Friday, October 31, 2008

Dry Leaves, No Problem

Looking east from Fletcher Avenue, Lexington

This barrier at the end of Hancock Avenue in Lexington is made from old rails.

Today: 12 miles. This year: 1505.7 miles.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Wet Leaves are the Black Ice of Inline Skating

Wet leaves are easier to see, of course. The resemblance to black ice is in the slickness and the difficulty of assessment. How wet are they? How rotten, and how deep? The more fortunate connection is that black ice and wet leaves both fade in the warmth of the day.

Just as Yury suggested, the shallow excavations later topped with concrete are the foundations of new benches. The one below is on the outbound side of the trail west of Wiggins Avenue in Bedford.

It's hard to keep track, but I don't think this tree leaning out from the tree line used to be so prominent. My guess is that its great height and the rain-softened ground are slowly tilting it over the trail just outbound from Fletcher Avenue in Lexington. There are high wind warnings tomorrow afternoon into Wednesday morning. Don't stand right there.

Today: 13 miles. This year: 1493.7 miles.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Construction Updates

Woburn Street's beautiful new pavement isn't yet finished out to the curbs. The detour to Fletcher Avenue continues.

The small rectangular excavations in Bedford are filled with concrete now. Are these are foundations for benches?

Today: 13 miles. This year: 1472.7 miles. To Stillwater: 163.8 miles.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Narrow Gauge Trail; Rectangular Plots; Woburn St. Paving

I passed the end of the Minuteman this morning and skated the paved portion of the Bedford Narrow Gauge Rail Trail over to the Great Road. I hadn't been there in years and had completely forgotten that a hundred yards or so of narrow gauge are rusting away alongside the trail. [Update: These rails are a re-creation, not original, and probably weren't there at my previous visit ten years ago.]

Near Loomis Street on the BNGRT

The gauge is well under two feet

On both trails I saw neatly excavated, taped-off rectangular plots. Landscaping? Archaeology? Shallow graves? I don't know.

After months of disruption and more than a week of outright closure, Woburn Street in Lexington was repaved this morning.

From Fletcher Ave. toward the trail crossing on Woburn St.

Today: 13.8 miles. This year: 1459.7 miles.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Blank Spot

I'm busy with visiting relatives and won't be skating or posting until Thursday at the earliest.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Mixed Conditions and a Hawk

Where the sun shines and the wind blows, the trail was clear and dry early this afternoon. Where they don't, it was thick with wet leaves or fir needles.

Near Valley Road, Lexington

Today: 8 miles. This year: 1431.2 miles.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Chasing the Ghost of 2007

At The Beginning of 2007, I mentioned my ambition to skate the distance to Stillwater, OK that year. It didn't happen. I renewed the goal in my Welcome to 2008. My plan was to keep ahead of 2007's pace and continue in 2008 past where I got lazy in 2007. That plan dissolved in mid-April with spring rains, chilly weather, and a week-long cold that kept me in the house. In late June I bottomed out 137 miles behind the previous year's pace.

Today it's all different. I'm (just barely) ahead of 2007-to-date. Another 16.3 miles will put all of 2007 behind me, leaving less than 200 miles to my annual goal. There might be a month of skating weather left. That should be enough.

Today: 13 miles. This year: 1423.2 miles.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Bikeway in the News: New Bike Cages at Alewife

Today's Boston Globe has an article about the increasing number of bike cages at Alewife Station, built in response to rapidly rising demand.

Yesterday: 10.5 miles. This year: 1384.2 miles.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Fall Foliage in Fine Form

Three words: slippery when wet.

Near Valley Road, Lexington

Yesterday: 8 miles. This year: 1360.7 miles.