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part 3 west texas

Welcome to west texas

wow part 3 looks a lot different eh? I always seem to find that the west truly begins on interstate 10 around Ozona Texas. Maybe its Sonora… Sonora seems to on the nose though. Since we last talked, I spent 3 days in Austin Texas durring which i did not ride my bike except to get breakfast at my long time favorite since the day i moved to Austin in June of 2005. Casa De Luz used to be filled with people who looked and talked like they were in a cult, and turns out they were. Now it’s pretty normal, but the food, to many people, is still as weird as ever. It’s super healthy, macrobiotic food that is not for everyone, but it sure works for me. I eat breakfast here whenever i come through and cook like this for myself most days as it feels intuitive to my body and cravings. Beans, greens, nut sauces, pickles, amaranth…

i don’t ride my bike in austin mostly because i am paranoid of getting arrested since i have an outstanding warrant for an unpaid ticket for running a red light 10 years ago. It’s silly, but perhaps i use it more as an excuse to do what these legs do best —- w a l k. I LOVE a good walk about, and austin is a great city to visit on foot. I also like to keep tabs on my favorite spots so that when i see the dramatic changes to a city that is growing faster than any other in the country — i can see them incrementally on these annual walks. Last year i did more of a loop, but it was a similar distance. I had a loop planned for this walk, but i had to switch sandals and double back halfway. It was in the low 80s and mostly sunny. A stunning day, and i dressed my sluttiest. I was looking for some action, but the Billie Eilish look was in and no one was biting.

Thanks for your kudos

okay so then i picked up best pal Patz, my partner in ULtra DYnaMico in the van. He was visiting family. Can you believe he is actually from Austin?? Thats where we met in 2005. That really unflattering candid pizza photo on the strava shot above is a dinner with the sports journalist Ian Dilly. Ian raced with us back in the mid 2000, and he also wrote that article about me for Bicycling Magazine back in 2015. Always fun to look that cover up for me from time to time. A lot has happened since then!

So patz and i drove west——-past——— O Z O N A T X

pal Sandy Carson had invited us to “Sandy Fest” in Terlingua for as long as i can remember now. We finally took him up on it and drove 7.5 hours in one day (thats major for me) to a campsite that Sandy and a crew of 20-30 great folks all within the Peddler Bike Shop social sphere. They come out here for 5 days every year and ride the extremely high quality single track around the Big Bend State Park area. We split into groups the first day and headed out for a real doosie!

Still a lot of us together heading into lunch at the abandoned ranch house
Patz E A T S

we ripped some track to the ol’ wax works and cinnabar mines. Not Cinnabon mines… sadly far from it. I did a blog back in 2014 where we did these same trails but camped along the way. If you are a real fan you will remember that one. It also became my first radavist article. But it was prolly is probably then. First time back!

New England bike does the Wild West

pretty cool stuff eh? I am re-reminded that this is some of the best desert feels in all of the West. This first day of riding was nearly 50 miles of 95 percent 1 track. I was toasted in more ways than one by the end. We went out for a shorter loop in the airport trails the next day— i was still burnt around the edges, but managed to manage. We stopped a bunch and i got to take a few stunt time shots of Cubby and his MASH hard tail jumping wagon.

Wow, right?

Love riding with folks like this who see trail features everywhere they look. My toastedness abates as i become a stunt time prime time spectator. I need to start bringing the bigger camera out on these rides again —- these were snapped with my little Ricoh GRIIIx that i keep handy in my bar tender bag from the “original and still the best” Randi Jo.

Patz was a real hero extensively voiding the warranty on his Romanceür— that low pressure 55 cava proto was perfect though!
Lunch time!

back to camp a little early for a lot of food. I started to feel more recovered towards the end thankfully. We knew the next day would be a lot sunnier and warmer, so it was nice to get another longer one in before the deeep HEAT.

The deep heat. 83 and sunny this day.

the next day camp dispersed and folks headed back to Austin. Patz and i had another day to hang before we headed to AZ, so we made the most of it by pedaling back out to the ruins. The sun makes a big difference out there! After a morning of office work under the shade of the outhouse, we headed out into the blow dryer.

Crystal mountain never disappoints. What a volcanic wonderland!

We made it to the ruins as the sun was getting low, so at least the intensity had subsided a little. I had not taken photos of this place in a decade when I operated with an IPod touch.

just some fun wreckage out there. Did not have time to dig deep as we had a ways to go to get back to camp, and the sun was running away from us.

Patz napped while i played Nat Geo

The light was really really nice as you will see in a photo below. I was really feeling good after swapping my bars back to uncle rons ortho upright bars, and went for a big ol hop up on top of a 2 curb height ledge in the middle of the trail and WHHHHACK. So much force directly on the rear wheel as i cased this 2 curb ledge with all of my might. Oooof, i knew it was not going to be good for that rear wheel —- my tire obviously let go of it’s air in seconds, and i expected to see a mangled rim, but it was still good enough to throw a tube in and get me the 2 hours back that we still had to ride; albeit with a flat spot and 2 protruding dents that made breaking a bit precarious. Luckily i have an extra rim in the van that i can re-rim this thing with —- but wow! These crust rims keep surprising me. A solid fave.

Damaged but still rolling!

the sun was gone now and boy was i happy Patz had worked at making his dynamo light work for our last hour in the darkness. I snapped this photo below of him as we got into the zone and set our chips and hummus timer for our return to camp.

and thats it! We are on the road to New Mexico now, but the weather isn’t great … so maybe not many riding pics coming up. Hope everyone is OOOOHHHHHHKAYYYYY!


5 responses to “part 3 west texas”

  1. Austin Avatar

    Enchanting desert explorations…mhm. Thanks for sharing all the lovely words and photos:)


  2. ericmarth Avatar

    Hey Roni — Digging this format, loaded with pictures and ruminations.


  3. Joe RedBeard Avatar
    Joe RedBeard

    I think “Warranty Void” will be one of my next tattoos. My Rom is salivating over some of those big balloon Cava supple meats though, any idea when they’ll be making an appearance?


    1. coolultraromance1598 Avatar

      Hi Joe! I agree on the tattoo idea. has so many meanings! as for the meaty cava, we should have em late spring. good luck at Midsouth!


  4. justjaybird Avatar

    very good. love the desert and all its mysteries.
    good looking trails. I’m extracting some heat from the pictures.
    still winter in the Catskills.


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