I want to ride my bicycle ~ I want to ride my bike ~ I want to ride my bicycle ~ I want to ride it where I like
~ Queen, Bicycle Race, Fat Bottomed Girls

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Snowy ride at Harbourview

Kyle(Loki) and I have been planning a ride this weekend for a few weeks now, he had his bike in the shop due to parts breaking on the Seymour trip and I needed a few tweaks to my new bike, have been trying to figure out why my King hub seemed to be sticky...well...at least the freewheel part of it...so our plan was to drive out to see the best bike guy on the lower island....Lorien who is the proprietor of Sooke Cycles, pick up Kyles bike and have mine checked out then a BIG ride to a trail we have not ridden before up in HV...that was the plan at least.

The spring in Victoria has been odd to say the least, very wet and grey....and to tell the truth it is getting on my nerves...I want to play in the sunshine, to have dry trails and dry feet at the end of a ride, is that too much to ask? Anyway the last few days they have been saying it is going to snow this weekend...WTF...REALLY, no, they must be mistaken...but alas they were not. Yesterday, it was hailing, snowy, sunny, rainy and everything in between..and then in the evening it settled down and started to snow...gah...why now.

This morning I get up and look out the window to happily see very little snow on the ground, maybe an inch or so, thats not too bad...lets hope that's all Sooke got too. But much to my chagrin just as Kyle pulls up it starts dumping on us again...and it's not letting up. I finish my breakfast as Kyle waits impatiently and then we start packing up, I am having 2nd thoughts now...it just looks nasty outside and my brain does not want to deal with another soggy ride...let alone my body.

But, Kyle is here...and I don't want to let him down, OK...lets go.

Off we go in his kickass Delica, thank god that thing has four wheel drive...the roads were a mess, but as soon as we got close to Sooke the snow let up and it started raining. We pull into Sooke Cycles to get Kyle's bike and decide what we are going to do. We chill out there for a while (maybe loitering is a better term..lol)...talk bikes...let Lorien do his magic with my bike and chat with his customers about bikes...lol. Just as we are getting ready to go this guy comes in asking about the local trails, turns out he and his girlfriend are from Ontario and want to ride while they are out. After we chat for a bit it is decided that Kyle and I will show them around HV...I love showing new people...dunno why...but I find it fun.

So we head out with our new friends following....kinda dreading the wetness ahead of us...well...at least I am. We gear up in the parking lot and I make the decision not to wear pads, I really don't know why...other than I have been riding padless for the past few weeks and like it...but on a wet..cold...snowy..slippery day, kinda a stupid decision that thank god did not come back to bite me in the ass.

As we start pedalling up the road, the sun starts shining..and it does not go away for the rest of the ride...it was awesome, a much needed break. It was not perfect...as the sun was melting all the snow off of the trees and it felt like it was raining most of the way up...lol, with the occasional clump of snow coming down and waking you up...felt like someone was throwing snowballs at me.

As we got up to the end of FM I started to notice a buildup of snow on the road...not too bad for the weather we have been having. We decide to go up a little further and cut into FM, saves some time pushing up that first part. The snow has amazing traction, is very wet and sticky...a lot of the rocks were very slick though...had to watch for them.

They way up was pretty uneventful, our new friends from Ontario decided to ditch their bikes in the ravine and hike up, they are not used to trails like this...let alone with snow on them, but they wanted to see the view from the top. The only time I actually hurt myself was going up....I was trying to get my bike up a little rock ledge and I slipped...tweaked my shoulder and back a bit, was kinda silly.

The views from the top were amazing (see slide show for the photos), Kyle and I grabbed a bite to eat while the others started back down the trail. I gotta say...coming down was a blast, way more grip than you would think...and the magic that Lorien did to my brakes was not going unnoticed here...heh. Just as we are about to catch up to them...I get another flat...no flats in years and I go to a folding tire and three flats in two weeks...gah, I hope this is not a trend. I change it pretty fast (for me at least..lol) and we get riding again...hootin' and hollerin' down the trail...I was lovin it. We did manage to catch up to the others before the end of the trail (I felt kinda bad, his girlfriend was walking a lot of the trail...but she was a trooper and kept on going with a smile)...and we rode the rest of FM together.

Nearing the end of the trail it started clearing up...was really nice to be riding on dirt again..lol. At the end of the trail they decided they wanted to ride the road back down, so we say goodbye and wish them well for the rest of their trip...it's gotta get better than this...hah.

We hit Kumquat, a brand new trail called Serenity Now and then Hump...to GT1 and 2 down to the parking lot....a few breaks for rest, glamour shots of the bikes and to chat....overall a great day of riding....damn glad I went riding..

For an up to date, free map of Harbourview click here!

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