21 November 2012

Errands become exploration

Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Well, it started out as an errand. I had to deliver a letter to the post office, so it could get on its way as soon as possible. So that's an excuse for a bike ride, right? And while I was going to visit my favorite postal clerk, it was also an excuse to buy several stamps for the company business.

The clerk was her usual friendly self, and our conversation led me to think of going to the gym or taking a bit of a ride. Since the day was bright and a warm 60° F. Since the afternoon marked the beginning of a long holiday weekend. Since I wanted to put off the 7 files of proofreading work waiting in my inbox.

So I headed to the bikeway along the Mad River. But at Eastwood Park, instead of heading south to the gym, I remembered the photos of the new bikeway construction recently posted by the Wright State Riders, and I crossed the lagoon to reach the connector now in development.

The new bikeway is in the third stage of development. The gravel underlayment has been covered by a rough asphalt layer that's nearly level with the surrounding turf. It's fairly clean, though dirt clods on the surface indicate that construction equipment is still active. I squeezed past a small front-loader that was at rest while a crew took a break, and continued on through sparse forested areas and meadows, and then out of the park by passing underneath Harshman Road at the Mad River bridge. The bikeway takes a sharp right, paralleling the street, and the pavement comes to an abrupt end overlooking a stretch of railway, just in sight of the old Harshman Mansion off of Springfield Pike.

From earlier supervision from car trips, I know the path continues between Harshman Road and the mansion as a graded cut into the turf, and that it turns east before it reaches Springfield Pike and ends before it reaches the small cluster of homes that once were known as Huberville. Supposedly, the bikeway will take over one of the lanes of Springfield Pike as it passes underneath the railway and Highway 4. Then it will break away again up to Huffman Dam, where it will join the Huffman Prairie Bikeway that joins Huffman Metropark with Wright State University and Fairborn.

More information on construction as of 18 Feb 2013.

Ride conditions
Temperature: 61°F at 13:45
Precipitation: none
Winds: calm
Clothing: Skinsuit, longsleeve undershirt, ankle socks, tights, open-finger gloves
Bike: Lotus Legend fixed 48x16
Time/distance: no estimates
Heart rate: no data

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