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Spring is Here!

I played hooky from the crew this week and headed out for a slow ride at Harvey Bear. I thought this would be a good match for my current fitness level and an enjoyable ride. It turned out to be great timing and a great ride.

It is mid-March and spring is definitely here. The temperature was around 70F and the sky was clear. The hills were a rolling carpet of lush greenery as all of the plants are also enjoying the great weather and are in full growth mode but it is still early so everything is still short. The scent of new grass filled the air as I arrived and I knew this would be a good ride.

With all of this in front of me, no particular rush and no other riders, I decided to make this an "enjoyment ride". This meant that I didn't have too push the uphills hard so I could ride with my head up looking around rather than looking down as I climb a hill, that I could stop for pictures or rest or just listen to the birds whenever I wanted, and enjoy a bit of solitude uninterrupted by a pending sunset or someone else being on the clock. I made the most of it.

The route was a familiar one: Willowspring, Town Spring, Harvey Bear to Calaveras and Valley Oak, down Gaviota, Rancho San Ysidro, Savannah and down Willowspring. As usual, the Calaveras - Valley Oak route was very nice as it wound along the hillside and through meadows and oak woods. Gaviota was also very nice. Some wildflowers are in bloom with bright yellows and muted purples, but I suspect that that many more are on the way.

Perhaps the most special part of the ride was a lunch break on the bench near the top of Gaviota. It was very nice to just drop all of the gear and sit on the bench and soak in everything. I took time to feel the sunlight and shadows play on my face as a gentle breeze moved the leaves above me ever so slightly. I watched the tops of the grasses dance to the breeze's tune and notice hidden purple wildflowers that I would have missed if I had been moving. I listened to the birds calling to each other. I relaxed and didn't think about anything. It was magical.

It seems like it has been a while since I intentionally took the time to smell the roses (or wildflowers). I am very glad that I took the time to do a different ride this time and was able to make the most of it. You should try it too!

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