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Rochester Hills PCT Bike Club
July 24 & 25, 2004
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On Saturday July 24, 2004 our scheduled ride was a breakfast ride starting out downtown Rochester at the Crazy Greek.  At first it appeared it was only going to be Pete and me doing the ride.  On the way out of Peteís subdivision I got a phone call from Rich asking if we were still riding.  I told him we were just starting out and I was glad to hear he planned to meet us at the Crazy Greek.

Rich was having some work done on one of his vehicles and brought along his bike and rode over and met us after dropping off his car.  After a decent breakfast we decided to head back over to the old Rochester Golf course with the intent of slicing up some more putting green for Peteís backyard project.  At first Rich wasnít clear that we had actually been cutting up sections of putting green and then Pete was replanting them in his backyard.  I think we sparked Richís curiosity and he was in for the ride over to the golf course.  The three of us made good time and before we knew it were at the entrance to the course.  We told Rich that Pete had already gotten verbal permission from someone working in the mobile office at the entrance, which is true.

We took Rich on a short tour of the overgrown golf course riding predominately on old cart paths and periodically crossing fairways and greens.  When we are out there riding it feels like our own private park for off road bicycling.  It is really too bad that a majority of the beautiful trees are going to be taken down to clear the area in preparation for the new subdivision.  Pete brought just one large duffle bag with a five-gallon pail inside.  He planned to fill the pail with the special dirt found under the sod of the putting green.  He needs this dirt to fill in the gaps as he is transplanting the sod. 

After a short ride we headed over to the 17th green where we have been removing sections.  We have stuck exclusively to this green so far.  The 17th appears to have the best quality grass and it also has an easy access for driving up later to pick up the sectioned pieces of sod.  Pete headed over to the pine tree where he stores the spade he uses to cut the sod.  After retrieving the spade he got to work.  Pete first cuts the outline of the piece by driving the spade straight vertically down about six inches into the ground around the entire perimeter of the piece.  Once the piece is outlined he then gets down on his knees and slices through the dirt horizontally about four inches below the surface until he has sliced through the entire sectioned piece.  My job is to help roll back the piece as Pete continues to cut the next piece with the spade.  Since Rich was along today he got roped into helping me carry the pieces to the pick up point which is only about a hundred feet or so away from the green.  We left the duffle bag at the pick up point along with the five gallon bucket now filled with dirt.  After cutting a few pieces Pete stowed away the spade and we hopped back on our bikes for the ride home. 

Since Rich needed to head back to pick up his car we rode back in the direction toward town.  We rode with Rich until he had to split off and Pete and I just continued on home.  I believe by the time I ride over to Peteís and we go to the golf course and back it ends up being approximately a 22 mile round trip ride.

Since we had so much fun Pete and I decided we should do this again on Sunday July 25, 2004.  We started out even a little earlier on Sunday, I met at Peteís house at 7:30 am.  It is a lot nicer riding earlier in the morning when there arenít a lot of cars out on the roads.  It is just quieter and more pleasurable ride early in the morning.  Since we were going to go back to the golf course again for more putting green we needed a good breakfast.  Out intent today was the Greek Island, which has a good breakfast special.  When we got there we were disappointed to find out they werenít open yet.  Instead of wasting time waiting for them to open we continued on toward our destination.  We figured as a last resort we could always stop at a McDonalds for a quick bite to eat.  We ended up eating at a little family restaurant right on east side Rochester Road just south of University.  It turned out to be OK.  I canít remember the name of the place, oh well it really doesnít matter. 

After breakfast we went directly to the golf course and Pete cut up some more green.  We were both surprised to find out that the duffle bag we had left behind the day before was gone.  Someone must have thought it was part of the miscellaneous garbage lying around the general area and decided to pick it up.  All the pieces of cut green were still there as well as the bucket of dirt.  Pete cut a few more pieces and then we rode home.  We drove back right away and Pete brought an old plastic snow sled to use moving the pieces to the pick up spot.  The sled worked out quite well and now it is stored in the secret pine tree along with the spade shovel.  We loaded Peteís van with all the sectioned pieces and headed home.

Monday July 26, 2004 I had just gotten home from work and guess who calls wanting to know if I feel like a bike ride over to the golf course, your right Pete, and he is on a mission.  We rode over and cut a few more pieces of green.  It was starting to get dark and even starting to rain a little on the ride home this day.  I turned on all my lights and attached one of those small flashing red lights to the collar of my shirt and we rode home as it got even darker.  We were very fortunate that we had very good weather for both the rides on Saturday and Sunday.  I donít think we should complain about a little rain on Monday.

Riding three days in a row was fun and a fair amount of miles for us, a total of approximately 66 miles.  Bad news is my bike is continuing to deteriorate.  I am afraid that I have to face up to the realization that this cheap bike is going to have to be replaced very soon.    

Thanks for checking in.

David Lindquist 

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