It was bound to happen – we finally got our first snowfall yesterday, albeit minor, and our first sub-zero ride today. We arranged to start our ride at 11 a.m., instead of the usual 10 a.m., to give it a chance to warm up. Umm…, not so much. It stayed at -3C all morning, although the wind chill did fall from -10C when we started to -8C by the time we finished. Needless to say, the ride was short and the coffee break was long. Actually, at 14.8 km, it was the shortest ride we have done all season.
Bob led 5 of us (another 3 intrepid souls started off at 10 a.m.), from Hawrelak Park, up MacKenzie Ravine, and over to the Second Cup on 149th Street. We lingered considerably longer than we usually do in the coffee shop to let the blood flow return to our toes and fingers. I wore my balaclava, so my head and face were warm, but even with insulated biking gloves my fingers were uncomfortably cold. Next sub-zero day I think I’ll wear my ski mitts! No adventurous detours today, as we did pretty well a direct route back – down MacKinnon Ravine, over Groat Bridge, around Emily Murphy Park and into Hawrelak.
The gravel trails in Hawrelak, the south side of the river and up MacKenzie Ravine were in pretty good shape, all things considered. The were a few frozen puddles, avoidable, but you had to be careful riding on the pervasive leaf cover ’cause you just knew that they hid a skating rink beneath. So the ride was slow and careful. Nobody wanted to ride fast anyway – there was already enough of a wind chill and even a minor sweat would turn uncomfortable real quick. Looking forward to warmer temperatures this weekend.
Again, I’ll be keeping this coffeeneuring ride in reserve in case the weather prevents me from getting enough rides in on my “official” coffeeneuring days of Friday and Saturday before November 11th.