Saturday, August 7, 2010

Big Mel Rides a Bike

Okay, so it's true that I spend most of my time goofing off, drawing pictures of the Original Chamois Monkey, and fantasizing about people actually reading my blog. But occasionally I do like to get my Fuji Team Pro racing bike out and go for a ride.

My latest adventure took me, Dr. T., and the Godfather from Edwardsville, IL to Staunton, IL along the Quercus Grove Trail.

The Quercus Grove Trail starts in Edwardsville at E Vandalia St just East of N Brown Ave. This trail changes from blacktop, to crushed rock back, to blacktop a few times with a small length of country road thrown in just for kicks. However, the trail was easily handled by my 23cm tires with just a few loose gravel spots that made me pay additional attention for a brief time. The ride out to Staunton is approx. 20 miles and extremely flat. Nice weather and easy riding allowed up to get into Staunton quite quickly.

While in Staunton, there is one place you have to visit ... Henry's Rabbit Ranch. Rich Henry, the proprietor, is one of the friendliest people you'll meet along historic Route 66. He has created what can only be described as a 'wonder emporium' of all things Route 66 ... oh yeah, and he has rabbits also. Stop in for a visit next time you find yourself in Staunton, IL, I'm sure he'll tell you a story and let you pet a rabbit!

Dark clouds forced us to cut our site-seeing in Staunton a bit short and we found ourselves riding back in a steady downpour all the way back to Edwardsville. My feet felt like they were pedaling in two goldfish bowls by the time we reached our car. The trail holds up fairly well in the rain, although it is allot like riding on the beach at low tide on the crushed stone sections.

Only major letdown was not getting over to Pink Elephant Antique Mall to see the newly painted pink elephant, their new flying saucer, an oversized tricycle, or sample a frozen treat from their new ice cream stand. Oh well, just another reason to ride again next time.

Big Mel

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