Rochester Hills PCT Bicycle Club

Feb 5 & 6, 2005
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Another weekend with both a bike ride and a walking hike.  On Saturday February 5, 2005 we did an early morning breakfast ride.  On Sunday we did a nice brisk hike through Bloomer Park starting around 10:00 am.  I will put a heading to each of theses two events, in case you only want to read about one.   

Saturday Feb 5, 2005   Bike Ride
Similar to last week Bob, Rich and I did an early Saturday morning bike ride.  We left Bobís house around 7:30 am.  The weather forecast was for a nice weekend of mild temperature with sunny to partly sunny skies.  When we started it was still a little chilly, in the mid 20ís.  Without any snow the past week and warmer weather the past few days all the streets were clear.  The bike paths along the main roads were also in pretty decent shape, only a couple areas with snow or ice.   

Instead of stopping at the Greek Island for breakfast we decided to ride a bit further.  We ended up on Rochester Road at the Golden Star, which is a small restaurant on the west side of the street.  Before going in we talked ourselves outing of eating there and made plans to ride to the Coney Island in the Target shopping center further south, just before Auburn Road.    

When we got to the Coney Island we noticed two Oakland County Sheriff cars parked out front with their engines running.  We also noticed there were two more sheriff cars parked out back with their engines running as well.  It looked like they had the place surrounded, something very serious must be taking place inside.  Just in case there was some sort of illegal activity going down Bob, Rich and I got ourselves prepared to jump in and help out the authorities if necessary.  You see the Rochester Hills PCT Bicycle Club understands the importance of community and we made the quick decision to get involved as part of good civic duty.  We left our helmets on just in case we came across any stray bullets.  Carefully we entered the restaurant, I think there must have been a few bike club fans eating breakfast at the Coney Island that morning because we got quite a few strange looks as we walked down the isle, we get that periodically when we are recognized.  Once we got inside it didnít take us long to see all the sheriffs were gathered around one large table, there must have been eight of them.  Rich was prepared to use his recently acquired emergency rescue skills to aid in supporting what we assumed was a wounded person laying on the crowed table.  Shortly after Bob screamed out, ďBack up give him some air, certified emergency help coming through,Ē we noticed the only thing on the table was a plate full of fresh pastry.   Even though it turned out to just be strawberry and custard filled doughnuts, cinnamon rolls and chocolate covered ťclairs it was still a dangerous situation for anyone who got their hands too close to that plate.  I have never seen such a frenzied group of forks attacking a plate of food.  Now I understand why the engines were still running in those sheriff cars, no time to turn them off, the pastries might get cold.  At first the three of us were embarrassed at our actions and at what Bob had yelled out.  Luckily the sheriffs were so consumed with the pastries they never even noticed us.      

We proceeded to a table in the back away from the smokers and had a nice breakfast.  Rich and I both had blueberry pancakes and I canít remember what Bob had, I think my observation skills were still slightly distracted by the sight of pastry flying up from that central table.   

After our breakfast we started back toward home.  We stuck to the side streets to get off Rochester Road to avoid some of the noise.  We all reminisced about one of Peteís flying falls that happened almost one year ago, on February 14, 2004, as we road down the same street.  

We stopped at the Radio Shack in the shopping center on Livernois just south of Walton.  Both Rich and Bob were looking for something at Radio Shack.  I sat outside the store on a steel slatted bench and waited while they did their shopping.  I didnít realize how many people go to those tanning places until I sat there for about 15 minutes and watched many people go in and out of the tanning place a couple doors down from Radio Shack.  Just another example of how odd I am, I would never even consider going to a place to be exposed to harmful rays generated by extreme lights for the sake of burning myself to a slightly different skin color than normal.  Oh well, I know I am odd and I accept the fact that I just canít understand many concepts in todayís society that are considered normal.  Ok, need to get back on topic.  After Radio Shack we had a nice uneventful ride home.  Following are the statistics from this ride; 19.8 total miles, 21.0 max speed, 9.5 average mph and 2 hour and 4 minutes total time moving on bikes. 

 

Sunday Feb 6, 2005   Hike through Bloomer
This is the third weekend in a row that we did a walking hike through Bloomer Park.  Last week Pete joined Bob and I on the hike and I think he had a really good time.  Pete was planning to join us again for this hike, but at the last minute he backed out.  Tom joined us for this hike.  We planned to leave at 9:00 am because Carol, Barry and Amanda were planning to visit with my parents around noon and I wanted to be sure to be home in time to properly set up for entertaining guests.  It was about 9:20 am when we picked up Bob in Tomís Durango. Tom felt obligated to call Pete and try and talk him into joining us as soon as he found out Pete dropped out.  Tom tried some of what Pete does so well, pressuring him to get ready to join us.  Pete said he wasnít feeling good and that he needed to stay home.  We werenít sure if Pete was sick or just hung over, he definitely didnít sound good on the phone so we will give him the benefit of the doubt and assume he was sick.   

It was another absolutely perfect day for a hike through Bloomer.  The sun wasnít out quite as strong as last week but the temperature was a bit warmer, it was supposed to be in the 40ís by the time we finished, and it was.  I brought Dianeís digital camera with me and I took a few pictures through out the hike.  Check out this link for all the pictures.  Most of the pictures are of Tom doing various activities, he seemed to be in an adventurous mood and willing to try out anything, so I took pictures while he did.  I think it is a good idea that Pete didnít join us because the combination of Tom and Pete together would probably have ended up with one or both in the middle of the river.  

Tom drove his Durango and while we were hiking in the park a large male deer slammed full force leading with his rack right into the driverís side passenger door.  Apparently a lady in a wheel chair was going by and actually saw the deer slam into the vehicle.  She was still there writing a note to leave on the car when we finished and approached.  She told Tom the whole story before wheeling out into the street heading across to her apartment on the other side of the road.  It left quite a dent in the door panel and as far as Tom could tell from the story the deer was unharmed.  The lady had a heavy accent and a bit of a speech impediment that in combination made it very difficult for Tom to understand her.  I canít wait to hear how Tom makes out explaining this one to his insurance adjuster.  I took a picture of Tom pointing at the dent, check it out with the other pictures from the day. 

As Pete was last week I think Tom was a little surprised at what a good workout we get while hiking through Boomer.  We walked along tails and made our own trails most of the way.  We went up hill and down hill.  We went along rivers and creeks and over rivers and creeks by what ever means we could find.  We did not see any deer this week, but we did see a lot of evidence of the presence of deer by their tracks and their smell.  Once you spend a fair amount of time outdoors, especially in wooded areas like Bloomer Park, you slowly begin to uncover a part of your internal being that you didnít even know existed.  Iím talking about your pre-civilization instinctual survival behavior and a more acute sense of smell and observation.  The one thing I can say based on personal experience is your sense of direction doesnít improve, I am still always lost.  Deer, rabbit and other small mammals have a distinct smell that you begin to become familiar with and it helps tracking these animals.  Deer smell like dirty cows and Bob and I can smell them when we are approaching in the woods.  The birds also make different sounds, both in their chirp and their wings flapping.  There is a lot to enjoy while walking through the woods.   

Tom set a couple club records on this hike.  There is a large tall branchless climbing tree that has a rope hanging from the top.  As we passed the tree Tom grabbed a hold of the rope and tried to climb up.  He got about four feet off the ground which is a new record since no one else in the club has ever tried to climb this tree.  This is another trick that Pete likes to do, do something that no one has ever done before and then claim it as a new club record.  Since this was Tomís first time out at Bloomer we felt we should show him the Velodrome.  Being off season the Velodrome was closed, which didnít prevent Tom from walking inside.  Bob and I walked up to the observation area and we looked done on Tom inside.  Once inside Tom walked over to one end to check out the tall steep bank.  Tom yelled out he was going to scale up the bank.  I figured this would be a good time to try out the video capability of Dianeís camera.  I hit the button and watched Tom attempt to scale up the bank.  I was surprised when he actually made it to the top.  This is actually a fairly impressive feat that again no one in the club had attempted before, but does warrant an accolade and is another new club record.  Once I figure out how to post a video you will be able to watch Tom scale the bank.  The video has now been posted, check it out.

On the rest of the hike we stopped to pose for a couple pictures along the river and the waterfall.  Tom climbed up into a tree with a large horizontal branch hanging out over the river.  He also ventured out onto some very suspect ice to get to an island that both Bob and I figured wasnít worth getting wet.   

If you donít like riding bikes, which isnít normal by the way, but still want to join us for an activity I highly recommend these hikes in Bloomer led by Bob.  Bob makes a great outdoor tour guide since he knows this park like the back of his hand.  

We didnít stop off for lunch after the hike, I needed to get home to grill up some chicken and warm up some left over mostacholli for my company.  Amanda brought over her two angle fish that had outgrown her fish tank.  I offered to allow the angle fish to live in my new larger tank.  It worked out well we had a nice family visit and the fish are doing fine.
Thanks for checking in.

David Lindquist 

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