Tuesday, October 01, 2019

Summer Throwback

Upper 80's, Sunny- (checks calendar) ON SEPT 30?!!
Yesterday I got out for a ride. Yes......on Monday. I know that's odd, but let me just say this- big changes are on the horizon. That's all I can say about that now. So, anyway, that said, I have Monday's and Wednesday's off for the foreseeable future. Which sucks.....financially, but as for riding, well.....it's a good thing. 

Well, as most of y'all know, the weather has been a roller coaster and Monday was a total Summer throwback. Blue skies, hot temperatures, and lots of wind. If things were still green you'd swear this was August again. But it is on the doorstep of October. Yeah......weird. 

I went out in the morning before it got really hot. It eventually got up to 89°F here. But I did not get out before the wind started in. I would say it was at about 20mph with higher gusts and that lasted all day long. One thing that was missing was humidity. It was about 52% as I was riding. That's pretty comfy around these parts. Had it been really humid too, yeah.......that would definitely have been a Summer Throwback. 

I decided to ride the Fargo Gen I as I have the six hours on the Noble Bikes GX5 and Muc Off C3 lube, so now it's on to the next bike/lube combo. Oh, in case you didn't know, I am conducting another "Lube-Off", so that is what this is all about. The Fargo has the Squirt lube, so this will also be a new-to-me lube. Well, kind of. I think I tried it once upon a time a long time ago, but I don't recall how it fared. So, as far as I am concerned, it is a new lube to the test. I decided that since Squirt recommends a new application every 6 hours that I would run each bike that long and assess the results then.

Did I mention that it was WINDY?!!
I headed South into the teeth of that stiff wind, of course, so that I would have an easy ride of it back on the second half. It was sloooooooow going! If I was doing 10mph on a downhill pedaling it was "speedy". Otherwise I ground away on a low-ish gear for several miles. My turn-around point was going to be determined by timing. That was going to be tricky because it was going to take less time to get back, by far with this wind, than it would to get out there. Wherever "there" ended up being. So, let's say I gave myself an hour into the wind, and then what? Half that time to get back? That was where my mind was at during all that grinding into the wind.

The roads were wet, and sometimes muddy.
 A Flock Of Starlings
The roads were wet from all the recent rain and humidity. I even had to dodge mud and water puddles many times. The County has been busy doing patchwork on the roads and the rock they are using is big, chunky, and deep. Fortunately these deeper patches of gravel were not long and not all over the place. Even with 2" tires that stuff sucked.

I didn't see much for animals. The Starlings I saw in flocks were not moving much as the direction they want to go in was right into that wind. They were mostly hanging out on power lines, waiting for a change, I would imagine. I also saw a committee of Vultures swinging over a hog farm. Hmm..... I decided not to investigate further. 

A quick break.......
.......to take a picture of this little guy!
While laboring up a grade I nearly ran over a little snake sunning itself in the road. I researched it after getting back home and I think it is a Western Ribbon Snake. It was soaking up those Summer-like rays for the last time this year, no doubt. I rarely see snakes, so I had to stop and get a picture. I hope this little snake grows up and gets to eating the local varmints soon. (Isn't it a little late for baby snakes?)

Coming back with the wind was MUCH easier!
Finally I turned back North and the wind felt like someone pushing on my back. It was so much easier coming back, it wasn't even comparable. So, with my job made a lot easier, I had time to focus on my surroundings.

I noted how fast the corn is drying down now. The wind yesterday should really have helped that along, I would think. The constant wind was making the brownish stalks rattle and dance like old skeletons in a Halloween cartoon. The abrasive sound that the leaves were making combined with the roar of the wind to nearly drown out any vehicle noises, so when a truck went zooming by, it caught me off guard. Better pay attention!

I could see that my calculations on my estimated time of arrival were way off, so I was soft pedaling back and letting the wind do the lions share of the work. Normally I would be speeding down the road to see how fast I could go in a sustained effort. But spinning, coasting, and taking it easy was a nice choice after busting my butt so hard to get as far South as I did.

In the end, I was ten minutes off. For as well as I can do math, (not very), that was pretty good. Now I have about 4 more hours to go on the Fargo, then it will be on to the Bubblegum Princess to finish out this first round of the "Lube-Off".

1 comment:

rth009 said...

Weird? Baby snakes usually only come out at late at night . . .