The next week of my life is going to be nuts. This coming weekend, Dirt Rag’s Dirt Fest happens at the Allegrippis Trails, and a couple thousand mountain bike enthusiasts from all over the county will be traveling to our backyard.
It’s a truly wonderful and exciting event to see and help make happen, but for those of us on the inside, it also means a lot of work and not much sleep, and a week that seems like one long, very busy day.
So this past Sunday, before all the craziness began, a group of us hit the trails, enjoying them in solitude before the crowds and busy schedules.
A day that started off a little chilly warmed up fast, and soon we were drenched in sweat from the physical exertion and the muggy air. It is still a welcome change after this winter to be hot instead of cold, to be able to stand still comfortably and not freeze, to jump in the lake at Hydroloop and go for a swim before climbing back up the hill.
It was a somewhat leisurely ride compared to many, with occasional stops to talk amongst ourselves and to the occasional other rider, and to enjoy the midday sun. Our gang of five was a good one, a tight-knit group of friends of varying abilities and levels of experience who are still able to enjoy riding together.
As we wind along through the trees, I’m amazed at how different these trails look from just a week ago, when I rode them last. The past week has really seen the coming of spring, the full-fledged emergence of leaves and budding of flowers on the redbuds and dogwoods. It seems like forever since I’ve ridden these trails under these conditions, surrounded by brilliant greens and the occasional pink or white. And yet, it also seems like yesterday that it was this year at this time, and I was new at riding these trails that are familiar territory, and just moving in to the place that is now my home.
The ride was over a little too soon, but now we are in the season of longer days and after-work rides, and we’ll be back out here doing this all again soon enough. For now though, it’s Dirt Fest time.