Friday, December 31, 2010

A Day In Pictures

I took this photo this morning in my front yard at 8 AM.

I awoke this morning to the unmistakable rumble of thunder.  Not just a quick small rumble, it was a long, very deep pitched rumble that rattled the house.  It was still dark in the bedroom, but when I looked at the clock it was 7:45.  I got up, the alarm was set for 8 anyway, and was in shock as I stepped outside.  It was nearly pitch black at 8:00 in the morning with some low level rotation just to our northwest.  I turned the tv on when I got to my shop (I was going to meet some guys this morning to ride), they confirmed a tornado had hit the town of Cincinnati, Arkansas, a small town about 40 miles northeast of where we live.  At that time there were 3 confirmed dead, people still trapped in their homes and still other people missing.  I continued loading my gear in the truck and was taking my bike down off of the workbench when the storm arrived at our place.  Luckily we just had a few bursts of hard straight line wind, and some pea size hail.  What a horrible way to bring the new year in for this small town.
My KTM sits eagerly waiting to be loaded in the truck ... it was happy today!  An hour later I'm loaded up and headed to the woods.  My RA is behaving for now, so I'm going to play it by ear on how far I ride. Everyone bailed, so I'm riding solo today anyway.  If I do start hurting, I will just head back to the truck.
After riding asphalt forever, well maybe not forever but 6 miles of asphalt on a dirt bike feels like forever, I find what I am looking for. Forest Road 247 will take me out to the back side of Lake Hinkle.  
This is amazing, these people have manicured this field.  It goes way beyond the frame of the photo, must be at least 15 acres that they have looking like this. Beautiful site to see as you round the corner on FR247.
FR247 crosses a creek that was slightly swollen after all of the rains we have had over the last 2 weeks.  The creek is normally about 30 feet wide, it must be 130 feet wide this morning.  I have rode through 20 feet of water up to this point.  The actual creek bed is about 70 feet in front of me.  Against my better judgement, I turned around. Still think I could have made it ... waters probably not over 4 feet deep out in the actual creek bed. lol
Headed back another way, stopped to take this photo because the sun on the trees was amazing.  By the time I got stopped and got my camera out, the sun was gone.  So much work to get stopped and get the camera out, I took the picture anyway.  There ... take that sun!
HA! 20 minutes later I got the sun this time.  Them durned dirt bikers messing up a perfectly rain washed road with their tire tracks.
Your tax dollars at work.  I know most people don't have a very high opinion of us dirt bikers, but come on ... even I know what a dirt road is. At least they could have put the pole in the ground straight!  
Gorgeous view with Rich Mountain in the background.  I wish I could make a living just riding my dirt bike around and taking pictures.  Too bad, most people that live around here have never seen the beauty that our back roads and forests have to offer.
Just before stopping to eat, I rode a new (new to me) short trail out and took a really hokey self portrait.  
After eating I am on my way back to the truck and run by this creek. It is about twice as wide as normal, it is nice to see some water back in the creeks after a very hot and dry summer.
I love iron truss bridges, have to stop and photograph every one I see.  Just ask Randall and Darel!
Ok, another photo op.  A fiberglass ski boat sitting on a creek bank in such thick underbrush, there's no getting it out.  It is sitting on the ground, not a trailer under it.  Don't ask me, I didn't put it there, I just took the picture.  
Ran across this water tower.  I'm showing my age here but I can remember when every town and community had at least one water tower in them.  It's sad, I miss seeing them.  It seems to me that we are losing way too much of our past.  The iron truss bridges ... ugly old concrete ones now, wooden barns ... been replaced by steel ones, no water towers, no mom and pop hardware stores.  I miss what once made towns individualistic.  Now you go into any town and there is a Fridays, Applebees, Home Depot, Best Buy, it's the same from town to town anymore.


Anonymous said...

Great looking ride. Not a bad way to spend New Years Eve. Really like the picture taken from the side of the bike looking at the mountain. I miss the water towers too. Keep on riding!


Anonymous said...

How does riding effect your RA, does it hurt while you ride? Looks like fun.


mary said...

Looks like the day cleared off nicely for you. Nothing like a New Years Eve or Newy Years day ride to start the year off right. Happy New Year!! Hope it is pain free and includes all of the rides you have planned.

Glad the storms missed your town.

Squirrel said...

looks great, nice photos! i cant wait to get out on my bike again once the weather improves.
hope you had a good new year!

tharr said...

John, thanks, plan on riding as long as I can get a leg over a bike. It WAS a nice relaxing day riding solo this time, could go as fast or as slow, stop as many times as I wanted to take pictures. I really enjoyed it.

Michelle, I'm not going to lie about it. It hurts every time I get on and off of the bike, once on it I ride pretty much pain free. After 70 miles or so, I am starting to hurt. I usually try to hold most rides to 110-150 miles because of my RA.My feet, hands and right hip are usually the first ones to get grouchy about the ride. There are some days that I just have to stay home though, if my RA is misbehaving.

tharr said...

Mary, the day was pretty nice once the storms cleared our area. The temps started dropping by lunch though. I unloaded at 10 am and it was 68, hit 70, then by 4 pm it had dropped to 43. Hope you can work some bike rides in here and there before spring arrives.

Hey Squirrel, thanks. I hate that winter holds us hostage now. Do you ride on a trainer indoors through the winter? I used to ride one, trainers are good for keeping your body acclimated to riding, but they are so boring!

Anonymous said...

I wish you and the family a Happy and Healthy New Year, great pic's and I think the boat may be mine, we had a wind storm here a while back.