Saturday 13 June 2015. To Tolono with the Prairie Cycle Club

Velo du Jour broke new ground this morning as I, for the first time, joined the Prairie Cycle Club on their Saturday morning ride from Meafowbrook Park. Have wanted to do this for a long time but have hesitated; not sure why. Guess I just wanted a buddy to help break into the group.

Who happened in this case to be a fellow yoga student with whom I had a conversation at a party last week. Thanks, Nancy!

Went with the group that took the most leisurely pace, though several of the cyclists wore cycling jerseys and cycling shorts and rode fairly serious road bikes.

Here we are about to depart from the Race Street parking lot.
The moderate wind was from the southwest, so it was determined that the destination would be Tolono, via Race, Airport Road, First Street, and County Road 800 E, a distance of about 10 miles.

Not far south on Race Street, one of our number, another first-timer, had bike trouble. We waited while fellow cyclists tried to help correct the problem,
but it did not yield to their efforts and the new cyclist decided not to
continue the trip, alas.

Loved riding in this group of people I knew slightly or not at all. Noticed that talking made the route pass quickly but that it wasn’t possible to observe as much as when I’m alone. Must say, however, that it was very nice to have the route determined by someone else and not have any of my personal mental space taken up with deciding where to go.

On south First Street observed the blue-green of a field planted in oats, which I can’t recall seeing before in Velo du Jour. Did not get a photo because it didn’t seem the group was ready to stop.

But did get a shot, a little ways south, of of a field of winter wheat.

Amber waves of grain, right here, in June!

Turned west toward Tolono on County Road 800 N, which was a little nicer entrance to town (and one without barking dogs) than the one (East Washington St.) I used on my recent solo trip here.

We all crossed US 45 and stopped at the Casey’s for water or a snack. One of our number enjoyed a slice of scrambled egg breakfast pizza.

Some of the group went on to Sadorus; the rest returned to Urbana, with the wind at our backs! Saw a bluish streak of a bird that I was pretty sure was an indigo bunting cross our path.

Hope to ride with the Prairie Cycle Club again soon!


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