Thursday, March 8, 2012
I have this issue where I try to set up some epic rides and I don't get to do them. Sometimes on the weekend I'm recoving from a tough work week and I don't pack my gear the night before, then I sleep in, next thing I know I'm getting out to ride an hour later than I wanted and a lame mechanical will cost me more time and training.
A couple weeks ago Bjet and I headed east for an epic training ride for Mohican. I set up a 54 mile route through Shawnee Forest last weekend. But we got off to a late start and once we got there Bjet's tire was flat (How flat was it?! Flatter than a Kansas pancake...).
We got to riding and the hills out there are pretty nice. Tons of gravel roads and their hills are a bit longer — kind of like little foothills of the Appalachian mountains. In fact, this area is nicknamed the little Smokies.
We got about 18 miles into the ride and realized we were running out of daylight. So we had to head back to the car. It was actually good though, we found some nice deserted roads. There is a lot of poverty out there, and a lot of loose dogs that chase you. That combined with the gloomy weather made it a smidge more depressing than a "soul ride." We've ridden there twice, once out of Blue Creek and once out of Rome/Stout on the river — both times it is has been hard to find a place where you can feel it's okay to park a vehicle, plus you end up riding through a lot of residential land. The good thing is most drivers are actually pretty nice.
Here is a post of our last ride there in 2010:
We hope to head back again in the next couple of months for some Mohican training. It might be fun to get a Rogue/BioWheels/Columbus possé group ride together. Perhaps ride once in Shawnee Forest and another time in Scioto Trail.
I would suggest to park at the State Park Visitor's Center and to use as many of the Forest Service roads that you can link together. There are also bridal trails but I haven't ridden them — we use these gravel roads as an alternative training ground when mountain bike trails are too wet.
Let me know if you want me to post some maps or if you want to join a future group ride.