Having to deposit a check, after eating some breakfast I hopped on my bike and rode up to the bank, but brought along enough water and food (Clif bars) to go on a longer ride, which I did. I ended up heading down 22 Mile to VanDyke to 23 Mile to Dequindre, to the east end of the Clinton River Trail, through Rochester, then along the Paint Creek Trail, turning back when I was seeing signs indicating that Lake Orion was only five miles away. By the time I got back home I’d gone (per the computer) 36.5 miles. It wasn’t logged because the rechargable AAs for my GPS are dead. Oh well.
The riding itself was pretty unremarkable, but I saw a couple rather nifty things. My wheels seem to be failing (spoke popping noises developing towards the end and a constant slight wobble on both), but nothing went wrong, and my head was protected from more weird sunburn by a recently acquired white CoolMax® Headsweats. The trails were relatively empty and people who were out there were generally friendly and knew how to share the trail.
Now, the interesting things: First, while heading home along the Paint Creek Trail I noticed a small dog-sized animal with very spindly legs start to slowly walk into the brush. Stopping to see what it was I saw a fawn, no more than 18″ tall, standing between the path and the creek, shaking. While standing there, just after getting my phone out, it came over to me and sniffed my leg, then my bike, then just stood there for a few minutes before going back into hiding along the path. I hadn’t realized that wee deer have such cold, wet noses, but this one did. Unfortunately the path at this point is bounded by swamp (with standing water) and river on each side, and there were no other big deer around. I’m afraid that it’s mother may have been hit by a car or the two were somehow horribly separated.
A few people had stopped to see what I was looking at, and they were wondering out loud if there was someone who could be called to take care of the deer and be sure that it’s all right, but I imagine that the DNR or Humane Soceity or whatnot wouldn’t do much, since baby animals getting separated from their parents and dying is a (rather unhappy) part of nature. When I rode away the fawn was standing in some brush between the path and river, shaking and shivering, but otherwise perfectly still.
There were also some guys in a small inflatable yellow raft slowly making their way down the Paint Creek right in downtown Rochester along the River Walk. They were going particularly slowly and were occasionally getting stuck on the rocks, but it looked fun and they seemed to be enjoying themselves.
Here’s the photos I grabbed today with my phone:
· An SBC can spilling wires along the north side of 23 Mile, just east of Dequindre.
· The Soccer City dome on 23 Mile has been deflated.
· A fawn sniffing my bike after sniffing my leg.
· Another photo of the fawn, poorly framed.
· Two guys in a yellow raft heading down the Paint Creek.
· The same two guys on the Paint Creek as they are going over some of the more rocky areas.
Yes, I know the quality on them is pretty bad. I’m seriously considering picking up one of these Olympus shock / waterproof pocket cameras to take on bike rides or when wandering places too risky for my DSLR, but I haven’t felt like spending the $230 or so yet.
Now it’s time to shower, scan some photos and edit them a bit, do a bit of layout, then head out to IPM. I should probably eat somewhere in there too.