Funny, my workers comp objective-independent physician would not recommend any further imaging, procedures or even physical therapy. I guess because I haven't given up on myself yet because I still work full time, I get outside and exercise, don't look disheveled or dress in dirty baggy sweats and tee shirts to doctor visits, the physician figures I must be ok and need no further treatment or pain management measures. That, and that the worker's comp company is paying HIS fee for the evaluation, might just be why he thinks I should not be taking any pain medications, doing monthly doctor visits and should just "man up" and live with the pain. Damn easy thing for him to say cause he can't feel the pain!
My wife and I have had to pay out of out that day pocket for procedures and imaging since June or so for the pain and problems that are a direct result of the on the job injury. I'm sure worker's comp would love to just forget about me and quit paying the DR and RX bills (which they do have to pay). Being at "maximum medical improvement" doesn't mean the pain or the problem is gone. It is just some jargon they can use to justify not paying for any further treatments, diagnoses or procedures. It always comes down to money, and them giving you as little as necessary by whatever mean they can create or justify. Too bad for them that I don't give up easily. My back will probably never be close to the way it was pre-injury, but I'm not ready to give up just yet.
Anyway, after all this rambling and venting, if you're still awake and care, let's talk OUTDOORS! Late summer early fall in the Wasatch of Northern Utah is awesome. The days cool to the 70's and lo 80's, it rains and snows some, the night are cooler, but not yet cold, and the leaves transform the mountains into multicolored beauty,
Summer/Fall is my favorite time to Mountain bike, and I get out as many timers as my schedule will allow.
My wife and I went up AF Canyon on Saturday for a 2 1/2 hour ride on the Ridge 157 trail-Deer Creek South Fork Loop. This ride is 6.6 mile single-track loop of the highest quality and can be easily done in 2-3 hours depending on the rider's fitness and how many vista's you take in (check out www.utahmountainbiking.com for more on this and many other trails in Utah). The second pic showing the granite peaks was taken from the Ridge Trail about 3/4 miles from the start.
The temps were nice that day (70's) and the sky was sunny and clear with just a hint of a breeze. We saw many wild sunflowers, phlox and fleasbane flowers along the trail. There was a lot of other trail users, including motorbikes, but they were polite and friendly, and I was glad to be sharing the trail with them.
My wife and I like to stop a lot and enjoy the views, and there are a number of great vista's to take in the mountain scenery. We ride at a casual pace, never competing against each other, but maybe just ourselves sometimes. I didn't have anything to prove that day, so I did have to push my bike up a few steep loose spots, but overall, the trail is very ride-able and is a classic fast fun single track.
My favorite part is the start of the South Fork Deer Creek downhill where it meets with Ridge Trail. It's a fast, steep, winding track through some dark timber, oak shrubs, bright Quakie groves and along the perimeters of grassy meadows, It's rated as an intermediate/advanced trail, but is not very technical. The downhill portion can be ridden fast, but it is narrow with tree roots, a few medium sized rocks, some hairpins and limited visibility due to heavy vegetation. After dropping down about 600 ft, you cross Cascade Springs Road and begin the uphill slog back to Summit Trailhead. The uphill is good for the most park, except for 3 steep loose areas about halfway through the ascent, My wife and I saw a herd of half a dozen wild turkeys in a meadow along the trail, and we often see deer, moose, and ruffed grouse during our rides.
I was a good ride in a great scenic spot with great weather, great company and a fun trail.
I didn't push myself too hard or wreck, but I suspect my back is hurting due to the ride...which is not a good thing, but again, a small price to pay to Find The Wild!