"The night is young, full of animals and riff-raff... the rain is coming."
So my bags from Revelate Designs came in a week early So I decided, why put off tomorrow, what you can do the day after, or something to that effect. My route was simple, the weather was not. It was time for my shakedown.
From the entrance ramp onto the bikepath, 5 miles to my first camping site (Woot, stealth-camping too!) just past the Beavercreek Bike Station. I made it there at about 21:30 Friday evening, set up my tent for the first time ever, and.. wow. It took me just over 1 minute to set up the ground cloth, the tent, and the tarp thingy over it. Black Diamond has really made me a convert to their products!
But then, the rain came, and with it, brought the cold. Ah well.. I planned for this. Hit the sack at around 22:00. Woke up at 03:00 to get some breakfast.. and.. oh crap, I forgot my camp fire cooking thing-a-ma-jigs. So be it; and started tearing down the camp site for Saturday's journey.
Do you believe in ghosts? I do.. During my teardown, from the corner of my eye on my peripheral view, a man, 5'10-6'0 suddenly appeared, and made my heart jump out of my throat. Turned towards him, and nada.. on my ride to John Bryan State Park, I remembered that he was wearing an 1800's military uniform. The bastard could have at least appeared in front of me so I didn't have a heart attack.. !@#% ghosts.
So.. there is a section of the route, where there is a privately-owned lot that is filled with old tires, rusted debris, and it is quite literally, a dump. To the left, is a small stream that flows into the Little Miami, which in turns, flows into the Ohio River, and that, flows into the Mississippi or whatever River. Turned on the camera's GPS-tagging features, and took quite a few pictures of the guy's property and the water's outflow into that stream. Guess what happens to those pictures?
Back to the journey, I made it to John Bryan, got my camp site, and went to start a fire. The next thing on my "to-do" list.. get my forsaken firecraft skills back up to par. It took me an hour to get a fire going. Ate some lunch, and went to sleep.
Three hours later, the riff-raff came. Some college kids that decided to have a party next to my bloody campsite. For all that is holy, SHUT THE !@#% UP!! Ugg.. So, back to dinner preparations.
Made another fire, cooked up dinner. Looked at my left over wood supply, set 4 boards to the side, and made me a pretty nice Teepee style fire for the evening while I ate dinner. The sky went dark and then the rain came again. Sonofa.. I did NOT make this fire for me NOT to enjoy it because of some stupid rain. Put on the rain gear, and sat out in the rain, enjoying the heat from my hard earned fire. It was good.
Put out the fire with the water from my reserves, and sat out a couple of pans, and my now empty water bottles for rain water collection. This is when things went badly.
RIGHT as I was going to sleep, those kids.. may they die horridly in a fire while drowning.. yea. Three hours later I finally get to sleep.
At some point during the night, I hear a small animal in between my tarp and the tent. This little bastard, he is drinking my freaking water that I collected! You little prick.. there is a damn river 50 feet away.. /sigh.
I wake up, and that damn animal drank all of my water, from the pans AND the water bottles... May he wind up on someone's dinner menu. Luckily, I had enough to get me 2 miles to the Yellow Springs bike station, where I made a fool out of myself in front of a group of road bikers going on a group run (parked the bike, stepped back, and tripped on their ill-engineered bike rack). I blamed it on the lack of water and lack of breakfast.
So, I made it home.. thighs are nice and achy.. 40 miles round-trip. It was a very fun and crappy trip! Can't wait to go back out next weekend
Mtbr's 2016 Winter Biking GearReviews and Roundups
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