Friday, October 26, 2007

Night Ride

Well, the weather is turning colder and it's getting dark earlier and earlier, but as an avid bicyclist, that's not really much of a problem. We just go on NIGHT RIDES! I actually enjoy these rides in some ways more than the the day rides. It's exciting! And around Halloween you can check out all the decorations displayed in the neighborhoods when the pace slows down. It is, of course, necessary to have taillights and superior headlights to do this. I have two headlights I use, a headlamp on my helmet (like a miner) and a set of lights for my bike. The headlamp is sort of necessary because if you have a flat, you must be able to focus light on the tire in order to change it. Fortunately, since I ride with a group, I don't need to do this myself. Guys seem to love to change tires. And that's good! It's messy, greasy, and often frustrating if you haven't done it in a while. And we use moutain bikes to ride at night, so the tires are an especially huge pain to change.

But about the ride. I dressed warm, but ended up unzipping my jacket in a very short time. The pace was a bit brisk, since only five riders showed up, and me the only girl. Usually we get ten to fifteen riders, but this was the first colder ride, and there was a chance of rain. Bad combination. Tends to scare people off. I have an older mountain bike, a good one, a Trek, but very heavy compared to the newer models, and a tank compared to the carbon fiber models available today. And then some riders use cross bikes, much lighter, so for them the ride is a bit easier I suspect. I like my old bike though, very retro, and I get an especially good hill work out.

So we flew through the night, up and down both paved and chuck hole filled dirt roads..... I grew up on a dirt road, before helmets, and shock absorbers, and wide tires, so I tend to be fearless on the downhills. I get into the most arrow position I can and just let it rip. It reminds me of skiing. Of course, it you fall skiing at speed you tend to slide; if you fall biking you tend to break things. So, I hang on tight, and look for eyes in the woods, small animals foolish enough to cross the road, and deer. That could be real bad.

We did only twenty-three miles since our ride leader needed to be home early, but it was long enough. Have to clean my bike though now. Lots of mud.

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