ride report – February 16th

Was able to duck out for a decent ride on Sunday…..my usual startup going up Double Oak Way and onto the ridgeline above Mt Laurel.  My plan was to ride the doubletrack trail all the way to Hwy 25, and then back on Hwy 41.  However, upon reaching the second powerline crossing, where land ownership transitions from EBSCO to a portion of land leased through the Alabama Forestry something or another, I heard some gunshot.  Not just a random shot or two, but around 20 rounds released in rapid succession….like maybe 15 seconds.  Definitely a semi automatic.  Then a few more rounds were released, and I could tell it was likely within 100 yards of where I was.  There was a giant boulder ridge up the hill above me, and I suspect someone was taking target practice on the opposite side.

Looking at the map, I can’t find any dirt roads or trails to support the location I believe it occurred, but I have seen some trucks on the nearby trail and it would not surprise me if a four-wheeler was able to get to that spot rather easily.

So, based on the gunfire and the fact that I was about to enter property that had plenty of No Trespassing signs posted on the trees, I decided to cut my ride short and head back the way I came.

Some random pics below.  Strava data can be found here.  18.7 miles and 1863 feet of climbing.  Very likely my last decent ride before this weekend’s Southern Cross.  I can’t say I’m happy with the mileage training I’ve done in 2014, but at least I’ve been able to ride a few times.  If Southern Cross were 25 miles and not 50 then I know I’d have no problem.

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