A Grey Sunny Day
Wednesday. We have been discussing this ride concept for months. The days are counting down and we don’t yet know if the proposed route is ridable. Now, the last coffee is downed and we are on our way. Testing, probing we try to force our way through some trails that just won’t go. Even if these tracks were passable I don’t think anyone else would want to ride them. Pushing my bike through knee-deep skudge it dawns on me that I am still a bit feeble. I thought I was ready to ride, that the sickness was behind me. Mud, gravel, hills weigh me down. For the first time in many, many years, I just want this ride to end. Tired, tired tired. The route is sorted out and marked. It is done and so am I.
Saturday. Still, I am not feeling well but this is not a ride to miss …if you like this sort of thing. This is meant to be part social ride, part race but I can tell from the start that the “part race” idea appeals to only a select few. As the ride progresses to more isolated tracks and concessions the pace picks up and riders falter. Some turn for home, some just ease up to take in the incredible nature of the route. More like part hiking trip or part tour than part race, I reckon.
The photos say much about my day. Dangling around the back, my faltering fitness speaks quietly to me. “Conserve”, it says. “Stay out of the wind.” Most of the ride happened in front of me while my camera was pointed backwards.
And grey. Somehow the photos speak more to my mood than the beauty of the day. The sun shone warm but there is a stark quality in the photos that I can only attribute my mental state.
But I love this route. I will come back to it again. Many times.