Las Vegas Bike Trip, April 10, 2014

On our last day or riding, we rode on the River Mountains Loop Trail. It is a 35 mile loop surrounding the River Mountains, which form the backdrop of Las Vegas and Henderson. The trail connects Lake Mead Recreation Area, Hoover Dam, Boulder City, and Henderson. The trail is 12 feet wide and paved.

Joe, Peter, Sophie, Wayne and Roger all started from our hotel. Tom, Judy, Linda, Debbie and I rode with Chan to Boulder City to start our ride. According to Joe, we would avoid most of the uphill sections by starting at that location. It seems to me that we had plenty of uphill sections, so I’m glad we avoided what we could. At one point I noticed Debbie and Tom were no longer behind me. I turned around and went back and found that Debbie had a flat tire. Linda and Judy eventually rode back to see what the problem was. They had some difficulty getting the CO2 inflator to work. They finally discovered the cartridge in the inflator had already been used and was empty. It worked fine after installing a fresh one.

We were on our way again. I brought up the rear in case Debbie’s tire went flat again. Debbie and I stopped to talk to a cyclist who needed directions. He spoke broken English. He was from Quebec, so I guess French was his native language. He was in the area with a group of 40 people who were going to participate in a triathlon the next day. The bike path was going to be part of the race route and he was pre-riding it. We couldn’t make him understand that it was just a big loop and he would eventually end up where he’d started. We talked to him for about 10 minutes……neither party understanding the other. Judy and Linda rode back to us thinking Debbie’s tire had gone flat again. The guy asked Judy the same questions he asked us. She gave him the same advice we did. I hope he found his way back to his car.

The trail had some very steep hills. At one steep section were two young men with long boards (long skateboards). One was at the bottom of the hill and the other was at the top, waiting for us to pass. They both were wearing full-faced helmets. I should’ve stopped to video his ride down, but the hill was steep and I didn’t want to stop. I’m an adrenaline junkie, but that looked like a disaster waiting to happen.

We got back to our hotel and then Debbie and I took her bike back to the shop she rented it from. I bought a cool Las Vegas bike jersey at the shop. We went back to the hotel and I started packing my bike up for shipping. We met for happy hour again and then had our last dinner together. Joe and Chan plan on leaving early in the morning for Lake Tahoe. They will be doing a bike trip there next year and will be checking out possible routes, hotels and restaurants. That trip will probably be on my “to do” list next year. We all said our goodbyes and headed back to our rooms. I finished packing my bike and had the hotel staff take it downstairs to be shipped out the next day.

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