Sunday, November 27, 2016

Country Views: Turkey Burn Ride

I used to always hang with a few mountain biking friends and go up to Camp Ingawanis for a Turkey Burn ride after Thanksgiving. Many times it would end up being the last ride of the entire year! Usually I would not be able to ride single track due to it being covered in snow. Back in those days commercially available, complete fat bikes were not a thing yet, and gravel riding on icy gravel wasn't advisable. Boy! have things changed in the last five years!

Barren fields and dun colored ditches greeted me South of town.
Now there are no riders gathering for that Turkey Burn mtb ride, and the weather of late for this time of year has been snow-free. Fat bikes are a common place thing, and groomed fat bike trails adorn the Green Belt just a few measly blocks from my home. Cycling all year long is not only possible, but many do just that now.

Even at 3:00pm the shadows are long during this time of year in Iowa.
So, it wasn't until Saturday that I actually got out to ride. I was busy house cleaning and rearranging my workshop Friday all day long. A long overdue project, I might add! That said, I made great headway in getting organized and cleaned up. I still have a long way to go, but progress there feels good.

So, it wasn't until Saturday that the ride actually happened, but after lunch I got away for a while to see how things were out in the country.

With the fair weather we've had, farmers have many fields readied and waiting for Spring planting already. 
The barn at the corner of Griffith Road and Aker Road off in the distance.
The wind was out of the South so I left Waterloo and headed out Southwards to get the headwind portion of my ride over with first. It was sunny and in the low 50's, which is outstanding weather for this time of year. A little headwind wasn't going to ruin my attitude since a late November ride in sunshine is a rare treat. The roads were in pretty variable shape. There would be smooth, almost hard pack sections for a few miles then parts which were "normal" and then a few miles of deep, fresh chunky gravel.

I went down to a point I figured I could turn around at and still get home with plenty of time to beat the Sun going down. I had the wind at my back now, lights just in case, and a wind jacket packed away just in case the temperatures started to fall quickly.

Thankful for the great weather, my health, and an understanding family!
Well, I made it home well before the Sun set, but I realized then that I had left my keys at home, and my wife and kids had gone with a friend to catch a movie. Whoops! I sent a text explaining my predicament to my wife with the addition that I was willing to wait till they got home to be let in. How ever many hours that would be! Well, I guess I must have the best wife ever.

She borrowed the friend's car and came back to let me in!

I better not push my luck and forget my keys ever again though!

1 comment:

john said...

Better treat "the best wife ever" with no phone call and let her enjoy her time. What Fat Bike events do you have on your schedule this winter?