Riding at St. Joe today!

We bugged out of town this morning early, Very Early.  Scott pulled up in front of my house at 4:45am to load up.  It was 8 degrees!  8 degrees!  Good god.  I do not know how much of this a person can take.  At my house, there is about 20 inches of snow on the ground in the front yard.  It was interesting to watch the snow go away on the drive down.  At the Wisconsin/Illinois border the snow was about 10 inches deep.  At Bloomington-Normal, sort of in the middle of the state of Illinois, there were patches of grass beginning to show through the snow.  At Springfield Illinois, there was only patches of snow in the shade, but the lakes were still frozen.  At St. Louis Missouri, the snow was gone entirely and the water was no longer frozen.

Somewhere in Northern Illinois. Look closely, and you can see the windmills turning, making electricity. Can't see any ground not covered in snow though.

We got out at a grocery store in St. Louis, and it was spectacular.  Not just the store, but the weather.  Wow!  It is amazing how 40 degrees feels so damn warm at this time of the year.

We arrived at St. Joe at about 11:45.  Not too bad.  It took us about 45 minutes to get the bikes out, get things sorted, suit up, gas up, tire pressure etc…  But, before we hit 1pm we were riding.  Riding people!  Riding.

St. Joe handles water pretty well.  But, it must have rained or snowed a bunch this winter.  Because, it was muddy and the ground was thawing.  The mud was not so bad.  It was muddy, but we pushed that around pretty well and turned the trail into something quite rideable.

But, it has been cold everywhere.  Not just Wisconsin, but here in Missouri as well.  The ground is still frozen an inch or so down.  So, as you ride the firm ground seems to come to the top and it gets G R E A S Y!  Yow.  But it was really fun.

It was a bit muddy today.

I am testing a left hand rear brake.  I know – what the….?  I have been having a hard time with getting my right knee folded up under me.  My knee brace protects my knee, but it makes it hard to get at the brake lever while seated.  That is not much of a problem  when standing, but when seated it is.  Lately, I have found myself in much tighter terrain and need to sit down more.  So, I am trying the hand brake.

So far, I like it.  Only one ride on it, and until I race with it I do not know, but so far it is interesting.  Solves some problems, but presents a few challenges as well.  I will put together a complete report on it when the weekend is over.

Plan tomorrow is 2-3 hours in the morning, lunch and then 2-3 hours in the afternoon.

Riding makes me smile!



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