Monday, July 09, 2012

Relief From Heat @ 85 Degrees? Yes!

South Side Camp Ingawanis single track
By the time I had gotten through with church, eaten, and had settled down from all of that, it was mid-afternoon. The temperature was "only" 85 degrees. I figured, despite my bout of heat related stress the day before, I might be okay to take a quick spin in the woods.

I know 85 degrees Fahrenheit sounds warm, maybe even hot to many, but that high temperature was almost 20 degrees cooler than most of last week. Having been acclimated to those brutal temps, 85 was, well......not cool, but it felt "normal". At least I wasn't sweating up a storm just from loading up the truck.

I got out to the Camp and I knew from a Facebook post that Captain Bob had been around the circuit with his fat bike. Sure enough, even though the trails are rock hard and dry, I saw evidence of his Larry's passing. Bonus: Captain Bob was the web-sweep, so I knew I wouldn't have issues with webs of any sort. Thanks Capn'!

Carbon fiber kick stand!
I spent more time dialing in the Fuji Outland 1.0. It has proven to be a decent enough machine, albeit not all that easy to find the sweet spot with, in terms of suspension set up. I'm gettin close. Real close now.

The other weird deal with this bike is the brake system. It has Tektro Auriga Pro brakes. The front is just fine, but the rear has chattered and lacked power from the get-go. I put a grind on the rotor using some aggressive sandpaper thinking maybe the pads were glazed and this might help. Sure enough, it has greatly reduced chatter and increased power. Pads are probably glazed or contaminated somehow. I think I'll pull them and have a look-see.

Well, at least I got the rear brake to actually do something, which was a big improvement over the last ride. Another big improvement was the air temperature. It was almost cool-ish in the woods, and it took me quite awhile to break into the full on sweat that was occurring within minutes days before. Compared to the day before, I felt fantastic. But.....

Saw the usual compliment of wildlife again...
I knew I shouldn't get over zealous either. Even though I felt great yesterday, the day before I had felt like a zombie, so I knew I shouldn't push things too far. I decided one fast lap was it. But I saw some cool stuff while I was out there.

Nothing unusual about seeing deer at the Camp, ( which I did see), but I did see a couple of flying animals that I normally do not see in there.

First one was, (I think), a Turkey Vulture. It was obviously huge, and lacked coloration, but it had a big fanned out tail, so not sure here. It could have also been an immature Bald Eagle, as there is a mating pair with a nest nearby. Didn't get a good look at the head, so I can not say for sure.

The second one was easy. It was a big Barn Owl. It was sitting in a tree near to the trail, and I wouldn't have ever known it was there, but it got spooked and took flight. Noiseless, huge flapping wings of wonderment. Very cool to have spotted that one.

I guess you know you live in the Mid-West when 85 degrees feels "cool" after a heat wave and when you are taking off your coats in March when it finally gets to the mid-40's again after a long, cold winter. I can't imagine how much I'd be freezing right now if it were in the 50's!

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