I promised that my next RR would be with my best riding buddy, CariocaGirl. So this time, we teamed up for a short adventure last weekend in southern VT in the Green Mountain National Forest. It was fine weather to ride this day - bright sun, not too hot. This ruffed grouse stood along a dirt road near to where we started. This nice two-track followed a brook uphill. There were a couple of armchairs dumped nearby in addition to the TV on the left. A rare desecration around here, in my experience. On the positive side, the TV would be handy as a bike stand if we needed to fix a flat here, like I saw in a NJ RR. The brook. It has been pretty dry, but most of the streams had some action, including this one. We stopped to listen to the water and the birds and take in the atmosphere. CariocaGirl getting warmed up aboard her TW200 as we advanced along the road. The early summer wildflowers added color and fragrance. We reached the end of the brook road and then followed this forest road to make a short connection. This class 4 road invited us to turn off the forest road. We accepted It started off as a easy ramble in the woods. We negotiated a steep rocky section, then this little stream crossing. Then another easy ramble. We were soon upon another stream crossing. This one called for a walk-thru first. CariocaGirl wasn't sure about this one, so I paddled both bikes across. It wasn't deep at all, but there was no line that avoided the big rocks and I didn't want to chance breaking something against one of them. So easy does it... Once past the stream, we faced a steep rocky climb up the ravine. This was steeper and rockier than it looks, but it wasn't that difficult. Traction on the rocks was good and the suspension took care of the rest. Time for a breather at the top. While we absorbed the peaceful scene around us, CariocaGirl noticed a discarded plastic bottle which I picked up and tucked into my tail bag. Good trail karma Further along, we also picked up a Budweiser carton, an unopened pack of Trident, and a couple of plastic chip bags. The whole road had an alternating tempo. Demanding, mild, repeat. Next up was a bit of mud. CariocaGirl is learning to cope with the tendency of that phat rear tire to float and slide in the grease. Mmm... Hershey's Special Dark A mild stretch had me thinking that challenge was in store. This shallow mudhole was not it. But around the curve... A beaver had engineered a reservoir... And the bridge did not quite get us to the other side. But we schemed up a go-around. The terrain dried out as it quickly rose away from the beaver dams. The road was steep here and small logs had been installed all along this section. I learned later that logs arranged transversely along the path like this are known as corduroy, a time-honored method for mitigating mud. Traction over them was good, but it was a dry day. I think it would be an stimulating exercise to try to ride them when wet. We saw no one since the brook road and had this all to ourselves. Oh, mire. We walked the bigger puddles to make sure they wouldn't swallow the bikes. The mud underneath was the boot-sucking kind. But I was surprised how good the traction was through it. I recently mounted a K270 on the rear of the XT and it has performed quite well so far. The grease and puddles we encountered existed despite the last few weeks being fairly dry here. As it happened, there was heavy rain the following night, so our timing was perfect. The final stretch was a long bumpy descent... But easy compared to the rock gardens we faced earlier. CariocaGirl did great and she was happy about it. The sign there reads Abuse You Lose, which I hope it never comes to. The view when we emerged from the wilderness. There can't be many other ways to better spend a few hours.