Our last day at Shaver Lake was an optional riding one where getting out of town instead gearing up for another ride would be fine.
After putting in some serious elevation the last couple of days, seeing where we’d each be individually hours later would be an obvious question mark.
No real plans were made the night before, but the next morning proved that we held similar DNA and getting a shorty in wouldn’t be a problem.
From our location, there wasn’t a lot of new options other than a jaunt eastward towards Dinkey Creek which would be an out and back.
The first half of the ride felt walled in as the trees left little to view of the periphery as the undulating climb was never pitched enough to view over.
Part of the ride reminded me of those long, cathedral like stretches back in Vancouver while climbing Cypress Mountain.
There wasn’t a lot of talking between us, just a lot of time appreciating how these straightaways let us focus on this experience.
Because our start was an hour earlier than the day before which meant it was a hell of a lot colder making it the first time I pulled out a vest for a ride this weekend.
Still, we kept our layers on for the entire ride.
For the most part, we had the road to ourselves with the occasional carload of campers rolling by.
You could tell the loss of consciousness with the varying tempo we each lingered in.
Being from the big city, you see an open space like this and we wonder why there isn’t a home there?
Even though there were no other structures during the climb, it wasn’t until passing this glade I had this thought.
The last couple miles of the climb pitched up a bit even though the road still stayed straight.
This would make you a bit more nervous with not much space on the road in LA, but the power of the wilderness calms you down.
After the climb peaked, every once in a while we started coming across
GI Jim’s had tons of military and camping items laid out in front (sorry not shown).
There was no one in sight, but you had the feel that if you tried to make off with some goods, the last thing you would see is a flashing light in the distance…
Occasionally, that emblematic rockscape would reappear where the scale of it to the eye was more forgiving than reality.
Seeing these large trees perched on small piles of dirt gives nature the engineering supremacy award.
Once we passed the Dinkey Creek Ranger Station, the place felt pretty populated with campers everywhere.
There was plenty of amenities with cabin rentals, horse back riding, cafe and general store.
I’m calling myself out here, but how come I can’t find these things easily on the internet?
I don’t know if this area was steroid induced, but these Sequoias right off of Dinkey Creek looked abnormally tall.
We got to ride in what scrapes of light the foliage offered.
See. I wasn’t lying.
Wait for it….
I’m not learned enough to know what the exact definition of what nirvana is, but having the power of the creek in the morning light made the oxygen crisp to the point that breathing felt like it was cleaning out the system and perfect end to our trip.
***** ***** ***** ***** *****
Returning to the cabin, we quickly packed and washed our linens and still made it out before noon.
Despite this being a perfect third ride crammed within 36 hours, there was still a bit of hangover feel.
Driving out of town felt slow and a hearty breakfast seemed like the cure.
We stopped in suburban Fresno, which is probably considered urban for the area.
After a heavy wait to get into Red Robin, we checked for a more local favorite and a quick scan on Yelp brought us to Seven Cafe & Grill which seemed like it would be fine enough…
…except it was so much more.
Sadly, I have this Incredible Hulk intermittent power to eat way more than needed on occasion.
The menu featured an item called “The Impossible Breakfast Feast” and rarely does the reality match up with these superlative titles.
Even though the breakfast featured four sausages, four pieces of bacon. four slices of ham, four eggs, four pancakes, and servings of hash browns, I assumed these would be McDonaldesque mini servings, so I ordered one as did Sasha.
When the plate arrived, I wasn’t prepared to be this shocked probably because this is the very definition of it….
This plate was evenly matched with Rhode Island’s square footage.
There was no way I would finish this and even half would be a feat (maybe I ate 65%).
Sasha on the other hand was super determined although I had my doubts at first.
A collegiate cross-country runner, I expected someone with this athletic and dietary discipline to not be a strong candidate to wipe his plate clean.
Looking back, the great Kobayashi was a ripped 173 pounds during competition with low body fat to keep that layer away from cramming his stomach.
After it looked like Sasha was on a roll, I started filming in time lapse…
This was a great trip, but Sasha won Sunday!