Fun? I'm Not Sure! I Think So.
The studs are still en route to MP-205, so I was hesitant to hit the Isabella Co. back roads, or at least ride to them on the snowy/icy MP paved roads without them. I probably could have, just didn't want to. Sue me (please don't, I gotz no cash). So I headed to the MMCC trails. The ones that threw me a massive ride block two weeks ago. I figured with the snow melt we had and the limited accumulative snow, they couldn't be too bad. I was right! Sort of.
I took the hiking boots with me as a back up plan. I figured if the trail was ballz deep in snow I would hike the trails and at least do SOMETHING other than drive 50 minutes round trip. Thankfully I didn't need them, but I would still do my share of walking. Thank God for Lake winter shoes!
The snow was crunchy to fluffy, depending on where you were, and as I started I was GEEKED that they were rideable. The thing is there was a enough snow to make everything pretty lumpy. Everything looked the same!! And without the occasional trail marker tied to a tree, it was damn hard to follow the trail. I had gone less than a half mile before I was off for some downed trees, and right about a half mile when I let out my first "where the f*ck am I?"
At times, breaking the virgin trail was damn fun. But at other times it was sssslow going and hiking. Maybe those fat bike elitists (RICK!) could have done a better job, but the 29 x 2.1s and my heavy ass were not exactly "floating" over the snow.
When it was good, it was GOOD. Real good, and I was "floating" over the snow... like a graceful Sherman Tank in the middle of Belgium 1945. But when it was bad, I was walking. But having fun walking, enjoying the crystal clear sunny day, and taking some pics.
The only thing that was bad was the fact that I kept losing the trail! The good thing was that many of the deer and critters of Michigan follow the trails and make it easy (they're so smart, must be all the pasties, NOT pasties).
The bad thing is that those critters don't always STAY on the trail (they're so dumb!), and the next thing you know I'm in the middle of the woods bushwhacking, hoping that my final resting place isn't on the grounds of a community college in the middle of Michigan!
At one point I was just walking and couldn't find any freaking trail markers! But then I saw some (human) foot prints that appeared to have been running (hopefully for fun and not from a knife wielding murderer). So I followed those tracks. Then they just ended. WTF??? Where the hell did they go?? I assumed they must have turned around at this point.
Now I am in the middle of the woods and can't find a trail marker. I bushwhacked a bit and found MY tire tracks. Great, I just went in a circle. So I bushwhacked (I've come to the conclusion that I think I like typing bushwhack for some perverted reason) some more until I found one of the double track "non bike" trails. It looked like someone had been XC skiing on it, so I followed the tracks hoping not to encounter some pissed off "why are your riding on the f*cking XC ski trail??" skier, and hoping to find the single track again, or at least a MMCC road.
I found the road.
While I KNEW that I wasn't actually LOST lost, I had still lost the trail and not having fun traipsing around the woods in search of little orange ribbons. So I took the road to the college and the xB.
It was fun, but not in a "wow, what a fun ride sort of way." It was fun in the "Jesus H. at least I'm not in the f*cking basement on the trainer, at the gym or on skis right now" sort of way.
I was out there a couple hours and went about 5 miles. I think. But like I said it was fun (sort of), and that is what it's all about. AND I earned another frozen bottle.
Warning to folks- If you ride the Mid Michigan Community College trails tomorrow, or this coming week. Think twice before following my lead. ;)
Time to have a few beers. My first in 6 days.