Thursday night rolled around and I left the house in shorts and short sleeves. I packed a vest, arm and knee warmers just in case. I was glad I did because is cooled off, and was a bit chilly down by the creeks and river.
Eric, Kevin and I rolled out. Eric rode with us to the Arboretum and bailed. Kevin and I continued through the closed gate at the Arboretum and asked permission to continue through. The gate keeper tried to give us a hard time, but the guy is just a nice guy, and let us go through. We rolled up the gravel road, up and over Hardtimes connector, where we passed a hoard of mountain bikers including Jay Middleton, and Kelly Baisley.
Up through Rice Pinnacle parking lot where we chatted with some bike bum, and then onto the gravel again. It was 6:30pm and still light. We left our lights off until the first long decent. I expected to see more people out with the warm weather and all, but did not mind the solitude.
As we pedaled smooth strong circles, we chatted about whatever it is that cyclists chat about. Our kids, our families, bikes (of course), the Foundry Launch Party etc.
As we were cruising down the first long decent, we came around a corner and if the 4 deer had gone right instead of left, I would have t-boned at least two of them. They were standing 10-20 feet from the center of the road, and seemed to be as surprised as we were because they kind of stood there.
the darkness closed in and the moon got a little brighter, the woods were alive with noise, the nocturnal animals out and about. We later stopped to listen to the frogs in the giant puddle, when Kevin looked down and saw these two toads. We almost ran over them.
Farther down South Ridge Rd, we were dive bombed by a couple of bats and then as we made our way down the Parkway and across the French Broad River, the noise of the frogs was loud. Spring is in the air and officially just around the corner. Snow in the forecast? yup.
It was a good ride, one of those rides where everything felt right. And getting home to homemade roasted red pepper pasta, kale, and garlic bread, topped it off!!