Thursday, October 31, 2013

A Misty Morning

It was misty, or was it 100% humidity, or.....
Wednesday was forecast to be rainy, and so had Tuesday, but Tuesday actually turned out to be gorgeous, and wouldn't you know- I didn't ride to work thinking it was going to rain. Bah! As my son said to me, "Well, that was a bad weather report!" I hate it when that happens!

So, Tuesday I was not to be denied. I was going to drop my son off at school and get out there as fast as could be to get in some sort of ride. The approaching wall of green masses turning to shades of orange and red on the weather radar's Doppler viewer online told me I'd better be double quick about it!

Then there was the dense fog advisory in effect until 11am. I wondered how soupy it would be out in the country. I knew a single track ride was unlikely with the wetness of the ground. I did not want to tear up any trails, so I had been eying a gravel ride. In some hills. That meant a truck transfer to the staging area.  That area would be the Ingawanis Woods lot where I could jump off into the Denver Hills area quickly.

When I arrived, the air was spitting mist/light rain. The gravel was wet to almost muddy. The winds were light out of the East, and it was dark for morning time. Fortunately, I had a blinkie tail light and my Endura soft shell jacket has a blinky mounting strap on the back. I set the light for a solid red since it is my belief that motorists respect a solid red tail light more than they do a blinking flasher.

....was it rain? Good thing I had a fender!
I was riding that Volagi Viaje bike I am testing for Gravel Grinder News. I had an SKS "S Blade" clip on splash guard to ward off the mucky-muck. Glad I did. It is a handy little mud guard that can be transferred over to another bike in a matter of a few minutes. Anyway, I was ready for the misty stuff, and the bike was working great.

I'm still not 100% sold on Volagi's philosophy that a bike like this should act like a racing bike. I mean, it's fine on pavement and anything smooth, but on looser, rougher stuff, I just don't feel  it works as well. That said, it's a bike that I think many would like. The ability to shoe horn in those big, cushy Kenda Happy Mediums makes a big difference here. I'll be getting this rig out for some more gravel riding and within a week to two weeks I should be all finished up with it. It's been a fun bicycle so far.

But yesterday it was hill riding. Big, steep hills that I would normally not find around this area unless I traveled quite a ways away. I found out what I needed to find out and then I headed for the truck again. I wasn't staying out all that long because I knew the rains were coming sooner than later. In the end, I could have ridden a bit more, but it was good. A late October thunderstorm right after I got home made me glad I wasn't still on those exposed hills waiting for a bolt of lightning to strike! 

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