I had been looking for a day to ride with a buddy, but I'm working or traveling every weekend in the recent past and in the near future. But the two of us were able to schedule a day off.
I did about 140 miles today riding out to Trace State Park, around the park, and back. I've gone over there enough times that I have a route that is about half gravel forest service roads, about 25 miles in all. Better for the knobbies and a lot more interesting than 4 lane. Lots of double track leading off the roads, but it's deer season from now through early next year. Not the right time to be exploring.
Still, the backroads have some stories to tell. Here is a graveyard with a clear message. Just in time for Halloween.
I arrived at Trace State Park about an hour before my friend, so I took a glamour shot and then I got my wheels dirty while I waited.
From there we rode about 20 miles of mud, a mixture of single and double track. It was a mix of mud holes (none bottomless like you find on lake bottoms), rooty mud, hard pack mud with traction, and snot where you just slide the hill if you try to stand in one place.
We cleared some terrain that intimdated us the last time. This is the top of a ditch. The ditch is about 8' - 10' tall, but only about 6' wide at the bottom. Unfortunately my camera apparently sucks at catching action.
By the end of the ride, though, we were getting tired. So were the bikes. Both bikes took naps. We probably picked up each bike twice.
Finally, I chased the sunset home, again on the Forest roads.
It was a good day for riding. Temps were in the 50s and 60s all days. It was cold riding to lunch (7 or 8 miles away from the Park on mostly 55 mph roads), because of the sweat. Mostly overcast. The final tally was about 20 miles of single track and narrow double track, about 50 miles of gravel road, and less than 20 miles of 4 lane. A good, if short dual sport ride.