Almost Thrown to the Wolves: Mormon Loop and National Trail

Melissa and I had the opportunity to go to Arizona for a work conference. Of course, the two of us had to do something adventurous! We decided we would go mountain biking for the first time. Now we didn’t really pay attention to the fact that it was over 100 degrees in Arizona, nor did we think about the possibility of us getting injured or dying on this little adventure. I have run one full marathon and Melissa has done several, so we thought how hard could this really be?

Cute Helmets?


Mountain Bike?




From the photos below you can see how positive we look about our decision.

Melissa is thinking this bike is so cute, can’t we just ride this mountain biking? Anyway, we realized we had everything figured out except where we would take our newly rented mountain bikes.

The conversation went like this.

Nancy and Melissa:  So….we rented these bikes where do you suggest we go?

Worker:  Oh there is this great trail called the Mormon Loop and National Trail. You should totally do it.

Nancy and Melissa:  You think we can do it?

Worker:  Ya, you will be fine!

HA!  That guy was a liar!!!

In that moment we were feeling positive and ready for our adventure!  We got a map and made our way to the trail head.  I’m sure it was obvious that the two of us had no idea what we were doing. Maybe it was the two of us pulled over on the trail looking at the map very confused that gave us away, but luckily we met this guy.  I can’t remember his name right now, but he pulled over and had the sense to ask us if we knew what we were doing. In most cases I would be really offended, but my gut told me he was looking out for us.

Now introducing a good samaritan:  a software guy I think….

As you can see Melissa is feeling extremely grateful to this guy for warning us about the Mormon Loop and National Trail.

This is our conversation:

Software guy:  Hey, have the two of you been mountain biking before?

Nancy and Mel:  A little bit offended but terrified on the inside.  Instead of being offended the two of us honestly say nope!

Software guy:  Where were you thinking of biking?

Nancy and Mel:  Oh, you know the Mormon Loop and National Trail.  Trying to sound like we knew what we were talking about.

Software guy:  You will die if you go on that trail.  I am not kidding.

Nancy and Mel:  Serious?

Software guy:  People fly from all over the world to bike that trail because it is so technical.

Nancy and Mel:  Instantly getting mad at bike worker guy for sending us to the wolves!!!   What was he thinking!!  What an idiot!

Software guy:   I can take you on the bunny hills.  (Which again I would be normally insulted but commonsense was starting to sink in.)

Nancy and Mel:  Very appreciative and take him up on his offer.

Now I know many of you are thinking Nancy and Mel why are you trusting this software guy?  He could be a killer!!!!! Well I guess that would have been good to think about at the time, but honestly that just only now occurred to me.  hmmm….

That would be me and Melissa on our bunny hill experience.  I have to tell you the little bunny hills were terrifying!  As you can see we’re pretty much biking in a rock garden.  I’m pretty sure Melissa and I screamed down every hill.  Could you imagine what Mormon Loop and National Trail were like???

Wait!  You don’t have to imagine!  I have a video of a guy biking Mormon Loop and National Trail.  Just watching it makes me so thankful we ran into our software samaritan!

Description: National trail can be ascended or decended. Both require expert skills and fitness. You cannot and will not find a climb this technical, challenging and fun in AZ. It will kick your ass and you’ll love every turn of the peddle. You can ride this trail 365 but, beware of mid afternoon temps in the summer, “There are birds that will pick your bones clean.”

(Taken from single tracks)

10 thoughts on “Almost Thrown to the Wolves: Mormon Loop and National Trail

  1. Sarah says:

    Crazy! I can’t believe that guy told you you’d be fine! Did you at least tell him he was insane when you returned the bikes?

    • Nancy says:

      Mel and I were trying to remember what we said, and neither one of us could remember. I think we were so grateful to have survived that we didn’t say anything.

  2. Melissa says:

    Oh my gosh, I had kind of forgotten about this little adventure! I think every hill I screamed, “Holy Mother of God.” I later learned he was Catholic. Classy, Melissa.

    So much fun! We lived to tell about it. Completely and utterly worth it.

    • Nancy says:

      I know! It was worth it! I think you are wearing dumb bike worker’s sunglasses because you forgot yours. HA! Thanks dumb bike worker that helped out a lot.

  3. Sarah says:

    Oh, one more thing: I enjoyed this post so much that I read it twice in a row. Nice work, Nancy!

  4. Jim says:

    Wow! You would have died! I would have told the idiot off and asked for a refund!

  5. Melissa says:

    Ok, yes it’s true that bike worker almost killed us. But, we all know that if he had tried to discourage us, I would more than likely have ignored him. “We’re tougher than you think” I’m sure I would have said, despite the fact that at that time I hadn’t even ridden a bike since middle school. And he did let me borrow his sunglasses, which at least protected my eyes! That’s something, right!? And without him, how would we have had such an exciting adventure!?

  6. Rob says:

    Haha, this is hilarious, Nancy! Amazing story. I’m glad you two didn’t die. Melissa, it’s funny to me that you’re actually defending the “dumb bike worker.” {rolls eyes}

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