Cleaning Out the Dream Closet

With a high of 80 degrees and abundant sunshine in the forecast for the weekend I am drawn to reflect on epic adventures I have been big enough to dream, if not bold enough to attempt. This time of year brings the finest weather in a head on collision with the most work. Something about a University town, no matter what you do for a living the energy and chaos of a fall semester sweeps everyone along like a flash flood in arroyo country. Boom! Then it is cold and the days are short. The Holidays are over and you are plump, glazed, and bored shitless by February- dreaming of the Spring. Yes- that even happens to us in Florida- what?

So consider this post a dream repository, a safety deposit box for good intent, a place of reckoning destined to haunt you as you walk the path of the winter listlessness.

The Undone

  • Pinhook River Ride– A flat, straight run into the Wildlife Refuge. You could probably do it on a roadbike. Guaranteed to see BIG wildlife. Gators over 10′, Wild Boar, Deer, and a bazillion bird species. Perfect time for it because the bugs are dying and the reptiles are sluggish. 50+ easy, breezy miles?
  • 10th Ave to Pole Barn Invitational– If you haven’t caught on about the Pole Barn down in Reddick, and the tribal link to BRC Headquarters, this ride is the equivalent of a Sioux war party traveling to rendevous with the sacred lands. A road tour of north Florida charm (means it will be scary!). 170 miles. I’m thinking motels and restaurants, shuttle the mt. bikes, travel light, get a ride home.
  • Torreya State Park- With our new mountain bike advocacy organization FAT OF THE LAND, we ought to be able to negotiate a once a year eco-tour of this beautiful forest along the Appalachicola River. Tulip Poplars, The Yew tree (like in the Bible!) and the endangered Torreya pine make this area unique. Full of Civil War history and significance as well. More ghosts than you can shake a powerbar at. (More dangling prepositions than you can…fill in the blank) 20 + miles of taboo wilderness.

  • The Monster Loop- A linking of all the major singletrack in town. Yes, I know Bike Church does this practically every Sunday, and proud we are of all of them!
  • Tallahassee-Sebring-Anna Maria Island- A 400 mile journey from my home to my homelands. Round trip would be 750 miles or so. I would be cool with catching a ride back. I have thought about this one since 1988.

That is it. Aside from a huge swing in the global zeitgeist towards positive regard for human life and tolerance of differences, the chance to rock out on electric guitar in front of screaming hordes, and the publication of a few major essays, there isn’t much else I want to do.

What about you?

Non-cycling related dreams or adventures are enthusiastically supported as well.

Sasquatch? Cue the crickets please…


8 Responses to Cleaning Out the Dream Closet

  1. The annual Torreya ride really calls to me. Like San Felasco, only better (and shorter, I hope!).
    But will the Nature Conservancy types allow fat tires in Eden?

  2. I’m wondering if anyone out there has negotiated a self-supported tour of 300 or more miles? If so, I’d like to hear the story, especially if it was in Florida.

    Regarding Torreya, you pretty much know before you ask. Regarding the Pinhook River, I still don’t know anyone but Juancho who’s ever heard of it, except for one guy who claims it’s only visible to those who “walk with the panther.”

  3. Torreya’s state land. Garden of Eden is something different, is owned by The Nature Conservancy, and sports no potties or water stations… Don’t know about fat tires… I’ll have to ask the man, we tight.

  4. I’ve got the vehicle and trailer to haul bikes and provisions to the pole barn and 3 or 4 returning roadies.
    I’ll even stop once or twice to have beers and let you catch up.

  5. Two yet-to-be-named bike churchers
    did a Pinhook River ride in the Spring. Start at the Wacissa spring parking lot. Go SE 10 miles on dirt roads. Hit the bridge over the Aucilla on nice old county road. Follow the Aucilla River singletrack trail (along the Aucilla, past the only rapids in FL) to HW 98 bridge, then head SW into the St. Marks. Follow that old dirt road as you take 3 chest deep “river” crossings against the gators of the Pinhook. Head North through the “sand-pit hills” and back along HW 59 to finish out the loop. That’s real Florida riding.