The Pacific Ocean From the Pacific Coast Bike Trail in Fort Bragg, California


E. and S. know me well, even if it has been a decade since we lived in the same place, so of course they offered up a bike ride this morning, first by the post office so I could run an errand–my favorite sort of bike ride–and then to the town’s bike trail. In this town, the bike trail skirts the Pacific ocean, and at the risk of sounding melodramatic, it took my breath away.  I know, my breath seems pretty easy to take, but c’mon, we’re talking about Yosemite and the Pacific here. It is all just spectacular. We pedaled along, smelling the ocean air and dodging the gaps and holes in asphalt that gets routinely washed out, saying our good mornings to other walkers, joggers, cyclists, and guys with fishing poles heading down the beach. I could get used to this breathtaking business, for sure, but then it was time to turn around and head home, promises of more rides tomorrow. It is all fog and cool breezes out here, and I wish I had my Surly with me to do some of Highway 1. Patience, patience, try to enjoy what’s here now and not just what you wish could be, I thought to myself as the ride ended too soon–a helpful reminder in general, I think.

Pedestrian Bridge in Patapsco State Park in Ellicott City

Pedestrian Bridge in Patapsco State Park in Ellicott CityA. asked if I wanted to go for a bike ride this weekend, and surprise, surprise, I did! Today’s ride took us from my neighborhood to Ellicott City and back, by way of the Gwynns Falls Trail, Patapsco Valley State Park, the Trolley Trail, and the Gwynns Falls Trail again, and oh, was it lovely. It was 0ddly a little chilly with whirling winds, so we kept our jackets on as we pedaled down the hill, around the harbor, and up through Federal Hill to pick up the Gwynns Falls Trail and a route I remember from our ride back into town a couple weeks ago. Continue reading

End of Horse Route at the B&A Trail & Boulter’s Way

End of Horse Route at the B&A Trail & Boulters WayI had to go to campus today for a meeting and then another meeting, and my strong desire to not go to campus meant I had to bribe myself, so I popped the Surly on the back of the car and drove us there with the promise that we could ride the trail out to Annapolis after work. Rather than park at the airport, I drove to the start of the B&A Trail, taking the long way because I didn’t plan my route beyond “drive toward the airport.” Continue reading

Looking Up at Trees From a Bench on a Trail in Damascus Regional Park


Many moons ago S. asked me to accompany her to her mom’s fundraising party for the MS 100 ride in Damascus, MD, and then it was finally today and time to head that way. Because she is awesome, S. kindly requested I fold up my new Brompton and bring it along for a ride on a park trail. She borrowed a mountain bike, and we were off. The bike is just so much fun to ride, and the gearing lets me keep pedaling while going down some fairly steep hills. I was flying, and damn, it was so much fun. But, as my father always says, what goes up must come down, and that’s true the other way, too. Yeah, I think I need a grannier gear on this thing for sustained climbs, or maybe I just need to get stronger. Overall, though, it was most perfect to be pedaling in the shade offered by trees like these, which we stared up at from a bench near the end of our ride. What a treat.