Heading to the Johnstown ride start I saw a bank of fog interrupting my otherwise sunny drive. Ah oh but the fog lingered only in what appeared a narrow slot through Alexandria. As I headed out of that village and headed to Johnstown, all the fog dissipated.
The temperature was around 40 degrees so kind of chilly but with the sun, makes a huge difference. Early, it appeared the ratio of women to men was around 5-2 but things evened out eventually as more cyclists arrived.
Rich Lewis on the right and now flying a limited schedule as one of Les Wexner's favorite pilots. Andy in the middle with Peggy on the left.
David in the middle celebrating a birthday with Deniece on the right and Gus Cook in the background.
We headed east into a head wind, kind of straight forward via Sportsman Club Road, Chatham, up and over St Joseph (ugh), into St Louisville and on east via Loches, which depending on your experience is pronounced "Locks", "Lochea" or "Loches", I prefer the French pronunciation cause I am a man of the world. Anyway, we arrived at Purity where we were to go north but a lot happening here.
A yippy white dog came charging out but was afraid to cross the moat. It blends in so well, you may not be able to see the dog. Just prior to this pause, Angie and Meredith had turned around. Meredith is battling a neck issue that complicates the cycling habit.
Check out that old Cadillac You could mount a large set of cow horns on the front and make it an official Texas Longhorn vehicle. Our group of 15ish headed north on Purity but when it came time to make the right on Long Run or continue north to go west on Blacksnake, I went north. A guy was scheduled to meet me at home to look at the blue Camry that I put up on Craig's List. Flyin Tuna came along to keep the rednecks off me and later, I sold the car! How about that!?! Finished with 49 miles while the others got in a good 61 with plenty of climbing and a stop in Bladensburg.
The routes for Sunday, 1/28, meeting at the famous gazebo at the intersection of 62/37 in Johnstown. Plenty of parking nearby for the 11:00am start. There will be two groups, departing together but separating on the road. I promise a true "B" pace for the 2nd group, off season pace at that. The first group can ride at whatever pace they want, no problemo. 64 and 49 mile routes.
What a nice day for a ride although Peggy, turning and catching me with camera up, seems a little surprised. Actually, the battery on my camera has gone bad so I had to use the phone and it is difficult to access it with gloves and all so I have few images to share. Seventeen of us headed toward Granville with a pleasant tail wind. Once there....
...about half of us stopped at the coffee shop to either shake our hair or reveal a new hair style, Lisa on the left, Deniece on the right. She too seemed surprised that I would take a pic so I have to relearn these people. Always be ready when I am in the vicinity.
Through the window, those who paused at CVS, circled and waited but alas, we took too long so Jordan, Philippe, Doug, Todd, Paul, etc... departed. The rest of us took off soon thereafter and battled a strong head wind on the way back. For some of us, the 42 miles frayed our senses and fitness and we began to whine, just a little, when Dirty Dan took a pull to the right of the white line. That Dan, already in mid season irritating mode.
Yes my few friends, a ride has been scheduled from behind the New Albany Starbucks, high noon on Saturday. We will go from there to Granville for a brief stop to take a sip of something hot. A 42 mile route for us to enjoy: https://ridewithgps.com/routes/26742751. So far, the range of fitness is from little ole me up to Gus Cook but many in between. The pace? Moderate as some of us have not been hammering on our trainers but if you want to begin with the group and then go a bunch harder, no one cares! Ride at whatever pace you want. All are welcome.
Geesh, sorry for the lack of posts. More coming on Sunday's hike but for the big news, rumblings about a "heat of the day" ride for this Sunday. Wouldn't that be neat, to get outdoors on our bikes?
I arrived back to Ohio with a promise that no matter how bad the weather/temperature was, I would get outside at least 4 times a week for some kind of cardio activity. Actually, I had 5 activities planned per week but looking at the first 2 weeks of forecast, well, you know. Unfortunately, snow fell so I had to get on the skis, which is problematic since I don't turn well.
The frigid temps finally passed and while I enjoy watching the snow fall and find the immediate aftermath beautiful, I am so tired of it after a day. So, I take it from the snow piles and spread it on the driveway to quicken the melting process. No, I don't count this as a cardio event. And then....
....Wednesday arrived, the rain paused, the sun came out and I was on the bike for a short, 21 mile spin. My daughter sent me....
...the above image from the patio of the Westin in Tucson where she works. 76 degrees that day but I don't miss it all that much cause I am staying outdoor active!!!
Early in the hike, crossing a bridge, we were treated to a somewhat desolate view. We had begun our hike from the main parking lot of Slate Run Metro Park off State Route 674. While inviting Eva to be the official hike leader and thus add star power to the event, the idea to begin a hike at this place was my own. Rather than allow my observation to bleed through the comments below, I'll say it here; this may be the most boring hike in which I have ever participated and were it not for the good people with whom I was hiking, I'd have never finished it. OK, now the happy face continues.
We paused to regroup at this bridge and observe nature's finest through the aforementioned opening. Wow, the snow, the bare trees, the birds, etc...it don't get much better than this!
At mile 2.5, with packs weighed down by snacks, we decided to take an early break and a thanks to Engineer Mitch for producing the most items for drinking or eating. This deserves....
....a closer look. Others brought spiked tea, dark chocolate, Reese Cups, cheese, etc... Flying Tuna brought cauliflower bread. She does not yet fully understand the concept but is getting there.
We resumed our fun trek, crossing several bridges that forded a series of ponds. Our participants were Eva, Steve, Mark & Karen, Mitch, Lisa R, Amanda, Frans, Cindy and me. Towards the end of the hike we decided to....
....hike to this cool observation deck and observe the flatish surroundings. We...
....chose to take this opportunity for another round of snacks and drinks. That was one stop too many for me, for a 8 mile hike but hey, that is ok. Let's see, what was the elevation gain, 450' so.....
Noon, Sunday the 6th, at Slate Run. Gathering at main entrance off state route 674. Eight to ten miles of flat to rolling hiking. All welcome but you better produce something at the halfway point that you can share such as food or drink.
OK, this is not for everyone and it certainly isn't for me but I promised myself I would get outside at least 4 times a week for some sort of cardio activity and so, here I was. I think the temperature was around 12 degrees with a brisk wind out of the west. I will name the participants because with all the clothing, how could you know?
We pushed off from the Clear Creek Metro Park trail head located off Starner Road. Peggy & Gus Cook, Steve O, Flyin Tuna, Frank S, Eva, Lisa R and me. I pulled my hand from a glove to retrieve the camera and took....
...this pic but did not notice that a hand warmer tumbled out. Good luck finding the small, white packet in the snow. Damn it! I've discovered that these cold weather cycling gloves I wear yield some insulation in favor of mobility so at some point during the hike, I decided to buy a pair of gloves more appropriate for real cold temps. We reached a parking area at mile 4.5 and paused there to share a thermos filled with a Gus-made Hot Toddy. Eva also had a thermos with hot tea. The Hot Toddy mixture was more popular than the tea so Gus solved that problem by transferring some of his brew into the tea thermos. That guy is smart. We headed back....
...a different way, getting on Ott Road, then a right on Starner which turned into Bunker Hill and back into the park on one of the main trails. We passed a home that had a herd of ponies running around and greeting us at a fence.
Eventually, we dropped down a trail and reached Clear Creek Road. My shoes are not water proof so I stayed on the road while the others followed the trail that paralleled the road including....
....Cindy and Lisa who demonstrated they were the most fit and adept at handling the trail conditions, putting the rest of us on the rivet for most of the return....damn them!!! Finished with 9.3 miles and 1200' of climbing. Seemed there was more climbing and with all the slipping and sliding on the ascents, there probably was.
And so my many friends, well wishers, sycophants, spaniels, toadies and many loyal readers, we arrive at a new year, 2018. Please note that the days are getting longer and once through this brutal week of highs in the teens, the temperature will moderate to normal levels, which ain't all that good but an improvement. At or near the top of everyone's mind is the question, what can we expect from the blog for this year. I wish I could tell you it will be different, even interesting but alas, there has been no transfer of talent and so, pretty much more of the same. I am sorry about that:)