Today was our last day before starting the journey back east. We were lucky that Fred was willing to watch the kids all day so that Ron and I could do a ride on the McKenzie River Trail with our friend, Chris. We got a little more than we bargained for as it turned into a marathon mountain bike ride (literally!). We dropped off Chris' car at the bottom of the trail and drove our car up the road about 20 miles to start the trail. The first three miles of it was smooth and twisty single track. Lots of fun, until the trail started to get really twisty and then really rocky. Not smooth, rounded rocky, either. These were sharp lava rocks piled in all kinds of unpredictable directions. Not very rideable. At all. It took us two hours to complete the first 10 miles of the trail. The next 17 miles was a lot faster--I felt like I was a Jedi on the Forest Moon of Endor--but it still took us 3 more hours. I started getting my post-ride aches and pains about 5 miles before the end of the ride. In spite of the pain I'm going to feel tomorrow, I'm so glad we did this ride. It re-awakened my adventurous side. I think I had assumed that my mountain biking days were behind me, but that ride (and the other few I did this summer) reminded me that I still can and want to ride my mountain bike. I'm looking forward to lots more riding during my sabbatical year.
We got back to Springfield a lot later than expected, but I was relieved that the whole family was there waiting for us. We visited for a couple of hours before stumbling into bed. Packing up the car will have to wait until tomorrow.