Experimental music, photography, and adventures

It happens to all of us …

Thursday, January 14th, 2010

Both Doug and Tim posted accounts recently of winter rides that were too cold, too difficult, and just not much fun. I had a ride like that of my own on Sunday. I was pumped from Saturday’s absolutely stunning snowy mixed-terrain ride, and I hoped to replicate those successes, only this time on the mountain bike trails at Brown County State Park.

I parked at Hesitation Point and pedaled out toward the campground, on the new trails. The Walnut Trail, an intermediate/advanced trail, had some footprints but no tire marks, and I was sliding around a lot on the four or so inches of powdery snow, but it wasn’t too bad. However, I skipped the really technical part, as it seemed like it would just be too treacherous. I figured the Limekiln Trail, which is generally easier, would be a better bet, but it was worse.

Several people had ridden there before I got there, and they had compacted the snow, making it awfully slippery. Even slight inclines were impossible to climb at times, because I just couldn’t get any traction. My rear wheel would spin out when I tried to climb.  That trail also has more of a sideslope than I realized; you don’t even notice in dry conditions, but with the snow, I kept sliding toward the ravine.

As you can imagine, this was not a lot of fun. I was expecting to have to go slow, but all this sliding around was really dangerous, and not fun at all. That, combined with the additional effort required to push through the snow, had me pretty frustrated. I still had fun, in parts of the ride, but overall it was one of those rare occasions where I did NOT enjoy being out on my bike.

I did, however, see a lot of really beautiful scenery … and I got some pretty good photos, as well. So, it wasn’t a total loss.

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2 Responses to “It happens to all of us …”

  1. joe Says:

    I feel your pain. I went out for one of my favorite long-ish rides when I was in NYC last week (Brooklyn to Nyack, NY – usually about 75 miles total). It was never an easy ride, but it was exceptionally hard this time. The wind was against me from the beginning and turning the cranks was like wading through molasses. Really difficult. I was slow the whole way. I kept going in the hope that it would get better, but I finally gave up and turned around about 5 miles to the usual turn-around point. I bought a cup of coffee, drank it in the cold and headed home. The wind was blowing behind me on the way back, but I was too tired to really appreciate it. Yes, it happens to all of us.
    Anyway, I’ve really appreciated reading your blog. Enjoy Bloomington and take care.
    -Joe

  2. bill Says:

    More great photos – nice stuff!

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