Dinner in Bedrock and thoughts on riding at night

Yesterday, some people were playing online poker, some were doing yardwork, some were celebrating a family birthday, and some were even shoveling snow (eew).

Me, I hopped on the bike and rode north to visit the cool cats in Bedrock.

Words fail to describe how open and friendly these people are. All it takes is me typing "I'm thinking about going for a ride, can I come up and visit" (or something along those lines), and next thing I know, I'm hanging out on BamBam and Pebbles' back deck with NuttzCarson and SuziQ watching the woodpeckers, finches and orioles at the feeders while steaks are grilling. The conversation ebbs and flows, there's some great music through the speakers on the deck, and the sun slips a bit further to the west. Thank you all so much for a wonderful day and a memory I will cherish.

I wish I could have stayed, indulging in the comforting presence of friends. But alas, I had to drive Hunny Bunny to the airport early early this morning, and according to my beginners bike license, I can't ride after dark.

Which is a damn shame, because I love riding at night, especially on those summer evenings where the cool moist air slips over your skin like silk and carries the scent of fields and forests to one tired of city smells.

I didn't used to like riding after dark; when I started riding, the way the darkness seemed to close around me felt claustrophobic. I was still a new rider, and the unknown beyond the glow of the headlights shook my new confidence and made me fearful. After that, I avoided the night ride, not really willing to take a look at that particular fear just yet.

But it all changed one night as we raced to clear the East Gate of Yellowstone National Park by the closing time of nine and then ride to Wapiti to look for accommodations. We hustled along the road, and just made the park gate; they were literally starting to swing it shut as we got there. The sun was setting behind us, and as the light faded we descended from the mountains along a river valley where the road followed the twists and turns of the water.

It was better than any rollercoaster, better than just about any bike ride before that. The same things that freaked me out during that first night ride thrilled me now. I was in the lead, and the world constricted to only the bit of road illuminated by my headlight and the challenge of navigating it; everything else, and I mean everything, dropped away. The dials of speedometer and tachometer glowed a soft green but I never glanced to take in the speed - I couldn't. Relying on the sound of the bike to know when to shift up and down, I pushed it, hitting the continuous S-bends of the curves as fast as I could.

When we got a motel, Hunny Bunny told me how foolish I'd been - an animal of any size appearing on the road would have been disastrous. "But there wasn't, " I said as I grinned at him.

It took me most of the night to come down off the high of that ride.

5 Responses to “Dinner in Bedrock and thoughts on riding at night”

  1. # Blogger Joanada

    and I haven't stopped shoveling snow since....ick is right.

    Glad you had a great time though, wish I could have joined you guys!!  

  2. # Blogger TenMile

    Thanks for the visit to the blog, Kat.

    I've managed a lot of night bike rides, the worst was a familiar road after a swing shift (4PM to Midnight).

    The bars closed late in England and a farmer parked his tractor and hay rick in my lane. The rig had a single red light on the passing side.

    I saw it in plenty of time but couldn't really tell what it was, and foolish me, I didn't slow from cruising speed, not realizing it wasn't moving.

    I almost dumped the bike, but stayed with it, layed it down, jerked it up and put it on the other side, riding the tank, jerked it up again to stay on the road and went on home after clearing it.

    I took hay out of my uniform sleeve after my hands stopped shaking.

    Oh, the bike was an old Royal Enfield 500.  

  3. # Blogger Instant Tragedy

    84 and sunshine.

    But I hope you are smiling and still glowing.


  4. # Blogger BamBam

    As is always the case,

    The pleasure was all ours!

    Luv you Kat! Can't wait to do it again. (now that you know the real directions to Bedrock!)

    Schtick steal here but.........

    It was PurrrRRRrrrfect !  

  5. # Anonymous Anonymous

    Sitting on the back deck in Bedrock is a small piece of heaven.

    Great seeing you again. I hope you make north a regular destination on your biek trips.  

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