(in more ways than one)
Got on the bike for the first time in months; mdehaan joined me for what turns out to be the nearly 18-mile route from my house to as far as we can currently go on the American Tobacco Trail. I’ve ridden this segment numerous times myself before, but rarely in the heat of summer, and never the whole distance with someone else tagging along.
Did this despite somehow tweaking my back yesterday. I really don’t know how I did it, unless I (ironically) did so while lifting and twisting my bike to get a season’s worth of packed sand and mud off it — or most of the way, anyway. But, I figured a little exercise to stretch things out would be better than to sit around and feel sorry for myself, so I didn’t call off the trip.
Seemed to handle the ride okay. With about 5 miles left in the return, my back started to tell me, “hey now, sitting is better than standing, but this is playing high and fast with the rules.” Either way, I wasn’t suffering, at least not from that.
It was hot however, low 90s. A lot of shaded areas, but still warm. I drank close to all of my 3L of water. Heat didn’t stop anyone else either, there were quite a number of people on the trail, and daring ones too, like those who had the kid carrier attached to the bike and would head across the subsections of the Chatham segment heavily covered in large gravel.
We rewarded ourselves with a trip over to the new Tyler’s Taproom in town. Pretty good food, and a terrific beer selection. Afterwards, I returned home and exhausted, stuffed with food and a few beers, and still having the sore back, I passed out for a few hours.
Did a bit of biking today. I have really been enjoying my bike outings lately. I have been riding the Wake County portion of the American Tobacco Trail as of late, but since Chatham County is being lazy in getting their section complete… (in)convenienthly smack in the middle between Wake and Durham counties, it is getting boring riding the same stretch over and over again.
Thus, today, I got on the road, went about 2 miles down to the Log Pond portion of the Carolina Connection trail, which is also encompassed by US Bike Route 1. Rode that for a while and then looped back onto the ATT and rode home from there… probably did between 15 and 20 miles today, so I’m pretty pleased.
It’s always the first 2 miles or so of hills that get me, then I am fine. I would like to eventually be able to bike the Cape Fear Run, which heads into Wilmington. 140 miles or so… I’ll get there eventually.
Anyway, a large portion of my trip encompassed pieces of New Hill, NC, which is currently embroiled in a battle with schoolyard bully Cary, over the latter’s desires to build a waste treatment plant within the town limits. I lost count of how many Stop Cary signs I saw, and saw many other more amusing ones. Two notables:
- A toilet sitting out near the road with a stuffed bulldog on top of it, accompanying a sign which read something to the effect of, “If you won’t take ours, we won’t take yours”
- A sign sitting outside an old, vacant gas station (when was the last time you saw gas for $1.37/1.47?) that read, “Save New Hill, don’t “Waste” It!”
In any case, it was a good ride, and even kind of thought provoking. Next time I may try riding down the ATT, connect onto Log Pond and ride into Moncure, NC. I am sure there will be some interesting stories to learn there, too.