I rode up to a ghost town just north of BV. The cabins there were actually used during the mining days of long ago and they are kept preserved. Everybody and their rowdy brother was in the mountains to play this weekend (nothing says the great outdoors like Lynard Skynard being blasted out of 6x9's) so I knew finding solitude would be difficult. I did get a bit of rain off and on but nothing major. Last night I was scrambling to look for a place to camp and finally settled on an isolated spot right at 9. I was up and moving by 7 this morning and got in another 4 hours. I saw lot's of cool things.
I also learned quite a bit from this ride. Changes that I made over last year's setup (that I thought would be way better) proved not so much. I ate/drank more than I ever have before and I ate good stuff too so that will likely remain (although I did bring too much food). I also had a lot of time for reflection (particularly today). The kind of riding I did for this trip was different than you find on the CTR. There was no singletrack at all and it was probably more along the lines of the Tour Divide. With the CT, you have to pay so much attention to the trail that you don't do an awful lot of looking around unless you're stopped. On the fire roads, I was able to rubber neck everywhere. I really had a good time. That doesn't mean that I'm not excited about this year's race but it does mean that I think I'm ready for something else. I just need to get the monkey off my back this year for my mind to really go along with that plan because, up to now, considering starting something else before I finish this has not been an option.
Hope you're all well.