Monday, October 12, 2009
A Quick Jaunt to the Woods
That front was a teaser. It swept in Friday night, and by Saturday morning, it had a cloud line that kept leading my eye directly towards Green Ridge. They were sitting pretty low, just above the fold. So I checked the temp, then the dew point, and figured Blue Ridge Summit to be just that. A woolie and some warmers and I was on my way.
I was curious to see the colors. The maples and birch seem farther along than any. They look like peppers going from green to bell but there is still plenty of room for ripening. Next weekend maybe? But it’s interesting to see all the microclimates in the forest. The trees seem to hold the heat in and it keeps the lower section living a little longer. The ferns are a bit more mysterious. Most are dying, but there are some random pockets that are still in perfect shape. The crazy thing is, the dead and alive are right next to each other,… same slope, same coverage, and same proximity.
Trails are mint. I’m pretty pleased with how they are coming in after the race. Virginia is a lot faster and I can actually sit and spin, just a little, in that 34x20 (That’s 32x20 to all you 29er people). But I can’t help thinkin’ there are two lines in there that need to be fixed. I never planned for the sudden surprise, loss of mo’ after the first little descent and personally, I’m thinkin’ the turn leading into it is hot and you have no choice but to carve it hard, a turn of the head, a straightening of the outside leg, a drop of a knee, and maybe a little twist,… but then BAM!......... a mo’ stopping obstacle and a steep little section. Same sorta occurence as Larry's, but the surprise around the corner was my fault. It could be better. The other spot I am thinking of must have been due to laziness or exhaustion or both. One small down tree in the way, I avoided it, and you can tell. But the true test is erosion. I’m a firm believer that anything that is a good 34x20 climb, will last. So far it has, but the trails on the South side are still very young. A good spot to watch would be Rattle Dick where it drops to Deer Lick Springs. It’s a good climb and descent and seems to be holding up pretty well, but our equestrian friends haven’t really been on it yet either. Only time will tell, and my time was out.
The day was done. I made it back for some homemade soft pretzels and my favorite Winter Storm.. The Sun was dropping below the horizon and those billowing stratus clouds were scattering the light everywhere like a big neon sign leading my eye straight back towards my vices, and as with all my vices, I returned for more the very next day.