This is a shameless attempt to save the the most advanced civilization in
history from imminent self destruction by eliminating carbon emission,
dependence on foreign sources of fuel,obesity, hypertension and diabetes.
Cycling accomplishes all those things at once and helps us develop a better
understanding of ourselves, each other and our relationship to the cosmos.

Oh, horse puckey!
I like to ride bikes, have been doing it all my life.
The rest of that crap is just a fringe benefit,
and the blogosphere gives me a chance to share my interior
monologue with virtual rather than imaginary friends.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Back and forth across Michigan

    I really thought I was going to create some posts while I was traveling for the past week, but it just did not happen.  I guess I was just too caught up in the whole meditative experience of  a boy and his bike.  Well, I'm back and everything went as planned.  The first day I drove to Traverse City, 2 1/2 hours north, and left the car in the long term parking at the tiny little airport there.  There is a $40 charge to leave it for the week and I think that reasonable to have it in a supervised lot rather than one of the local trail heads for that length of time.   That part of Michigan is close to mountainous, not Alpine or Rocky high, but hilly enough to support an impressive network of ski lodges.
Scenes like this are common, 12-14% grades and although the descents probably equal the climbs, it just never feels that way.  It was one of the few really cool (60's) days we have had in quite some time.  It was overcast and cool all day, with  a light rain falling as I worked my way through the forests.
In this area, there are large and scenic patches of both national and state wildlife areas.  On this particular day, I was not enjoying the scenery as much as I should because the temperature, and rain became a little more challenging than I would have liked.
It felt just like this all day.  Uphill in the rain, against the wind wearing a rain cape; just how much patience can a man have?    I am really pleased that I no longer use a computer.  It would have been really frustrating to see the stats from that day.  But I muddled through and found the route had no services at all.  I planned to ride about 50 -60 miles and there was no store, gas station, bait shop, no nothin' along the last 40 miles.
I did see a lot of 
oil wells spread throughout the edge of the forests and wildlife preserves.  I'd nearly forgotten that Michigan has a large number of producing wells and that shale fracking is going to be a major social debate here in the next few years.   But you can't buy a Gatorade from an oil well, so I just kept my head down and worked my way to Higgins Lake State park where I was glad to get a modern campground, a warm shower and a cold beer.  Pulling into a modern campground on a bike makes you feel a bit like a Lilliput surrounded by pack animals.  Every space is filled with trailers and Rv's.  Tents are used as ancillary shelters.
"Getting away from it all" 
seems to mean bringing it all with you---just in case!

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