|The roads South of town weren't too bad, but they weren't too good either!|
The roads weren't too bad, but you had to really pay attention to your lines. Some lines were solid and you could really fly while some were soft and when you hit them it was like someone was holding your brake lever halfway down. I think the frost is coming out now, but it isn't all the way out. Some parts of the road were actually fluffy. You definitely do not want to ride into that out there!
I had heard about how some gravel riders in Southern Iowa had been seeing and hearing the snow geese migration. I also had heard rumors of Robins being back in Black Hawk County already. So,while I am no ornithologist, I do like to try to see birds out in the country. Besides just riding, this was one of my chief goals for the day. I hadn't ever heard or seen anything migrate other than song birds and Canadian Geese, which are a dime a dozen in Iowa.
Maybe the Canadian Geese need to actually become citizens of the U.S. I mean, they are here all year anyway. Oh well.......
|Here you can kind of see how the roads are a bit soft and mucky, but really, they aren't unrideable at all.|
I didn't see any signs of Robins, nor did I hear them, but I don't doubt that they are here. The snow is largely gone with the exception of drifts in the ditches. I did pass a grove of evergreens that was producing the tell-tale warbles of the Red Winged Blackbird. So, they are back, at least. Then I heard my favorite call, the song of the Western Meadowlark. Those birds always remind me of my stays at my grandparent's farm as a child.
I even saw a Bald Eagle on the way South, but sadly, no geese! Maybe I missed them, or maybe they were flying at such an altitude that they were above the clouds? I don't know, but the video I saw on Facebook of migrating snow geese showed them very high up. I was not very confident I'd see or hear anything. I guess they sound like yelping puppies from afar.
|Rest stop on Quarry Road.|
Now these geese weren't white, or obviously so, like the ones I saw on the Facebook video, these were darker colored. But they sounded exactly the same. It was a huge formation so high up I kept losing sight of them, although I could hear them clearly in the quiet of the countryside. I stood there gazing at the clouds untill I couldn't hear them anymore.
|The Bald Eagle showed up again during my last rest stop going home.|
It wasn't a long ride, but I am way out of shape, and I have to start working myself back up to the longer rides here. Gotta start somewhere. The migration of birds is in full swing, and my migration back to riding gravel is as well.