The scenery is incredible, more rewarding for me than Valley of the Gods in terms of its geological variety.
One hundred seventeen miles to the south on Highway 191 is the turnoff for Valley of the Gods. I stopped in Blanding along the way to hydrate and fill up my Camelback with ice and I’m glad I did. Staying ahead of dehydrating is the trick for me.
A rider on Softail passed me at this point ascending the trail, boosting my confidence. I felt a bit overdressed compared to his shorts, wife-beater and bare head. To his credit he wore sunglasses and fingerless gloves, but those were more accessories than gear.