Deer me

“Three for the buffet, please.”

They’re baaaaaaaaaaack. …

They’ve always been here, of course. They leave evidence all over the yard. But it’s rare to catch them eating our foliage in broad daylight.

With aridification at a level not seen since mule deer and Native A’s had the run of the ranch around here, plus a mountain lion said to be working the Elena Gallegos Open Space, it’s no surprise a deer or two or three decides to take five here in the Compound, munch a bit of lawn with a side of birdseed.

I was exploring a bit myself yesterday. There’s an arroyo slicing through Bobcat Boulevard NE that I’ve been meaning to check out, and since I was aboard the Co-Motion Divide Rohloff with its 50mm tires and 19-inch low I dove into it on a whim.

A brief diversion.

It started out as your typical sandy wash, then quickly narrowed to some nice twisty hardpack. A friend had told me it was possible to ride it to Foothills Trail 365, but with fauxdobe haciendas on either side I was wondering if I might wind up on someone’s patio, having a pointed property-rights debate with their Rottweiler.

Nope. My friend was right. After negotiating a few rocky bits and some old snow and ice, I found myself on 365, near Trail 230, an part of EG’s open space that I know well. So I cut over to the ranger station, dove down Simms, and retraced my route to the arroyo to ride it in the other direction, toward Tramway.

This section of the wash stays broad and loose until reaching a concrete apron that leads past Little Cloud Park and under Tramway. Hang a right just before the dropoff and you can ride another diversion channel back under Tramway and pick up the north-south bike path near Paseo del Norte.

It goes without saying that if you like riding diversion channels you want to indulge your whim in dry weather, unless you also enjoy flume rides to the Rio Grande. It seems we have plenty of dry in the long-range forecast.

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5 Responses to “Deer me”

  1. Pat O’Brien Says:

    Seems like every bike in the stable is getting a ride these days. Ain’t retirement grand?

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      ’Tis indeed, Paddy me lad. The Somas, which all have fenders, have been getting a workout since that snow a while back. I switched to the Co-Motion and went off-road when the State decided to set its sweepers to hoovering up all the red traction sand along Tramway.

      Speaking of Soma, the former president and owner of The Merry Sales Co., John Porter, recently passed away at age 94. John retired right around the time I attended my first Interbike, but I’ve worked with his son, Jim, and Merry Salesman Stan Pun, on various review bikes over the years. Fine fellows, both of them. And Merry Sales is a rare breed indeed, a family outfit, currently run by its third generation of Porters.

      Anyone with a yen for bike bits should encourage their IBDs to work with Jim and the gang. You can buy some items direct, too.

  2. Dale E. Brigham Says:

    Sorry to hear of the Merry Sales/Soma Cycle patriarch’s passing to the next realm. I have a Pescadero, and it is, to me, the epitome of a modern bicycle. Those folks understand bicycles.

    Today, on the Military History channel, I watched a documentary on the WWII battle of Iwo Jima, hosted by none other than the recently deceased P.J. O’Rourke. He, and it, were great. I had no idea that historical documentaries were part of his repertoire.

    Dale in (Perhaps the Most Stupid State in the U.S. and the Universe) Missouri

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      The Merry Sales folks get it. We have the two Soma Double Crosses, two Soma Sagas, and one New Albion Privateer in the Fleet. And if I ever buy another bike, it’s almost certainly gonna be a Pescadero.

      P.J. did a ton of stuff. But like you, I didn’t know he wandered that far afield.

      Another funny fella who covers a lot of waterfront is Roy Blount Jr., whose journalism about Jerry Jeff Walker is a classic. His books “Crackers,” “One Fell Soup,” and “What Men Don’t Tell Women” are my favorites.

      • Pat O'Brien Says:

        Roy Blount Jr. is also a “Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me” alumni.

        I have owned 3 Soma frames, An Extra Smooth, Saga, and Double Cross Disc. I really liked all three, and I had my LBS build them with components from other bikes or new components I picked with advice from my shop. I was delighted with all three bikes. The Saga had the best paint job I have ever seem on a production bike frame. The first ES frame arrived with a dent in one seat stay. It was returned and Merry Sales quickly replaced it; they gave me great customer service. The Double Cross Disc was my favorite. It also had Khal’s Official Stamp of Approval when I rode at at the Santa Fe Century, we did the half century, with him, Patrick, and my nephew Andy. If I returned to cycling, I would be riding another Double Cross Disc.

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