“I wondered for a long time what it would be like to be there, winding slowly along the old Lilloett highway. Signage alerted me that it was “guaranteed rugged” and fits of colored leaves swirled past my windows. In between dodging solar flares as they shot their way through my windshield I realized I hadn’t seen another car in a long while. I lost track of time about five songs before then. It can be hard to guess the time in those changing seasons when the sun sits so low along the hillsides. But time wasn’t much of a worry, I knew I would end up in Bralorne before dark and that was all I was really counting on. Winter was quickly approaching and the chilly shadow around every hill was a great reminder. The hot chocolate I purchased at a small gas station in my last towns passing was a little too hot to drink just yet, but holding it with my aching grip felt just right.
I didn’t really have a clue what to expect on my trip out to Bralorne. I knew that Aggy was out there hunting for lines already and that Blake Jorgenson would be capturing our trip in photos. I knew that we would be riding areas only accessible by helicopter and camping on a mountainside in early October too. I assumed it was going to be really cold and possibly snowing on us the whole time. I also suspected that due to adverse weather conditions and an apparent lack of any real riding details, everything could turn out to be complete flop of a trip. But I had a new 2012 Supreme Operator on the back of my truck and a boat load of planning put into making it possible for me to be on this trip, so I was excited to pedal into the unknown and see what was to come.
What I really didn’t expect from my trip into the Bralorne wilderness was to head home along that same windy road almost a week later with a fully shifted perspective toward where it was possible to ride my bike. The number of puckering moments far surpassed any expectations I had for the trip and I still can’t wrap my head around the intensity of some of the lines we road. The gnarliest riding I have ever experienced paired with long nights at our snowed-in alpine campsite, nip-nippin’ by the fire and barking at the moon made for a real life changer of a trip. I guess I better bite my tongue right about now, since there is some big time story telling and epic eye candy still to come from that outing and I don’t want to spoil the pot. You’ll have to wait a bit for that, but for now, check out a few pictures of me from my friends Matt Miles and Steve Riffel. We are shooting some rad projects in the loops right now, getting our fair share of fall action before the snow flies. I’ll check back with more soon!”