Kokopelli Day 1 – Fruita

On Thursday we were up at 5:00am and on the road by 5:30 as planned, and by 10:30 we had the bikes loaded and ready to go.

at start of Kokopelli
at start of Kokopelli
Kokopelli symbol is a flute player, and is revered by Native American (Hopi, Anasazi) cultures in the southwest US
Kokopelli symbol is a flute player, and is revered by Native American (Hopi, Anasazi) cultures in the southwest US

As we climbed up out of the parking lot, Kyle was awed by the scenery and immediately the photo snapping began.

let the photos begin!
let the photos begin!

Mary’s Loop

getting the best angle on Mary's Loop
getting the best angle on Mary’s Loop
looking down on the Colorado and Horsethief Bench Loop from Mary's Loop
looking down on the Colorado and Horsethief Bench Loop

There is some exposure along Mary’s Loop in Fruita, and I was nervous about how Kyle would handle that, particularly with the weight of the bikepacks, but he handled it without any issue.  He’s done some climbing with friends in Boulder, and I think that’s helped him get accustomed to heights.

Lion’s Loop

The spring flowers of the desert were starting to become plentiful.

Lion's Loop flowers
Lion’s Loop flowers
Lion's Loop flowers
Lion’s Loop flowers

Salt Creek

As we left Fruita towards Salt Creek in the early afternoon, we got to some of our first serious hike-a-bike.

high above Salt Creek
high above Salt Creek
challenging hike-a-bike down to Salt Creek
bridge across Salt Creek
and back up
and back up

As the afternoon wore on, it go hotter, and the winds really picked up.  Soon we were battling 20 mph hot winds consistently, and we took shelter wherever we could.

Kyle escaping the sun

At the top of the hike-a-bike section, our navi said we had a long downhill, but noooo.  We pedaled hard into the wind, which negated all the benefits of the descent.  

Rabbit Valley, Mack

We had hoped to get to the Westwater Ranger Station which was 15 miles away, but were completely out of water.  Since we were close to I-70, we had four bars of cell coverage.  I called Cris who was staying in Fruita, and she thankfully brought us water and some awesome burritos.  We pitched camp at Rabbit Valley in Mack, CO.

calling it quits at Rabbit Valley
calling it quits at Rabbit Valley

We discovered others at the campsite.

we had friends all night and at the crack of dawn
we had friends all night and at the crack of dawn

As the sun went down, we got out the cameras and tinkered with tent lighting photos.  This was mine, shot on my iPhone 7+.

tinkering with tent light photos
tinkering with tent light photos

This was Kyle’s, shot on his Nikon DSLR.  I think he won.  

Kyle's tent lighting photo
Kyle’s tent lighting photo

The next day would be a big one, hoping to make up our mileage to Westwater, and then down to Dewey Bridge and to start the serious climb to Moab.

Gallery

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