Saturday, December 3, 2011

Night Rides

If you live in Corvallis and want to ride year round, you have to invest in some good lights (see my "Things I Use" tab for some great cheap lights). With good lights you are not limited by the sun and you can see the trails by a "whole new light." (I know, I couldn't resist). Two recent events have brought this home even more to me.  The first was the first annual (I hope) "Phantom of the Woods" ride at Halloween.  The was an even put on by some of the riders from Peak Sports. You showed up at the ride (many in costume) and were given a map and the check points you needed to find.  At each check point, there were glowing pumpkins, strange decorations, and a task you had to perform before you could go to the next stop. There was also a large bag of candy at each stop to provide "fuel." There were about 15 riders who showed up, and the rest of you missed out! Stops included getting a tattoo and picking a bloody finger for a prize number!

The second event happened last Thursday on our weekly night ride. We left about 9:15 from the Oak Creek gate and climbed to the "Dan's" junction (where the roads meet on top). As we came to the top, Maggie the trail dog started parking at what seemed like a bear.  There were 6 of us, and you should have laughed at the conversations.  No one turned to leave, nor did we want to change our route (which required us to go by the "bear" who run and hunkered down about 10 yards off the road that we wanted to go on), because in reality we all wanted to see it. So we decided to go as a group and then the "bear" jumped up and charged on two legs! Again that split second of "fear" before two other riders came out of the woods and the bear took his head off.  It was just some of the other regular riders waiting for us with a gorilla suit. Well done and had us all laughing!

Night riding (with good lights) opens up a whole new avenue of adventure and experiences. We've climbed by a full moon to the top of McCullough without lights, startled deer, heard the coyotes, seen owls, and trapped rabbits in our headlight beam. Things you just doing get to do in the daytime.  And with good lights the riding is just as good and as fast (you drive your car 65 mph at night don't you?). Especially with bears in the woods and goblins in the trees.

1 comment:

  1. Hey - Mountain biking at night sounds like an adventure. Are you open to others joining? If so, when and where do you meet?

    Rob 541-971-2906