In between training rides for the Everest Challenge next weekend, I’ve been stoked to have some more good times with DSES. Mama Nature’s been kicking down some primo weather for us… so stoked! Where to begin?
We did a little kayaking on Thursday up at June Lake. The water was a little choppy, mostly sunny… and the water was pretty warm too (I found out first hand… more on that later). So, yeah… Mammoth Kayaks hooked us up with the kayaks as usual… Jason towed everything up to the beach, and was super helpful as always. Met up with the usual suspects from DSES… Maggie, Zachary, Laurel, Megan, etc. Then the Bishop crew started rolling in. Nothing but smiles. What a great bunch of peeps. Before long, we were all out cruising… Lotsa jokes about my pink crocs… whatever. Good weather, good friends, good times. A few kayaks tipped over to add to the fun. I jumped in when I saw Zach and Jason tip. Zach is about 250lbs, and paraplegic. I thought he’d need help getting back in the kayak, but his upper body is so strong, he was able to pull himself back up, soaked jeans and all. Pretty impressive! For September, the water was nice and warm… Bridget and Amy also flipped their kayaks, but I was able to stay in my kayak and help Megan and Ernie as they got back in the boats. Nothing but laughter and smiles in the water… what a blast!!
Kamakaze with Scott & Devin – Saturday, I got called in for a last minute lesson with Scott. I remembered him from winter. I had taken him out on a ski bike, and he just wanted to rip it up from the first minute. Did I mention he’s an incomplete quadriplegic? By the end of the ski bike lesson, we were shredding Chair 2… which he very happily reminded me about. Scott assured me he wanted nothing less from our mountain bike outing. Devin, Scott & I chatted about it, and after a couple warmup laps around the gondola building, decided- screw it. Let’s take the gondola up, and take Kamakaze down. Scott has enough hand & arm strength, and the disc brakes on the bikes are strong. Let’s do it! Maggie gave her blessing (did she really have a choice?). So we took the “One-Off” MTB Handcycles on their first ever journey up the gondola. We learned right away, that they are about 6″ too wide to fit in the gondola with the rider in them. Bummer. So Devin and Scott had get out of the bikes… but it was actually better, as we were able to enjoy the gondi ride up… otherwise they would’ve been in their own bubbles with nobody to marvel at the views with! Everything else went super smooth. Took some pics at the top, and started down Kamakaze. Views I normally take for granted, I was super stoked to share with Scott & Devin. Red’s Lake, San Joaquin Ridge, The Minarets, etc- breathtaking! Devin got to scope out Scottie’s… which he will be skiing this winter… awesome! So yeah, we charged down… the fire road descent has some rocky and washboard sections that I don’t even think about on my full suspension squishy rig… but on the fully rigid handcycles, it definitely took a toll on these guys… good thing they’re strong and motivated. Congrats to Scott and Devin for being the first peeps to ride down Mammoth on the new XC handcycles!! Already planning more routes and trails to conquer… Hoot!!!