It was two months ago, I made my first ride to Water Dog and immediately fell in love with that little city park. I went back twice during lunch breaks by myself, but I felt a little lonely. Plus, both times I saw an old man, once with a big stick in his hands, on the trails. He could be the nicest man in the world, but it always made me nervous when I suddenly saw him in the woods. So, I shot an email to a mailing list at work looking for a lunch time riding partner. Lucky for me, I got a reply. Ever since then, Bryn has become my regular riding partner. I've had many interesting discussions with him including this one about English vs. British. There have been a few others that joined occasionally. The funny thing was the second time riding with Bryn, we saw the old man again. Afterwards, Bryn came up to me and said, "thank you for riding with me because that old man made me nervous." Mind you, he stands 6'4" tall.
During the past two months, I've managed riding at Water Dog twice a week during lunch breaks as well as on Wednesday evenings with Passion Trail Bikes. Although the lunch time rides are short (about half an hour every time), with such frequent visits, I could gauge my own progress easily. And often times, I was encouraged by the little progress I made over the previous time. (Of course, setbacks happened too from time to time.)
However, today was a major milestone that's worth documenting, for me at least — I managed to ride down Finch Trail, aka 13 Switchbacks, without clipping out. Only two months ago, I was not able to ride switchbacks at all. Practice, practice, practice. It paid off. I hope I can repeat this performance consistently. And of course, I still need to work on riding up all the switchbacks in one shot. Fun!
- Water Dog Park (on live555, whatever that is).
- Water Dog Trail Map (PDF from Passion Trail Bikes website)
- Water Dog Rides from Passion Trail crew