My first bikepacking trip was out of Portola, CA. I started out following the 2019 Lost and Found Gravel Grinder course. However, I went off-route and found myself doing quite a bit of fence hopping and bushwhacking.
I had planned on about 180 miles over two days. But on the first day I was beat at about 50 miles so I cut it short. Riding with a loaded bike is much, much harder than I expected. On the second day my legs felt much better, but I kept it to 50 miles. I didn’t want to be driving home late. Overall it was a good trip. I got a little time at altitude with some rain and snow flurries. It was a great experience and a much needed reality check on how hard Silk Road is going to be.