Arizona Trail Day 1-7 Bikepacking from Mexico to Canada

Hi! I’m writing from Tucson, Arizona. Mile 140 of the Arizona Trail.

It’s been a while and I’m going to keep this post fairly short. Between updating daily on Instagram and putting together a 10 minute video when I get to a town I find myself stretched too thin to do much blogging.

I’ll just give you some highlights and point you to Instagram and YouTube for the more detailed day by day accounts.

Arizona Trail

So I spent a week with Gerald, Kat, and their son in Scottsdale Arizona. In that time I bought a new bike, a Surly ECR and did training rides every day.

Gerald drove Kodak and I down to Montezuma Pass last Sunday. We had to hike 3.6 miles round trip from the pass to the Mexican border, the official southern terminus of the AZT before we could being biking.

The biking has been brutally hard. The Arizona Trail is considered the most difficult mountain bike trail in the US and not meant for beginners.

I had exactly zero mountain biking experience before I started this trip and basically zero road biking experience either.

It’s been quite an adventure! Kodak and I are doing our own pace so I’ve been solo for pretty much the whole AZT thus far. The last time I saw him was in the town of Patagonia, mile 50, where he decided to take an extra day to finish one of his videos.

I’m loving it! This trip feels much more like a true adventure than the Appalachian Trail. The AT is adventure on rails. There’s only one trail to follow and everything is so well documented that there isn’t much room for improvisiation or mistakes. This trip thus far has felt much more wild and uncertain. I’m having to figure out routes and problem solve like I never had to on the AT, and I love it!!

Tomorrow I’ll do about 27 miles until I get to a water source at the base of Mount Lemmon. I’ll camp there then get an early start to tackle the mountain. It will be 26 miles of straight climbing all the way to 9,000 feet. That will not be an easy task on the Surly, which is a fully steel frame bike that weighs in at close to 40lbs. That’s 40lbs unloaded. Then I have all of my gear, plus 6 liters of water, food, it’s going to be heavy slow going.

The good news is that once I reach the top it should be fairly smooth riding for several hundred miles. At least that’s what I keep telling myself.

I’ll end it here. I just wanted to get something out to you all so that those who are following the e-mail list are aware that there’s more consistent content coming from Instagram and YouTube.

You can see all my YouTube videos from the trip by visiting http://www.couchtotrail.com/youtube

And you can find daily updates at http://www.instagram.com/jackjoneshg

Jack Jones

Jack Jones

Chief Explorer at Couch to Trail
Jack is on a quest to explore the world and find adventure. He is passionate about using his adventures to inspire others to follow their heart and step out of their comfort zone. He is a meditator, CrossFitter, and thru-hiker.
Jack Jones

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