Thursday, February 23, 2017

Country Views 17: One Last Time Before It Goes

The Tamland Two in repose
This spate of warmer than usual weather has been going on for about two weeks now. Wednesday was the zenith. The finest day of them all,with last Friday a close second. Not a trace of snow can be found now, however, and even the grass is greening up in places.

But it is over for now.

Today we are sliding downward to more natural for late February temperatures. It was nearly 70 degrees out Wednesday and by Saturday it will struggle to get into the low 20's. The warmer weather we saw won't be back again for a while. How long is anybodies guess, so I was in no way going to miss out on a gravel ride on Wednesday.

This time I assumed that the winds would be Southerly, and I was correct. I just didn't know how strong they were going to be. I figured that they were a pretty steady 20mph and higher at times. Right out of the South-Southwest. It was a grind going down Aker Road, but every mile pedaled South put another mile into the "fun bank".

The gravel certainly wasn't an issue. It was packed in by the traffic during wetter times and hasn't been maintained yet at all. It was fast and with the warmer weather and winds we've had, it was dry to slightly damp. In a few places it was outright wet, and I saw one place with standing water, but really, it was quite good out there.

Apparently the foxes are digging up these holes along Aker road. A co-worker saw a fox in this area Saturday.
It was sunny and windy for my entire ride but back toward town looked cloudy.
I was thinking I might go to Traer on this ride, but with such a strong wind requiring a lot of work, I decided not to burn too many matches up and cut that plan short. I ended up turning back East on Reinbeck Road and then back North on Beck Road. It was a good plan for me since the rest of the day after I got back I was cooked. Building blocks. I'll be doing bigger rides later with no problem.

That's not a gravel road that goes anywhere. It is a service road for a new wind generator due to go up soon.
I had read on-line on the local news provider's page that new wind generators were going to be getting installed soon in Southern Black Hawk County. I ended up going by an access road and saw where one of those is going to be going in. I got a picture of the unsullied horizon line, just so I won't forget what it looked like before the thicket of generators goes up.

Looking South towards Tama County. Looks like some farmers have been doing some tilling already.
 There really wasn't much to look at on this trip. I saw a couple of Red Winged Blackbirds already. I saw a nice hawk in a tree as I swung back over to the Sergeant Road bike path, but that was about it. I had a good, tough, but fun ride anyway. Riding without a jacket on February 22nd? Are you kidding me? I'll likely never be able to do that again.

Or let's hope that is the case!


3 comments:

phillip Cowan said...

Saw two foxes Wednesday morning on my commute (and two skunks). Guess the false Spring has been enough to get them out of their dens.

Robert Ellis said...

Might be a armadillo doing the digging, that is if you guys have them that far north. Those things can really do some excavating, and they will do it anywhere and without regard for anything!

Guitar Ted said...

@Robert Ellis- I have heard stories of armadillos being spotted in Southern Iowa, but never up around here. Still, that is a possibility.

We have the aforementioned foxes, which will burrow into ditches, and we have badgers about in this part of Iowa as well. I am going with foxes though, as I say, they were spotted along this road recently, and foxes have been making something of a comeback around Waterloo of late.