Monday, September 27, 2021

Fall Views: Early Morning Riser

I barely made it out for the show.
Last weekend's big ride made an impression on me. I was reminded how cool it is to get out and ride while the Sun is coming up. I guess Gravel Worlds was really where that thought came into view more, but anyway... 

The thing is that during the Summer months, one has to rise ultra-early to catch the Sunrise. I mean, I'd have had to have been out of bed around 3:00am during June, just to be out there in time for all the fireworks. I'm kind of a morning person, but that's ridiculous. So, getting out to see the Sunrise in Summer is not usually something I am motivated to do enough to, you know, actually do it. 

But Fall, now we're talking! The Sun comes up at around 7:00am, and getting up at 5:00am, or even at a more luxurious 6:00am, is far more attractive to me, and doable. So, last weekend's early call was a reminder to me that- hey! I can do that again if I want to, and why not? So, I got up at around 5:15am Saturday and ate a breakfast. Then I got around to putting gear on and I got out of the house around 6:20am.

A little bit later than I wanted to get out, but I was out! The plan was to head down South of town and get some time in watching the Sun rise on a gravel road again. But I was going to have to hurry! I had seven miles to get to the gravel, and the Sun wasn't going to wait for me!

I noticed it last week too, but the rising Sun seems to line up with the East/West roads this time of year.

The Golden Hour was just beginning here on Washburn Road looking off to the North.

I left out on the Sergeant Road bike trail with my lights blazing on the Twin Six Standard Rando v2. I was spinning those cranks as fast as I dared to with my single gear. It was in the 40's again, so I had some warm clothes on. I wore my Twin Six Standard wool jersey, wool arm warmers, a 45NRTH Naughtvind vest, and GORE gloves. I also had on some 3/4's length commuter pants, a pair of liner shorts, and long Sock Guy wool socks with my Giant MTB shoes.  On the noggin went my Gravel Worlds buff, a helmet, and the Rudy Project glasses I have with the transition lenses. 

The Sun is juuuust about ready to pop up here as I go South on Ansborough Avenue.

I'm not sure what these contraptions are, but they looked like two monsters from afar.

I spun like a mad-man until I reached the Washburn Road and Aker Road intersection where I stopped for the road picture above to start this post. Then I went East to catch the Sunrise, and then South again on Ansborough. Through this section I was passed by three trucks. Farmers are in the beginning stages of the harvest, and you could tell it was going to get real busy out there really soon. 

Petrie Road was covered with fresh gravel, which was highlighted by the rising Sun here.

Harvested on the left, not quite yet on the right.

I saw plenty of cleared fields on my short ride. I suspect that within the next two weeks all the crops will be cleared out and the fields will be barren until next Spring. It won't take very long to get everything out of the fields this year if things stay dry. 

Headed back on Aker Road

This will probably be the last time I get to see corn shadowing a road in 2021.

Fall is a funny time of year. One moment it is Summer, (last weekend), and three weeks later everything looks like Winter is on the doorstep. I know that the air is certainly changing. I thought my feet were cold last week? Ha! My feet got absolutely frozen on this ride Saturday. It's about time to break out the Northwind boots and plastic bag vapor barriers again. 

It actually was colder at this point in the ride than it was when I started out.

A speeding truck kicks up dust on Washburn Road off in the distance.

The ride wasn't that long, but it was great to be out so early. I also was glad to have beaten most of the harvest traffic that looked as though would be cranking up big time this weekend. I got passed by two semi-tractor rigs as it was! 

So, I'll be keeping my eyes peeled for all the harvesting activities and try to fit in rides where it makes sense. But I also will probably be doing a couple more of these early morning deals now too. I would be out beating the traffic and activities, and getting a big show in the process. Sounds like a good deal. The only problem being that as the Sun is lower in the sky, I really have to watch out for cars and trucks as those folks will have a super-difficult time seeing me out there.


Phillip Cowan said...

Your Petrie Road shot is my favorite. Very cool! Maybe frame worthy. Saw lots O' corn going in in Illinois this weekend too. S'pose it's the same all over the Midwest. You can see the plumes of corn dust from the harvester a long ways off.

Guitar Ted said...

@Phillip Cowan - Thank you! I remember thinking how that particular moment was gone within just a few minutes. I just happened to be at the right spot at the right time. But that is one of the reasons I got out of bed while it was still dark, right? To see something special. I guess that I did.

Yeah, the conditions across the Mid-West could hardly be more appropriate for harvesting. I think we'll see this crop come out very quickly.

baric said...

That's what photography is all about. Right place at the right time. Great shots, great camera.

Guitar Ted said...

@baric - Thank you!