Saturday, October 24, 2009

Day of the Dirt

There have been rumors of a cougar on the outer reaches of the local bike path. The woods seem wild when you get a couple of miles out of town. I use the path for the park and ride variation of my commute in the season when night comes early. I'm not worried, though. I am far too old to interest a cougar.

The park and ride variation lets me salvage some riding from a day when I need to do something after work that requires the cruising range or cargo capacity of the motor vehicle.

On Wednesday, the theme was "Dirt." About halfway to town in the morning I crossed a road to the next section of trail, going at a brisk pace, only to round a bend and wallow into truckloads of loose fill that had been dumped on the trail in a layer about eight inches deep. It stretched ahead many yards to where a mound of it blocked the path completely. I turned back to the road and took the highway into town.

In the evening the fluffy section had been packed down enough to ride through. I enjoyed the peaceful darkness. The light array on my bike is working well. I have two on the handlebars, one on the fork on an accessory mount designed to hold computers on tri bars, and a Black Diamond Cosmo headlamp strapped on my helmet. The helmet light is handy when oncoming cars don't dim their lights. I can aim it in the windshield to get the message across.

Feeling very relaxed I emerged from the trail onto a quiet road that leads to the wide gravel area where I leave the car, at the intersection with another road. It's not posted with any warning signs. I've used it for several years.

When I arrived there on Wednesday in the deepest dusk, I looked over at where I had parked and could see only an enormous pile of dirt. When I got far enough around I could see that it did not bury my car, but it had been dumped absolutely as close as it could get without burying it. Then the humorists had driven a piece of equipment into the pile from the end next to my car. It was an impressive demonstration of precision and skill. I had to laugh.

For the next two days I rode from home. I'll figure out the parking thing next week when I need it again.


getinlost said...

Interesting use of a car, I would not have thought of it as a viable dirt stop. I also don't believe they're talking about that species of "cougar".

twister said...

Legs pumping and moving at a good clip would ring the dinner bell for the big cat. If she jumps on you don't scream like a girl, though. Bust her in the chops and say, No Soup For YOU! that should do it ;).

word verification:the bra