For a few months a weekly Friday night campfire gathering has been happening near the Tortolita Mountains, organized on AZFJ and ExPo. I went for the first time and turned it into a mini bike adventure by dragging the ATLAS out. Of course the week I finally manage to make it, nobody else shows up! Luckily, Angry Tim, who lives nearby, came to the rescue with a camp chair and beer(s).

I packed what I’d consider my ‘full’ camping setup; tent, heavy bag, and thermarest. I winged it for dinner (had a ton of pasta when I left at about 4pm) and brought my backpacker stove for oatmeal in the morning, bike tools, a few personal items, a bunch of water, and warmer clothes for the chilly morning hours. Certainly enough stuff for a very comfortable camp but not too heavy and nowhere near as much as you could fit in the bags. The weight was barely noticeable, this bike is a complete beast.

It wasn’t hard to find a very bike-friendly route which even included a neat unpaved walking/biking path through some of the Dove Mountain housing developments. Riding into the sunset – also very nice.

The morning was damn chilly, I’ll likely bring a little more to wear if the forecast is for around or less than 40F. On the way out back to Tangerine Road I got a better handle on the dirt portion of the route. I think I’ll refrain from posting the GPS tracks of my way to the campfire – it may have involved throwing the bike over a barbwire fence and trespassing across the Ritz Carlton (don’t tell anybody). Fortunately that isn’t necessary and won’t be repeated. Not that I’d want to anyway, I was probably pretty lucky not to suffer great injury during the fence stunt.