Tour De Farce™ Week Six: Byurnt-byurnt-byurrr…byurnt-byurnt-byurrr…FOXY!

Epic, isn't it?

So here’s the thing:

I like foxes, of both the four-legged and two-legged varieties (the idiot news channel, not so much). So you can imagine my delight when, as I was charting my course for last week’s ride, I noticed that a slight detour from my route would take me to an actual State Park, and not another blink-and-you’ll-miss-it shantytown. Eager to let me non-existant tires bite into the soft earth instead of cruel pavement, I veered north from I-70 and headed on up to Fox Ridge State Park. But before you get too excited, let’s review, shall we?

MILES BIKED THIS WEEK: 45 (9.0 miles/day, Monday-Friday)

TOTAL MILES BIKED SO FAR: 239

WHERE I WOULD BE IF THIS BIKE HAD WHEELS: Fox Ridge State Park, Illinois

I’m a sucker for a good park, especially one with trails, and falls, and flora and fauna not so inured to the comings and goings of humanity that they stand beside the trail, begging for spare change and bits of Lunchable. No, although Fox Ridge has its fair share of visitors, the local Wildlife Conservation Squad seems to be on the ball, and the locals seem keen on preserving this bit of nature’s bounty rather than slapping a highway overtop it and adding a soulless strip mall anchored by a pseudo-ironic Rain Forest Cafe. As an added bonus, the entire park is centered around the rugged bluffs of the endearingly named Embarras River (pronounced in the Midwestern French way, i.e., “Ambraw,” rather than straight-up Ohio Anglicization, e.g. “Versailles” pronounced as “Ver-sails, hyuck-hyuck-hyuck!“). Should I ever make it over this way in real life, I will happily spend a day or two at the Fox Ridge State Park and Creepy Fish Experimentation Station. It’s hard not to like a place whose motto reads “take only memories, leave only footprints” – just make sure you don’t step on any butterflies.

Coming up next week: Altamont, IL…no word yet as to whether any hippies will be receiving a beatdown by angry Hell’s Angels, but I’m going to avoid playing any Rolling Stones just in case.

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