Experimental music, photography, and adventures

Archive for October, 2009

40s and rain

Monday, October 19th, 2009

Last week, I unwittingly had my first rainy ride in the 40s of the year. I was about halfway through my ride when the rain started. Riding in a chilly rain can be downright miserable, but this time, I enjoyed every moment of it. Fortunately, it didn’t rain too hard, and I was dressed warmly enough.

Sometimes I really enjoy riding in less-than-ideal conditions. The roads were quiet and there’s something beautiful (if ominous) about a drab grey sky contrasting with a colorful landscape. And once the rain started, fog started to roll in, shrouding the hills.

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Ogle Lake hike

Friday, October 16th, 2009

We had planned to do a hike with my family, but it ended up being 40 degrees and raining. I still wanted to hike, Sarah was willing to give it a shot, and my nephew, Avery, still wanted to hike as well. So it ended up being just the three of us. We headed out to Brown County State Park to hike around Ogle Lake.

A little background: Brown County State Park is a big tourist destination in the fall. People travel hundreds of miles to go to Brown County, see the leaves, camp/hike/bike/ride horses, fish, hunt, and shop in the nearby town of Nashville, Indiana. Nashville, and the state park, can get quite crowded sometimes, especially on fall weekends. It’s popular for a reason: it’s incredibly beautiful. But the crowds can be a bummer at times.

Being locals, we are fortunate that we get to see this beautiful area year round. And, we can head out there on a Wednesday evening if we feel so motivated. So, that’s exactly what we did. And on this weekday evening with chilly rain, the park was almost empty. Fortunately for us, the rain stopped about the time we started hiking.

I always enjoy spending time with Avery. He’s a great kid, and he reminds me of myself at his age. Conversation topics ranged from the reason for the change in seasons, how some people can curl their tongue while others can’t, mileage markers along the trail, beavers, fish, deer, etc.

And of course, I love hiking with my wife. And the dog, who fell into the water trying to drink at one point.

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On our way home, I stopped at a couple of the many vistas the park has to offer. It was nearly dark, and the hills were shrouded in fog. Beautiful. In the last shot, you can see the Hesitation Point mountain bike trail running across it.

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An overcast fall ride

Thursday, October 15th, 2009

On Tuesday, I really wanted to get out for a ride. It was cool (around 50 degrees) and overcast — a dreary-looking day. And I knew it would get dark while I was on my way home. It would’ve been easy to stay home, but I felt like riding, and I wanted to see some changing leaves. So, I rode.


View 2009-10-13 Shilo + Lake Griffy in a larger map

Once the temperature gets down to around 50 degrees, the number of riders on the roads drops significantly. I did see a few other cyclists, but not many. Fortunately, car traffic was light as well. I took State Road 45 out to Tunnel Road.

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I turned onto Shilo Road, where I ride frequently. In this direction, it’s a fun, mostly-downhill road with a lot of twists and turns and switchbacks. Much of it goes through dense forests, and between the cloud cover and the trees, it was too dark to take many photos.

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After a while, the road exited the woods and spit me out by Bean Blossom Creek. I stopped to rest on the bridge.

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These are all familiar roads, but I especially love to see them in the fall. I saw some Dan Henrys for the upcoming Hilly Hundred ride. I rode on, debating which route to take home.

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As I rode up the long Firehouse Hill, a helmetless roadie passed me quickly. I thought about giving chase and kept him in sight for a while, but eventually I fell back.  The more spirited effort was fun while it lasted.

Eventually, I decided to ride down by Lake Griffy. I don’t often ride by this lake because it requires going down a big hill, then once you cross the lake, going right back up again. It’s a tough climb. Normally, I don’t shy away from tough climbs, though, so I’m not sure why I tend to avoid this one. It was getting dark so I stopped and flipped on my lights, then really enjoyed riding down the big hill.

The lake looked absolutely beautiful, with some trees turning, and the sun having recently set over the lake.

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I rode up the hill on the other side of the lake. It was a tough climb, as always, but completely doable. I shouldn’t avoid it in the future.

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After being in what feels like a remote area, the road abruptly intersects the Bypass, one of the busier roads in town. It’s a bit jarring, really. I crossed the Bypass and headed home via smaller roads through town.

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It was a lovely ride of about 25 miles. I was glad I got out.

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