Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Owl Head Ranch Ride

Our journey begins at Park Link Rd and the I-10 Frontage Rd.

A bit of a chill in the air for our start, but not too cold.

Ancient Landscape for us to behold.

We ride as if on a frozen black river, through this sudden vastness.

Interstate 10 lies just at the base of Picacho Peak. In this shot, it's about 10 miles or more directly West behind us. Off of the I-10 Frontage Rd, with its roar of trucks and cars far in the distance, the Ancient Stillness of the Desert begins to settle into the morning air.

This fellow has seen better days--just off the road, he looked scarred and haggard--maybe from a failed attempt from a predator. Javelina are tough creatures and fierce fighters.

We climb slightly on this route, and have a slight headwind making us work to move forward.

The Great Owl's Head. Owl Head Ranch is about eight miles due South, somewhere near the base of those ears.

We are taking Park Link Rd. to Hwy 79, and then turning around. Just trying something a little different. Mainly we want to avoid heading down Hwy 79 to Hwy 77, which becomes Oracle Rd. Hwy 77 is a bit dangerous.

This cattle guard is at Hwy 79, or the Pinal Pioneer Parkway, and Park Link Rd. This is looking due West, the way we came. If you look toward the center of this photo, you can just see the Owl's ears.

As we fly back on Park Link Rd, heading West, The Great Owl in ever-present.

With the down-hill, heading West, we are riding 20 to 25 mph for long stretches of road--there's no traffic what so ever.

We had to carry Camelbaks for extra water as the route is remote.

We also are enjoying a slight tailwind on the way back.

Back on the Frontage Rd and heading back to Tucson--this is the tough part, mes amis, because there's a steady South Westerly headwind. It makes the trip back this way very hard. To this man we say, "Rest in Peace..."

A flat tire slows us down. My front tyre actually blew out. I didn't see what I ran over.

Ryan had a flat just at I-10 and Tangerine Rd, right before the long six mile climb back up to Dog Mtn.

At almost 80 miles, I am worn out--with the climbing and then the wind slowing us way down--this ride has been harder and longer than usual.

Tangerine Rd compared to Park Link Rd-- both are old East-West cattle trails. Tangerine is now haul-ass fast busy, with never ending steams of automobiles. Park Link lended itself to a much earlier and saner time. When I first rode on Park Link, it was dirt. Still, there are no power lines to bring electricity for our air-conditioners--or phone lines for our Internet. On Tangerine we are considered fodder for car driver's radiator grills--

On Park Link Rd, we are Gods.

Cheers! Bruce


Anonymous said...

Scariest looking javalina I've ever seen. I'll have to do this route with you some time.


AZbiker said...

Did part of this ride yesterday with 77 & 79 to make it a loop. Found your blog while Googling; Cool picts.