I wanted to see if I could peakbag Sugarloaf. As I found out on my ride last weekend, the Fish Lake SnoPark is a bit too far away for doing this as a day trip for me, so the next best approach appeared to be from Deer Creek Road. There are a couple small parking lots plowed for vehicles along the 7520 Rd., and I parked right at the intersection. A lot of snowmobilers were going up and down in the first mile, so many actually that I almost thought of turning around; the stench of the engines was just awful.
But, after that initial busy-ness, I had the road all to myself for the next hour or so. It’s so peaceful to ride on a snowed-in road, and snow makes everything look so pretty and clean.
It was snowing all day and I almost chocked on a big fat snowflake. That was silly – it melted and I didn’t even have to cough. My thick woolie baselayer kept me warm enough, even though it was soaked and covered with snow. It seems to be the ticket down to 25 F while climbing at a snails pace.
I had to walk the last mile – the snow was getting soft and thick. A group of ‘bilers arrived just before me and wanted to take my picture. That’s the second time in 2 weeks; I seem to be quite the attraction out there on the trails. Many people would stop for a quick chat or gave me a thumbs up.
The snowmobilers up at the top told me of all the views that one would have on a clear day. I need to come back here! After the obligatory peak shot and my last cookie, I spent 10 minutes in the outhouse trying to come up with the best way to switch up my clothing layers. In the end, I just put the fleece pullover over my wet woolie, and then the thin wet jacket, covered all with a windbreaker. For bikepacking, the wet baselayer on the bottom would have been a bad idea as my fleeze was damp after a while, too. I added a backlava and pulled the hood over that. Finally, big puffy mittens went on my ice cold hands and I was ready for the descent. After laughing and sliding for the first mile down, I let some more air out and was on my merry way. I’ve never heard of anyone riding with 2 psi, but that’s what my digital gauge tells me I have in the front and rear tires. It seems to do the trick. With still an hour before sunset, the ride down was incredible. All the hard work going up paid off: coasting, riding bumps, sliding, pedalling some, watching snow-covered trees go by – all the while enjoying toasty toes and warm fingers.
21 miles, 4000 ft. el., GPX track