|Riding on the Sinclair Trail late in the afternoon today.|
It is turning cold here in Iowa, with freezing rain and snow in the forecast for tomorrow, followed by bone-chilling days as some Canadian air moves in.
So, although it was a bit cloudy, breezy and raw today, my oldest son and I went on a bit of a bike ride. He lives in San Francisco, and is over for a few days, with his wife, for Christmas.
What with one thing and another (sleeping in, going to the gym, eating a late breakfast) we didn’t agree on bike riding plans until late morning. By the time I got two bikes out, aired up the tires, filled two water bottles, it was early afternoon.
I offered to let his wife come with us, but she decided she would rather stay home with my wife (and stay warm). So it was just the one son and I who took off on a cloudy, cool afternoon.
|My son demonstrated bicycle safety on the Sinclair Trail (above). Passing by Cedar Lake on the way home (below).|
I was riding my road bike, while he was riding my mountain, winter-beater bike. It was fitting, because the mountain bike came into the family when he was an intern at Microsoft in Seattle about 10 years ago.
We rode over to the Cedar River Trail and headed south towards downtown. Our goal was to ride on the new Sinclair Trail, which I had been on once before with my youngest son.
It was breezy and cool as we headed south, but not too cold. We had the trail pretty much to ourselves. After about an hour, we arrived in the area of the new trail, but my son got a call from his wife that she and my wife were headed to The Flying Weenie, were we planned to meet for lunch.
So instead of riding the new trail, we headed across the Bridge of Lions. The Flying Weenie was a new experience for the San Franciscans. My son and I both had Chicago dogs, while my wife and daughter-in-law had gyros. As usual, both my dog and my fries were excellent—if you haven’t tried a biker’s lunch at the Flying Weenie, you really ought to.
Anyway, following a pleasant lunch, we returned to the trail. It had turned sunny, but also cooler. After a quick ride on the new trail, we returned to the Cedar River Trail for the ride home.
We rode through Noelridge Park, and then took F and E avenues south in order to check out another new bike route. The city recently repaved a stretch of C Avenue, adding sidewalks and a bike lane, and creating a new pedestrian cross light on Collins Road.
|New bike lane on C Avenue Northeast.|
|Corner of C Avenue and Collins Road. Crossing north means bikes to your right will be turning right, so be careful! My son (below) waits with me at the corner, riding his old Microsoft bike.|
It was around 4, afternoon traffic getting a bit heavy, as we headed north on C Avenue. Still, the ride was fine. We had to switch to the new sidewalk because the bike lane ends about a block south of Collins Road, but that was OK. The crossing light is now active, and we didn’t have any trouble—although my son noted that the crossing light is very short. A pedestrian would probably only make it to the mid-street island and have to wait for the next traffic cycle to cross all the way, but with bikes we zipped across Collins in one light.
All told, we rode a bit more than 23 miles. It was a cool, but nice ride. The one glitch is that my son attempted to raise the seat on the mountain bike, but it settled back down in a few minutes.
Still, with rain and snow on the way, it was nice to get some riding in over Christmas break. And now I’ve scouted out the new route to cross Collins Road, which, I’m sure, will be useful in the future!
|Earlier this week I rode the winter bike to Mount Mercy for a fun day of grading. There may be some sarcasm in this caption....|