August 10: 95 Kms;  3 Hrs 02; 582 Metres; Eight Riders

Hello. Well, that was sweet. We stole a day of summer from fall’s imminent grasp. There will soon be no inventory of such days left. The demand will remain steady but supplies will dwindle. You can sense the change already. The summer air is nervous, knowing it will soon be swept away. The forward advance of downed leaves lie untimely along the verge and roadway. Their rustling presence heralds the coming equinox, as if to remind us that to every thing there is a season. The earth is fecund with decay, and re-birth.

As for to-day’s ride, it was a few kilometres shorter than advertised but still required enough effort and it provided enough thrills to leave us wanting more. The outward and homeward routes were excellent – on rural, winding and undulating back country roads, mostly free of traffic. Yes, it was great. In fact, one of us was heard to remark that ” there’s nothing better than this” as we rode in tight formation down Old Carp Road. To this, KO just smiled. Yes, you just should have been there. I hope you can join us tomorrow.

Here’s the tentative plan for Sunday, assuming wind is from the north-west:

Meet at Stinsons at 7:30 am 7:30 am and ride to Tim’s on Bruce St in Renfrew for coffee.

As for the ride, we’ll take the lower route to avoid the busy Burnstown-Renfrew road. This means we’ll cross hwy 17 a couple of times. There is a general upward bias to the route but nothing severe. The Bruce St hill is it, really, and then it’s just rollers on the Castleford Road to River Road. You’ll just love that section. One warning, however, there will be lots of wind to contend with.

Here’s the Route: Ride to Renfrew via Russett, #508, Anderson Road, Miller Road, Lochwinnow, Gillan, Hall, Opeongo, #132, South Mcnaughton, Butler, Hwy 60, Bruce, Castleford, River Rd, etc for a total distance of approx 80 kms. Coffee after 50 kms+-. As usual, it’s steady as she goes, with minimal delays on the road. Bring gels, bars, water, electrolytes, etc. Liquids will be a key element tomorrow.

NOTE the Venue and Time: Stinsons on White Lake Rd 7:30 am, sharp departure.

Temperature will be in the mid teens; wind NW at 20. Who wouldn’t want to ride in that?

Alert: Important information: These are ‘no-drop’ group rides, except for the hills where it’s every man for himself. Regroup at the top. Honest effort required by all. New cyclists welcome.

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Okay, Ride your bike! Bye-bye, ac. Comments always welcome at;


My father worked with a horse-plough,
His shoulders globed like a full sail strung
Between the shafts and the furrow.
The horse strained at his clicking tongue.

An expert. He would set the wing
And fit the bright steel-pointed sock.
The sod rolled over without breaking.
At the headrig, with a single pluck

Of reins, the sweating team turned round
And back into the land. His eye
Narrowed and angled at the ground,
Mapping the furrow exactly.

I stumbled in his hob-nailed wake,
Fell sometimes on the polished sod;
Sometimes he rode me on his back
Dipping and rising to his plod.

I wanted to grow up and plough,
To close one eye, stiffen my arm.
All I ever did was follow
In his broad shadow round the farm.

I was a nuisance, tripping, falling,
Yapping always. But today
It is my father who keeps stumbling
Behind me, and will not go away.      Seamus Heaney