Late March Start

Posted: March 30, 2015 in Uncategorized
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I was done waiting for the snow to melt. I was riding Sunday no matter what. The day before it lightly snowed most of the day. It didn’t stick but it didn’t leave me hopeful.

The weather prediction promised sunny skies Sunday, low 40s at best in mid afternoon.

Good enough.

See March 29, 2015 Ride

Mt Tom 3-29-15

I met up with Ron in Holyoke at route 5. I had on a short sleeve bike shirt with arm warmers and a shirt over that. I added 4 more layers including 2 coats. I also wore long tights, winter gloves, and “bootie” covers over my shoes. My toes would get a little cold, but I stayed comfortable during the whole ride. Ron had warmer gloves but still had to stop to warm up his hands.

We rode a slow pace to avoid the wind chill, especially when going down hill. Slower speeds also helped us avoid potholes that littered the roads.

Following route 5 north, we turned onto Ron’s favorite hill…Mt. Tom Reservation’s access road. He climbs it 20-30 times a year. I have been keeping up on spinning classes and felt good about this early climb. What neither of us anticipated though was the ice and snow on the roadway. Sitting in the saddle, we steered carefully through the snow and ice at a consistent pace.

At the top of the road both left and right were blocked to traffic. The right turn hadn’t been open for a long time. The left turn towards route 141 gate has been blocked since the microburst that happened last fall.

From my many walks up to the Mt. Tom summit, I could see the damage along the road from a distance. Now I was getting a closer look. At first no damage was evident and it looked as it always has. Then it changed quickly. As Ron said “the view is now spectacular.” I was saddened by the damage but impressed by the power of nature. Logging was going on even on that Sunday which I appreciated. I look forward to when it will be cleared out.

The gate at 141 is at the highest point on the road. The damage abruptly stops feet from the gate. Trees on the other side of the gate, close to the road were mostly untouched. A restaurant and banquet house across the street seemed unfazed. Just below that is Mt. Joe’s where I park for Mt. Tom hikes. From there you would never know what happened a few feet away.

Biking towards Mt. Joe’s to Go , I looked forward to the rest of my ride knowing the season was starting with a bang.



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