Rancho Vistoso - Winterlude 2021 - CycleBlaze

January 23, 2022

Rancho Vistoso

Today’s ride

For each of the last three days of our stay here we’ve hoped to fit in a last ride out to the national park.  We were surprised to map it out and see that it’s only about a 45 mile ride starting from home, which feels very manageable.  It’s not to be though.  Friday was blocked by the need to get a new windshield installed.  Yesterday looked like a poor choice because of the chance of rain.  And today?  That idea loses its appeal quickly when we check the weather and see there’s a strong cold wind blowing in from the east and contemplate biking twenty miles into it.

One of the excellent things about Tucson as a cycling destination is that when the weather is unattractive in one part of the basin it’s often just fine somewhere else. Today a ride up the Oro Valley looks just right.  Sunnier and calmer, with the brunt of the east wind blocked by the Catalina Mountains.  The perfect day to repeat the loop through Rancho Ventoso that I took weeks ago and bring Rachael along for the ride this time.

It looks like the game is up. The lady of the tree is in hiding today, but hubby is still here keeping a wary eye on me. Obviously it’s time to move on.
Heart 5 Comment 0
Riding conditions in Oro Valley on the north side of the Catalina Mountains are ideal today.
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It looks like it’s much nicer on this side of the range today. A good rule of thumb for planning your day rides in mountainous terrain: when you have a choice, take a ride on the mild side.
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In Oro Valley, with Mount Lemmon head on.
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On La Cañada Drive we stop for lunch at the rattlesnake wayside. He’s a big one - you can see his rusting rattlers at the extreme left of the frame. Rachael’s been looking forward to seeing this guy ever since I was here before. She’s been singing ‘Rattlesnake, rattlesnake, here comes the rattlesnake’ all the way out here.
Heart 4 Comment 2
Bruce LellmanThis must be a really wide angle. I like it. Beautiful! Or, wait, is it a fairly short panoramic?
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3 months ago
Scott AndersonTo Bruce LellmanYup - short pano, Rachael’s idea. This close up a wide one was severely distorted. The path is actually completely straight.
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3 months ago
That Rocky - nothing scares her!
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Rich FrasierClearly true - she hangs out with you! :)
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3 months ago
Scott AndersonTo Rich FrasierHey!
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3 months ago
marilyn swettI'm trying to remember where this sculpture was as I know we'd ridden by it. Reminds me a lot of Borrego Springs.
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3 months ago
Scott AndersonTo marilyn swettI know exactly where it was, because I was watching for it on Tangerine Road a few days earlier and didn’t see it. We stumbled on it by accident today because I’d misremembered where I’d seen it the first time and was looking in the wrong spot. It’s on La Canada Drive, on the east side of the road a few hundred yards north of the intersection with Tangerine.
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3 months ago

Ride stats today: 51 miles, 1,400’

Moving On

We’ve been here exactly six weeks now.  It’s been an excellent stay - we biked nearly 1,500 miles and got in a few wonderful hikes, but it’s time.  We celebrate by going out to the Hub Eatery for a last meal, and while we’re here it occurs to us that this is exactly how we started out.  When we arrived in Tucson six weeks ago we had dinner here, and we’re pretty sure we had exactly the same meal both times.  Matching bookends.

Interesting decor in the Hub Eatery, a casual place with a pub-like feel.
Heart 2 Comment 1
Bruce LellmanI suppose while waiting for your food you could do some climbing.
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3 months ago
Looking out the window from our table we see a new mural we hadn’t noticed before.
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A Dragoon IPA, from Flagstaff. Very representative. Dragoon is nearly the universal IPA offering at restaurants here in Tucson.
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A meal satisfying enough that we’re happy with repeating it. A kale and roasted butternut squash salad with brussel sprouts, dried cherries and candied pecans; elote pasta with chicken; grilled salmon with basil-walnut pesto, brussel sprouts, butternut squash and bacon.
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Today's ride: 51 miles (82 km)
Total: 1,957 miles (3,149 km)

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