An admitted shoe geek waxes philosophical about running, triathlon, and life in general.
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Friday, December 13, 2013

Winter in the Pacific Northwest

It’s amazing what a difference a day (and about 20 degrees) makes.

I’ve been mostly enjoying the lunchtime mountain bike rides this past couple weeks, when the temperatures haven’t ventured above freezing, and some mornings have ventured into the mid-West BRRRR territory. Sure, there’s a little bit of ice to deal with, but that’s easily avoided or coasted over. The ground, though, has been consistent, hard-packed (okay, frozen), and in some cases smoother than many of the PAVED roads I ride on. The frost heaves had proved to be strong enough to float my 155 lbs (hey, it’s after Thanksgiving) and bike.

Until today.

It was 45 degrees when I left for work at Oh-Dark-Thirty this morning, with a light drizzle. All those nicely hard-packed dirt roads that I’ve enjoyed these last couple weeks have turned into the natural equivalent of mashed potatoes. The security trucks that make the daily rounds back in the woods have left the frost heaves a rutted random washboard, punctuated with abrupt fall-through of two inches – kind of exciting mid-corner.

I liked riding in the cold. As much as I had to bundle up, I could hang up the clothes overnight to dry and take them out the next day. 

This time, not gonna happen. I looked like a Warrior Dash finisher by the end of an hour-long ride. The clothes will HAVE to be washed before their next outing. The pile of grit I left on the locker room floor would have made a good place to plant early corn. And I had to blow it out of my nose…
Winter in the Pacific Northwest.

I wouldn’t live anywhere else.

Okay, except maybe someplace that has real winter. Or endless summer.

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