming from all over the state and southern California to be a part in the what has become the largest (in attendance) and longest running (in years) adventure race in Arizona.

They will begin to arrive on Friday about mid-day, by Saturday at sunrise, we will have almost 200 people revved up and ready to go.

This year’s event will send teams of 2 or 3 persons out into the mountains where they will mountain bike, trek, hike, complete mystery events and finish up with a freestyle navigation leg that is very similar to an orienteering meet.

The weather gurus (yeah right!) are predicting perfect weather for the day.

I can’t wait!

Soggy Granite August 31, 2008

Posted by Dave Of Prescott in Adventure Recreation, trails.
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I took a drive in my Jeep Cherokee today (my mountain bike is still in the shop) for some motorized adventure recreation.  We have had an above average monsoon this year, and I found that even the forest roads that are mainly DG (decomposed granite) were soggy and mushy.

Making ruts in forest roads is one of my pet peaves, so I opted to go to a place that was mostly DG.  Well, I found that what appeared on the surface to be mainly dry was in fact mushy.  So instead of spending a whole day out jeepin’ it, I called it quits after just a couple of hours for the sake of the roads.

The forests are filled with grasses, which should help the deer population around Prescott too.  This also means that many of the biking and hiking trails, especially the less traveled ones, are becoming overgrown.

Take note, I am not complaining, we need the moisture!

The monsoon should end in the next week or so, then maybe I can get a full day out in the mountains in the Cherokee.

Afternoon In Arizona August 22, 2008

Posted by Dave Of Prescott in Adventure Recreation, Day Hiking, trails.
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Tracie and I put the dog in the pick-up and headed out to do a short hike on a trail we had never been on before.  We waited until the temperature dipped below 90° and then took the 20 minute drive to the trail.

The trail had not been used in a long while it appeared, because in the flats near the beginning, there were wild sunflowers growing eight feet tall right in the middle of the trail.  As we began to climb into the trees, the trail got very rocky and looked like the only thing that had been on it recently was runoff from the recent heavy rains.

When we got up near the top end, we had a stunning view of Granite Mountain and the surrounding area.  The trail got better as we went, I think partly because hikers usually come in to see the view from the end we were going out.  In other words, it is the more travelled half of the loop.

We made it back down to the flats, then hiked along the dirt road towards the truck.  Here’s something gross, there were literately hundreds of huge grasshoppers squished in the roadway…..and to make matters worse, other grasshoppers were cannibalizing them!

We took this hike at a very leisurely pace, and finished the 3 mile loop in a little over an hour and a half.

It is really nice that the days are long enough to get out in the hills at the end of the day for a short day hike.

Time to Get Outside! February 27, 2008

Posted by Dave Of Prescott in Adventure Recreation, Just Stuff.
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We finally have a few days of sunshine and the trails are drying out, so it is time to get out on your favorite trail! Whether you are hiking or mountain biking, it doesn’t matter. Just find a way to get out there!

Staying Fit While Traveling February 26, 2008

Posted by Dave Of Prescott in Adventure Recreation.
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If you search on ways to stay fit while traveling you will get a whole gaggle of things to read.  For me, I try to find ways to do the things I do at home.  I am not a gym workout person, I like to hike, mountain bike, and various other outdoor pursuits.  It is because of this, that I started my company, Go! Adventure Recreation, in Prescott, AZ.  Before I travel, I try to find out if someone in the city I will be in offers a way for me to get outside to workout.  Booking a guided mountain bike ride is a super way to discover the area you are visiting, and not have to worry about gear or transportation or have any knowledge of local trails.  The Guide picks you up at the hotel, takes you out to the trail that they have selected for you based on your self described fitness level and skills, they fit you to a bike, give you helmet and gloves, then lead you out on a ride!  When it is over, they deliver you back to your hotel, and you can get back to the business you came to do with a renewed vigor having just had the type of exercise that you are accustomed to at home.

First Post for the Go! AR weblog February 24, 2008

Posted by Dave Of Prescott in About this Blog.
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Hello anyone out there? This is the first post on what I hope will turn into an interesting weblog about well….lots of things, but first and foremost, I want it to be about Adventure Recreation.

Getting outside and doing something that gets you away from the throngs of civilization can be one of the most rewarding things you can do. That hike up to a hilltop to find a spectacular view into the next valley; or a mountain bike ride up an old forest road that takes you into another era when gold prospectors eeked out a living panning for gold along the rocky creek that you have pedaled to.

It is these exhilarating moments in life that I hope to write about. My business (Go! Adventure Recreation) is about helping people find these wow moments. The few hours “out there” that wash you clean, re-charge and invigorate you….they are what Adventure Recreation is all about.