eBike Excursion 1: Scouting the Trails Near my House

Hot damn, are there some beautiful trails by this house. Like within a block or two. It’s really just two trails that intersect. One is ho-hum. It’s short and unremarkable. But the other one! The other one, holy shit on my dick it’s amazing. It’s so long I actually began to fear I’d run out of battery.

When I spent $800 on the eBike battery, I had second thoughts. Like “will I ever need this much range?” Well now I do. The main leg is 4.3 miles. But it connects to all these other semi-official trails and low speed back roads used by local industry that are many times that length.

I’m getting ahead of myself, though. After charging Das Wampyr overnight, I set out at 11 am expecting to be back by noon at the latest. I overshot that by nearly two hours. There’s just so much to check out. Two wetlands, a lake, a river…a golf course (whoop de fuck) and a bunch of interesting industrial buildings and machines.

This is apparently a water treatment plant. Makes sense as it’s adjacent to a river I suppose. I couldn’t smell anything unpleasant. The brutalist architecture caught my eye. But the entrance structure was really wonderfully designed:

How cool is that? Answer: Very cool. Reeks of 1960’s futurism, the best kind. Sort of reminds me of the NIKE headquarters for some reason, or something from Tomorrow Land at Disney World. Wasn’t expecting any of this from these trails.

There’s a bicycle bridge! Just for bikes and pedestrians apparently, crossing the river. From the highest point on the bridge I was able to get some neat shots up and down the river, as well as taking a break to check my tires and joints.

Up river. Not sure what built those rafts. Beavers, I want to say? They don’t look like dams to me though. I don’t know enough about beavers to say for sure but I vagely recall that they build shelters that look something like this. The mini-islands dotting the river are intriguing indeed, and may warrant a visit should I ever build a small electric boat.

Another of the small islands. Barely an island, really, since the two shores are so close to one another. Still, if I can legally visit them I think they’ll make for a fun day trip some time this Summer, just to poke around and see what all lives there.

Golf course. Blah. I hate landscaping, it never looks right. I hate golf for how much land it gobbles up. Oh well. The trail turns to gravel here. I might need to swap over to mountain bike tires in the near future.

Railroad, and bridge over it. Lots of hobo symbols spray painted nearby, I assume people jump onto/off box cars around here. I did see loads of tents camoflaged with tarps and branches but won’t post them here, lest they be used by law enforcement to destroy or forcibly relocate those shelters.

Gravel foot path down to one of the wetlands. There’s just exactly enough gravel portions of the path to make me want mountain bike tires, but I’ve had such good luck with these kevlar street tires, they never seem to leak. I don’t know. Anyway it looked mushy from here but in fact the ground was surprisingly solid.

I got off here and walked a short ways. I worried my boots would sink into the mud, but they never did. Apparently people come out here to fish. That, and the presence of a maintained foot path, incline me to believe it was fine to be out here.

Look at that, would you? Spectacular. Moreso this Summer I think. Anyways I now have direct access to two natural bodies of water at least. The river, and the wetland. Very much suitable for underwater experimentation, if you ask me.

More of the wetland. Kind of swampy, didn’t feel like testing out how solid the ground was here. I imagine it looks much less sinister during warmer months when those trees aren’t bare. I am proud to live in a state where humans share the environment so harmoniously with other species.

The trail continued until it ran parallel to a freeway for many miles. I don’t consider freeways scenic so I didn’t bother. Maybe there’s something cool at the other end? I’ll find out some other day. I didn’t know how much battery was left, so I didn’t risk it.

Here’s the smaller of the two trails. I left it for last since it’s kind of “blah”. Not bad, but not great, I think mostly it’s there for access to the park and so people’s kids have somewhere safe to ride their bikes. I saw a lot of joggers and people walking their dogs here.

One of the trail heads. Had to stop for obvious photo op. There’s a few of these wherever one of the trail branches comes to an end, usually with places to chain up your bike. I really need to get a chain. But then the tracking device (and sticker advertising it on the bike) have so far prevented theft without ever having to chain it up.

There’s so much more to see out there. I feel more and more vindicated for choosing this location to live in. I really love the feeling of speed and freedom that ebiking represents, and having such an expansive trail network to ride on really makes the huge hassle of building that damned thing worth it in the end.

Stay tuned, more to come as I discover it.

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