First a few updates on the Rover! Lots of riding. February is at about 511 miles of riding with two more days left. I’ve ridden 1000+ miles since my first ride on the Lectric XP on December 22. Woot!
2/20 15.8 miles
2/21 33.7 miles
2/22 33 miles
2/23 32.5 miles
2/24 16.8 miles
2/25 25.5 miles
2/27 32 miles
I’m generally finding 30 mile rides pretty comfortable now. My butt get’s a little sore but not too bad. The upright geometry of the bike feels very comfortable. My knees feel great.
This new route is, by far, my favorite ride. It’s pavement for most of the first 6.5 miles then it transitions to mostly gravel for the last 6 miles. The whole 12 miles is county road with very little traffic and a mix of woodland and farmland on either side. When the road begins to transition to primarily gravel at about 6.5 miles the woods become denser and at about 9 miles it begins to feel less like a road and more like a wide bike path. No sounds but wind in the trees, birds and me. Had the great luck to see a fox cross in front of me on my Thursday ride. At that point in the ride I slow down from peddle assist 3 or 2 and settle in at 1 or 2 at 10mph. For the last 3 miles I’m at PAS 1 and 10mph or less. It’s the best part of the ride and if the packed dirt gravel went for another 10 miles I’d gladly ride it another 10 miles.
I did venture down to HWY BB which is further along but the road becomes much rougher with too much gravel layered too deeply. In general it looses some of the smooth forest path character and not nearly enjoyable. There’s also a Y branch that goes north towards St. Francois County and it’s a nice gravel ride until the county change when it goes to blacktop. Still very nice. I rode that all the way up to Hwy T and looped back via East Castor River Rd one day which was a fairly nice 31 miles. Hwy T is a faster blacktop road with no shoulder. I didn’t encounter much traffic and wouldn’t want to as it’s a 50mph road though I was only on it 3 miles. East Castor River Rd isn’t all that nice to ride on, really rough and too much gravel in spots so I’m not sure when I’ll do this loop again.
Our Livable Streets and cycling project are making steady progress. We presented to the City Council and County Commission. I’ve got updates on the Spokes and Folks News blog which is where I’ll likely post most of my future updates on the project. The local newspaper did a very nice story about our project. We’ve got our bicycle safety booklets and are looking at a couple grants for the bike racks. Rolling forward!