Monday, September 02, 2013

Lebanon Hills

I took Eryn over to Lebanon Hills yesterday.  I wasn't sure what she'd think.  She's not always excited about exercise.  But she loved the skills area, going around it about twenty times, and had me ride the green trail twice.  And today she wanted to go back.  We tried the longer green trail this time which was a little harder.  She did a great job and made it all the way around without any complaining.  Quite the opposite, she very much enjoyed herself.  I hadn't been there since they had the old parking lot which is now being left to go to seed and wilderness.  The newer lot is much larger and has changing areas, bathrooms, a tool station, and a water bottle filling station.  It's a nice area.

Now if we only had mountain bikes instead of hybrid-like sport bikes.  Mine is a little better because it has a front shock and gravel tires, but those are the same tires I took on RAGBRAI, so that gives you an idea of what I optimized for.  Her bike is a.) too small, b.) doesn't have front shocks, and c.) has fairly smooth tires.  We were going to put off getting a new bicycle until winter, but now I'm going to double up my shopping efforts and watch Goodwill as well as there are often old mountain bikes for sale, and it's probably a good place to get a beater.

Panorama of Eryn in the skills area.

Walking over the medium skill area.  Where that guy is in the background are three sets of hills, green, blue, and black or, easy, medium, and hard.  The guys that were there at the same time we were discussed the fact that proper use of the bumps meant air time.  I refused to get airborne and just practiced learning to take the hills slowly.  The teenagers had air time.  It looked frightening.  The lot is generally packed with people out on the longer ride (blue goes all the way around the big park - you can see the map at the Lebanon Hills link) and today there wasn't a single place to park.  Fortunately, we're so close we can just pedal over there.  So all my bitching about not leaving near a bike trail, well, you now realize I was complaining despite living within 10 minutes of one of the better mountain biking trails in the country.  Some people...never content.

She didn't fall down on the medium skill obstructions.  She fell over on the sidewalk at the entry area to the skills area.  That's always the way it goes.  Nothing bad, just a nice scrape.  I tried to go over this and decided it wasn't worth my neck or hip.  I did try some of the rocks and bricks with success.  You have to be willing to take them with a bit of speed.

Proof that she attempted it while on the pedals.  You can't see them in this picture, but there are a lot of teenagers and families at the park.  I wish there had been teenage girls riding mountain bikes and discussing fixies when I was 16, but if there were, they weren't in my neck of the woods.  It's a much different bicycling crowd than 30 years ago.

MORC does trail work every Tuesday night 6-8 p.m.  That's probably something Eryn and I have to go check out.

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