Friday, October 09, 2009

And then I went for a bike ride

The weather forecast for the next week is jaw-droppingly unbelievable. I keep re-checking it, scarcely letting myself believe that "mostly cloudy" and "partly cloudy" days could really carry into mid-October. But even if the predictions hold partly true, there may still be more opportunities to run up mountains, and maybe I'm not in such a hurry after all. I got a lot of stuff done this weekend that I've been putting off. And I finally rode out to Echo Cove for the first time ... well, probably the first time in 2009.

It's only 62 miles round trip from my new place in Fritz Cove. It took me a little less than four hours with a snack break, so my pace wasn't totally slacking, but the time just flew by. It was one of those rides where I reached the end of the road, slowed to a stop, and stared at the boat ramp that marks the absolute dead end, wondering how I could possibly be there already. I was totally zoned in, or maybe zoned out is a better word - in heavy bike therapy mode, spinning pedals and letting my mind wander all over the landscape of my life. By the time I returned to Auke Bay, I had drawn three strong conclusions that I said out loud to myself, which felt great. Honestly, I don't know why people pay others to help them work through therapy when bikes are so good at that sort of thing, and free.

Today I woke up late and had more errands to do, so I only got in a fairly quick run (oh yes, I went running) up the Dan Moller trail. I made it to the cabin in about 40 minutes and decided to continue up to the ridge for good measure ... which turned out to be surprisingly treacherous. It's a quick jaunt in the winter, so I didn't think twice about stomping up the same steep drainage sans snow. But I slipped on the wet, rotten grass, fell to the ground hard on my hip and started sliding down the mountain. I clawed at the slimy slope as I gained momentum, laughing even as I was falling because it seemed ridiculous that I was going to slip-and-slide my way all the way back down to the bowl. Finally I reached out and grabbed onto a spruce branch, suspending my downward slide, and used that line of trees as ropes to pull myself up to the ridge. It was pretty humorous ... Here I've been, all worried about impending snowfall, when what I really need an ice ax and crampons for is autumn groundcover.

I'm headed back out the road tonight, this time to go camping at a cabin for a friend's birthday. It was a great, mellow weekend, but if that unreal weather forecast holds up, I'll probably have no choice but to ramp it up again next week.


  1. "I know I love mountains. And I know they do not love me back." Wow!

  2. So what were the three strong conclusions then?

  3. After such a build-up, it is not fair to leave us hanging. These "three strong conclusions", do they have universal application? Or are they deeply personal?

  4. The first pic in your post has to be one of the greatest of all time, with the bike by the side of the road.

    Keep pedalling! And thanks for the fantastic posts and pictures!

    The views here in Rome are NOT the same...


Feedback is always appreciated!