For just over one year now, I have been dreaming and scheming about bikepacking. I scoured the internet, talked to friends and, worked extra jobs to earn the money to purchase the equipment. I loaded the bike, unloaded the bike, reloaded the bike, slept in the back yard, got frustrated, and got excited. I got to do a coupled of paved road trips, both 2 nights, one camping and one cushy. But I yearned for the day that I would load down my Siren and hit some dirt. ( a couple of months ago, I had attempted a trip but aborted because the timing was not right).
After getting set up, I sat down for my second dinner around 9pm: frozen bean and cheese burritos. I brushed my teeth and settled under my tarp to listen to the night sounds before drifting off to sleep.
Fast forward to midnite when I was startled awake by the howling wind. The thunder and lightning were getting closer and there was an occasional spattering of rain drops. I looked up into the trees, looking for the dead branches and tree tops but didn't see any. I noticed that the trees surrounding my site were tulip poplars. They were waving in the wind and knowing that they could easily snap, I formulated an escape plan and headed for the concrete bath house where I sat for 45 minutes to wait out the storm.
After the storm passed, I headed back to the tarp, laid out my bedroll and crawled in. I heard the loud crack of a limb, seconds after about 100 yrds away I heard the loud thump of a large branch smash into the ground....then I drifted of to sleep.
I woke up and got moving around 6 am. I could hear thunder rumbling in the distance and decided to pack up and head out before the rain rolled in if it was going to. I enjoyed some coffee and a honey bun to get me going. I was the first one up and out of the campground and virtually had the road to myself.
Up and over Bent Creek Gap, and onto South Ridge rd, I decided to lengthen the trip and rode some of Explore and Pine Tree before heading up Hard Times rd where I got on the BRP and headed home.
50 miles for an overnight trip, and I wanted to keep going. I'm excited to get my first off road trip under my belt and look forward to many more.