There were any number of things I should have done this afternoon. Did I do any of them? Nope.
This is the one day yet this week when the temperature was going to be tolerable for anything other than sitting in front of a fan. So I figured I'd put off the "desk" work, and go for a bike ride today.
I chose a 12-mile road loop with about 7 of them on dirt. I knew it was all at least moderately shady, and only one of the paved roads was straight.
The route started right out with a crossing of the South Branch of the Pere Marquette River.
To make the loop work, I had to follow Wilson Road east and then find the main two-track southeast, which would be Aspen. I had no delusions that it would be marked, but hoped I could figure it out, and I did. The sand was very loose on Aspen, and the riding was difficult. In fact, I had to walk the bike a few places. Maybe someone stronger could have kept riding, but I can't keep the speed up enough in the deep sand.
Aspen seemed to go on forever, and I thought maybe I had gotten on some other road, but eventually I did come out on Walhalla Road (where I knew Aspen had a sign), and it was that road.
Walhalla is the straight paved road, but even it had moderate shade. Soon I reached the southern end of my loop with another crossing of the river.
Soon after that, I turned east on Hawley, also paved, but with nice curves. Another 2.5 miles, and I turned north on a dirt road called Indian Trail. It had a much better surface than Aspen, at least at the south end.
Along this route I watched a fledgling blue jay testing his wings. Mom was having a fit from a nearby tree, but the little one didn't care much about me at all. He fluttered along the ground a bit, finally managing to get up on a log. After a long rest there he took off and crashed head first into another tree. No worries, he wasn't going fast enough to get hurt. I left him to his lessons.
The final mile of the ride had loose sand again, so I had to walk a short section. I arrived back at my car in two hours. It was a great ride. I would call it moderately hard, because of the loose sand. Not sure I'd do it again for the same reason. I'll probably look for another interesting loop.
Tomorrow, I have to buckle down.
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