Oregon Spring, that fickle vixen, is up to her old tricks. Just two weeks ago, The Logging Road Cyclist strung together yet another loop out in the Siuslaw in tank top, shorts and blindingly sunny conditions (Cannibals, Indians and a Grave). Doubtless this contributed to the sense of daring that lead him to really step out and participate in the first “organized” ride of his life: the brand-spanking new 2013 Rickreall Gravel classic, for which torrential rain, punctuated by sleet and a minute here, minute there o’ sunshine obtained. At the start, TLRC felt bit out of place in his subfusc gear, and then was stunned at how rapidly the bulk of the peloton vanished into the curtains of rain and mist, leaving him alone (as usual) and in the gap between the merely pathetic and the hopeless. Since the ride was, at that point, much like any other ride (except for all the tire tracks), he decided on a diversion from the “official” route and snooped around again for the elusive Rickreall Limestones that are supposedly well exposed in a quarry or two nearby. After being warned by some civil locals of a crazy coot who lived at the quarry entrance and who had a penchant for greeting strangers with a gun, TLRC hewed close to The MORE Fundamental Axiom, gave it up, and completed the “lite” version of The Classic, the better to get home early and take The Long Suffering Girlfriend out for a penitential (and pricey!) dinner to make up for an indiscretion from the week before, namely not signalling enough with the SPOT, thus needlessly raising her anxieties. TLRC was looking forward to a dinner with a vaguely French-sounding name himself. Besides, he was tired, and wanted to go home and get dry.
The next week was cold and rainy, and TLRC found it difficult to get out for his usual training, although some time in there he went out and put Outback in the Mac-Dunn rides section. Just this weekend, he decided it was time to stop moping around and get on with life, no matter how Spring had deteriorated. Clearly what was needed was one of the good old classics on Saturday, come rain snow or shine, and some company who knew and loved the ride. The Ride: Feagles Cr. (40mi, 4500′). The Company: The steadast and sturdy D., who has is an apparent tolerance for both TLRC’s alleged chattiness and his (TLRC’s) conviction that poor D. can never know enough local geology. Two can play at that game: D., a man of letters with a keen political eye always teaches TLRC a thing or two himself. Between the two, a veritable cyclo-Chautauqua.