“I wouldn’t go there if I were you,” said the man in the church pick up truck. He went on to explain, “It’s a real steep road—a road that once you go down, you won’t want to come back up. And at the bottom of the road there is a creek. So you’d have to cross the creek. And you couldn’t ride across it.”
My dad and I prodded for a little more information about this “creek.” Was it impossible to cross? “No, not impossible,” he conceded, “you might be able to wade across it, but I wouldn’t do it if I was you.” He then directed us to take an alternative route. We thanked him. We discussed our options.
That conversation went something like this, “We’re crossing the creek.” “Yup, he had me at wade.”
And off we went.
The hill was steep. The road turned to gravel toward the bottom. We dismounted and, well, um, yea. It was kind of a big creek.
And at that time the years of playing Oregon Trail on our Gateway computer came back to me. I knew our options:
We went with #1. First I took off my shoes and socks and plotted the safest path for the bike.
Successfully to the other side, it was now time for the big operation.
My dad, clad in his trusty Chaco sandals (an option those on the Oregon Trail didn’t have), was tasked with bringing across the wagon, er, I mean bike. Below is the photo essay of his crossing.
Yes, that’s right. We made it.
I get it that our decision to go for the creek may not have been the wisest, but it was fun and it was a challenge. And, saying yes to the challenge is kind of what this ride is about. Today we biked 80.8 miles. To be clear, it was supposed to be 72 miles, but there was also that time when we rode 4 miles on this beautiful bike path that was going to take us between Lawrenceburg and Aurora when…this happened:
For the future Lawrenceburg, maybe warn us before we go on a bike path with no public access roads that you’ve decided to shut down for five months. But, eh, it’s cool, we turned around, retraced our steps and just kept biking. We were riding on the energy of our amazing send-off event in Cincinnati where our colleagues, friends, family, and the police chief came to wish us well and many even biked with us for the first 7 miles. Thank you to all that came out.
And we were biking with the excitement of being back in the saddle (I’m sure the jockeys from today’s Derby can relate).
But now I must sleep. Because, today was just the beginning.
Here is a map of what we did today: