Saturday, March 12, 2016

the lone rider

i'm a lone rider.  not a lonely rider but a rider who prefers riding alone.  i tend to be a loner in most aspects of my life-a hermitess. i enjoy my own company.  that being said, the fact that i am a slow rider does aid to my riding loner style. a few health issues which i am trying to resolve require me to stop now and then to breathe or stretch and i just hate having people wait for me.  

another reason for my solo adventures is the solitude i enter into on my bike.  its just me, Lavinia and the wilderness.

i am not a roadie, i prefer the sweet single track in the forest or mountains.  i work as a 7th grade aide.  24- 7th graders 5 days a week can be mentally exhausting, leaving me little time for my own thoughts.  the feeling i get when i jump on my bike and go into the forest fills every part of my being with peace and a sense of calm.   it's a moment when i can forget about everything and just be.  i find time to think things thru-  i listen to birds, feel the trees breathe, sense the eyes of mountain lions on my back and dodge suicidal squirrels that cross my path.  but when i am on the gnarlier trails i have to focus- "be here now"  as they say!  no room for other thoughts! which is a different kind of peace. these gnarlier trails take my breath away, get my adrenaline pumping and i feel so alive and full of exhilaration-like i'm flying or bouncing around like a crazed wombat!  it's  a stellar high!

lone riding does have its drawbacks.  crashing when you are alone can be scary.  Or when you come upon something like this in the trail- well, it is nice to have help.
with all this much needed rain we have been getting lately my riding time has been sparse.  i did manage to sneak a ride in today in between storms!  woot!  i got to see how full the dam was and it was amazing.  haven't seen it like this in years.
the great thing about the trails at bullards is they are not muddy in the rain, they are rideable.  i can feel good about not wrecking up the trails!  i saw my first dogwood just beginning to bloom today! 
can you see it there in top center of the above photo?  the flowers are just opening!  the greens are so brilliant on the trails they seem surreal.
the photo doesn't do it justice.  when i look at the lake i often wonder what Garden Valley looked like before they flooded it.  must have been gorgeous with its steep wooded hillsides with the north fork of the yuba river wildly flowing thru the valley. 
during the summer months these trails are not as serene.  the blare of motor boats speeding with blasting classic rock fills the air.  but for  now, these precious months before the campgrounds open is bliss at its finest.  solitary fishing boats dot the lakescape.
looking forward to my next ride!  looks like a clearing in the rain coming up next week!  so glad i chose to ride today  instead of cleaning the house.