Last summer, I was invited to the Bonneville Salt Flats in northwestern Utah on a short, overnight campout with my friend Madison and some of her friends. While there, I met Claire and Caroline… who shortly thereafter invited me to join them on a 3-day backpacking trip in the Sawtooth National Forest in the state of Idaho.
This three day hiking trip with Claire and Caroline in the Sawtooths turned out to be the best thing I did in all of 2020… and since that time, Claire and Caroline and I have become good friends.
One of the things I like about Claire and Caroline is that they are always doing something outdoorsy – whether it be hiking, rock climbing or running a marathon… so when I invited them to join me on a short 2-day, 1-night bikepacking adventure in the Uinta National Forest, I knew they’d be able to handle the physical demands of the ride, even though it had been a very long time since either one had ever ridden a bicycle – let alone a bicycle loaded down with all the food, camping gear and other supplies needed for an overnight cycling trip.
On the first morning of our bike tour, we woke up to a rainstorm outside our homes. Despite the foul weather, Claire and Caroline showed up on time and didn’t use the weather as an excuse to cancel the bikepacking trip at the last minute. Another thing I like about Claire and Caroline is that when they say they’re going to do something… they show up!
Lucky for us, by the time we reached the starting location for the tour, high up in the mountains of the Uinta National Forest, the rain had stopped and the sun was starting to shine. The weather was perfect for the start of our ride!
We got off to a slow start, which is normal for anyone riding a fully-loaded bicycle for the first time. But as the day went on, we slowly began to pick up speed.
I had picked a route for our adventure that took us down a dirt road, high in the mountains of Utah. I picked this route because I wanted Claire and Caroline’s first bike tour to be somewhere incredibly scenic, with very little vehicle traffic and in a place where we could camp for free in the evening.
The downside to this route, however, is that the cycling surface was somewhat technical in some sections… and with several short, but steep climbs along the way.
But as I said before, I knew that Claire and Caroline could handle the physical challenges we would face along this route… and even though it wasn’t easy, they did great!
After working our way along this road for several hours, we eventually made camp at the top of the Wolf Creek Ridgeline, with views looking out over a nearby valley – exactly the kind of camping spot I had imagined when I planned this short weekend bikepacking adventure.
Watch the video from Claire and Caroline’s first bikepacking adventure in the mountains of Utah… then click here to learn more about the basics of bikepacking and how you can start conducting your own overnight bikepacking trips.
BONUS: If you really want to show off your passion for bikepacking, consider picking up one of these awesome BIKEPACKING T-shirts.