My bicycle is our second car. I love to bicycle in all weather, for all distances, and on all routes. Bicycling has brought so much joy to my life, and I want to share it with anyone who is interested. I will use my soapbox to tell you about the ...
My bicycle is our second car. I love to bicycle in all weather, for all distances, and on all routes. Bicycling has brought so much joy to my life, and I want to share it with anyone who is interested. I will use my soapbox to tell you about the joys, the freedom, the benefits, and, yes, the challenges of bicycling and walking for transportation.
Each year bicyclists come to central Missouri from all over the state for BikeMO, the official ride of the Missouri Bicycle and Pedestrian Federation, and choose between a century (100 miles), a metric century (100 km, or 62 miles), or a half-metric. Every 10 or 15 miles is a SAG* station with food and water. A SAG vehicle cruises the route and helps out cyclists who run into trouble.
This type of ride is common in some places, and a lot of fun. Northeast Missouri doesn’t have anything like it.
Until now. Saturday was the Hilliest FLATS Ride Ever, a fundraiser for the Forest Lake Area Trail System and the Community Fireworks Show. The Red Route was 27 miles down Boundary, Hwy 11, Hwy K to Novinger, then back to town on Old Hwy 6/ Potter Trail. Hwy K is awfully hilly, but going clockwise as we did, the steepest hills were descents.
The Blue Route was 7 miles in town and featured the three existing trails: Wabash Trail on South Osteopathy, La Harpe to the YMCA/ School Trail, Cottage Grove up to Steer Creek Trail, then back downtown on New St. past the pool. This was a hilly route too!
We planned the ride to start early, 7:30 a.m., because of the heat. My parents had come to town from Lawrence, KS for the ride. Mom wasn’t able to ride because of a bad knee, but Dad borrowed a tandem for us! After I rode a tandem during Biking Across Kansas, I suggested we try out a tandem, and he found one. Since the tandem was a heavy old single speed, we chose the Blue Route.