It is a cold and damp morning as I look at my backyard. As I stare at the leafless trees and fluffed up wrens I am warmed by the coffee and memories of last summer. One ride comes to mind, the TRIRI bike rally that was held at Spring Mill State Park last June. It was a 4 day event. It was not a bike race. It was a bike tour. The organizers mapped and marked loop rides from the park. The first and last days were 20 to 40 mile routes. The 2nd and 3rd days, you could chose long, medium or short rides. So you can select the route which best suits your ability and desire to explore.
You can arrange to stay in the lodge or camp. I camped. Though it was in the primitive area we were given access to the hot showers and restrooms in the modern campground. There are advantages to having your car with you: going to the store for supplies or get yourself to the inn for breakfast or supper. And the car was a handy place to store your road snacks in at night or when you were away for camp. One the neighbors were awakened by a racquet in the middle of the night. The beam of the flash light caught the bandit red (or rather white) handed. The raccoon had opened the powdered Gatorade container and was really enjoying the sugary powder.
The routes left time to explore the trails around the park. The routes even had me traveling to sights I had not been to in my 60+ years visiting the area. The food at the inn was great. I would be remiss not to mention that the persimmon pudding is really above average. Since most us bike so we can eat (deserts), they have really good cobblers and pies. TRIRI sponsored a beer garden. A micro-brewery from Bloomington brought several kegs of beer that we were able to enjoy. It was met with such enthusiasm that this year it will be 2 nights.
I had a lot of fun meeting and riding new people. I stopped at places that before I had just ridden past, one of which is Becks Mill. TRIRI had arranged for the mill to be open for us and staffed by the docents. It was a fun stop which reminds that I need to take my wife there sometime soon. In case of trouble we had emergency numbers and there was a roving SAG vehicle. Though I was told they would not pull me up the hill. I was sad that service was not included.
This year it will be held at McCormick’s Creek State Park, June 10-13th. It is located west of Bloomington. It will be fun to explore new areas of the state without worrying about the mowing the lawn or cooking for 4 days. I plan to be there, come and share the fun!