Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Biking and disc golf on another hot day

I passed up a bike ride with friends today, to do a ride of my own. I wanted slow, relaxed, flat, and closer to home than their ride. It seems like I've been making excuses lately for not riding, but the bottom line is that I'm just not as motivated as in some previous years. Today, I needed to just get off my butt and get out.

It had been a long time since I'd done the Mohawk River loop between Schenectady and Schoharie Crossing State Park, a 45-mile round trip, and that felt like the right idea for today.

An early start was a must, with temps expected to hit 90 later in the day. I skipped breakfast and got going a little after 8am, and stopped fro a breakfast sandwich and OJ at a Stewart's outside of Scotia on NY-5. I stayed with NY-5 through Amsterdam to Tribes Hill, where after the one climb of the day, I descended to the Mohawk and crossed on the Lock 12 bridge. I didn't stop at the visitor center at the park, but instead continued on to Karen's Produce and Ice Cream, a little further west on NY-5S. Ice cream seemed like a good idea, since it was now getting pretty warm.

Much of the way back to Schenectady followed the Erie Canalway Trail, and I got into a very relaxed mode, just gently spinning the pedals in a comfortable gear. This was more like the riding I did on my trip last summer, and not much at all like many of the recent group rides I've been doing. I rather enjoyed it. Arriving at Lock 11, the Mohawk River was glassy still, with no wind whatsoever.

Below the dam, the spillways were still raging with the last of the high water from recent rains.

At one point, I had a minor disruption of service on the trail, as these hissy geese refused to move until their offspring were safely out of the way.

The relaxed ride continued as I exited onto NY-5S and continued east toward Schenectady, picking up the bike trail again about 5 miles from the car. It was nice to be able to do 45 miles at my own (uncharacteristically slow) pace, and to stop occasionally for treats and pictures.

Back home, since I was already covered with sunscreen and road grit, I decided to throw in a quick round of disc golf in Central Park before getting cleaned up. I should have stayed home - suffice it to say it was NOT a top-10 round.

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