Sunday, March 15, 2009

Transition Day

The day broke clear and warm. Even warmer since we overslept and were still happily snoring away under cover of down when we should have been downing our last cup of coffee as we looked at the gear all ready to go sitting by the door.

Sometimes it's good to have a quick start on Transition Day. Spring is launching it's most serious attack with temps predicted to peak near 50 degrees, 10 degrees if you measure with a C. The snow was going to lose this one and everybody knew it. No point to sitting around taking it slow, this was time for action.

Shock and thaw would prevail but the skiers weren't going down without a fight. There weren't many parking spots left when we got to the Woodland Trails parking lot and we were in the early shift. For the number of cars in the lot we didn't see very many people but every single one had a smile broader than the clear blue sky.

Spring skiing isn't always great since the snow is progressing along its terminal path, destined to put in its star appearance as the key ingredient of the spring mud. This day was the exception. The snow was nearly perfect but for very few spots where the ice was already staging victory parties  in the low sunny points on the trail.

We skied a bit longer than the legs we brought with us were ready for but we promised they would have a long rest from skiing so they numbly went along. The sun had the sky to itself but the temps were still just above freezing so the snow wasn't suffering and we weren't sweating like the warmth of the last ski of the year can sometimes inspire.

A quick stop at the bakery and ski season was put to rest for another year and it was only lunch time. It's important when coaxing your end of season legs to continue on to that extra loop at the end not to let on what the nature of the afternoon plan. On such a beautiful spring day, a guy like me has no choice but to head out for a spin on the bike.

I ride year 'round but the first spring ride has a magic not to be missed and this particular day had the glory of the spring sun still refusing to share the sky with anything but the stark tree branches all waking up but not yet showing the first yawn. Neither has the ground yet thawed so while the snow was melting quickly under the stern gaze of the sun, all the run off was still moving horizontally, creating lakes and rivers where yesterday and tomorrow there would be none.

So great was the glory of this day that I recorded mostly with my internal retinal camera but these few shots capture the essence of a day where skiing lumbers off for its summer hibernation and the lone winter cyclists are joined by the fair-weather throng. It's a wondrous thing to have such a day that begins in the soft white embrace of skiing and ends with the warm caress of the saddle flying over the distance covered by our wheels.


  1. Great post once again. It's not very often that you can get a Duathlon done that is made of sports like skiing and cycling, sports usually not performed at the same location or at the same time of year :). Thanks for the photos, too. It looks like it was magic day.

  2. Hey Groover, thanks for stopping by! It was a great day, even better than the pictures tell.