|A Little "fire" in the sky Saturday as I headed East|
I have never been one to take it easy on injuries. My view has been that if you baby it, you just put off the inevitable and using your body wisely, with an eye to "keep moving", is best. I'm not advocating that anyone else should do what I do, but......it's always worked for me. So, with that in mind, a little single speed jaunt into the South of Black Hawk County was my goal. Single speed makes for some bigger efforts than the terrain might call for with a geared bike, and I wanted to put a little stress on the back, to see how it would react. Besides, I feel better on a bicycle than off one. Weird, but many times when I am hurt, that's the case.
So, I pulled out the Black Mountain Cycles "Orange Crush" rig which I converted to single speed earlier this year. Aired up the Donnelly EMP tires, and threw on some bottles of water. Ready! Off to Prairie Grove Park to park the "Truck With No Name" and get rolling on the gravel, not more than 3/4's of a mile away. It was cool, in the mid-60's, but it was supposedly going to get into the 80's, be humid, and there was little wind forecast. Sounded like a perfect August morning to ride.
|Dust from a passing vehicle hangs in the air as Red Wing Blackbirds flock together for their migration South.|
Yes, Winter is coming. The ditches are all hoary and devoid of flowers now. Brown weeds are commonplace as the flora have served their life and recent heat has accelerated their demise. The corn has tasseled and eared out. Fall is just around the corner.
|The corn is ginormous.|
|There is just something about the light this time of year, it gives everything a certain feeling.|
|Petrie Road's Level B section was especially sandy this time around.|
|The sand allowed for some animal tracks to be easily seen.|
|A crop duster banks into a turn over Petrie Road.|
|It's all down hill from here to the end of Petrie Road in the distance.|
|Fresh dump truck loads of gravel on Aker Road.|
Well, I did say I wanted a good work out! I got what I came for, no doubt, and when I reached the truck, I was glad of it. My back had enough of that! Not too much- no. I had it in me yet to go home and do many things yet, so I didn't wreck myself out there. Goal accomplished.
It was definitely a highlight ride of the year though. It just doesn't get a whole lot better than that. No wind to speak of, comfortable temperatures. Sunshine. Great roads, even though they were full of fresh gravel. But most of all, that peace that was over the land. You cannot buy that. It is a gift. I was glad to be able to receive it Saturday morning.
Now for some more healing on the back, more training rides, and then onward to getting ready for Gravel Worlds. The last big deal of the Summer. In my mind, Fall pretty much starts after Gravel Worlds. So, that made Saturday's great ride even sweeter, that it happened yet this Summer, after so many times of missing out on getting a ride in.