|Don’t stop now, damn you.|
Late yesterday afternoon we finally cracked 60 degrees. We got to enjoy it for only an hour, but it broke a long streak of below-60 weather that began on Oct. 31, 2013. Today we reached 63, making this the warmest day of the year. I shouldn’t complain, but today also marked exactly six months since we last hit 70 degrees: Oct. 11, 2013. This is not an exaggeration: I literally never put my cold-weather gear into storage. I have needed warmers and tights even in July.
Tomorrow I will be at Greenbush with some other Team Pedal Moraine people for four hours of trail work. The popular John Muir Trails opened this afternoon, but that’s 80 miles south of Greenbush. Wisconsin’s Department of Natural Resources still has not opened the mountain bike trails of the northern Kettle Moraine. Greenbush, New Fane and Pleasant Valley (a non-DNR property) all remain closed. And the weather forecast is not good: rain throughout the weekend, a rain/snow mix on Monday, cold and cloudy through the middle of next week and then more rain and/or snow next weekend. Glacial Blue Hills Recreation Area (a West Bend park) is open, technically, but no responsible rider would use it until it dries out.
I have not ridden on mountain bike trails since Sep. 8, 2013, when I crashed and broke my collarbone in a WORS race at Lake Geneva. The races at Iola (May 4), Greenbush (May 10) and Rhinelander (May 18) are still on my calendar, but I am far from 100 percent committed to them. As of last weekend, people were skiing at Iola. That means Rhinelander still has snow too. And now there’s a new wrinkle that could wipe out my plans for Greenbush and Rhinelander even if trail conditions dramatically improve: another business trip. I might be going to sunny Tampa FL for a conference, May 12-15, with travel days before and after. I am not a big fan of Tampa or of Florida in general, but at least I wouldn’t need my cold-weather gear.