Looking ahead at the ten day weather forecast 7 out of 10 days shows rain or snow. It is that time of year … Spring … when rain is all too common. Of course, with rain comes river flooding and closed trails. Some of our trails are still closed from rain a few weeks ago. And we keep getting more rain so the river silt (mud) on the trails can’t dry out so it can be removed off of the trails. So the trails stay closed with no hope of opening back up anytime soon. Winter brings quite a bit of precipitation causing all of this and then Spring comes along . I sure with the city of Fort Wayne, Indian never would have built so much of our trails along the rivers. What trails we have which were not built along rivers don’t have this flooding problem. At least I have those to ride on when the other trails are closed. Even some of them get flooded over by nearby creeks and ditches but they don’t flood nearly as often and when they do they don’t stay flooded very long compared to the traills along the rivers.
If ever any of you are considering riding the Fort Wayne Trails it would be advisable to check on the status of trail closures by going to THIS webpage. It is usually kept up to date. You are also welcome to CONTACT ME as I usually know what is going on with our trails.
Today (as I compose this) has been a warm rainy day so I took advantage of it and spent several hours working on my trike. Tomorrow is not suppose to rain so hopefully I will be able to ride and test out all that I did to my trike today. The following day some nasty weather is forecast so I won’t be venturing out. But whenever I can my plan is to …
Flooded over trails is something that happens all too often. All it takes is one day of rain and some of our local trails close for weeks sometimes. This is something I have written about several times before so I won’t repeat myself here. I will simply provide a link to a past article I wrote about it.
I am amazed that one of our local rivers rarely ever rises up under a major highway flooding over the trail which goes under the highway. Looking at the river here one would think it would readily flood over. Yet I have only seen it flooded over a couple of times. And this river has flooded over elsewhere at other locations and doesn’t even rise any here oftentimes.
It is a mystery to me, but I am glad about it as I can still ride this trail when others are closed due to flooding. I may have to take alternate detours elsewhere but most of the trail is rideable when others are not.
Dealing with all too frequent flooding and trail closures gets old quick. Never the less, I am thankful I still have other trails to ride that usually don’t flood. And if worse comes to worse there are always streets and roads to ride … as hellacious as they are. I am talking about pot holes. I don’t know how many thousands of dollars I have spent repairing my trike from damage Fort Wayne streets have caused. The heavier duty BMX wheels I have now are holding up much better than the stock Catrike wheels did. Still I hate hitting pot holes and there are lots of them and I can’t usually avoid them. With the Catrike wheels I was constantly breaking spokes … I mean dozens of them. I think I have had only one broken spoke since I got the BMX wheels. I have put a lot of money into my trike over the years, but it is serving me well and holding up well with the components I now have on it. I just wish I had made the changes sooner rather than keeping it stock for so long.
In addition to the trail closures due to flooding there are also several utility, construction, tree removal, and bridge closures all going on at the same time in many different locations. As they say “when it rains it pours”. And as they say … “you’ll have that!” And I can vouch for it … we got it.
After 5 days of not being able to get out and ride I finally made it out today … only to discover ya can’t get there from here … at least not by way of the bike trail. I rode about 14 miles on the trail when I came upon a closed gate and a barricade sign stating the road was closed. So I had to turn around and go back the way I had come. That pretty much ended my ride for the day. It was cold out there today and my hands were cold. I had other things I needed to do anyway so it worked out well.
Anyway, I just love it when construction people fail to put up signage back at the previous trail exit letting you know the trail is closed ahead. Oh well, I was out for exercise anyway. The reason the trail is closed is because the electric company has erected new poles and they are now in the process of pulling new wires up onto the poles. The wires will cross over the river as they go their merry way. Anyway, the entire project is suppose to last thru this month so there is a long way to go since it is early Dec. I will just have to deal with it. There are other trails to ride … thankfully. And there is a way around this area to get back onto that trail and ride the rest of it. It involves riding on and crossing some busy streets but I have done it many hundreds of times. So I am going to …
Life is full of obstacles and while riding our trikes it is no exception. Whether it be natural such as a fallen tree, a flood, etc. or man-made such as a barricade set up, a bollard, a kissing gate (how many of you know what that is?), a detour or road/trail closed sign, or some other nifty thing placed in front of us … they all accomplish the same thing … slowing us down, making things more difficult, costing more time and effort, causing us to turn back having to give up progressing onward … at least on that particular pathway we are attempting to travel on.
It is a lot easier for a person on foot or a bicycle to deal with this than it is for a trike rider.
Encountering flood water and attempting to ride thru it can be risky business. It just may be deeper than anticipated and you can get a sitting bath. If the water is cold and/or nasty that isn’t so good. I speak from experience.
This is a kissing gate … try to get thru that on a trike. Some are made so you can, but this one above isn’t one of them. The one pictured below a trike can get thru, but just barely. These certainly are not very convenient. Here is a video of a tadpole trike rider and his wife dealing with a kissing gate:
Bollards just usually slow us down, but some are spaced too close together for a trike to get thru. For sure be careful when approaching bollards. They have a nasty habit of jumping right out in front of tadpole trikes. 🙂
I see these signs a whole lot more than I care to … mostly due to trail flooding from the rivers they run alongside of.
As a volunteer Greenway Ranger for our local trail system I report problems I encounter while out on the trails and many of them I take care of myself as long as I can. I cut and remove lots of fallen trees and tree branches. I like riding on the trails so I do what I can to help keep them open.
Well, all I know to say is … OBSTACLES? … YOU’LL HAVE THAT! … Let’s all try to …