Breaking Routine, and Bagging the Final Hilltop

We all have our favorite trails, trails that we tend to ride over and over again because, well, because they are our favorites. If we live within striking distance of a place, like Bonelli (in this case), whose hills are criss-crossed with trails it can become easy to focus on some and neglect, or ignore, others. I mean, why spend time on an unknown when we know we like the known. Know what I mean? 

The problem is, even favorites can become routine, a trap that can keep us from "discovering" new routes and new experiences.

Well, today I decided to break a bit from routine, to take a side trail and see where it went. Where it went turned out to be the top of a hill, probably the only hilltop in the park I had yet to wheel myself up. Hilltop, in this case, is a bit of a misnomer - it is more like a plateau, a mesa, large enough to have its own self-contained single track loop running around its summit perimeter. Of course it also offered some new and different views of the lake, and beyond.

And just like that a new trail section has been added to my Bonelli routine.

On a side note, while stopped to catch my breath up at the reservoir, a couple riders came up, one of whom recognized me. It was Omar MtnBiker leading another preview ride along, what will be, the Turn and Burn course. We talked a little about that race, as well as the upcoming Triple Crown series; the first race in that series will be here at Bonelli on September 27, before moving on to South Hills Park in Glendora on October 11. There is a break to accommodate the Turn & Burn on October 24, before the series resumes with its grand finale, the annual Fat Tire Fest at Mt. SAC on November 1. Who said the racing season was over, we still have the Fall Classics to come. Check out all the relevant information on those races by liking the Cycle Events Company page on Facebook, or their website (through which you can also register for the races).

the more difficult ascent. just about where the trail disappears is a steep with a four inches of soft stuff - walking time. the other way up (off of Raging Waters Drive is much more gradual)

my guess - most riders descend the swim beach side, and climb up via the Raging Waters Drive side

routine is usually around those hills on the far side of Picnic Valley

the stream crossing may be routine, but one i look forward to