Back in the USA for a month and did my first Gila ride today. I had planned on doing the CDT [Continental Divide Trail] South, but ended up veering off at the actual continental divide and heading up Eighty Mountain...mainly because I didn't want to miss breakfast with my mom.
This is the start of the dirt climb. The Berg trail was a pirate trail built by one of our local mtn bikers in the early 90s. Now it is part of the Gomez Peak trail system and it connects with CDT. Smells like tobacco probably due to the large amounts of mountain mahogany in the area.
North and south slopes are big deals in the Southwest. South facing slopes will be dry and deserty, where as the north slopes will be more lush. Heading up the NE flank of Eighty Mountain with thickets of oak.
Views to the northwest looking towards the Mogollon range in the far distance. In the foreground is some wild area which isn't easily accessible anymore but used to explore in my CJ-5 when I was a teenager and later in the early 90s by mountain bike.
Switchback near the top of the Eighty Mountain loop trail. I was able to clean this whole section of trail, but walked the switchback, mainly because I figured it was a good spot for a photo. I suffered on the climb due to the altitude. Living at sea-level, now riding at 7,000 ft.
A rocky section before the real rocky, steep, and technical section. The Litespeed performed well. My technical skills on stuff like this are a bit rusty, but I did pretty good. I stopped about 10 meters from the end (I didn't know the end of the rocky section was only 10 meters more) to rest my forearms. Getting soft in the old age...but in my defense it was really technical rocky stuff and hard to get restarted on once stopped.
Good ride...it'll get better as I acclimate.