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Fun "Detour!"

Sunday, May 08, 2011

We had a great turnout for our bike club's roadside clean up yesterday! Sadly, we found stuff that demonstrated such APPALLING disregard for all the beauty that nature can bring us: a pc monitor sitting in a puddle down the bank from the shoulder and a lazy boy recliner which had been rolled down the bank of somebody's pick up truck no doubt. I carefully picked up the larger pieces of a heavy glass liquor bottle that had been smashed on a roadside post with pieces all over the riding path of a route which I frequently take. I scruffed the smaller pieces off the shoulder into the grass well out of the path of bicycle tires.

Afterward we all hopped on our bikes for a well-worn route up 79 to Whitney Point. Enjoyed some conversation with another member along the way who clocked us at 17 mph. Nope still no gizmo on my bike to measure such things. But each time I have a member check my speed I find I typically run between 14-18 mph depending on road conditions and elevations. This places me at a middle-of-the-road sorta speed with approximately 1/2 of the riders slower than me and the other 1/2 faster and I'm pretty content with that. Not looking to be a speed freak as I think it would take away too much enjoyment of being out on my bike! Last year coming down Bear Spring Mountain into Downsville we reached around 50 mph coming down a PERFECT road for such a thrilling descent...straight, smooth, no curves or turns...just a swooping, whooping joy!

Whitney Point offers many different interesting routes to take and the 15-20 of us splintered up into various directions. As I had some things to do in the afternoon I opted to simply return back to Chenango Forks with a few others. Soon I felt as though I'd cheated myself from getting out into some new territory. I'd forgotten how much I enjoyed doing that!

Fortunately one of the other members thought of a "detour" on the way back which proved to be delightful! Up Cloverdale Road we went! Nice, quiet, tucked away into the back woods with banks of trees fuzzy with early green sprouting from their branches sprawling before us. I could imagine this view transforming in the fall with the leaves changing color! I'll most definitely be back for THAT! :-)

After a while we rode up to the Black Bear Winery, a place I'd always meant to visit, but never have:


The owners had been puttering around outside and were JUST getting ready to open up shop (noon time). So in we popped to have a look-see! The fellow showed us around sharing that he specializes in making wine from everything EXCEPT grapes...cool twist! Turns out they have an open mike every Friday when folks stop by with their guitars and have fun singing bluegrass and other types of music. I told him my guitar has been gathering too much dust lately and I might just stop back for some fun! Not that I play bluegrass (prefer jazz) but I think I might be able to join in or, who knows kick out a solo tune or two? :-)

He showed us the various vats, tanks and bottles where his current projects were coming along nicely. Very fastidious, neat and tidy facilities! Even if I DON'T drink wine except for rare occasions, for the ambiance and fun...? I'll be back!

I felt SO much better for having taken "the road less traveled" and was ready for the day ahead! Isn't it funny how just a slight tweak, just off the beaten path can open one's eyes too some wonderful things...? Today's was a shorter ride of 22 miles, bringing this year's totals up to 219 miles.

Continuing to celebrate the spirit of Bicycle Month I'll share some notes from our local bike club members on our local television channel:

Go-Green: Save Money and the Environment by Riding a Bike

And a neat BBC series all about bicycles...the first part:

Ride of My Life - The Story of the Bicycle

Links subsequent installments are on the right side of that web page.

Everyone make it a special and wonderful Mother's Day!

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    I'm so jealous!!!
    2501 days ago
    Alright, here's the deal... :) You sing and help create the ambiance, and I will drink the wine!!! :) The winery is not far from Windsor, and why I hve never gone there!!! I will have to check it out!
    2504 days ago
    I had participated in one of those road side clean ups a couple years ago -- filled many many bags, spent a whole day in pouring rain -- and then my DS told me what the likely content of the many bottles (broken and otherwise) I had helped pick up along the side of the road. It involves truckers and a need to keep to a schedule and lack of desire/time to make bathroom pit stops and . . . uh huh.

    I had used heavy duty gloves, washed up thoroughly too: but, was sick for about two weeks afterwards . . . !!
    2504 days ago
    Your zest for life motivates me to keep going in the right direction!
    2505 days ago
    What a fun day!

    2505 days ago
  • L*I*T*A*
    great your day turned out so well..........
    blessings and hugs...........lita

    emoticon happy trails...
    2505 days ago
    Sounds like a marvelous day! I wish I had a group to bike with or a biking buddy around here.
    2505 days ago
    Sounds like you had a great day!!!
    Thanks for the links you shared.
    2505 days ago
    Excellent Don. Made me wish I was there. I'm having the Spark people blues lately. I know I should be on more but it seems like work lately. Your up more than me on miles though. I'll figure it out and be back to you. Terry
    2505 days ago
    I love exploring new areas. That is one of the reasons I got a bike. You can cover more miles in the same time compared to on foot. Yesterday afternoon I discovered I can travel the lenght of Quabbin resevoir without ever sharing the road with a car (~27 miles). I'm very excited.

    Ride on.
    2505 days ago
  • FRECKS96
    Wonderful day! Black Bear is fun, I've been there a few times and have friends that visit quite regularly. I'm looking forward to hearing about your upcoming jam sessions.
    2505 days ago
    What a great day on a bike! My favorite rides are the one's that aren't planned...they just happen!
    2505 days ago
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