Monday, March 15, 2010

Good thing the camera's shock- and waterproof

It's wildflower season at Henry Coe State Park, so we've headed over there to mountain bike for the last couple of weekends. It's pleasantly warm without being blisteringly hot like it can be in the summer. The hills are green, the flowers are out, and the creeks are full. There is also an abundance of mud, most of which is now plastered all over the bikes.

The first time we headed down, Chad rode with his buddy Randy and the guys, leaving Nimue and me to explore the mostly flat trail along Hunting Hollow. At first I felt a brief twinge of annoyance at being stuck with a low-key ride, but the trail Nimue and I were on soon proved to be a wet fun-filled adventure of creek crossings, which was quite a delight. I got a lot of creek riding practice myself, and it was particularly entertaining watching Nim, who is often pretty cautious, learn to bash through the water with great abandon.

Nimue's pretty good at cheerfully pushing her bike uphill when she needs to. Note the gorgeous setting with the violently green grass that pushes its way out of the ground this time of year.

The obligatory tongue-sticking-out shot. She's enjoying a peanut butter, nutella, and dried cherry sandwich on homemade sourdough.

I discovered the hard way that filming one's kid from behind with a handheld camera while riding through a even a minor creek is not always the best idea.

Watching me topple over into the creek and then burst out laughing seemed to let Nimue relax a bit more with her riding, as after I fell she began to wipe out in the mud too.

Many, many, many more crossings. Good thing it was warm-ish.

The extra dry clothes in the car that she had packed weren't enough; Nimue cracked open the bag of emergency clothes that haven't seen the light of day since the 1980's.

In the end, we decided that the guys all missed out on the real fun.

This last weekend, Linda was in town and willing to watch Nimue, so I got to do a "real" ride with Chad and the guys. A couple hours of riding, a few thousand feet of climbing, some bushwhacking through the tall grass. Yes, I'm slow going downhill (too much self-preservation instinct to ever be a really good mountain biker), but I did manage to hold my own for the most part going uphill. It's gorgeous -- and this time I didn't fall!

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