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Old 11-13-12, 10:45 AM   #1
Sculptor7
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The Lonely Roads of Late Autumn

My last few rides have been somewhat joyless. Not only have the leaves pretty much begun to leave but so have most of the other riders. The cold winds coming off the Atlantic along with grey skies and chilly winds are eagerly competing to see who can cast me into the most desolate mood. It's always hard at this time of year in Maine to believe that it will all come back in the Spring: the friendly "Good Mornings!", the sounds of the birds and the beauty of the beach roses. But for now it is just a case of (as my wife says) "manning up!".
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Old 11-13-12, 11:57 AM   #2
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Or, as my wife would suggest that I'm prone to doing (and borrowing/paraphrasing from Dylan Thomas). I will not go gentle into the dark of winter. Iíll rage, rage against the cold and dark.

I'm just not going to let seasons dictate my life. How pathological is it? Well, when it snows, I clear not a path, but all the walkways and driveway. I put my studded tires on my bike and pull my winter layers out of the closet. I refuse to let winter keep me indoors. If winter must be, I shall not silently suffer its cruel torment. No, bring it on, I say.
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Old 11-13-12, 12:18 PM   #3
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While I don't miss the winters of my youth and college days, I applaud those who suit up and ride in the dark and dreary.
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Old 11-13-12, 12:24 PM   #4
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I just cannot seem to get motivated to ride in the dankness that is Oregon in the winter. At least I have a trainer to try and keep from getting too idle in the winter, but even thats a difficult ride to motivate. I think its my genetics to become lazy and tired in the winter.
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Old 11-13-12, 12:36 PM   #5
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Since I began backpacking a while back I've come to enjoy winter. I love a good snowfall and the winter landscape with spruce and fir boughs bowed down with snow. I also like the way a snowfall deadens sound so that you seen to be in different and silent world. I like this environment so well I've camped frequently in the dead of winter - once with temperatures down to 15F or 20F but I was snug and warm in a huge down sleeping bag. I came to enjoy the fitness and skill needed to function happily in deep snow. I think it is the same satisfaction we cyclists experience after several seasons when we have aquired enough fitness to enjoy the challenge of climbing a good hill or moving at speed, whatever moving at speed means to each of us. This year I plan to get cross country skis to use on expeditions to local golf courses.
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Old 11-13-12, 12:46 PM   #6
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After the summer we haven't had-I will be out whenever the weather permits. Don't like cold but I have plenty of layers to ward it off. Rain and mostly it is just a light rain and I have waterproof topcoats. Wind is the main problem but if I go inland I can lose some of it-- BUT it is when two of those get together that riding is best done in the clubhouse on Monday nights.

Tomorrow looks good and there may even be a bit of sun to go with it.

But it happens every year. Weather turns a bit foul and the only ones out there are the diehards- or the young and foolish.
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Old 11-13-12, 12:53 PM   #7
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Since I began backpacking a while back I've come to enjoy winter. I love a good snowfall and the winter landscape with spruce and fir boughs bowed down with snow. I also like the way a snowfall deadens sound so that you seen to be in different and silent world. I like this environment so well I've camped frequently in the dead of winter - once with temperatures down to 15F or 20F but I was snug and warm in a huge down sleeping bag. I came to enjoy the fitness and skill needed to function happily in deep snow. I think it is the same satisfaction we cyclists experience after several seasons when we have aquired enough fitness to enjoy the challenge of climbing a good hill or moving at speed, whatever moving at speed means to each of us. This year I plan to get cross country skis to use on expeditions to local golf courses.
That's so beautiful I almost want to move someplace snowy... almost.
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Old 11-13-12, 01:16 PM   #8
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I for one, am waiting for the cold winds to blow. It means that my favorite MUP will be almost empty.
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Old 11-13-12, 01:19 PM   #9
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This year I plan to get cross country skis to use on expeditions to local golf courses.
Beware, this is a HIGHLY ADDICTIVE activity.
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Old 11-13-12, 02:38 PM   #10
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My riding is very straightforward and practical. It's done to commute, or to get the groceries and the errands done. I don't even think about mood or that sort of stuff.

The number of bicyclists out there does drop off, but it's not like they were much company for me anyway.
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Old 11-13-12, 02:58 PM   #11
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I am with you on this one Esteban58

It sounds nice but somehow I don't think I will be moving to a cold climate any time soon.
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Old 11-13-12, 03:46 PM   #12
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I'm a bit burnt out from all the riding I did this year but lately I've been rather enjoying the bracing temperatures, clear crisp air, and different perspective I get with all the leaves down. There seem to be about the same small number of riders I typically see during the summer. The shortening days are a bit of a drag though. It's really only the two or three months during the depths of winter with the coldest temperatures, short dreary overcast days, and snow that put me off riding.
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Old 11-13-12, 04:20 PM   #13
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I'd just as soon winter in Naples, FL.
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Old 11-13-12, 11:19 PM   #14
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I just cannot seem to get motivated to ride in the dankness that is Oregon in the winter. At least I have a trainer to try and keep from getting too idle in the winter, but even thats a difficult ride to motivate. I think its my genetics to become lazy and tired in the winter.
It is my commute that makes it happen. The motivation is just to get to have fun on the ride in, and the ride home. If I approach it that way, I find commuting in the winter easier than the summer (fewer distractions and excuses to drive to hurry home). Just not as many long rides. I simply have to ride, or I eat/drink/expand too much.
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Old 11-13-12, 11:30 PM   #15
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Winter Bike Camping.
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Old 11-14-12, 12:01 AM   #16
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I know what the OP means. Even here in bike-crazy Minneapolis, this time of year even the more popular bike routes feel a little empty and I wonder, "where did everybody go?". And yeah, there are times when getting myself out of the house becomes a bit tougher.

But I had a delightful ride tonight on the midtown greenway - Minneapolis' cycling super highway. By greenway standards, the trail was pretty empty, which means I saw maybe 20-30 other bikes during a 20 mile out and back ride (this was at 10 PM. During the day, the greenway would be much busier, even in November). It was in the high 30s, but the wind wasn't blowing and it felt great to be out.

I don't mind the gray or the cold or even the dark or the lack of company, really. I'm mostly happy to be out riding, once I get out. But what gets me is

(a) a really biting wind
(b) whenever the temperature takes another step down - the high 30s tonight was fine, but my first ride of the season at that temp was a bummer. In a week or two, the first ride down in the mid 20s will be a bummer, but then I'll mentally adjust, etc.
(c) cold and wet . There hasn't been much of this so far, and if I'm lucky we'll skip the freezing rain and go right to snow, which will be fine. If I can avoid it, I don't ride in cold rain or cold and wet streets.

stay warm and keep riding - most any weather is better than the gym or the trainer.
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Old 11-14-12, 12:16 AM   #17
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During winter my wife and I try to do things that make us smile.







Last edited by Doug64; 11-14-12 at 12:28 AM.
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Old 11-14-12, 07:13 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Looigi View Post
I'm a bit burnt out from all the riding I did this year but lately I've been rather enjoying the bracing temperatures, clear crisp air, and different perspective I get with all the leaves down. There seem to be about the same small number of riders I typically see during the summer. The shortening days are a bit of a drag though. It's really only the two or three months during the depths of winter with the coldest temperatures, short dreary overcast days, and snow that put me off riding.

I too enjoy the different perspectives of late fall... I am seeing things that I did not even know were there...
... Throughout the summer, I kept hearing a waterfall at one spot. But the leaves and foliage blocked me from seeing it. Now I can see it and it is more beautiful than I had imagined...

I also enjoy the shift away from the hectic growth and pace of spring and summer as nature lays down to take a rest...
... I find it a good time for me to slow down a little as well and allow things to settle...

Just as we need a quiet, peaceful night of sleep, so does nature...
... I find I can enjoy it for what it is if drop my ideas of how things "should be" and "would be" if I were in charge and simply enjoy it for what it is...
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Old 11-14-12, 02:00 PM   #19
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We will soon be embracing the below freezing highs and below zero lows. I can get out and do shorter rides into the 20s. By the low 20s it becomes difficult or tiresome to try and keep things clear and or warm enough to really enjoy it. Then the trainer will take over to keep me going whilst attemting to still get out 1 or 2 times a week.
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