Rochester Hills PCT Bicycle Club

October 20, 2006
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Friday October 20, 2006 Pete and I both took this day off work as a vacation day with the intention of doing a bike ride.  I can't think of many better uses for a vacation day other than a bike ride.  This year I ended up using a majority of my vacation days from work taking many Fridays to create long weekends.  If I wasn't out hiking, jogging or kayaking with Bob I was out riding my bike with Pete on these special Fridays.  Hopefully we are going to get a lot of snow this winter and I will be able to get a lot of use out of my snow shoes I got from Diane for Christmas last year.  Last winter we didn't get much snow after Christmas so I only got the chance to use the snow shoes a couple times.

Pete's son and fellow bike club member Paul wanted to ride with us this day.  Paul is a freshman at Oakland University and he has classes on Fridays so we decided to wait until Paul was done with his classes and back home before heading out on our ride.  I rode over and met Pete and Paul around 1:30 in the afternoon.  This is an unusual start time for us, but any time is a good time for a bike ride.  It was a little cool outside so I put on wind pants and a couple thin layers up top which would be perfect for a day like this.  Paul has had his new bike for a few weeks now and he has been out riding getting used to it sense the last time I rode with him.  It is obvious he is comfortable and confident riding his new bike.  Paul is a natural bike rider, it comes very easy for him.

We headed over to Paint Creek Trail (PCT).  Once we did the quick decent down Dutton we arrived at the entrance to the trail.  We jumped on the trail heading south toward Rochester.  This time of year you have to be careful to determine if the surface of the trail is sufficient for riding.  Sometimes the crushed limestone surface is too wet and mushy for riding.  We were lucky this day with the trail condition being good for riding.  Pete and I rode along straight down the middle of the trail as Paul ventured off from side to side testing out the capabilities of his nice mountain bike.  There were only a few other people out taking advantage of the trail this afternoon so there wasn't much traffic to worry about as we rode along.

We took PCT all the way south past the Rochester Library.  The area on the trail going past the Library is one of my favorite places to ride and run.  There is just something very pleasing and calming about this area.  The landscaping around the Library is very well done and it just adds to the overall beautiful outdoor experience of this area.  The river is on the opposite side of the trail of the Library along this stretch.  The river also adds to the area by its visual beauty as well as the sounds of constant running water.  This is just a really cool area.  There are park benches for people to sit down and read their books or magazines on a nice day.

Next we headed over to Bloomer Park.  Bloomer is another one of my favorite places, it is a cool place to hang out and do all sorts of outdoor activities.  This day we planned to ride around the park a little and show Paul the velodrome.  I don't think Paul had ever seen the velodrome so this was a good plan.  Once we got to Bloomer we rode the trails a short distance on our way to the velodrome.  Paul thought it was cool and he was dying to try it out.  The fact that it was closed and Paul didn't have the right type of bike didn't stop him from giving it a go.  The apple doesn't fall far from the tree.  You may remember a couple years ago when Pete first saw the velodrome he just had to try it out as well.  I am happy to report that Paul's result was much better than the time Pete took the nasty spill on his attempt.

Paul was able to squeeze his bike through the closed opening and he got out on the track and he did a few laps along the lower blue flat portion of the track.  He just couldn't get enough speed to be able to climb the steep banks.  Paul is now the first club member to have successfully completed a full lap on the track.  I believe Paul actually completed three full laps.  I took a couple pictures with my phone camera of Paul out on the track.  I will post all the pictures at the bottom of this page.

After the velodrome we rode over to the sledding hill to see if Paul wanted to use some of his excess energy riding up and down the hill.  He did ride down and back up once which is quite a hard ride.  He only did it once because the ground was too wet making it soggy resulting is very difficult, almost impossible, riding.  After riding around bloomer a little more we finally exited onto John R Road and headed over to the Belle Tire store so we could top off our tires with air.  Once our tires were full it was time to head back home.  We had a nice cool relaxing ride home.

Following are the statistics from the ride, 22.3 miles total, 23.5 max mph, 2 hour and 2 minutes time on bikes and 10.9 average mph.
David Lindquist 


Paul out on velodrome

Paul getting some speed

Paul going around second turn

Paul along the back straightaway

Another of Paul on track
 
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