Thursday, April 4, 2013

Cycling to Great Falls

On Saturday I had signed up to go cycling with a group along the C&O Canal. I'd not been able to do this before as the path is all gravel and/or sand, not something I'd want to ride my Bianchi racer on, so it was a great opportunity to try out the mountain bike. I was a little concerned as there were only a couple of other mountain bikes in the group while the rest were hybrids so I hoped I could keep up.
But once we set off I made a point of being up near the front. One poor lady had a fall right at the beginning but didn't become a casualty so we all slipped into our own paces and pedaled. It was a beautiful day, a little chilly but lots of sun.
This is Dan Snyder's house, owner of the Redskins. He's not a popular person and got into a lot of trouble for chopping trees down so the view from his house wasn't impaired. He was ordered to replace the trees but never did:
The trail was surprisingly empty with just a few walkers and very few cyclists. We reached Great Falls and saw more visitors there but most stayed in the immediate area and weren't really using the trail.
The water crashed over the Falls noisily, hardly surprising with all the rain and snow we've been having lately, the water level was quite high. I didn't notice any intrepid kayakers dashing through the rocks. Only a few of us walked to the viewing balcony and then we met some more of our group who'd arrived late. I had no idea whether all had finally arrived and nobody seemed to be that concerned. After 30 minutes or so I was glad when we started back as I was feeling the cold again.
On the ride back a head wind had picked up so it was a slightly harder pedal but I stayed up front and pushed on. I chatted with a couple of the ladies about books and was actually quite amazed when we discovered we'd only got another 2 miles to ride. We got back to the parking lot having cycled 22 miles which I was pleased with, having made little of riding with big fat knobbly tires. It had been a fun work out and wonderful to get some exercise in the fresh air. but I was glad to get into a nice warm car and head home to the fire. It's still not quite warm enough for me yet out there.

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