Subject to the constraints of a maddening work schedule over the past several months, I've watched my entire 'extracurricular' life not-so-slowly evaporate. For a long time, the routine has been: wake up, bike to work, work some insane number of hours (okay, and spend some of those hours messing around on the web), bike home, try to sleep, repeat. Without the 'bike to work' part, I probably would've lost my mind completely long ago.
However, things are looking up. Work has finally trimmed down to something resembling a reasonable percentage of my waking hours, and I'm back to having Saturday and Sunday off. This means I might finally be able to join in on some group rides, and possibly otherwise develop a (GASP!) social life. Likewise, since I'll no longer be stuck at work until 10 on Tuesdays, I'll be able to get my butt over to Bike Couriers' Bike Shop for their Tuesday "become more competent at fixing your bike" series. Yeay! (Maybe they'll let me redo their website?)
Likewise, as much as I love winter riding, my very favorite weather lies ahead — cool enough for my heat-intolerant self, but warm enough that other people are not averse to joining me on a ride (in theory).
Temperatures in the fifties/teens (F/C) are just about perfect for me. No murderous ground-level ozone, and I can ride for miles, barely breaking a sweat.
I'm hoping to coax my bike n00b friends out on the wonderful 25-mile traffic-free Louisville Loop multi-use path that follows the river all the way from just northeast of downtown to far southwest Louisville. (All the more reason to tune up the Sproingbok!)
I know there's a fair amount of disagreement out there as to whether or not we need bike paths -- but I really like them for recreational purposes (I don't think they're effective commuting tools for experienced cyclists — that's what roads are for). Likewise, for newer cyclists who may not yet feel comfortable on the road, they're great training grounds. I know exactly one new cyclist who feels comfortable enough on his bike to ride on most roads; my roomie and other friends would be much happier being able to concentrate on riding alone, rather than riding, traffic, and so forth.
I'm mapping out a 12-or-so mile solo ride for this Saturday, provided I don't decide to join the Louisville Bcycle Club 'slow & easy' ride that's already going out. My plan is to take one of the longer TARC routes out to its extreme terminus, then ride home at a leisurely pace, enjoying whatever parks, ducks, and other scenic resources I encounter along the way (and taking pictures, I hope). With sun and a high of around 50F/10C predicted*, it should be a glorious day for a ride.
*weather.com hasn't been right about a predicted high in over three weeks, as far as I recall — but I'm optimistic ;D).