I found an app for my phone called All Trails. It gave me a listing of trails nearby. I had heard about this nice mountain bike trail called, DTE Foundation Trails, in the Waterloo State Recreation area just north of Chelsea, Michigan. One day as I was driving from riding the Lakelands State Park Rail Trail, I saw a sign for parking for the DTE trails.
The trail was constructed and maintained by the Potawatomi Chapter of the International Mountain Biking Association (IMBA). www.potomba.org for their information. The trails flow in different directions depending on the day of the week. Some days go clockwise and others go counter-clockwise. Posted signs clearly let you know which direction. There were spots to pull over for faster riders.
I still consider myself a mountain bike novice and selected the easiest of the four trails. I felt that this was a very good decision. The most difficult section for me was during the first half mile which was due to the elevation increase. I just pull off when I need to catch my breath.
I found the curves to go smoothly with my fat tire bike. The handlebars could easily make down the path. There were few rock and roots. A regular mountain bike could easily traverse this and I even thought of taking my gravel bike here. I will definitely come back. I had a great time.
Last week I did a ride on a rail trail with my ebike. This trail has a crushed limestone base most of the way. I had ridden this many times years ago and felt that I had a good sense of how I would feel on the ride.
From the beginning I felt very sluggish and turned on the e-assist to help me. I continued to need the assist consistently for miles and I could feel that I needed to rely on the help to keep my usual pace. Looking at my battery power level I noticed that I only had half the battery left after only ten miles. I was seven miles from the turnaround and I was ten miles from the start. I would need to make a new plan for the rest of the ride.
1. Turn off motor assist
2. Shift to easier gears in complete the planned route. One option is always go a shorter distance. Don't worry about my speed or the time.
3. Use power if needed, but been very conservative. I would be doing some pedaling.
4. Turn on the power when I get back to this spot to use what I have left.
The plan worked and I used every bit of the battery.
Lesson 1: There is a learning curve when using an ebike when you want to go long distances. If you are only going for a half hour ride on the local trail or commuting, you would just use whatever power you want and not worry about conservation.
I covered 40 miles. I had to be careful how I use the power. Luckily in this situation I knew the topography and trail conditions ahead of me and this gave me confidence in the plan.
Lesson 2: Check the air pressure in your tires before you go on a ride. I did not do this and I realized that low tire pressure was the main reason for my sluggish ride. A guide may say to inflate tires like this to 25 PSI for riding trails. I was on rail trails and did not have roots, rocks, ruts and holes. The tire sidewalls guided inflation to 35-66 PSI. The next day I had 10 PSI, so no wonder I could not move easily. Use a gauge to check the tire pressure. I cannot gauge this by pushing with my fingers.
Using the ebike gave me an indication of the power that I am needing to keep my pace. I do not think that I would normally use my battery power. I will do the ride again and see how much power I use with more full tires.
Now I will check all tires before I head out on a ride and inflate to the appropriate level for the situation.
I enjoy watching YouTube videos while I ride inside. Yesterday I needed an easy day because of sore muscles and watched a video about a day in a tour through the National Forest in Utah.
This adventurer has a YouTube channel and this was the second video tour that I heard his plan for getting water. He was carrying two frame bottles holding about 23 ounces each and a squeezable gathering pouch to which he could attach a flow through filter. He stated that this would hold about half of a bottle. He could hold about 58 ounces at a time, just shy of a half gallon.
I saw this and I said, "carry more water" and "have a better plan". This adventurer has been touring for over 20 years and has much more experience than me. He has survived with his strategy.
Here is what I consider about water:
HAVE PLENTY: When I got started touring again in 2010 I bought this Camelbak from REI. There is a 100 ounce bladder and room for gear with a capacity of 18L. I would supplement this with two or three bottle on frame cages and my total liquid would be 169 oz. This would get me through the day to my campsite. I could also make it through the evening and morning if I could not refill. I remember only once going through all my water during the day and I found a spigot at a township fire hall that filled me up.
HAVE IT STAY REFRESHING: On the Camelbak I added the insulated tube cover and the double walled bottles help some with the water temperature. I feel best about putting electrolytes in the bottles and not the bladder. The water bottles are easier to fill at a stop. If I happen to stop at a restaurant for lunch I can get some ice for the bladder.
IS THE CLIMATE HUMID OR ARID?
WHAT IS THE TEMPERATURE?
Experts advise that you look carefully into your water plan when the temperature is over 80 degrees Fahrenheit and 75-85% humidity.
DO YOU HAVE HEALTH ISSUES ?
Seek the advice of your physician about how to proceed with exercise. I know for me my body does better in the heat than some my age, but I still need to be cautious. The general rule of thumb is that heat becomes more serious for older persons (I am in that category.) Understand how your body will respond.
UNDERSTAND THE PHYSIOLOGY
Red blood cells carry oxygen to your muscles. The blood is 90 % water. Your sweat takes the water out of the blood and this causes the blood to become thicker. This sluggish action will slow the transport of the oxygen. Do you see why we need to keep replenishing your water?
This is my newest hydration pack. This is a waist pack with a 2 L (67.6 oz) bladder and space in another pouch for a tube, pump and tools. I have attached a jacket using the straps on the bottom. The loops along the pack under the sign will handle clip-on items. I like this because it is not as cumbersome as the backpack.
Ellison Bay in the 19th century industries were lumber and fishing. Fruit growing was the prime commerce in the 20th century. Now tourism keeps the area going.
The area was known for the great trout fishing and later the surrounding timbers were part of the logging industry.
This house was built in 1871 by Levi Thorp. He used gold from the California Gold Rush to finance the construction and furnishings. It is in the U.S. National Register of Historic Places. Today it houses an art gallery, cafe and gift shop.
Some of the lighthouses along the Door County shores.
What a great place to visit and tour the building seeing actual furnishings through the time of the keepers 1868-1926. The light is 43' above the ground and 76' above the water.
My previous post for this trip was dated April 27th, entitled Moving into Door County. I had continuing to add miles, but I got out of the routine of posting about the trip. I think that I just got outside more and restrictions from Covid-19 were lifting. I bet you understand because the same thing happened to you about that time.
Deaths Door is in this water between the peninsula and the islands. The waters can be managed much better now. These islands are named: Plum, Detroit, Hog, Rock, Pilot and Fish. Washington Island has about 600 residents. The economy is primarily vacation based.
This park is open year-round and offers many opportunities to experience the outdoors.
I love my riding days and look to find interesting and informative items to share.