I did a little searching on the internet and planned a long route up into the mountains that would take me to places I have never ridden before. The night before the ride I had my bike ready and my gear packed read for an early morning ascent up into the clouds. Once parked, I pedaled up as far my legs would take me and when I could no longer pedal, I pushed and even dragged my bike up the trail until I could go no further.
Lately I have had a tremendous number of things in my life to think about. Often when riding up I have an opportunity to tune out the elements and the exertion my body is making and I am able to think deeply about 'things'. As I said before, I had a lot on my mind so the extra long climb allowed me to sort out the issues affecting my life. In the end, I ended up going up and over one mountain and then on my way up another. I finally stopped climbing when I was ankle deep in snow and soaked to the bone deep in the forest with a clear mind.
At 11am I stopped at the crest of a mountain and watched the clouds roar past carried by a strong stormy wind leaving a glimpse of clear blue skies off in the distance. These images reminded me of sacrifices that Canadian soldiers made in the wars they have fought have allowed me the freedom to be able to enjoy my life. They have given me the freedom to do what I want to do on a daily basis. Though I may not express my admiration for soldiers on a day to day basis, I completely respect what they do and always treat them with the utmost of respect, because that is what they deserve.
So my route down took me back to the Goldmine trail and then over to Snakes and Ladders, the trail right above Shotgun and then finally Shotgun.
This map shows my route up in Blue and route down in Red
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This ride gave me an opportunity to deeply reflect on many things in my life and to pay my respects to those that have fought in wars that preserve our way of life.