Monday, May 22, 2023

Country Views: Moving On To Summer

Escape Route: Shaulis Road bike path
The weather has now transitioned to warmer temperatures for the daytime and Spring has sprung to its limits now. The dandelions are white and seeds are wafting in the breezes. Smaller wild flowers are in bloom in the ditches. 

And the Red Wing Blackbirds are starting to get aggressive already.

Signs of Summer, I'd say, and with everything moving quickly to peak "greenness" here, the seasons have changed once again. So I'm back to Summer attire, riding to work with no jacket and back home with no lights on, and cold temperatures will likely be far off  now, at least for a few months. 

I got in a decent ride on the pink BMC again, this time South of town, and right into a stiff Southwestern breeze. It was pretty warm. Almost hot, with upper 70's and tons of Sun with wispy white clouds in the sky above. Perfect for a country ride. 

This is another glacial erratic on Holmes Road. We've got a lot of these in Black Hawk County.

The roads were strewn with a decent amount of gravel as I headed South, but not terribly so. There were lines if you looked hard enough. It's nice to see that things are not as bad as they were last year down this way, at least so far.

Those Red Winged Blackbirds are at it again already!

I was tooling, along minding my own business, when I heard a chirping noise getting louder and louder. Then I saw the shadow on the road. Red Winged Blackbird! Already?! Seems kind of early for this aggressive behavior, but it doesn't matter what I think. 

They are not super-aggressive just yet, but the old area between Washburn Road and West Orange Road on Aker is going to be a hotbed for those really nasty Red Winged Blackbirds again this year. When I passed through Sunday they were the worst there - far more aggressive than elsewhere on my ride. 

I had planned on visiting the dirt section of Petrie Road but a slow moving vehicle ahead of me that pulled into the adjacent farm to that section of road made me think twice. As I passed the farm, I noted that the vehicle was sitting there with the driver's side door open. So, the driver was watching for me, as they had a clear view of either Petrie or Holmes from their vantage point. Hmm.... I know that this landowner is a bit waspy about folks driving or cycling up that road as they really want the County to vacate it so they can take full control. 

Well, whatever.... I kept riding down Holmes and left them to their devices. 

I'm afraid this barn isn't long for the world. It keeps getting worse looking by the year.
Meanwhile this barn seems to be still in consistent usage.

As I rounded the corner and headed back North, the tailwind push was quite evident and welcomed. It wasn't going to take too long to get back to my truck with that at my back. I felt pretty good too, so I cranked out a few miles in the big ring and made some good speed. That was fun.

It was a great time to be out and while we really still need some rain here, other than that, it was about as good as it gets. Hopefully the bike and body work this well on the Hall of Fame Group Ride in Emporia in less than ten days! 

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