Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Tuesdays at Wakefield

Sagada at Wakefield
SagadaP at Wakefield
It was only last spring that I started taking Sagada to ride at Wakefield. She learned to ride in the softball field parking lot-- meandering along aimlessly trying to grasp the concept of steering and jumping off only when she lost control or when she ran out of asphalt. When she could control her turns I took her to the Creekside trail for her first taste of singletrack where she learned to ride over small roots and pick her way through the rocks. Although the trail was relatively flat, some of the small ups and downs didn't seem so small from the saddle of a four year old. "Follow my line" I'd call out when the trail got rocky, or "Hill coming up-- pedal harder little singlespeeder..." at every little change in grade. After a while it became second nature to her and she would take the lead. I'd ride behind, watching those little legs pick up the cadence as the hills came into view, or seeing a hint of body english in effect when trying to rail a turn. She surprised me a few times by getting over roots that I thought would surely send her off the trail.

And so it went almost every Tuesday through the summer and fall. While Gina rode with the MORE ride, Sagada and I would rip the Creek trail. We took a break in the Winter when it got too cold for her, but now that spring is here we've started up again. After a few warm up rides to get her biking legs back, we took it up a notch last Tuesday and headed for the race course, where we made short work of the "phase I" trails. She had to walk some of the climbs, but she got through all the dips, turns, and switchbacks beautifully. We paused at the top the hill (which she calls a "mountain") to admire the view. Below us, we could see the ribbons of singletrack that we had just ridden snaking through the trees. "Look Daddy, I climbed the mountain!" she says excitedly. My thoughts rush back to the time I first crested Signal Knob at Elizabeth Furnace. I know exactly how she feels. We finish off a Gatorade before pointing the bikes down the "mountain" and railing the switchbacks. On our way back to the cars we run into Rickyd leading a fast group of riders on the Creek trail. Normally I'd feel like I was missing out, but not this time. I'm exactly where I want to be.

5 Comments:

Blogger Mrs. Outlaw said...

Awesome!

6:23 PM

 
Blogger gmr2048 said...

great write-up, joe. you must be such a proud papa. congrats on starting a new generation of singlespeeders!

8:16 AM

 
Anonymous Lee said...

Thats awesome Joe!

11:41 AM

 
Blogger fatbob29r said...

Joe,

How proud you must be. I remember when Aga was still shy and had training wheels in the parking lot! Now she's climbing mountains!!!

6:33 PM

 
Anonymous Maili said...

You're a great dad Joe!! Sagada's going to grow up to be a tough rider and a confident lady!

3:05 PM

 

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