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The people have spoken.  I have heard your voices and have resolved to get new tires.  I expect to be able to provide a detailed report on the purchase, installation, and ride quality of these tires by next weekend.  In the meanwhile, I have called Old Ironsides into long distance service.

Well, at least it can be called “moderate distance,” if not “long distance.”

A rare action shot of Old Ironsides

Yesterday’s weather was once again fantastic, with temperatures soaring into the upper 60s.  There was a stiff breeze, but that was of little consequence when matched with the springlike temperature.  I probably would have plotted a 50 mile route for the Trek, but with Old Ironsides I  cut the distance back to 36 miles.  In the end, pushing the hybrid that distance felt a bit like 50 miles anyway.  For my objective, I chose some pleasant country lanes east of Nokesville that I haven’t been on in several weeks and set off.

Rocking the arm warmers

The mild temperatures allowed me to try out my very first set of arm warmers, a Christmas present from a friend who is trying to help me round out my cycling wardrobe.  They are made by Garneaux, the same Canadian company that makes my shoe covers.  Like the shoe covers, these arm warmers did a great job.  I find myself becoming a fan of Garneaux, despite their suspicious French name.  I felt a little silly, being decked out in proper cycling kit all the way to my ankles, whereupon the studious observer would note that I was wearing sneakers.  Oh yeah, I was riding a hybrid.  It was definitely an odd combination.

A momentary break in the country

After traversing the bike path on Rte 234, then navigating the busy Aden Road (much of it with no shoulder), I arrived at those pleasant country lanes.  It takes me 11 miles to get there, which once again makes me wonder why I don’t simply drive there more often and start my ride at the place where I enjoy it.  Purists (especially those with a political agenda) will point out the silliness of driving so I can cycle and the adverse impact on the environment such a practice creates.  I’m not persuaded by this argument, but rather cannot be bothered to put my bike and rack on my truck and drive out there, then repeat the process on the return.  I rather like arriving in my driveway at the end of the ride and being done with the event.  When the chore of riding Aden Road outweighs the hassle of commuting to ride, then I’ll do it.

Horse farm on Parkgate Drive

The roads east of Nokesville were (as anticipated) quite nice.  They are dotted with horse and dairy farms and have very little traffic on them.  After pedaling about for 14 miles, I once again returned to Aden Road and made the journey home without event.  Having the wind at my back was a nice way to finish the ride.

So once again Old Ironsides proved its worth.  While not being up to the task of regular distance riding, it can come through in a pinch as it did yesterday.  It is also my regular choice for nighttime and family rides.  I’m pleased to have it in my two-bicycle stable.


11 thoughts on “Nokesville

  1. I’m with you on the merits of cycling straight out of the drive. We often stick our bikes in the back of the car when Mrs Tootlepedal wants to come along as otherwise we would have a very limited set of options at the distance she likes to do. We don’t need to put a rack on though, which helps.
    I envy you your high temperatures, the stiff breeze is harder to bear at 40 degrees or less.

    • The winter is off to a magnificent start in these parts. I am now counting the weeks until March 1st, when I declare winter to be over (if it snows in March, I become very upset). Next week’s forecast: very mild. So far, so good.

  2. The weather this weekend was spectacular. The Mt. Vernon Trail was full of people in short sleeves. I guiltily drive to places to walk all the time. Today, it was to the parking lot for Roosevelt Island so I didn’t burn half of my walk mileage in transit. I wanted maximum time along the river to recharge the mental batteries. I rationalize this behavior by walking for almost all of my errands and commuting by public transit. It is rare that I get in a car during the week.

    • There’s no need for guilt, in my view. You had a great day on the island and drove your car to the event. I predict the sun will rise tomorrow despite this heresy! 🙂

  3. For all the comments that I’ve left, I never knew that there were followups on the comments;0D Just discovered that.

    • LOL! No worries, Cherri. All you need to do is review every single post you have commented on for replies. As always, please leave the site after each viewing to increase the number my number of hits. 🙂

    • If we’re not going to rely on the Canadians for our cold weather gear, who will we turn to? The Russians? Not likely. I say support the Canucks, even those who speak the wrong language!

  4. It’s like Spring here in Dear Old Blighty this week as well, no doubt we will be frozen out of our complacency all too soon.

    Oh, by the way, my mind set is the same as yours re driving to cycle, who can be arsed with loading the car up? A right pain…

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