Wednesday, May 4, 2011

My elbow loosened up enough by Tuesday morning that I was able to extend my arm enough to hold onto the hoods.  It was my day off work, weather man was predicting rain before lunch time . . . what else was I going to do?  I was out the door and on the bike by 8:30 AM hoping to miss the rain.  As my luck would have it, no sooner had I gotten on the Champlain Bridge and crossing over into Quebec did I begin to feel the odd drop of rain hit my face.  Tabernac.  

Just near the P8 parking lot on the North Loop - road closure due to a washout.  I had seen it shut down last week, but with only cones, barricades and tape.  I guess people were going around it and getting too close.  If it were up to me I would have just shut down the Northbound lane - that way cyclists could avoid riding on Meech Lake Rd. which can get busy, is fairly narrow and the asphalt is in rough shape.  According to Guide Gatineau's blog, the NCC will have this completely shut down until July/August.
I decided to press on and try my luck for as long as I could hoping not to get too wet.  By the time I was in the park the intermittent rain had ceased.  When I left the house it was only 7 degrees out and I had neglected to take a raincoat.  Thankfully the rain would hold off until my descent down Blacks and I was able to avoid getting caught in the heavier precipitation later in the day, which surely would have resulted in me getting hypothermia.  

Was nice to be on the Fortune Climb - I do believe it's my most favourite road climb in the park.
 It was my third ride in the park in five days.  The first was very disappointing from a fitness, power, ability to climb hills perspective - very humbling to say the least.  The second ride with Curvy was a little better as I had someone to push me a bit and had a wheel to follow.  Tuesday's ride was much better.  My legs felt a noticeable difference on the climbs and my computer confirmed that my pace had quickened since Friday . . . still slower than cold molasses compared to most, but it was still comforting to see an improvement. 

The forest looked soaked.  No doubt it is considering all the rain we've had so far this Spring.  I don't know what people are thinking going out and riding on such wet trails.  For example,

Poached from the OMBA website under this thread.
I 'get' that people are itching to ride.  I am too.  But for the love of Jebus, stay off the freak'in trails (at least the more sensitive ones) until they have a chance to dry out . . .
Worst. Spring. Ever.
. . . too bad that doesn't look like any time soon though.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Sorry, I can't agree with the OMBA thread. I've been biking for many years now and have yet to actually see irreversible trail damage due to wetness. Sure it can look like shit (ie: Tony's pictures on the thread) but by summer it's a well designed trail its dry and packed down and by the fall, the leaves/needles have narrowed the trail once more.

What Tony’s pictures don’t show is the other 90% of SMHL where conditions where were pretty damn good. In fact, I've been riding there with the Fatbike since March (not in the last few weeks however) and I have zero regrets.

There’s a fun-‘supply and demand’ ratio which the general public goes by and if the trails get too muddy the fun quotient drops and they stay off… naturally! In my case, I’ve temporarily moved to Limerick which happens to have some of the best conditions in years.

BTW, I put my labour where my mouth is - we had HUGE rains last fall at MSM and we still allowed riders to hammer Lager trail when the lifts were opened (200+ riders). Once the trail got to a point of extreme rutting the traffic dropped substantially but it was still open. Within a few weeks the trail was back to normal.

I hope you post this on your blog as a different perspective and frankly, I wouldn’t even mind it this comment showed up on the OMBA thread with my name & all (I don't have an account and frankly wouldn't bother starting one just for this). It’s time they realized that all of these self-imposed restrictions are only hurting them – because everyone else is riding regardless and having a blast.