Thursday, July 20, 2017

GROPING AROUND IN THE DARK

One of our days spent in Northern Idaho consisted of riding bicycles on the Hiawatha trail.  The fact I have only been on a bicycle a couple of times in four years and have not put my rear on a saddle in a year would not deter me from saddling up with the posse.  Don't they say once you know how to ride a bicycle you never forget?



What they failed to tell me was immediately following the start is the first of many tunnels.  It is two miles long.  Now I certainly remembered how to ride a bicycle, BUT riding in a dark and wet tunnel with only a small beam of light MIGHT have pushed my "Nearing Panic" button.  WHAT WAS I THINKING???



This picture from the WWW would have you to believe you could actually see in the tunnel.  THAT WOULD NOT BE THE CASE.  It was pitch black and you could only see the lights pedaling toward you and the dim circle of light created by your LED flashlight.  In this--the longest of all the tunnels, it closely resembled a Broadway Parody of "Three Blind Mice"  --PLUS TWO.  The others quickly pulled ahead of me and I was in the back with only my twilight haze of light to try and avoid all the puddles of water and the the deep troughs of run off on each side.  I was truly groping in the dark and watching for the first glimmer of light that announced I might get out of this dark dungeon alive.  Sadly I determined my Claustrophobia is alive and well.



When we finally emerged in the daylight, I knew I would survive.  We then rode mile upon mile of trestles, switchbacks, and beautiful trails built on an old railroad track bed.  The scenery was breathtaking and the slight downgrade made the entire ride an exhilarating experience.

We began the ride in Montana and rode back to Idaho changing time zones on the way.  There was some confusion about the time for our pick up by the shuttle for the ride back to our car.  We somehow managed to make it with minutes to spare--quite by "blind luck"--pun intended.



We then load our bicycles and ourselves on a bright yellow school bus for the thirty minute ride back to the start.  The most frightening part of the entire adventure was the school bus ride up the hair pin switchbacks getting us back up the mountain.

SURPRISE---YOU HAVE TO RIDE YOUR BICYCLE BACK THROUGH THE TWO MILES OF DARK TUNNEL TO GET TO YOUR VEHICLE AND TURN IN  THE BICYCLES.  Since there is NO Plan B---you must get back on the bicycle and ride back through the pitch black tunnel.  Only thing is the tunnel is now FILLED with a large number of riders, making it even more treacherous.  



SOME of us needed to have to have our rears cleaned up after sloshing through the water and mud filled tunnel.



OH--BUT THE FUN WE HAD!



AND THE SIGHTS WE SAW!



When we relaxed after stumbling through the dark beginning!  Sometimes you have to take the plunge into the unknown and conquer the fear factor, to experience the biggest blessings!


"I will lead the blind by a way they do not know, In paths they do not know I will guide them I will make darkness into light before them And rugged places into plains These are the things I will do, And I will not leave them undone."
Isaiah 42:16


7 comments:

  1. Now THAT was an adventure for the ages! Thanks for sharing.

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    1. With more to follow on this trip! If you go to Idaho-this is a must!
      Thanks for visiting today !
      Blessings!

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  2. You are so brave, giggling...my son and husband have mountain bikes, and they have started to ride them once again...at first, they both were sore from muscles they never knew they had...smiles.

    Breathtakingly lovely photos, Lulu. smiles

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    1. My rear was slightly sore, but not nearly as bad as when I ride a road bike, it was beautiful!
      Blessings My Friend!

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  3. Did the dark tunnel have bats flying at you? And dramatic frightening music like in horror films? And rats and big spiders' webs? If not, then those people who run it have missed a trick. Can you imagine how many more bike riders that would attract? Especially if every now and then a skeleton jumped at you, or a big ball followed you like in Raiders of the Lost Ark and Indiana Jones. You did say that the tunnel was at an incline. So the ball would follow you naturally.

    God bless.

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    1. Thankfully NO bats! They were in another cave when we hiked. They did warn us abt meeting traffic in some of the tunnels. I will take bats & skeletons over a truck any day!!
      Blessings, Victor!

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    ReplyDelete

Your comments keep my writing and often cause me to think. A written form of a hug or a pat on the back and an occasional slap into reality---I treasure them all!