July 2, 2014
I thought it would be good to have a photo for the blog of the City sign, with its special lettering. As I was stopped and taking this photo a woman who was on her morning jog appoached. She slowed way down and said "I must ask -- why are you taking a picture of a garbage can?". So here we are with a photo of a City of Leavenworth garbage can. It's the lettering I wanted ;'-). And throughout my ride it was the only can that I saw with this lettering. Must be a communtiy thing.
Susan loves fishing over here because she "catches". She and Mary drove up the Icycle (I prefer this as a spelling rather than the real Icicle) Road for a hiking and fishing outing. Mary would rather do the kind of fishing that results in catching bigger fish -- the size that makes a good dinner. Susan is happy to simply catch -- and she got five on this outing -- no matter the size, as she releases once caught. She likes the sport. They were out all day and had a good time and Mary had a "fish on" at least once! They enjoyed the four mile hike as they made their way around the loop, fishing as they went.
I, of course, went for a bike ride. UP the Icycle Road.
Starting from the house, it is a pleasant ride on quiet roads, skirts dowtown and leads to the back road taking me to the fish hatchery and to Icycle. This first 5 or so miles are rather flat, or at the most, slightly rolling.
|A country scene along the way|
|Old farm machinery never dies, it becomes a hanger for mail boxes|
I took a side spur that did not indicate a dead end, but the huge sign at the end of the road PRIVATE PROPERTY KEEP OUT NO TRESPASSING THIS MEANS EVERYBODY stopped me at an overlook at the river before retracing to the main road.
|This scene could be right out of Huckleberry Finn|
|SUPs on the flowing river. A new breed of Huckleberry Finns|
I wandered through the Hatchery but saw no fish. There are outdoor performances at the stage here in the summer months. Susan and I once tried to go to one, but they were sold out. Perhaps we will make it someday.
|Theatre seating. I assume you bring your own chair|
|The stage for current play (I don't know what that is)|
The "fun" part was now over. Once I rounded past Sleeping Lady Resort, the climbing would soon begin. The first mile or so was a teaser with fairlly flat terrain and some views worth stopping for.
|See the raging river on the left side|
|More of the raging river|
|Raging river raging DOWNhill. Let this be a clue|
I had a brief snack here, then once mounted I would not stop until the end. I feared that if I stopped I would not get back on to keep heading UP. Ten miles of 1400 feet elevation gain, 96 degree heat, and add chipseal road surface. Gruelling. At every bend in the road I thought perhaps the sign would be there telling me the paved road was ended. Then at the next bend I would think, if this is not it, maybe I will turn around and head back. Then I started my mantra learned from my friend Dan Urich --- "pain is weakness leaving the body". This got me several miles more. Then it was "why am I doing this???". But I could not give up the challenge. I had to finish to the end.
|I threw up my arms in HALLELUJAH|
I made it! I (almost) threw down my bike and found a big rock to sit and have the last bits of my snacks and contemplate the completion of my self-imposed challenge, as well as the fact that my water was low -- and tepid by this point. From the dirt road -- heading down the hill -- a jeep stopped and the guy rolled down the window yelling "can I offer you a cold water?". HUH?! OH YEAH! Nice guy from Kirkland said he was impressed that I (all lone) made it up this road, and that he was getting tired just looking at me.
I was indeed monstrously slow up this "mountain" as, although I did not exactly time it, it took me a little more than two hours to make those 10 miles! At one of the steepest grades my odometer showed 2.7!!! As one might conclude, it was a grand downhill run back to Sleeping Lady where I stopped for a cold drink, some food and more ice water. I could not freewheel down with abandon becuase of potholes that could potentially fling me from the saddle. I did cautious freewheeling with my eye on the road to avoid such catastrophe and that was fast enough. Remember the two hours to get to the top? Getting back down was about 45 minutes.
Once home, cooled down, showered and rested, I felt the glow of accomplishment. Susan, Mary and I shared our stories of the day and each of us had our joys. It was a grand day.