I very rarely ride with a destination in mind. Usually its for exercise or to clear the cobwebs out of my brain, or becuase I've just finished reading bicycling and I've got the urge. Today though I had a desitiantion in mind. I had to head up to City Bikes to get some work done on my bike. About two weeks ago I got the cables and housings replaced on the deraileurs. Pretty standards stuff and the bike was due. Unfortuantely the guy who did the work didn't tune it properly so when I was shifting through the middle gears it would shift, not shift, grind, fantom shift...basically do all kinds of things it wasn't supposed to do. Very frustrating and jarring. I took it back to the shop and the mechanic there did about ten minutes of adjustments to the barrel adjuster and we were back in business. Good times.
So the ride itself was a blast. The first part up to City Bikes was extremely uneventful. It was pretty low stress urban riding. Lunch time so there weren't a ton of cars out...although the recent show storm and subsquent salting had taken its toll on the road, so there was a fair number of potholes to dodge.
But after I got out of City Bikes it got fun.
When I walked out of the store there was a massive lightning bolt and thunder clap directly overhead. It was pretty impressive. It has been spitting a bit on the way up but it was becoming clear that the heavens were going to open up. And boy did they.
It turned out to be alot of fun. It was like being a little kid riding through the mud again...except at 18 mph. I got off the main roads and headed onto the rock creek park trail. The rock creek trail is not my favorite trail. Its been pretty neglected and there are alot of spots where tree roots have pushed up the pavement -- not such a big deal if you're a jogger, but if you're a biker its like riding over moguls. Fortunately the trail was empty and I could maneuver pretty easily. The creek was really beautiful. Between the rain and the recent warming and ice melting the creek was really running. Very calming to listen too. There were also quite a few puddles along the trail which almost took me out once or twice, but I was able to keep my wheels under me and plow along spitting mud and rain all over me.
The best part was that all the time during the rain the sun kept shining. It was crisp, refreshing and invigorating. A really great ride. I would have stayed out longer, but I had to get back to the office and scrape off the mud and put clean clothes on.
This weekend will be the first TNT training ride -- there were supposed to be 2 rides already but the cold snap has kept the team inside. I was hoping I could join them, but as you might know Noel and I are moving into our new house this weekend. WOO HOO! Its super exciting and if all goes well I won't throw my back out! Its also going to be very bike friendly. The trainer will be set up downstairs so I can jump on anytime I want and spin for a bit and there are bike lanes on the main drag through town.
I'm hoping to ride on Sunday for about 30 miles and will report back on that ride and the full story on the move.
UPDATE: Here's the track of where I roe. Zoom in and out and check out where my car was parked (starting point)