Archive for the ‘dirt trail’ Tag

First Ride of 2016   3 comments

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March 27th is not the earliest date for my first ride of the year but this 2016 debut was probably the most enjoyable early season ride I’ve  ever had.
With sunshine and a temperature of 12C I was able to wear cycling shorts and was very comfortable.
Before I could hit the road I had to do a little prep. Fortunately, the mountain bike was in pretty good shape – the one thing attention needed was the chain. I was out of my usual dry wax based lube but found some of this:

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It worked fine and I was soon able to head out on the road (without squeaks).
My ride took me from downtown via bike paths and Ada Boulevard to Rundle Park and then on to Hermitage Park. There was only one section of the bike path still covered with snow and ice but fortunately it was only about 30m and I was able to detour via the adjacent grassy field. The road and bike paths were as dry as I’ve ever seen them at the end of March in Edmonton. The sand/gravel was also not bad at all.
Here’s a bit of what I saw along the way:

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From Rundle Park on the way back I crossed the bridge to Goldbar Park and followed the southside paths to the 50th Street Bridge where I crossed back to the north side.

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Back on the north side I got off pavement and on to dirt trails.

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These dirt were very dry (and actually a bit too hard for the tire pressure I had).

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It was a great ride. I covered 25K which is more than I probably should have done for the first ride in over four months. My legs handled the easy pace but I was feeling it in the back of my neck from the now-unfamiliar hunched over riding position.

It Doesn’t Seem Right   8 comments

It doesn’t seem right; it is certainly unexpected – to be having such a good time on the bike in November (in Edmonton). Nonetheless, I was out on my mountain bike again today (2011 November 10) and came home – much later and happier than I expected.

I started out from central Edmonton around 2 in the afternoon, heading along the south side of the river trails (dirt ones as much as I could).

Downtown Edmonton (with the James MacDonald Bridge)

From high on the riverbank, there was a great view of the ice on the North Saskatchewan River

Ice on the North Saskatchewan River

From southwest of Queen Elizabeth Park, a great view of the reflection of the old Rossdale Power Plant building in the river:

Old Rossdale Power Plant Building

I headed under the Walterdale bridge then along a winding little single track  to the High Level Bridge. That was a fun little trail of a type (narrow, hilly and amongst the trees) that I don’t often ride.

Single Track River Valley Trail

I passed under the mighty  High Level Bridge:

The High Level amd Menzies LRT bridges

and then along through the wooded trails west of Kinsmen Park, up and down a hill and then along the riverside trail to Emily Murphy Park. There were  a few places along the trail where water running off  the riverbank has already frozen. This one did not freeze on the path but a couple of other places, the trail was covered in ice for a 5 meter stretch.

Frozen "Waterfall"

From Emily Murphy I continued on along the flat, wide trail  north of the Mayfair golf club to Hawrelak Park. There was a bit of rain coming down as I rode this stretch but I was glad it wasn’t snow – not that it was cold enough on this unseasonably warm afternoon

At the south end of  the park:

Trail Though the Trees

As I stopped to take that last photo I was approached by a photographer from the Edmonton Sun newspaper who had apparently captured me riding a nd wanting to get my name. He was also interested in my little rearview mirror and took photos of that too. I may end up being in the paper.

From Hawrelak Park I continued along the dirt trail on the east side of the river all of the way up to Keillor Road. The trail has a few good hills.

Downhill Trail

and a lot of gently rolling paths

Undulating Trail

This trail may be my favorite in the city. It winds through lovely stands of evergreens and birch – looked great and smelled wonderful

Pond on the Riverbank

I stopped frequently to take photos and even parked the bike a few times  for that purpose.

Bike in the Woods

I retraced my path on the way home but saw some different things – like the ice starting to form on the lake in Hawrelak Park

Lake at Hawrelak Park

Trail north of Hawrelak

Along the trail. I stopped to take the photo above but then was entertained for a few minutes by little chickadees flitting about me and landing on the branches just beyond my reach.

Chickadee

As I had been moving so slow, it was getting late (approaching 4 pm) and at this time of year dusk was not far off so I was trying to make up time which meant crusiing along the flat wide trails.

Fast Tracks

Back on the trail between Emily Murphy and Kinsmen.I again encountered the ice across the path and had to sloe down – in fact for one of the patches I chose to just walk across the ice.

Ice on the Path

In the end I had rode 23K and felt absolutely great – far exceeding my expectations for a ride in November,

Trails in November   Leave a comment

Happy November Cyclist

I figure anytime I can be out on my bike in November that is pretty good and today, November 7th I did just that. It was a lovely afternoon – sunny with a temperature of around 5C. Fortunately there has been no snow yet this year so the trails were dry.

I did about 15km, on my mountain bike taking the paved trail through Dawson Park, then the dirt trail beside the river to the 50th Street footbridge. On the way back I took the trail up and down the Kinnaird Ravine and then the paths on the north slope of Dawson Park.

Although it was not a long ride by any means, I ended up being out for a couple of hours as I was stopping so often to take pictures. I will just let those pictures tell the story of my afternoon:

Trail beside river, east of Dawson Park

50th Street Bridge with ice on the North Saskatchewan River

Trail beside Highlands Golf Course

Kinnaird Ravine Trail (east end)

Kinnaird Ravine Trail

Top (west end) of Kinnaird Ravine Trail

Trail on North Bank of Dawson Park (east end)

River Valley from Upper Dawson Trail

Pedal's View of the Trail

Trail through the Trees

Fallen Trees Across the Path

All in all, a very enjoyable afternoon ride and hopefully not my last one for November or 2011.