Now the weather is much, much nicer. Even if there are some cool, damp days and it seems to be cloudy more often than it's sunny, the contrast with cold, wet, muddy and grey is pretty amazing. But I've been slacking - not riding when I should and could be out. I've made a couple of singletrack forays each week - but the other days I've been doing nothing. Most of those days the weather was good enough that I could have had at least a nice ride around town, but I haven't. So now that I've confronted the problem I'm going to try to get in at least a short ride five of the next seven days. And I'll even get back on MapMyRide and log my miles. Yeah.
Friday afternoon I headed down to Beaver Creek with Dave. My plan was to ride a bit, from the campground down to the picnic area. Then I planned on hiking back up, rather than push the bike up the insanely steep and rocky 5/8 mile "shortcut". Once I got back to the car and caught my breath I would hike the bow saw down the trail about 1/4 mile to a downed tree and cut it out. So I geared up and headed on down the trail. I finally got the mount and lens cover replaced on my GoPro helmet cam, so I tried mounting it on the front fork for a bit. Unfortunately that needs a bit more work, so I switched it to my helmet. Even more unfortunately, when I came speeding down a hill, pegged my left bar end on a sapling, and crashed onto the trail at a pretty good rate of speed, sliding at least 10 feet on my right side - I had accidentally switched from video to photo every 10 seconds.
|Immediately after crashing - you can tell because the bike is LAYING DRIVE SIDE DOWN.|
Thankfully I didn't do any damage, but that was entirely too hard for a 49 year old guy to hit the ground. Kinda took the oomph out of the afternoon. I continued on my ride, eventually getting back into a semi-natural groove, but my shoulder and hip were pretty sore, as well as my right ankle. The flat section down by the creek was a lot of fun though, and I actually managed to get some of that part on the GoPro - before the SD card filled up and it stopped recording.
I'm not sure why exactly, but I didn't leave the bike at the bottom, instead hiking (mostly) and biking (a little bit) back up to the top and the car. By the time I got back up there I was twice as sore as when I hit the ground, and I wasn't about to hike back down and spend another half hour sawing through three tree trunks. So I had a nice cold drink and headed back home - good enough for one day.
Saturday morning I did something a bit different. Diana was sick at home with a nasty bout of intestinal flu, so Kenny stayed at home with her. I headed out before 9:00 to meet up with two of the adult leaders from Kenny's new Boy Scout troop. They had an idea to do a canoe trip on the local river, a slow and muddy waterway that has something like 20 dams on it. And since they knew I was into kayaking they asked if I'd like to go along on an exploratory trip to see if the river was passable. We put in one town upstream, near the Bliss dam in Newton Falls, and paddled downstream in spotty rain and cool temperatures. Over the next four hours we came across three river-wide blockages, the last of which was a huge mess in an area that was very difficult to portage. So they may have to either find another place to paddle or find another way to use the clear sections in order to get in enough distance to make the trip worthwhile. It was nice to paddle on the Mahoning in the upstream sections where I'd never been before, but what I really need is some whitewater. I'm waiting for a weekend when the water level and my free time are both right and I can get in a nice ride on the lower Slippery Rock Creek. Now that's some REAL fun!!
|A fortuitously placed fallen log at Moraine State Park.|
|A too-tight corner before...|
I guess it was another so-so weekend. I did get some stuff done, and managed to get in some riding, but I certainly hope to do better in the upcoming week. With a little bit of cooperation from the weather, and a few other things falling in line, hopefully I'll get more miles - and have more fun.