Yesterday was the first really cold SMNDFBR of the season where temperatures started well below freezing and stayed below the freezing mark the entire time. Remarkably we still managed to wrangle up a bakers dozen for the ride.
There has been snow on the ground for quite awhile now since it's been so cold, unfortunately that snow was very wet and formed a lot of ice before it turned over to drier flakes. This has caused a considerable amount of icing on untreated surfaces, Wilderness Park is no exception so it was decided that it'd be safer to ride gravel out to Elmwood instead.
City streets and paved trails were in good shape and mostly ice free, the same could not be said for the small section of the David Murdock trail east of 84th street. Because of the shade there were several sections that were skating rinks, much like the one pictured here. Fat Bike tires are not immune to ice and perhaps we were a little bit too confident in their abilities because we had a 4 bike pile up at this very spot, given how close we were to each other and the fact that there was zero grip on the ice, I'm really surprised it didn't take out all of us. Good thing we took a route intended to avoid the ice...
A quick bike and rider check revealed that both bikes and riders were all good to go, being in the middle of the synchronized ice ballet, I can't really say what it looked like but I've been told it was rather graceful as far as crashes go.
After our little spill we decided to alter the route a little bit and get over to Havelock rather than stick to the Murdock trail, gravel heading east was in great shape and the sun even managed to come out and warm things up nicely. It was a great day to be out on a bicycle even with the chilly temps.
Attempting an Elmwood ride this soon after the holidays and this early in the season might have been a little over ambitious so it was decided that Eagle would be plenty of gravel this day.
Small town gas stations and bars just aren't the same as they are in bigger cities and they tend to become the meeting places for the community as well. I am sure we were probably displacing the old dudes of Eagle, Saturday morning coffee and gripe session and for that we are truly sorry old dudes of Eagle but we needed a little warming up before heading back.
I don't make it into many of these... mostly because I have the camera and because I always look like that weird, unkempt uncle that every family has but nobody wants to admit to but Scott felt I needed to have my fuzzy mug in the pictures, so really it's Scott's fault you had to see this.
Took A Street back to Lincoln, yes A Street is a dirt road east of 120th, a found our friend the headwind. It's probably a good thing we didn't continue out to Elmwood, the temps started to drop and the flurries started up shortly after we left Eagle. Thankfully we made it back to Lincoln before it got too bad and nobody slipped on anymore ice. Thanks to all who made it out yesterday and to all of those who continue to come out when they can and help to make these rides so amazing.