Well, today was our "big day" and it went pretty well for everyone but Flanny. We did Poison Spider to Gold Spike to Gold Bar. There are some seriously steep steps on this trial that can get covered with sand which complicates the whole thing.
Gino hitting the first steep steps.
Here's Tom on the same section wheelying over the last steps.
About halfway along the trail splits and comes to an abrupt end at this cliff.
Here's Clipper waving and shooting at the same time. What you can't see is he's also chewing gum. He's got serious talent.
Here's our group shot up on the edge.
When we got to the infamous "Golden Crack" there was a pile of rocks creating an alternate route to the jump that you used to have to clear to finish the trail. I jumped it and then everyone else went around except for Tom who cleared the gap which Clipper looking on. He cased it hard and knocked the petcock right out of the tank but didn't lose more than a few drops of fuel before refitting it. It also didn't start after that but it turned out to just be a loose ground in the start switch.
Here John takes the go-around at the base of the crack.
Here's Flanny with two working knees...
I got a lot of teasing during the day because each time we came to a big obstacle I would say, "Seriously guys, this is the last hard section..." but I was honestly certain it was. The actual
last hard section was this one. It was a 6' face that wasn't too far off vertical, or so it seemed when you looked at it. Without getting off and really scouting it seemed like the far left was the line over some 2' (or for Flanny 60cm) boulders and that was the line Flanny chose. Turned out to not be the right one.
Here's Gino clearing the center section. He's really stepped it this trip as has everyone.
Sadly Flanny stalled on his line and when the bike tipped he was sky high and his left foot fell into the gap between rocks and the bike fell on him crushing his knee. He heard a pop and a grinding noise.
Flanny couldn't stand but we were still 15 miles from town and it wasn't serious enough to for extraction so we cut off his pants leg and used tire irons and a tow strap to brace the knee and then I rode his bike over the face and we dragged him up the rocks and then carried him to the bike.
Gino is taking advantage and copping a feel.
Gino and Tom carrying him to the bike.
It took four of us to get him on the bike.
Our plan was to get off and spot Flanny on the hard sections so he didn't need to dab on the bad side and then to get ahead and pick the smooth line and point it out so he had an easy ride down into town.
At the hospital the after x-rays the doctor diagnosed Flanny as mentally unstable and with a blown out meniscus of the left knee.
The Moab hospital has a board that keeps track of how many injuries each trail generates, more for fun than anything else. Here Flanny marks down his trail and then adds one to "dirt bikes" which, I might add, was well over quadruple the number of injuries that mountain bikes had.
So Flanny is going to sleep on it and see how he feels in the morning...