Thursday, June 21, 2012

Tunnel Hill Trail

 On Wednesday, I went with my dad and brothers on a bike trail called Tunnel Hill Trail.  The trail is about an hour's drive away from our house.  We left as early as we could to take advantage of the cooler morning air.

The trail was quite lovely, but before I can show you just how beautiful it is, I must first show you how much work went into it.

Yes, five bikes and a large water cooler were packed into the back of my family's 12-passenger van.  It worked out quite nicely.  You can tell that Dad has done this kind of thing before. ;)

The evening before the ride, shortly after we made the plans, I decided that I needed a new bike.  The one I rode before I've had for about eight years and was in rough shape.  That, and I wanted one that fits my personality.  
I found this.  I knew without a doubt that this was indeed my new bicycle. 

The ride itself was nice.  We got there at about eight in the morning, so everything was still fresh and new.  My brothers spotted several deer (they were farther ahead than I was at that point).  The first one they saw was a doe.

Then all of a sudden, a tiny, long-legged creature came out of nowhere:

It was a fawn! 
It was amazing to see such a small animal with such energy!
Fawns are so adorable.

A few miles later, Brother #3 stopped short on the trail.  He apparently had just barely missed a turtle. 
Dad picked up the little guy, who quickly receded into his shell. 

 You can see just how tiny he was.  I think he was a small snapping turtle, but I'm not sure.

Here are some pictures of the trail itself.  It was nice and shady for a good part of the ride. 

I forgot to mention earlier that this trail was originally a railroad.  There are several trestle bridges, with this one being the largest.

We were up pretty high!

We came to the end shortly after we went through the longest tunnel.  

I meant to take pictures inside the tunnel, but the first time we went through it took all my strength just to get through it.  That, and it was really dark in the middle.   I took video when we went through it the second time, but it was pretty shaky.
So, this is pretty much all I have of the tunnel itself:

 Not bad for taking the picture over my shoulder while riding away from the tunnel, eh? ;)

The trail was longer than any I have ever covered before.  It was ten miles one way, up a slight grade.  It was an endurance run, that is for sure.
But it was worth it.


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