Yesterday I went back to Two Moon Park for a nice ride. Although I was swamped with work I couldn't pass up the beautiful weather. It was calm, sunny and almost warm. I had a great time cruising around the park. I did have a scare though. I burst out of the trees into a clearing and right in front of me was a set of antlers. Right next to the trail was a small 4 point buck. I startled him but he stood his ground. I came to a stop about 10 feet away from him. I kept expecting him to bolt but he didn't. My heart leapt out of my chest. The buck was still holding his ground although not aggressively. I thought, 'here it is. I'm finally getting gored by a deer.' I've been telling people that's how I'm going to go because I keep having close encounters. We stood and just looked at each other for several seconds when I decided that I needed to move on and get out of there. I pedaled forward cautiously and the buck took two leaps away and turned to watch me again. As I pedaled off down another trail the buck followed parrallel, very intent on keeping an eye on me. It was pretty cool but a little creepy. I ran into him one other time but at a much more comfortable distance.
Today was much colder but I decided to go anyway, partly because desperately I needed a break from work and partly because I knew that I couldn't go tomorrow because of a work luncheon. I needed to work through lunch but I think I was more productive after lunch because of my ride. I headed up 27th Street to the top of the rims and caught the Black Otter Trail going East. As soon as I could I hopped off of the paved trail and onto the dirt trail. Today was rough. I flew off of the pavement onto the rock shelf a little to fast and got rattled to the core. The ride was so rough that my wrists started to ache immediately. I had to slow down just so I could hold on. Off if the rock the trail was soft with a lot of loose silt and I could feel both tires slipping as I rode, another reason to slow down. It's a good ride with some technical obstacles that remind me how much I have to learn about mountain biking. I did drop off a few small ledges which was a little victory for me but some of the other obstacles still freaked me out. I need a buddy to go with that will push me to improve. I enjoy road biking by myself but mountain biking I feel is a group sport. I take what I can get though.