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*this* John W. Hays' take on things and experiences

Archive for August 3rd, 2019

Makwa Trail

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I’m up at the lake again this weekend, but this time it is for the big golf weekend that Cyndie’s brothers host annually for a collection of close friends who happen to golf. I don’t golf. So, why am I here?

The annual weekend has morphed over the years and began to include some other activities, one of which was biking the Chequamegon Area Mountain Bike Association (CAMBA) trails through the woods. That suited me well and earned me an invite both this year and last.

Last year was so wet that we chose to stay on the gravel fire lane roads rather than risk the challenging single-track trails, but this year conditions were perfect for hitting the Makwa trail with my birthday and biking buddy, Paul.

Riding this trail involves a mostly non-stop series of split-second decisions about where to point the front tire to traverse or avoid the consistently changing hazards of roots, rocks, and turns. The deciding is only part of it. There is also an unending strain of frequent gear selection, balance control, and a clenched power grip on the handlebars.

It’s a LOT more work than my road bike. I was reminded why I have migrated back toward primarily riding my touring bike on pavement as I have aged. There are a lot more opportunities to relax and coast pleasantly along on smooth asphalt.

Yesterday’s exercise was a nod to my good ol’ days. It made me feel young again, …while simultaneously aging me.

I’m grateful to the universe for the blessing of not being slammed to the ground in the hazardous terrain of the backcountry woods of northwest Wisconsin. I must admit, that result is more a product of luck than ability at this point.



Written by johnwhays

August 3, 2019 at 7:37 am

Posted in bicycling, Chronicle