09 August 2009

This is the way the summer ends: The Teddy Bear Picnic

My friend Jim offered to make us a deal on his old Hitchhiker trail-a-bike-like-bike more than a year ago. And at the time we were excited about the prospect of using such a clever contraption to assist us in riding further and longer into the woods than we've been able to go as hikers and Euro-style kick-bikers.

In the end, however, we waited a long while to finally seal the deal with Jim (for a 6 pack of New Belgium) because we wanted to have our daughter riding more-or-less independently on her own pedal bike first, so that she would understand balance and handling a little better and thereby minimize her risk of getting bounced off and stuff like that. Well, she's been riding quite capably on her own for some time now. And, when I called Jim last Saturday to inquire about the bike, he said he still had it and that we were still welcome to come and take it.

After a few years of neglect (Jim's daughter is 9) the rig needed a little sprucing. But once regreased and polished up a little we spent the week working incrementally up to today's adventure: our first real shred in the woods!

Earlier this week we rode around the block one day, then up the Thorpe Park FUTS to the top of Mars Hill on another day, and yesterday, we made a figure-8 loop of the trails in Buffalo Park. But today, I'm proud to say we rode some real trail: From the improvised trailhead at Park and Paradise we rode up Jumps to the Back of the Buffalo, then up the first part of Lower Oldham, East across the Pipeline, and back down to the heretofore unnamed drainage above Jumps just below the Big Rocks, which my daughter has officially named The Teddy Bear Picnic.

And that's a fine name for a trail, indeed.


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May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. -- Ed Abbey