05 August 2009

The New Trail and The Shortcut

It started off as a simple ride on the friendly and familiar American Tobacco Trail yesterday. Then we decided to go through the construction signs and barricades and see what was going on further down the trail. We were glad we did because it's not every day you get to see the trails you love so much actually being constructed. What might have been considered an inconvenience to some riders who were not allowed into the construction zone, for us rebels it truly was a treat - we stopped and talked to the contractors, took pictures of their fine work, and really enjoyed seeing the progress they were making. As we snapped photo after photo, we thought about RTC and how they might enjoy some reports from the field. So here they are!
When we got to the end of the trail we discovered we had run out of water so we turned around and took a detour on a paved road in search of a gas station. We found one, and after stocking up with drinks we thought we'd ride down the road a bit further and find a shortcut back to the trail. Sigh.
We met a nice young kid named Will riding his bike and he too was looking for a way back to the trail. So we rode together awhile until we found "a way" through the woods. 3 miles and 3 hours later, sweaty, muddy, scratched up, sorta lost and quite frustrated, we found ourselves sitting by the lake at the bottom of a very steep rock wall - a wall we knew we would not only have to climb, but also have to get our heavy bikes up on. We had ridden nearly 20 miles already, Ken's leg was bleeding and the mud by the lake had nearly sucked the chucks right off my feet. I was trying really hard not to whine like a girl. Will, on the other hand, acted like it didn't phase him at all, and other than telling us how badly he needed a GPS he didn't complain one bit. That is until we climbed the wall and realized we had come out of the wilderness only to arrive about 50 yards from where we had went in. He couldn't believe it and neither could we. Well, Ken could. Ken had been trying to tell us for some time to veer left, but Will and I were SURE we were headed in the right direction so... Anyway, after a few justified mumbled "I told you so's" from a hot and tired Ken, we said goodbye to Will and headed in the opposite direction. Riding 10 more miles back to the truck we stopped only occasionally to talk about how much fun this would be in retrospect - after it was on the blog. lol
Enjoy the pics below...

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