Hello Blog! It has been so long! I have missed you!
There are a lot of pictures in this blog entry (from myself, Erica and Sue) and some of them are out of order... Me and two friends from our Women's Ride Wednesday group went to Ankeny, Iowa for the Pigtails II ride and WE HAD A BLAST!!!
I highly recommend this ride! Put it on your calendar...May 18, 2019! It is a women's ride and after the ride the after party is for everyone. There were some guys that rode with their gals on the ride but not very many.
The ride is noted as 48 miles long and is a 'there and back' ride. I wanted to ride over 50 miles so between the ride from the parking lot to the check-in spot and going a little farther at the bridge, we got 51 miles! Woo hoo! We would have ridden to the next small town but the weather was a concern...as it was we only had to ride 1 1/2 miles in pouring rain on our way back.
The ride is on a paved trail the whole way with no real hills. When I got tired I could tell when I was going on an uphill grade but it was not bad at all. And when you ride with friends and meet a lot of new people the distance is not as long as you would think. The update e-mails we received said there were over 800 women signed up for this ride and I was a bit nervous. I was picturing a big pack of riders taking off at the same time like a race. Not like this at all! Whew! The start time was from 9:00 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. so everyone was leaving when it suited them. So if you are a newbie and/or nervous about big groups, this really is a great ride to get your feet wet!
The big adventure started with our hotel....the hotel I saw on hotels.com is NOT the hotel we pulled up to! Well, it was, but the picture I saw was not a current one and the receipt was under a different name...it was a rental name. (I will contact hotels.com with the update...it is more of a 'housing' rental place versus a hotel/motel for out of towners) We will just say it was disgusting and did not give a feeling of safety....We did not stay and the guy who ran the place did not seem surprised or hesitate to refund our $$$. He was so nice and the best thing about the place! We found a place much closer and much more expensive, but the feeling of safety was worth every penny! I have used hotels.com several times and this is the first time a place was not what it was supposed to be. Anyways, after we found our new place we laughed about the old place...Sue said when we walked in the guy probably thought we were in the wrong place. :-)
The adventures continued from here...and wow! So much fun and this place was amazing! We got into town Friday evening and went to the High Trestle Trail Bridge...we found a parking lot and a dirt trail that went to the paved trail. The dirt trail was another adventure! It was narrow and curvy, and there were bike signs with a picture of a bike on a steep down hill line to warn us of hills. Yikes! It was pitch dark so with the curves and ups & downs I got disoriented with our headlights moving so much. It was fun but scary at the same time! On our way back we stayed on the paved path to the road, then rode the bikes to the parking lot. (The next day in the daylight we saw a closer parking lot)
Welcome to the High Trestle Trail Bridge! It is lit up in neon blue and it was breathtaking! My bright yellow wind jacket glowed under the lights...
Riding over the bridge...
The awesome trio! Erica, Sue and myself.
Our bikes lined up on the bridge...
Sue and I at the entrance of the bridge. Actually it could be the entrance or the exit. These huge pillars are at each end.
The next morning we showed up at Jethro's. A breakfast buffet with BACON was included in the fee. We also got lunch and a jersey along with some freebies at a couple of stops along the way.
Here we are, getting ready for ride day! (Sue, Erica, Me)
We are heading out of town...Sue had Percy, her cute stuffed pig, riding in her back pocket. Percy did great the whole ride!
Out of town and riding on the trail...
Our first 'out of order' picture. At the opposite side of the bridge there is a 'lookout' area.
This is approx 24 miles in to the ride...and we felt great!
AAAHHHHHH, riding over the bridge in the daylight! Eric stopping for the view...
Both day and night are equally as beautiful on the bridge!
One of the stops giving away some freebies...
Getting my fruit group! And it was quite yummy if I say so myself!
I don't normally drink and ride (anything..bikes, horses, motorcycles....) but it was warm and I was sweating so I was sure it would not stick around long. Plus the trail was wide and smooth and not packed full of people or obstacles - yeah, it would be just fine. And it was. My first time drinking this stuff and it was GOOD!!!
Me and Sue over the bridge...
The Madrid Tigers had this painted on the wall of one of the tunnels.
Hello! Me riding and loving every minute of it! Sure can't tell that rain is on the way, eh?
Just rode thorough the tunnel...I love tunnels and bridges!
Me and the pillars that are at each end of the big bridge...
Sue and Erica riding down the trail...
Sue heading towards one of the small tunnels...
She is wearing her jersey they gave us for the ride. I got that style and Erica got the Mountain Bike style.
Hey! Who are those good looking ladies on the bridge? Oh, us of course! :-)
The freebie tent set up outside of the Nite Hawk Bar and Lounge. I wish I could have gotten a picture of all the bikes parked outside in front and around the side of the building. I have never seen so many bikes in one place before! FUN!
Yes, a buffalo. It was sharing a small grassy area with some cows. Are they growing Beefalo? I think they might be.
Heading in to one of the towns...
Erica riding on the High Trail Trestle Bridge. I love this picture! She is a member of the Big Tree Cycling Team and is wearing her jersey...she represents well! :-)
This is where I got my fruit group. I decided to have my fruit group because this day was full of new things for me, and since I have never had a Bud Light fruit group I might as well add to the 'new things' and give it a try. Glad I did! This picnic table was very long on and on wheels. It is a rental! Very cool!
Sometimes we did the passing...and sometimes we got passed...
We rode several miles and I saw trails signs about horseback riding. We finally saw two riders!
This canoe is hanging inside Jethro's BBQ place. We have bees so I was drawn to the paint job. :-)
Brian on the other hand knew the brand that was painted on the side and he even knew how to pronounce it. :-)
A view from the lookout spot at the end of the bridge.
Riding across the bridge with Sue behind me...
There were a lot of riders out but it didn't feel like it. Even though we would come across some bigger groups we had to get around, most of the time it was like this. We would see people but there was plenty of room in between.
Sue and Percy Pig passing the BBQ sign...
I am still in awe of this unique bridge!
This scroll was painted in the tunnel with the painted tiger. Short version - have respect for the trail and others.
The opposite side of the tunnel (same side as Scroll) there was the Trestle Trail painting.
Sue taking a picture of me taking a picture of her...ha ha!
Outside the Nite Hawk...
The view from the bridge...
There was a photographer taking pictures of the groups and individuals going over the bridge. These are out pictures...
What a fun time! On our way back we caught a tail wind and rode a few miles at over 20 mph! My fastest ride speed ever! We were watching the big storm cloud and rain heading our way. We almost made it back....the last 1 1/2 miles we got wet! I was scared of the wet pavement but we kept on going! More to laugh about!
There were a lot of laughs, two of us rode farther than we have before, the weather was mostly great, the friendship is even stronger....yeah! Great times!!!! There were all kinds of bikes! Road, gravel, mountain, fatty's, recumbent, and not sure what the other ones were but they were like an elliptical machine. These ladies had to stand up and ride their elliptical the whole way - and they did! There were young ladies, middle aged ladies, a little bit past middle aged and some way past middle aged. The one thing we all had in common besides being women on bikes is the smiles! SMILES SMILES SMILES!!!!
Thanks Erica and Sue for going with me and for a great time! And thanks to our guys for holding down the forts so us gals can go ride for the weekend!