...and I was still sweating when I got to work this morning. It snowed about 8 inches over the last 24 hours, most of last night. I was nervous about riding in to work this morning but powder is easy to ride in. It just moves right out of your way and the tires actually make contact with the ground. But since a lot of the snow fell yesterday during the day there was no pavement underneath the powder, just a sloppy mess of dry slush partially compacted by passing vehicles. This stuff sent my front tire flying in all directions. I deemed it safer to ride in the ruts because at least I could see what was going on underneath me.
As I slowly crept out of the alley onto the street this morning, I felt like I was riding a rodeo steer just holding on for dear life. I had a death grip on the handle bars as I tried to keep the front wheel straight. I almost turned around to drop my bike off at home and walk it, but it was a new challenge, as I kept telling myself it was going to get better as I got to the busier streets (more cars to compact the snow). It was true, it did get slightly better as I went. On Broadway I was able to pedal 7-8 mph without loosing control. Thats only 2 to 3 times as fast as I could walk it, but I was working hard, cranking the pedals with everything I had. I couldn't catch my breath at times. I just kept telling myself, "Make it to Montana Ave. It will be free sailing from there." And it was. I was able to pedal in at 12 mph which felt like flying after that last 1/2 mile of white sludge, which by-the-way, was easily the hardest 1/2 mile of my life.
By the time I got to work I was sweaty and out of breath. As I was locking my bike up I heard some tires spinning and looked up to see a 4X4 ATV with a snow plow stuck in the drift. It made me feel good about my triumph on a bicycle that I was able to conquer something that even a 4x4 ATV was having trouble with. And on to the next adventure, getting home...