Tuesday, May 30, 2006

It's beginning to look like BICYCLE weather!
So, I guess I'll be pushin' them pedals...

One really great thing Coeur d'Alene has in its favor is that it's a great town to bicycle in. There aren't a lot of big hills here in town (Unless you count the rise between 9th and 11th streets that begins around Wallace Avenue, and goes north as far as Harrison). My knees don't really do big hills well anymore, but I can head out about 3 miles east on the Centennial Trail, turn around just past Tony's Restaurant, then saunter westward thru town, go around the Dike Road, and head out the new part of the trail, turning around again just past the Riverstone Business Development area, and then back into town; total round trip is probably 15 miles (maybe more) when all is said and done. A nice, long, easy ride. A ride my knees can handle.

The old neighborhoods are really great to bicycle through; when you get off the arterials onto the side streets, you get a taste of what Coeur d'Alene was like 30 or 40 years ago, since some of the old neighborhoods look exactly the same as when I was growing up here. Once, I was riding on the trail out near the Riverstone development, and out there, the silence is quite startling; the Spokane River flows placidly and the breezes are cooling. On my way back into town, I came across a big puddle of water just north of the river, and there was a single solitary duck swimming around in that puddle, filtering the water for food, just swimming by itself slowly. And you know, I stopped and watched that duck for over half an hour. It was just very peaceful somehow.

It's amazing, how the noise increases as the trail gets closer to town; coming back in to CDA, the trail parallels Northwest Boulevard, and it sounds like you're riding next to a drag strip; tons of vehicles rushing by. Whoosh! But the trail re-enters CDA on River Avenue, and I usually go back around the Dike Road, and back into City Park, and that's always a good place to take a break. I used to ride a lot on the exercise path that runs alongside hiway 95 (It goes all the way out to Garwood), but there are so many busy intersections that a bicyclist must cross, that it's getting pretty hazardous to use that route anymore. So I don't.

Bicycling is really gratifying for me. I used to run a lot, and I really miss that, but there ain't much I can do about that. But bicycling enables me to still be able to get out onto the road and put in some miles. If I could still run, I am sure the new part of the Centennial Trail (that I described above) would be one of my favorite routes. There aren't a lot of places one can find solitude around here anymore, but that part of the trail is one such place. Until that area gets over-developed like everything else around here, that is. Enjoy it while you can!

What I can't understand, is why motorcycles have to be so doggone LOUD. Isn't there supposed to be a noise ordinance in CDA? Or is that just for loud MUSIC? Sitting in the Java place today, a petite blond lady was riding a Harley-Davidson "softail", and as she rounded the corner on 4th and Sherman, that ol' Harley engine was blasting away, and although I was inside, the noise coming through the open door actually HURT my ears. My question is, if most cars are fairly quiet, why do 2 wheel vehicles hafta BE so doggone loud? If I'm aware a loud motorcycle is coming my way, I have to cover my ears.

It's probably obvious I had nothing to post, so I typed out the above diatribe from my brain cells; another post that I ripped outta "Thin Air", I guess. And not only did I not have anything to write about today, I have no really noteworthy pictures to display either. When that happens, I get into my little bank of Coeur d'Alene area "generic" photos, such as the one below:

This here photo was taken somewhere near the Wolf Lodge exit; you can see the old, OLD highway up above the current highway that is bordered with those white concrete barriers. That old, OLD highway was the only way out of town until the "Old" highway (which is now CDA Lake Drive) was built. And that old, OLD highway was a fairly hazardous little two-lane road, and all it had to keep your car from vaulting over the side of the road were posts that stood maybe 2 or 3 feet tall. I've never driven on it, and I don't WANT to. I still have to work up the nerve to drive on the highway that scales the hills around Beauty Bay. Ack!!!


Blogger Jinx said...

I haven't done a heck of a lot of biking yet this year but I love it.
who know one of these evenings I might ride my bike down and see if I can find you strumming the guitar.

11:36 PM  
Blogger little ol' me said...

Hi, Jinx...As you'll read in my next blog entry, my body couldn't quite do all my mind wanted to do, but I still rode an easy 10 miles (or close to 10, anyway). Basically, I hide out in the park on hot weekdays when the house gets too hot to BE in. I've already been spotted by one huckleberry reader. I guess the game is up!

12:26 AM  

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