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It’s Almost Spring, but There’s Still Time to Try Fat Biking on Public Lands!

In just a few short years, fat biking has become one of the fastest growing winter sports in the United States.  In 2014, the BLM Hartman Rocks Recreation Area near Gunnison, Colorado held its Winter Growler Fat Bike Race, and this year, the BLM showcased its outstanding winter riding opportunities at the first-ever Fat Bike Expo in Anchorage in late February. 

The BLM booth at the Expo featured BLM’s partnership with the International Mountain Bicycling Association. It also featured the new National Conservation Lands recreation mapping project and the MTB Project, a mountain bike guide and trail map website presenting the top 20 BLM Backyard to Backcountry rides on public lands.

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Let me trace my fingers over your body, connect each scar, trail across each freckle, map every birthmark and burn mark. Let my lips speak my prayers against your skin, of my love for you, of my worries and concerns. Let me gaze upon you as the deity you are, as though you were the moon itself, or the star I wish upon at night. Darling, your body is a fairy tale, let me help lead you to your happy ending.

Lips on my Ink by Ego

Body weak on impact
Touch too much and I melt hot wax
Not even a moment to react
Heat’s up
Going stir crazy with every touch
Kisses all but become too much
Precise those pressed lips that land on me
Mapping and trailing
The drawings on my body
Ever careful as you seduce me..focusing on sensation
Wet as ever from those kisses not even penetration
Such a game ..your x’s are making me Oohh
The way you kissin’ on my Ink makes me ready to go
Lips on my skin oh so sensually
Like I planted this ink so strategically
Don’t know how much I can take of you teasing me

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I eased the truck down a narrow, dirt road to Red Mountain Wilderness Area in Utah.  After just a thirty minute drive from downtown St. George, I found myself smiling at the sight of brilliant wildflowers growing up through the sand.

My adventure started out on a winding footpath that brought back memories of my first visit to this backcountry area. A dozen years ago, I loaded up my dog and pack and set out to explore my own backyard.  What I found was “the Vortex.” 

The swirling, geologic feature has taken on a variety of names – Cowboy Hole, the Bowl, and Doodlebug to name a few. And even without marked trails or official maps to this secret gem, plenty of hikers find their way.

During my recent rip, I explored with dozens of other visitors, from solo hikers to groups of family and friends. Vickie Honchen hiked the area with her sweet dog Moki. Originally from Alaska, Honchen retired to the St. George area to enjoy “the openness of the southwest.” Carrie Neilson watched as her family ran circles at the base of the Vortex. And other familes, like the Bruins, hiked to “see stuff like…nowhere else in the world.”

Together, we explored a place like no where else. It is a place that will call me – and them – back to the wilderness and to the Vortex. #getoutside

Story and photos by Rachel (Tueller) Carnahan, BLM Arizona