As I’ve said before I never took up mountain biking for various reasons. Now those reasons are less of a concern. Plus they keep building these wonderful trails through my neighborhood. Today I worked a half day. Came home and decided I needed to get out for a bike ride. I didn’t have much time to get out for a road ride. BUT, a quick loop on the Brewer Park trail was do-able. It’s 1.25 miles to the trail head from my front door. How can I not take advantage of these trails?
I’m getting slightly less frustrated with my lack of off-road skills. But my pace is frighteningly slow at this time. Today my avg pace was 6.8 mph. Granted it was stinking hot. I took many short stops to wipe the sweat off my forehead and face. That’s a slower pace then I ride when I’ve got the Pugsley out in most snow conditions. But you know what? It was fun. And I had the trails completely to myself.
I still get stopped by rocky features like this. Since I’ve never ridden trails like this with experienced riders, I haven’t been able to learn from other riders how to ride rocks like this. So as soon as my foot goes down, I dismount and push. I also realize my Pugsley isn’t the best tool for this job. The thought crossed my mind today I should think about buying a proper mountain bike. It surprised me. I’ve never been interested in mountain bikes with squishy suspensions. But with all these nice trails, maybe I should. Well, if I decide to do that, it won’t happen for another year or so.
Personally, I wish all the trails looked like the one above. I’d be perfectly happy just riding along through the woods without all the challenging obstacles. Of course, ever since I fell off my bike in 2008 and blew apart my right humerus bone into 13 pieces, I’ve been a bit scared of falling off my bike again.
One thing that was very odd about riding through the woods today was the fact there weren’t any trees down or any sign of the horrendous storms that blew through parts of Duluth last Thursday. The storm uprooted and destroyed hundreds of trees in the city. The Hartley Park Mountain Bike Trails, part of the same system as the trails I rode today are closed. It’s only about 10 miles east of where I was today. Here’s the last two posts for the conditions at Hartley Park Trails:
- All of Hartley park is closed. There are lots of unsafe trees in the park.
- Closed… Rain and very high winds last night.. Haven’t looked yet but very likely that there are many trees down across the trails.. Ugh!
Another 4 miles east of Hartley Park is the Lester River Trails, also part of the same system of trails. Here’s the last two conditions post for those trails:
- All of Lester trails are closed. There are lots of unsafe trees in the park.
- Well over 100 trail obstructions. Large down trees mostly. A ride of any sort really isn’t possible at this time.
I keep telling myself how fortunate we were to have this storm narrowly miss the part of town we live in. Correction, we did get the storm. We just didn’t get the 70-100 mph straight line winds that caused so much damage. I was in the damaged areas Friday morning. I thought about taking some pictures of the downed trees and power lines to show people. But I decided a picture of a couple of downed trees wouldn’t capture the breadth of the destruction. It was so widespread over such a large area. A picture couldn’t capture that.